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vitex / chastetree
shopping: two varieties
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per 1/4 Pound
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$3.00 
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per Pound
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$7.50 
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$2.80 
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Vitex agnus-castus

vitex / chastetree

plant overview
virtuous vitex

Vitex is a flowering shrub that is native to the Mediterranean region, where it once played a role in the product of baskets and other textiles. The berry or fruit of the plant earned a reputation of possessing the capability of making a monk all thoughts and impulses that would otherwise compromise the vow of celibacy. While the implied hormonal properties of Vitex indicate that the herb should not be used during pregnancy or where there is a history of a hormone-driven disorder, Vitex berry is commonly incorporated into tea blends. Powdered Vitex berry is usually encapsulated as a dietary supplement, although it can also be added to smoothies and other beverages.

Clicking "learn more" next to each variety will take you to individual product pages for details.
Vitex / Chastetree
01.
A Bit of Botany
a little botanical information about vitex

description
Vitex agnus-castus is a member of the Lamiaceae family. The plant grows as a vase-shaped, deciduous shrub reaching 10-15 feet; or is trained as a single trunk tree reaching 20 feet in height. In USDA Zones 5-6— cold winter areas— it is more often grown as a 3-5 foot herbaceous perennial.

The plant's grayish-green leaves are aromatic, compound, palmate, with 5-7 lance-shaped leaflets. Each leaflet is up to 6 inches in length. The plant also features tiny fragrant flowers that are lavender to pale violet in color. These flowers appear in mid to late summer in loose panicles that are up to 12 inches in length.

common names & nomenclature
The name vitex is derived from the Latin vieo which means "to weave" or "to tie up". This is a reference to the use of Vitex agnus-castus in basketry.

Also known as:
chaste tree, chaste berry, vitex, chasteberry, monk's pepper, cloister pepper, agnus castus, man jing zi, abraham’s balm


02.
Where in the World
habitat and range for vitex

Vitex agnus-castus is native to the Mediterranean region.

03.
Cultivation & Harvesting
considerations for growing and harvesting vitex

climate
Vitex is widely cultivated in warm temperate and subtropical regions in full sun or part shade.

soil
Grows best in a rich, well-drained soil.

growing
Seeds are sown in March in a warm greenhouse without pre-treatment. Germination is usually free and quick.

Transplant out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and for their first winter grow them on in the greenhouse. Plant them out into their permanent locations in early summer of the following year.

Vitex can also be propagated by cuttings.

harvesting
Harvest vitex berries in the fall and dry for later use.

preserving
Store the dried vitex berries and powdered dried vitex berries in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

04.
The Rest of the Story
vitex history, folklore, literature & more

vitex for reproductive health
When it comes to reproductive health, there are a lot of products on the market. And many of those products work to control hormones using artificial means. But nature has provided a tool for aiding in sexual and reproductive health that doesn’t use artificial lab created hormones.

Vitex is a plant that’s native to the Mediterranean region of the world. It’s been used for thousands of years to have an effect on hormones and has even been called “chaste berry” for its ability to help control sexual feelings. There are many stories of monks using it to fight their natural sex drive. For many years, vitex has been an herb that was used to help people remain chaste.

But modern research has shown that it does much more than keep people from acting on sexual urges. In fact, it can actually be a major benefit to your reproductive health. Take a look at what vitex can do for women.

If you suffer from problems such as irritability and depression due to hormonal changes in your menstrual cycle, vitex could be the cure you’ve been looking for. It actually helps to control the symptoms of PMS and relieves the moodiness as well as the physical bloating and discomfort that go along with the syndrome.

And if you’re dealing with hormonal imbalances that cause irregular periods and mood swings, you’ll find that vitex can help to straighten out the body. It will naturally regulate the hormones so that you don’t find your moods riding on a pendulum. You’ll also find that your period will become more predictable and regulated.

After childbirth, vitex can help insure that your breast milk production remains steady and strong. You’ll have an easier time nursing and if you’re not producing enough milk, vitex is the answer.

Don’t expect vitex to work overnight. Just like many hormonal treatments it takes about 90 days to get the full effect. Don’t give up on it after a month or even two. Give it a solid three months to make a difference in your hormonal balance.

You can take vitex as a tincture daily in order to get the best benefit. The recommended dosage is 40 drops a day added to water. When you continue this program for several months, you’ll find that gradually your hormones will become regulated. Vitex is a great alternative to taking artificial hormones that can cause more problems than they cure.

for educational purposes only

This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.
This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

please be advised: 
you should always consult with your doctor
before making any changes to your diet!!
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PHOTO CREDIT (TOP): ©2003, Wouter Hagens, public domain
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