Plaza Faisan, near the center of El Pilar's main cultural
center, is named for this hearty ground plant. The inflorescence,
sticking up amongst the large green leaves may remind you of a pheasant's
tail, a bird frequently seen in the El Pilar Archaeological Reserve
and surrounding area.
Cola de Faisan has many medicinal uses. For swollen
tonsils, the leaves are mashed with sweet or liver oil and the mixture
is heated and placed on the neck twice a day. The juice from the crushed
leaves is placed on chicken pox to help dry out the sores. It is also
reportedly used to treat infections of the female reproductive system,
sprains, back spasms and aches, arthritis, and rheumatism.