The Leaves: The downy hairs on the leaves and the stalks when dry make excellent tinder. One of Mullein’s common names was the “Candlestick plant”. When the plant has finished blooming (second year) one can cut down the stalk, pour melted beeswax over the top few inches and create a torch.
Mullein Tea is a common remedy for coughs and colds. Demulcent, astringent, and emollient this tea can offer some relief to coughs or bowel complaints, specifically hemorrhoids. David Hoffman in “the Holistic Herbal” states that Mullein is ideal for toning the mucous membranes of the respiratory system. It helps reduce inflammation while stimulating expectoration.
For hemorrhoids one can make a tea with the leaves and use as a poultice on the inflamed hemorrhoids. This tea has proven effective for diarrhea as well.
In test-tube research, mullein has been found to fight flu-causing viruses. However, since the flu can lead to serious illnesses such as pneumonia, it’s critical to seek medical attention when experiencing flu symptoms (rather than attempting to self-treat the condition).
In the folkloric tradition Mullein leaves can be burned and the smoke inhaled to relieve coughs.
Drying Leaves: The leaves are thick and take a few days to dry. Once dry they can be crumbled and placed in a glass jar and stored till needed.