Health Benefits of Butterbur

Featured Image -- 4907

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

Butterbur has a plant extract used in alternative remedies. But what are its health benefits and are there any risks involved in using it?

Butterbur comes from a shrub that grows in Europe, Asia, and parts of North America, and is available as a natural remedy in many health food stores and pharmacies. It is most commonly used to treat migraines and hay fever, although it has a number of other potential uses.

What is butterbur?

Butterbur plant and flower.Butterbur extract comes from the bulb, leaf, and roots of the plant.

The proper name for the butterbur plant is petasites hybridus. It grows best in wet marshland, damp forest soil, or on riverbanks.

The name butterbur is thought to come from the fact that its large leaves were traditionally used to wrap butter and stop it from melting in summer.

Butterbur extract is taken from the leaf, roots, or bulb of the plant.

The use…

View original post 780 more words

Advertisements

Ozark Encyclopedia – M – Mayapple

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Mayapple, American Mandrake – Podophyllum peltatum

Parts used: root, fruit

Traditional uses: Poisonous. Root soaked in whiskey and taken for rheumatism and as a purgative. Boiled root eaten as a purgative. Powdered root used on ulcers and sores. Fruit used for food.

“Podophyllum is a medicine of most extensive service; its greatest power lies in its action upon the liver and bowels. It is a gastro-intestinal irritant, a powerful hepatic and intestinal stimulant. In congested states of the liver, it is employed with the greatest benefit, and for all hepatic complaints it is eminently suitable, and the beneficial results can hardly be exaggerated. In large doses it produces nausea and vomiting, and even inflammation of the stomach and intestines, which has been known to prove fatal. In moderate doses, it is a drastic purgative with some cholagogue action. Like many other hepatic stimulants, it does not increase the secretion…

View original post 317 more words

Fragrances for Fall {DIY}

Featured Image -- 4837

Good Witches Homestead

Without question, people adore the cozy smells of fall that brings pumpkin spice, tart apples, crisp leaves and spicy cinnamon. Bring those scents into your own home to celebrate fall without using harsh artificial chemical scents by making your own natural home fragrance on your stove. All you need to do is bring a pot of water to a simmer and add in spices with other fresh ingredients, such as apple peels, cinnamon, and cloves.

Combined together, these ingredients will send an autumn aroma throughout your home. As an added benefit, not only will your home smell like you have been baking (without all the effort) but the simmering water will help to humidify your home, which often suffers from dry air in the fall and winter.

Pumpkin Spice Simmering Pot

Ingredients

  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 pieces of candied ginger
  • 1 clove of nutmeg

Instructions

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil, add the candied…

View original post 410 more words

Herbal Astrology

Featured Image -- 4833

Good Witches Homestead

Our ancestors were deeply attuned to the phases of the Moon and the stations of the Sun. Farmers once farmed by the Moon; the idea was that the “waxing” or growing Moon pulled plant energies upward, while the “waning” or decreasing Moon meant energy was moving back down towards the Earth and soil. When you consider that plants are filled with water and that the Moon’s gravity is strong enough to pull the tides of the ocean, there is a strong logic to this practice.

The “waxing” phase, from the New Moon to the Full Moon was the time to plant leafy plants and plants from which aerial portions were to be harvested such as berries, stems, leaves, flowers and barks. The “waning” phase, from the Full Moon to the dark of the Moon, was the time to plant root crops and also a good time to transplant, weed, prune…

View original post 1,162 more words

Ozark Encyclopedia – L – Lady’s Slipper

Featured Image -- 4802

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Lady’s Slipper – Cypripedium

Parts used: root

Traditional uses: Roots used for menstrual disorders. Infusion of roots used for stomachaches and kidney disorders. Roots used for spasms and fits. Infusion of root taken for colds and hot infusion of root taken for flu. Sedative and nervine.

“American Valerian is one of the names given to the Yellow Lady’s Slipper (Cypripedium). The roots of several varieties, the principal being Cypripedium pubescens and Cyprepedium parviflorum, are employed in hysteria, being a gentle, nervous stimulant and antispasmodic, less powerful than Valerian.” ~Grieve MH

As a nerve medicine – “Lady’s-slipper (Cypripedium) roots are boiled in milk to make some sort of ‘nerve medicine.’” ~Randolph OMF 114

“Mrs. Landry says that a herb grown around there known as Lady Slipper…cures nerves and nervousness she says to dig up its roots and boil them down and take a tablespoon full as needed.” ~Parler…

View original post 94 more words

Welcome October: Calendula, October Birth~flower

Featured Image -- 4741

Good Witches Homestead

COMMON NAME: calendula
GENUS:Calendula
SPECIES, HYBRIDS, CULTIVARS:
C. Officinalis ‘Golden Gem’- dwarf; double; yellow. ‘Pacific Beauty’- double; yellow, orange, apricot; more heat tolerant than other cultivars. ‘Orange Gem’- double; medium orange. ‘Chrysantha’- double; buttercup yellow.
FAMILY: Compositae
BLOOMS: summer and fall
TYPE: annual
DESCRIPTION: Calendulas have light green aromatic leaves and large {up to 4 inches across}, daisy-like flowers that come in shades of yellow and orange. Plants get to be approximately 2 feet tall with a spread of 12 to 15 inches though dwarf varieties that grow only have that size are also available.
CULTIVATION: Calendula performs best in cool weather and is often used as a fall bedding plant. For fall bloom, the seeds should be sown outdoors in mid-June. The seeds, which should be sown 1/4 inch deep, germinate best at temperatures ranging from 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. They need total darkness, so be sure…

View original post 4,704 more words

Analysis of Helichrysum (Immortelle) Chemistry, Antioxidant Activity, and Chemotaxonomy

Featured Image -- 4712

Crooked Bear Creek Organic Herbs

Traditionally, helichrysum (immortelle; Helichrysum italicum, Asteraceae) has been used for the treatment of scars and cuts, as well as used as a liver stimulant and diuretic. The essential oil of helichrysum has been found to have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, fungicidal, and astringent effects. As an emollient and fragrance in the cosmetic and perfume industry, the chemical composition of helichrysum essential oil has been somewhat characterized. The aim of this study was to further characterize the chemical content and antioxidant activity of helichrysum aerial parts and to assess the chemotaxonomy of the H. italicum taxa.

The flowering aerial parts of helichrysum (H. italicum ssp. italicum) were collected in May 2011, near Valdanos, Montenegro. The air-dried aerial parts of the plant were extracted with 45% ethanol and dried. The air-dried flowering upper parts of helichrysum were submitted to hydrodistillation to produce the essential oil.

The essential oil was characterized by…

View original post 630 more words

Fall Allergies ~ An Herbal Approach

Good Witches Homestead

Seasonal allergies can really get you down, and over-the-counter meds can knock you out. Try these natural herbal remedies to soothe pollen induced headaches, scratchy throats, chapped skin, and more.

allergy-teaAs allergy sufferers, we’re acutely aware of seasonal changes in air quality. Earth’s reawakening in spring brings us welcome warmth, but it also delivers not-so-welcome tree pollen. Summer’s riot of plant bounty includes grasses and the associated output of pollen. Fall has its own offenders in the form of ragweed pollen and mold from fallen leaves.

If you’re an allergy sufferer, you may be thinking about closing the shutters and latching the door. Venturing out into this minefield of airborne plant pollens can feel treacherous. Fortunately, Mother Nature has provided us with a phyto-pharmacy that can help carry you comfortably through each season.

What’s an Allergy?

Seasonal allergies are common, affecting more than 35 million people in the United States and…

View original post 1,164 more words

Herbs To Have In Your Medicine Cabinet This Fall

Good Witches Homestead

It’s the time of year, where more often than not we are turning to our medicine cupboard to support our bodies and our families. An abundance of tea herbs, honey, and lemon, fresh herbs like ginger, turmeric, cayenne, and garlic are all great to have on hand throughout the winter. A few herbal tinctures also play useful roles and are key ingredients in the medicine cabinet.

elderflowerElderberry | Elderberry is an excellent superfood-like ally safe to take in large quantities. With elderberry and plenty of rest, our body’s natural response kicks in–that’s why elderberry syrups and tea have long been used to help support optimal immune function. All these amazing herbs come in handy when our resources are low: elderberry helps our body maintain its normal immune response. Because it’s so much like food, it’s incredibly safe for kids, and happens to taste divine when combined with honey–hence the elderberry syrup! This one…

View original post 1,014 more words

Ozark Encyclopedia – H – Horsemint

Featured Image -- 4667

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Horsemint – Monarda bradburiana (often several of the Monarda genus)

Parts used: leaf, flower

Traditional uses: Infusion used for colds, chills, as a febrifuge, and for bowel complaints. Can be used externally in oils and salves for dermatological needs. Used in many of the same ways as Monarda fistulosa.

For stomach cramps and bellyache – “Red-pepper tea, catnip tea, horsemint (Monarda) tea all of these are mightily cried up as remedies for stomach cramps or bellyache.” ~Randolph OMF 95-96

Tea used for worms – “Horsemint tea is supposed to be a sure cure for rectal worms in children.” ~Randolph OMF 106-107

For diarrhea – “Horse mint (Monarda) is good for diarea.” ~Parler FBA II 2067

For kidney health – “Horse Mint (Monarda) leaves to make a tea out of helps the kidneys.” ~Parler FBA III 2596


Moerman, Daniel E. Native American Ethnobotany (NAE)

Parler, Mary Celestia Folk Beliefs from…

View original post 9 more words