Bitter What? Benefits of Bitters

Bitters…have you ever tried them? Do you know what the benefits of bitters are? I am here to tell ya!

Bitter is a flavor that many Americans think is wrong. You hear all the time, “yuck too bitter!”, “needs more sugar” ad stuff like that. We NEED that flavor in our diet. America loves their sweets more than any other country in the world.

If you frequently feel lethargic after meals, bloated, constipated or just crummy in the tummy, you may benefit from taking a tincture of bitters before or after each meal. I find it works great before meals. As soon as you put the tincture on your tongue, it stimulates the salivary glands producing your first digestive juices which is telling your stomach to get ready, here comes the food, start the digestive process!

Not only that, it may help –

  • sugar cravings,
  • regulate blood sugar
  • balance appetite
  • increase absorption of vitamins
  • help the liver

BUT who is it not for???? Someone with IBS with diarrhea – we don’t want to encourage that for goodness sakes.

There are many commercial bitters on the market today with an array of flavor profiles but it is super easy to make. Of course if you don’t want to make it yourself, I can make it for YOU!

There are so many herbs and fruits to choose from when creating your bitters as well as choices of alcohol. I personally prefer to use brandy, it is mild and helps the medicine go down, so to speak.

First choose your bittering agents, one or a combination: Use between 10-50% of total ingredients.

  • Gentian Root – the bitterest of all bitter herbs on the planet. Very strong!!! Don’t go overboard.
  • Dandelion Root and Leaf – a common bitter that is eaten but does well in a tincture
  • sarsaparilla, wormwood, artichoke leaf – I have not tried yet
  • Orange, lemon or grapefruit peels

Flavorings or aromatics to help the flavor profile:

Spices, herbs, fruits:

Cardamom, Cinnamon, Coriander, Coffee, Ginger, Fennel seeds,  Black pepper, Vanilla beans, Cacao nibs(because chocolate goes with everything!)

Chamomile, Hops, Hibiscus, Hawthorn berries, Mints

Citrus fruits and peels, fresh or dried.

The sky is the limit really!

This is my recipe adapted from a recipe from Learning Herbs and from The Kitchn.

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all the ingredients

Grapefruit Bitters

  • 1/2 fresh grapefruit, washed well, cut up into chunks
  • 1 Tablespoon dried dandelion root
  • 1 Tablespoon dried dandelion leaf
  • 1/4 cup dried hawthorn berries
  • 1/4 cup dried hibiscus roselle (sabdariffa)
  • 2 Tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 2 Tablespoons raw cacao nibs
  • 1 Tablespoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • approximately 24 ounce brandy or other liquor

You can find most the the herbs at Bulk Herb Store I like that they are close by in Tennessee and I really love their story, check it out!

Add fruit, herbs, spices to a quart glass canning jar.

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Then pour your brandy to cover completely!

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Mix well and put a lid on it. Keep it on a shelf out of the direct sunlight, where you see it daily to give it a shake.

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Grapefruit bitters and valerian tincture macerating

This is it after 24 hours – beautiful!! BUT you must wait a few weeks until it is ready. Taste it after two weeks but 3 might be better.

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Once it is done, strain it into another jar. You can add a bit of warmed honey to it but not too much, maybe 1/4 cup. You don’t want it too sweet or it won’t do its job. 😉

I will post the finished product when it is ready.

Share with me your recipes or your experience with bitter.

Enjoy your day – get out into nature and take a walk – 

Anne-Marie

 

 

 

Benefits of Shiso (Perilla frutescens)

Have you ever eaten Shiso, aka Perilla or Beefsteak Plant? If you have eaten in a Japanese restaurant, you may have had this yummy treat without knowing it. The name shiso comes from the Chinese word, zisu which means “purple”. Perilla, as I call it, can be green or purple depending on the variety and where it is grown.

Perilla is in the mint family and extremely easy to grow although many of you have this growing in the wild on the edge of the woods. Go check and see after reading this post and let me know!

perilla

Description and Biology

  • Plant: small, freely-branching annual herb that grows to 18-30 in. high; stems four-sided and covered with short hairs.
  • Leaves: opposite, ovate, green to purple with toothed margins; distinctive musky mint-like odor.
  • Flowers, fruits and seeds: flowers are small, bell-shaped, white and purple with a distinctive ring of fine hairs along the bottom in terminal spikes or emerging from leaf axils; July and October.
  • Spreads: by seed that either drops close to parent plant or may be transported by wind or water.
  • Look-alikes: beefsteak plant superficially resembles basil and coleus and can be confused with other members of the mint family.***From nps.gov

Medicinal Benefits of Perilla:

  • Leaves edible, contain calcium, iron and vitamin C
  • Good source of antioxidants
  • Used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for asthma, colds, and flu
  • Seeds high in omega 3’s and support a healthy immune system.

I personally like to combine perilla leaves with kudzu leaves and lemon balm for colds or just a pleasant tasting tea.

MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE WAY TO USE IT?

Pickled Perilla

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The following recipe was given to me by my friend Brooke. I tasted one of these pickled leaves and was hooked for life!!! The original recipe, or what was posted was on www.mykoreankitchen.com

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Layer the leaves
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add sauce and repeat layering

 

Pickled Perilla with Brown Rice Recipe

  • 20-30 Fresh Perilla Leaves
  • Seasoning Sauce: Mix the following in a medium sized bowl
  • 10 Tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon korean chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh garlic
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sliced green onions
  • optional – 2 tablespoons chopped green and red chilis
  1. Rinse perilla leaves in cold running water and drain them in a colander while getting the sauce ready.
  2. Prepare the sauce by mixing the rest of the ingredients in a bowl.
  3. Layer perilla leaves in a glass container with a lid, about 3-5 at a time either stacked(I could be that anal!) or in a layer. Spread about a tablespoon of the sauce over the leaves. Repeat the process until all leaves are layered with sauce. Any left over sauce can be poured over the top.
  4. Cover and refrigerate. This can be eaten after a few days. It tastes even better after a week! Will keep in fridge for months!!
  5. To eat, cook up some brown rice and fill each leaf with the rice, roll up or squish it together and eat. 😀 Totally yum!!!

Enjoy!

Anne-Marie

 

 

 

 

My Favorite Green – Stinging Nettles!

I love when the Stinging Nettles are coming in!! My favorite green of all time. I am probably the only one that gets excited to see the nettles spreading all over the garden in places that they weren’t before. 😀

stinging nettle
stinging nettle

If you didn’t know, I hide nettles in EVERYTHING I can think of: ranch dressing, soups, eggs, veggies, all spice blends, smoothies, teas…yeah everything. Here is my favorite ranch dressing recipe –

RANCH DRESSING adapted from the Tightwad Gazette

  • 2 Tablespoons dried parsley
  • 2 Tablespoons dried stinging nettle
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp. paprika
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper

Mix all of the above into 1 cup of buttermilk and 1 cup of mayonnaise(not the fake stuff either, make sure there are only a few ingredients. Hellmann’s is my fave!) Make 1 pint. Keep in the refrigerator for up to 7-8 days. IF you do not have buttermilk, use regular milk but only 1/2-3/4 cup.

And before we get to the nettle lasagna and more good recipes here is a little something, something on the crazy good benefits of stinging nettle right HERE

Nettle Lasagna? – holy moly – YES!

lasagna

Recipe below:

Spring Lasagna with Asparagus, Peas and Stinging Nettles
A Recipe from TheBittenWord.com, with inspiration from Martha Stewart Living and Gourmet

Serves 6-8

1 pound sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 pounds asparagus, trimmed
1 medium white onion, diced
5 cups loose stinging nettle leaves (see note); baby spinach can be substituted
2 cups fresh or frozen peas
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 1/2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
4 ounces mild goat cheese
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
2 lemons, very thinly sliced
12 no-boil lasagna noodles

Note on preparing stinging nettles: Wearing gloves, place fresh nettles on a cutting board. Separate the leaves from the stalk. You can use the stems and leaves from the top 6 or 8 leaves on each stalk. You can also use the lower leaves, but discard the thicker stems as well as the main stalk, as they will be too thick and reedy to eat.

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare stinging nettle leaves (see note above), and prepare asparagus: Cut the tips off of each asparagus spear and reserve them. Then cut asparagus spears into 1/2-inch pieces and set aside.

In a large saucepan over medium high heat, cook sausage, breaking up pieces, until no longer pink, about 6 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer sausage to paper towel-lined plate.

Into same saucepan, add 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil, then the pieces of asparagus spears. Sauté asparagus until crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Add remaining olive oil to pan, then add diced onion and sauté until just softened and beginning to turn golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add stinging nettle leaves and sauté until wilted and cooked through, about 3 more minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

Cover lemon slices with cold water by 3 inches in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer for 7 minutes. Transfer to a paper-towel-lined plate using a slotted spoon.

Make the roux: Melt butter in a different saucepan over high heat. Stir in flour; cook for 2 minutes. Whisk in milk. Bring to a boil, stirring. Reduce heat. Simmer for 1 minute. Remove from heat. Whisk in Parmesan and goat cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Spread 1/4 cup of the roux in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish, then top with a layer of noodles. Top with sautéed asparagus, half the sausage, one third of the remaining roux, and another layer of noodles. Top that with sautéed nettles and onions, peas, half the remaining roux, half the lemon slices, the remaining sausage and another layer of noodles. Arrange the remaining lemon slices and the reserved asparagus tips on the top layer, then pour on the remaining roux.

Cover dish with parchment-lined aluminum foil and bake 28 minutes, until top is golden and bubbly. (You may want to finish it under a broiler for 2 minutes.) Let stand 10 minutes.

More amazing nettle recipes!!!

Enjoy the yumminess!!

Anne-Marie

Distilling Hydrosols & Essential Oils

On Saturday I was fortunate enough to attend a class on Distilling Hydrosols & Essential Oils in Atlanta at Kaleidoscope studios.

kalidescope

It was simply amazing to see first hand how essential oils are made! I always thought the hydrosol  were the byproduct of distilling essential oils but a true hydrosol is made with that purpose in mind and then the essential oil is collected from the top of the hydrosols since the eo’s float on top!

Definition- Hydrosols, also known as floral waters, hydroflorates, flower waters or distillates are products from steam distilling plant materials. Hydrosols are like essential oils but in far less of a concentration.

There is so much hype on essential oils nowadays, attending this class has clarified quite a bit for me. While I do use a small amount of eo’s in my topical salves and in aromatherapy products I do not  use internally.  Too many people are overusing these precious oils at a crazy rate. Essential oils should be used cautiously no matter WHICH company you purchase them from. They are not candy or flavorings as some companies may have you think. Instead of adding a couple lemon drops to your water – use a real lemon! I saw a recipe for using basil essential oil in a pesto recipe or pizza recipe, can’t remember exactly BUT seriously what in the heck are you thinking  to use an essential oil as a spice instead of the spice? Go get some dang basil from the store or better yet your garden?!!!

Casual-daily-preventative-internal-use-of-oils

Ingestion-of-essential-oils-has-its-place-but-must-be-approached-cautiously Learningabouteos.com has a ton of good info for reading up on essential oils!

If the use of essential oils continue to that extent, we may not be able to keep up the growing of the plants especially the rare one or hard to get – frankincense, sandalwood and rosewood.

Back to that lemon water and basil “seasoning” – it takes 3000 lemons to make 1 kilo or 35 ounces of essential oil. It takes approximately 50 pounds of plants – basil, mints to make 1 pound of essential oil except for rose – 2300 pounds of flowers – uggghhh. AND peppermint? 1 drop of peppermint essential oil is equal to 24 cups of peppermint tea!!! I will drink the yummy tea instead, thank you.

OK now for the cool stuff of what we did, sorry didn’t mean to get on a soapbox! 😀

Our teacher was Chris Gambatese and here is his bio from The Homestead Atlanta, by the way please click their name for some more fabulous classes!! Lorna Mauney-Brodek assisted and bottled the hydrosol. Lorna is the Herbalista and runs the Herb Bus clinic in Atlanta – check her out too!

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About the Instructor:
Chris Gambatese is a brewer, distiller, & herbalist practicing in Cork City. He has been an avid grower of medicinal plants for 15 years. Also in that time, he undertook studies in Herbal Science and Medicine for 6 1/2 years and has continually experimented with various forms of medicine making, concentrating mainly on tinctures and aromatic waters. He is a bit obsessed with being in control of all steps from seed to bottle in the medicine making process. Chris also has an avid interest in field botany and wild crafting.

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Chris showed us the type of stills to use and why copper is better than stainless steel. The commercial eo companies use stainless steel but the copper is reactive to the plants and 4x more conductive so it is a faster process of obtaining the hydrosols and eo’s. Copper is also anti-microbial helping to make your hydrosols have a 1 year shelf life. The hydrosols can be used immediately rather than have them sit a couple months to age or whatever it was called.

He called the art of distilling magical because you are using the 5 elements of earth as you do the process:

  • Water – our solvent
  • Metal – the copper pot
  • Earth – the plant matter
  • Air – the vapor, gasses as the water boils
  • Fire – the flame under the pot

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Chris had 2kg or 4.5lbs fresh rosemary in a pot with approximately 2 gallons of water.

rosemary - Copy
Bella Vista Farm Rosemary

 

The still was assembled and the fire lit to bring it up to a boil then reducing the heat. At the same time there is heat, at the top of the still, cool water flows over the domed top which then makes the vapors hitting the cool top drop down into another chamber down a hose and into the beaker.

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Beaker quite full so at this point some of the hydrosol was decanted off and the process continued below.

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THAT is our hydrosol and essential oil. It took almost the whole 3 hour class to completely finish. The darker color in the pictures of the the liquid is the essential oil. It had separated at one point but came back together when beaker was removed and swirled slightly, like a centrifuge.

Out of that 4.5lbs of rosemary and 2 gallons of water, we got 50ish ounces of hydrosol and 1/2 ounce of essential oil. YEP 1/2 ounce!!!!! Each of us got to take home a small bottle of hydrosol. Sweet!

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So what am I going to do with my hydrosol? Keep it all to myself until I can do it on my own!!! No really I am going to try it on my face, in a hair tonic and maybe add to a tincture. Chris told us by adding the hydrosols to our alcohol tinctures we create a layered medicine with more plant properties than just the alcohol or water or hydrosol. So cool! If you do take your hydrosols as internal medicines, take 1-3 teaspoons, depending on the herb up to 3x/day.

I will be uploading a video that I took of the decanting of the hydrosol and the essential oil as soon as I get permission. 😉

Hope you have a warm, cozy day today!

Anne-Marie

 

Recipe for Green Tea Sunflower Scrub

Do you use sugar scrubs? Have you ever read the label ingredients for those scrubs? Can you EAT your scrub?

This Green Tea Sunflower Scrub  is wonderful for your skin and YES, you can take a taste too! 😉

green tea scrub2

I love sunflower oil and seem to use it in so many herbal skin care recipes! I will start to purchase it from a local source too – there are a couple farms I need to check out for it.

This recipe can be made in minutes and will keep for 4-6 months, not that it should sit on your shelf for that long!!! The whole purpose is to use it and make your skin beautiful!!!!!!

But first, some good stuff about what is in this scrub:

Sunflower oil – high in vitamin E – regenerates cells, omega 6, good for skin health, lots of fatty acids, sunflowers can grow everywhere, no saturated fat – won’t clog arteries, energy booster, high in antioxidants.

sunflowerseedoilinfo

Honey – I use sunflower honey when I can find it, amazing if you haven’t tried it yet. Honey is moisturizing, soothing, slows the aging process, antibacterial(great for acne).

Sugar – need this for it to be a scrub – 😀 I use organic cane sugar, especially after hearing that some conventional sugars are processed with bone char – d-i-s-g-u-s-t-i-n-g. Sugar is a natural humectant, meaning it draws moisture from the environment into the skin. natural source of glycolic acid, an alpha hydroxy acid (AHA) that penetrates the skin and breaks down the “glue” that bonds skin cells, encouraging cell turnover and generating fresher, younger-looking skin.

Green Tea – Full of antioxidants, Green tea is loaded with polyphenols, which fight free radicals, reduce inflammation, provide protection against skin cancer and bust any nasty toxins or bacteria that may be lingering in your pores. Helps with aging, saggy skin. So you don’t have to just drink it to reap the benefits!

green tea scrub4

Green Tea Sunflower Scrub Recipe

This batch makes about 7 – 2 ounce by volume square jars

4 cups organic sugar

3/4 cup sunflower oil

2 Tablespoons sunflower honey or your favorite honey

7 teaspoons green tea powder or open up a few tea bags. I now use Genmaicha green tea which contains rice and grind it in my spice grinder – love this tea!

green tea scrub3

Mix well. If you like it wetter, add a bit more oil. I don’t like a big greasy scrub so feel free to add/change any of the ingredients to your liking.

green tea scrub 5

green tea scrub1

To use: take a teaspoon for a face or a couple tablespoons for the body and apply to wet skin, massaging gently and rinse well.

Enjoy and Merry Christmas Eve!

Anne-Marie

 

How To Make an Usnea Tincture

Usnea is a really cool herb! It is a lichen that grows on trees and you can find tons of it where the air is cleanest. We found enough for everyone at the retreat up in Highlands. Of course we did not pick it off the trees, that is a no no!!!! Many tree branches fell with all the bad weather up there so all we had to do was pick it up. 😀

So what is usnea?

Usnea_subfloridana_DSCF0047

Usnea is a lichen( an algae fungus combination) and it is antimicrobial, antibacterial, vulnerary and antifungal.

Uses: Known to help staph infections, heal wounds, respiratory issues, allergy symptoms, sore throat, fungal infections, urinary infections, sinus infections, vaginal infections, the list goes on and on!!!

You can tincture the whole herb for internal use –

or dry it and grind it to add to salves for topical uses.

I use it in my Not Your Mama’s First Aid Salve 🙂

I just finished making the tincture using the DOUBLE EXTRACTION method so I wanted to share my first video tutorial. It is in two parts so make sure you watch both on You Tube, here are the links.

How To Make an Usnea Tincture Part 1

How To Make an Usnea Tincture Part 2

The recipe I used is as follows:

Ratio of herb to liquid as weight to volume – 1:5 whether fresh or dried (That is NOT the same for all herbs)

1 ounce fresh or dried usnea, chopped up

4 ounces water

2.5 ounces pure organic cane or grain alcohol

  1. Place chopped usnea in a stainless steel pot, add water. Bring to a boil, then immediately turn to the lowest setting, cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Your water should reduce down to approximately 2.5 ounces to match the amount of alcohol to be used.
  2. Take off the heat, remove cover and allow to cool for a few minutes.
  3. Pour usnea and the infused liquid into an 8 ounce canning jar.
  4. Pour measured alcohol over the mixture and mix well.
  5. Cover and shake daily for two weeks.
  6. Strain and bottle into an amber or other dark colored bottle.

Dosage for adults is 2-3 dropperfuls 3x/day as needed.

There is an amazing amount of Usnea info from Rosalee de la Foret so go visit her blog too!

Have a beautiful day!

Anne-Marie

Uses of Beautyberry

Have you ever seen a beautyberry bush with its vibrant magenta colored berries? The berries seem to glow, they are so bright!

This plant is useful in a couple ways. Ways that we like…medicinal and edible. Woo hoo!

beautyberry

First of all, you cannot mix this plant up with another so ID is fairly simple. The leaves are oval to obtuse, large, toothed and slightly fuzzy with a scent that once you smell it, you will always know it. The scent is not offensive, sweet but kind of pungent. The berries are tiny, brightly colored purple and grow in a bracelet-like fashion around the branches.

You can use the leaves as a strong insect repellent comparable to DEET without the chemicals – yeah! If you find yourself in the woods without a bug spray, just grab some of the leaves and crush them and rub onto your skin. Of course you should always do a small test area to make sure you are not allergic as with any plant. You never know.

Grab a few extra leaves to take home and make a spray:

Bug Off Recipe

***1-2 cups fresh leaves/stems cut up in a quart jar and fill with boiling water. Cap and let set for at least 4 hours. Strain to use in spray. Do not drink.***

How to Make Homemade Bug Spray:

  • 1. Fill spray bottle (I used 8 ounce) 1/2 full with distilled or boiled water or infused beautyberry water
  • 2. Add witch hazel to fill almost to the top – leave about 1.5 oz space.
  • 3. Add 1 oz. fractionated coconut oil
  • 4. Add 1/2 tsp vegetable glycerin if using
  • 5. Add 30-50 drops of essential oils to desired scent. The more oils you use, the stronger the spray will be. ****Choice of oils: lavender, rosemary, cedarwood, lemongrass, lemon, citronella, peppermint and clove

Now for the berries. You can taste a berry raw but it is not recommended to eat them raw, you must cook them. Greene Dean’s site – Eat The Weeds calls Beautyberry, “Jelly On A Roll”. It makes a delicious jelly!!!

Here is the recipe – click here for Greene Dean’s article

shared on Wildcrafting Wednesday!!!

Wildcrafting Wednesday
 

Enjoy your day –

Boneset Harvest and Medicinal Benefits

This year I grew some new plants, Boneset being one of them. It was soooo easy to grow from a plant that I purchased in North Carolina.

boneset harvest

I harvested the aerial parts(all parts above the soil) and have it drying on a rack in my kitchen right now.

boneset drying boneset in bags

Boneset is a must have herb for colds and flu! Here is a mongraph on Boneset with info that I have collected from my experience and from sources credited at the end of this post.

Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum)

Boneset can grow to about 4 ft tall. It has a thick, rough textured stem. The leaves are opposite, slightly toothed, elongated diamond shaped and joined at the stem. appearing as if the stem is punctured through the leaves.

Boneset Leaves close up
Boneset Leaves close up

The flowers grow in clusters at the top of the plant and are tiny and white.

boneset flowers

In Georgia, we do have some wild boneset varieties that are not E. perfoliatum. To id, look carefully at the leaves arranged on the stem to make sure the leaves join at the stem.

So what does the name “Boneset” mean? Think about when you have a bad cold or the flu. You hurt allover the body, fever, chills right down to the bones right? Boneset is known to fix all of that with its analgesic and diaphoretic properties – helps you sweat it out. 😉

Cautions though – too much boneset at once can cause you to vomit! So small, frequent doses are best.

Boneset is a bitter herb so a tea should be sweetened or it can be made into a syrup. Recipe below.

This herb is known to help:

  • induce sweating in fevers, colds and flu
  • stimulate immune system
  • malaria
  • rheumatism
  • muscle pains
  • spasms
  • pneumonia
  • pleurisy
  •  gout

For fevers & colds – make a tea using 1-2 teaspoons dried boneset(can be purchased here) or 1 tablespoon fresh to one cup of water. Steep covered for 15 minutes. Strain and sweeten. Drink 1/2 cup every hour, as hot as you can stand it, until symptoms improve.

For digestive system – to improve or stimulate digestion, take 2 tablespoons of warm tea after meals daily for 3-6 months or as needed.

Boneset Syrup

adapted from Medicinal Plants of The Southern Appalachians

  • 2 oz fresh boneset or 1 oz dried or a combination of herbs includingg mullein, sumac berries, elder berries
  • 1 pint of water
  • honey

Pour boiling water over herbs, cover and steep overnight. Strain and add back to a clean pot. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until liquid is reduced by half. (Helpful to stick a chopstick in the pot and mark on it where the liquid comes up to, then again when you think it is done).

Turn heat off. Add equal part honey to the reduced liquid and mix well. Store in the refrigerator for 1-2 months.

Dosage – take 1-2 teaspoons as needed. Cautions: May not be good during pregnancy or for someone with allergies to the Asteraceae family.

Enjoy your day!

Anne-Marie

Wildcrafting Wednesday

References: Bella Vista Farm, Medicinal Plants of the Southern Appalachians by Patricia Kyritsi Howell, Petersons Field Guide Medicinal Plants and Herbs by Steven Foster & James A. Duke

Disclosure statement: While I may recommend certain herbs and foods for any illnesses, allergies, skin conditions, natural beauty care and household cleaning, as a reader and a consumer use what I say to research further on your end. I am not a doctor but I am an herbalist not a licensed practitioner but  always learning to improve our lives and to relay what I  have learned on to you!

Sometimes this site includes affiliate links from trusted companies that I personally deal with and approve. By clicking on the links provided in my posts, I do receive a small commission with each purchase at no cost to you. It helps pay for my time spent writing, exploring new products and to bring you the best content that I can. I hope to provide giveaways that are provided from our affiliates soon.

Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question. Whether you use the link or buy the product is entirely up to you.

Wildcrafting Wednesday Featured Blogger

The Secret Meaning of Herbs

I was reading through a beautiful post on the Herbal Academy of New England just now referencing the secret meaning of herbs.

When we look at flowers, we sometimes describe them in how they make us feel or how they look. For example, when I look at a Calendula blossom, I think how sunny this flower is with its bright, cheery disposition and I smile. 🙂

calendula bvf

Looking at the list from secret meanings post it shows that Calendula means Health. I can see that! Think about it a moment….if a plant makes you happy and cheerful with a sunny disposition, how can you NOT stay healthy!!!

Here is the full article shared from the Herbal Academy. Also if you ARE interested in any of their offerings, please click the link on my side bar, I would greatly appreciate it!

Enjoy – Anne-Marie

Below from the Herbal Academy of New England

A Few Herbs and Their Meanings:

Remembering the secret meaning of herbs and including them in our daily lives as points for contemplation and by giving tussie-mussies are beautiful ways to pay tribute to the ties between plants and humans that have existed for thousands of years. As we seek to connect with others and the natural world around us, it’s delightful to indulge in little “secrets” now and then, and let our desire for a little mystery and whimsy out to play in a time-honored tradition with a modern twist. Here are a few more herbs and their meanings to get you started (Laufner, 1993):

  • Angelica: inspiration
  • Basil: love
  • Bay laurel: success
  • Calendula: health
  • Chamomile: comfort
  • Echinacea: capability
  • Fennel: worthy of praise
  • Hops: mirth
  • Hyssop: cleansing
  • Lady’s mantle: comfort
  • Lavender: devotion
  • Lemon balm: sympathy
  • Lilac: joy of youth
  • Lovage: strength
  • Mint: virtue
  • Oregano: joy
  • Parsley: gratitude
  • Rose: love, desire
  • Rosemary: remembrance
  • Sage: wisdom
  • Thyme: courage
  • Vervain: good fortune
  • Violet: loyalty
  • Yarrow: healing

To read the FULL article: click HERE

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