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Rica-Rica: an Altiplanic Medicinal Herb

The Rica-Rica is characterized by its aromatic and strong essence and its medicinal properties. Its scientific name is "phil deserticola Alcantholippia" and belongs to the Verbenace family. It is a perennial plant of about 50 cms high that grows associate to tolilla and bailahuén. Its violet flowers appear in October and is consumed like tea. It is an astringent and is used for dysentery and diarrhoea.

In Socaire it is used for the discomfort produced by the meals and against the cough in Toconce. In some others places is called "cori".

Brígida Huanca, producer of Quechua medicinal herbs, lives in Ollagüe and collect herbs on Amincha and Puquios, in Pampas and small farms.

According to Ms Brigida, the Rica-Rica is used for problems of the heart, kidneys and circulation of the blood.


  • Infusion (Herbal tea) : For adult use a teaspoon
  • For young 7-14 years: 1/2 teaspoon
  • F for children 1-6 years: 1/4 teaspoon.
  • Add hot water and let rest.
  • Optional: Mix with Chacacoma for a good digestion
  • Precaution: once per day and one time per week.


Prescription: Brígida Huanca, that collect traditional Quechua herbs. Ollagüe.

Traditional Atacameño Medicine. Parra, Ahumada and Necul. 1997.