Herb of the Week
The St. John’s Wort card in my oracle deck says: blooming at the height of summer, St. John’s Wort is like solar batteries, ready aid when everything is grey and damp. St. John’s Wort has been touted for depression, but its function is more about the gut than the brain – and so are our…Read More
Winter is the Fennel time of year! Fennel is a warming herb that improves digestion and liver function, which is why you see it in recipes for sausage and other heavy or fatty meats. Fennel is particularly suited to the cold, stagnant digestive conditions that we see so commonly in our culture today. A lot…Read More
If you listened to last Friday’s podcast, you know that Ryn was sick last week with what we affectionately called the “Lung Crud Plague”. If you’re also sick with lung crud, Elecampane is the herb for you! But before we talk about the why, let’s just get this right out in the open: Elecampane tastes…Read More
Ashwagandha is one of my very favorite herbs: it supports the adrenals and other endocrine organs, improving the function of those organs and helping the body to better cope with stress. You’ve probably heard about the “HPA axis” – which is the connection recognized between the hypothalamic, pituitary, and adrenal glands. But I submit that…Read More
Hawthorn is often categorized as an “exhilarant” in old herbal literature – strongly uplifting to the spirit. Along with Rose, Vanilla, Vetiver, and others, Hawthorn is a great “rescue remedy”. Whether it’s sadness from a deep loss or just baked-on, caked-on gloom and doom, Hawthorn can help. I love to make an elixir of Hawthorn…Read More
Self Heal, Prunella vulgaris, is one of those plants that seems able to do everything. Writing in the 16th century, Gerard said that no herb equals Self Heal for healing wounds, and a whole host of other things. Self Heal is used all over the world – by Native Americans, Europeans, and all across Asia,…Read More
Ground Ivy, Glechoma hederacea, is a small, unassuming little plant. You might know it as “Creeping Charlie” or “Gill-Over-The-Ground”, or (if you’re from England) as “Alehoof”. It often grows low to the ground, spreading horizontally instead of vertically – but if it’s in an area that isn’t mowed too often, it’ll stand up for a…Read More
I didn’t really understand Angelica until I went to Iceland, but since then, I can’t get enough of it! Angelica LOVES Iceland, and it grows as tall as me – or taller. It’s got a strong, tall stalk and huge flower head, with leafy arms that reach for the sky and the sun that never…Read More
A lot of people think of Roses when they think of Valentine’s Day, but there is so much more about Rose to love! Let’s start with the thorns – which you might think is somewhat strange, but the thorns are exactly what makes Rose such an amazing protector of small furry creatures and little feathered…Read More
Nettle is one of the most-loved herbs – and there’s so much to love! For starters, Nettle is one of the most super of all the super foods. High in vitamins, minerals, even protein – Nettle is deeply nourishing. According to the USDA, “Nettle is probably one of the richest sources of minerals among plant…Read More
Mullein is a fuzzy plant that starts out small, but in its second year can grow over six feet tall! Mullein is a good friend to people who challenge their lungs – whether it’s with smoke, particulate, or any other crud we breathe in. It’s particularly great when that “crud” is dry, dusty, and caked…Read More
Thyme remains one of my very favorite herbs for colds, the flu, and other respiratory gunk. Thyme has a very high volatile oil content – in other words, the constituents that make it smelly – and those volatile oils are super anti-microbial. The trick is, you have to get them in contact with the microbes…Read More
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