Gold lacquer close up
[Erysimum cheiri]

Golden violet: the golden shimmering medicinal plant

Golden violet is an almost forgotten medicinal plant today. It enjoyed great popularity in the Middle Ages and was part of medicinal and ornamental gardens. It was sung about in many places in the songs of minstrels, but not only for its healing power, but for its beauty, which was usually associated with the beloved.

Gold lacquer facts

Did you know that...

... the plant gives off a violet-like scent?
... golden violet is called 'wallflower' in English-speaking countries because it can also grow vertically on walls?
... gold varnish was used in humoral pathology for the excretion of so-called black bile?

What is gold lacquer?

Golden violet is a perennial herbaceous plant with a growth height of 20 to 60 centimeters. The short-stalked, lance-shaped leaves are arranged rosette-like. The racemose inflorescence reaches its most beautiful splendor in early summer May to June. The stem plate flowers of this plant shine in various shades of yellow, orange and red, giving the plant its pictorial name. Since the Middle Ages, the popularity of the plant rose sharply due to its outstanding play of colors and conquered from knight's castles the peasant gardens of the rural population in our latitudes.

General and medicinal properties of Erysimum cheiri

The basic knowledge

Blood purifying

Golden varnish is blood purifying. In naturopathy, it has therefore been used for centuries to cure and purify. This is to stimulate the spleen in its filtering capacity to clarify the blood.

Cardiac Active

Golden varnish is heart active. Its glycosides regulate and harmonize a heart in turmoil. Cardiac neuroses or slight weaknesses can thus be balanced so that the heart can once again do its work calmly and vigorously.


Golden varnish is digestive. Due to its decongestive and cleansing effect, the abdominal cavity is relieved and digestion is eased. In addition, the glycosides contained stimulate intestinal activity and thus help better excretion.

Erysimum cheiri: Ingredients

A number of effective substances are contained in the gold varnish.
  • Glycosides
  • Mustard oil glycosides
  • Vitamin C

Golden varnish: effect for body and mind

Today, the golden varnish is rarely used alone, as it has drastically lost its importance. Today it is mostly used as a component of purification cures and for blood purification. Especially therapists trained in humoral pathology use it as a component of spleen-activating formulas for the elimination of so-called slags. Sometimes it is found together with other plants in heart mixtures, as its contained glycosides have a positive, balancing effect here.

Erysimum cheiri properties

  • Urinary
  • Heart regulating
  • Spleen cleansing
  • Blood purifying
  • Menstrual
  • Skin care

Fields of application in naturopathy

[Erysimum cheiri]
The amount of therapeutic indications has greatly decreased. For some topics, however, golden varnish is still a popular ingredient in therapeutic mixtures.

Golden varnish for liver & heart disease

Many heart and liver conditions are directly linked because they involve conditions of blood flow. If the heart fails to move the blood as much as it should, liver stressing back pressure phenomena can occur. This causes the liver to lose strength and the patient to feel very tired. As soon as the glycosides of the gold lacquer help the heart to do its job again, the liver is relieved and the metabolism can run as usual.

Gold varnish for constipation

Constipation is often the result of an overloaded liver. When goldenseal improves the quality of blood, purifies it and at the same time stimulates the heart to better supply the body with fresh, oxygenated blood, the liver is relieved and digestion improves. In this case, it means that the constipation decreases and the stool is better eliminated.

Erysimum cheiri in heart failure

Weak hearts do not manage to pump the blood sufficiently through the body. As a result, edema can form in the legs and other organs can be disturbed in their function. Since the glycosides contained in goldenseal are active in the heart, they help to support the heart in its work. The supported heart can thus perform its work adequately again and the consequences of heart failure subside.

Erysimum cheiri in the acceleration of menstruation

In humoral pathology, one of the causes of excessive, painful menstruation was the excess of black bile. This excess causes clinging and cramping in the body and is responsible for an increased tendency to inflammation. The goldenseal is considered a remedy of the spleen and stimulates it to filter the black bile from the body. As a result, the tendency to cramp goes and menstruation can be painless and uninhibited.

Notes on the use of gold lacquer

Gold varnish is used today for treatment only as a component of finished preparations. It is applied orally with a little water in drop or tablet form several times a day for defined periods of time. Continuous ingestion is not intended as a matter of principle.

Erysimum cheiri during pregnancy & lactation

During pregnancy and lactation, goldenseal should not be used due to its content of cardiac active glycosides and its menstrual stimulating effect.

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Cheiranthus cheiri plantn bubble



Botanical name

Erysimum cheiri

Plant family


Other designations

Cheiranthus cheiri


April till July

Harvest time

April till July


full sun


Southern Europe

Flower color

golden yellow

Flower shape


Leaf color


Leaf shape


Sheet properties


Soil type

gravelly to sandy

Soil moisture

dry to moderately dry


neutral to slightly alkaline

Lime compatibility


Nutrient requirements




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