15.09.2015

Herbal leaves medicinal uses oregano

The seeds or propagated part of a grown up lemon balm plant should be sown at a distance of 24 inches from each other.
A general fertilizer can be added once a month to improvise the growth and nutrient content of the lemon balm shrub. Lemon balm leaves contain phenolic compounds, rosmarinic, protocatechuic acids, caffeic, and flavonoids. Applying lip balms that contain even the slightest extract of lemon balm in it has proven to reduce the symptoms of cold sores, heal the sores faster, and prevent infections from spreading.
A mixture of German Chamomile, peppermint leaves, clown’s mustard plant, licorice, caraway, celandine, milk thistle, angelica along with lemon balm cures stomach pain, cramp, vomiting, acid reflux, and nausea. Lemon balm cures sleeping disorder and relaxes the nerves when the herb is taken along with valerian. Oral consumption of certain amount of lemon balm extract can reduce symptoms of mild Alzheimer’s disease. Research shows that breast fed infants with colic cry less when they are given a product that is a mixture of lemon balm, German chamomile, and fennel twice a day for a week.
Consumption of lemon balm extract is very effective in lowering and balancing high blood pressure. Sometimes over consumption of lemon balm can cause dizziness due to the sedative content in it. Because of the sedative content in lemon balm over consumption of it can affect the nerves and organs and result in slight breathing trouble.
Sometimes oral consumption of lemon balm and its extracts can result in vomiting, stomach pain, and nausea. Studies have reported some cases of skin reaction and irritation due to consumption of lemon balm. It has been studied that the lemon balm oil decreases wound pain producing a sense of liberation from it. Lemon balm oil added to any unscented beauty care product works like wonders on the skin as a healing agent.
In the early 19th century, when chemical analysis first became available, scientists began to extract and modify the active ingredients from plants. Recently, the World Health Organization estimated that 80% of people worldwide rely on herbal medicines for some part of their primary health care. In many cases, scientists aren’t sure what specific ingredient in a particular herb works to treat a condition or illness. Herbal medicine is used to treat many conditions, such as asthma, eczema, premenstrual syndrome, rheumatoid arthritis, migraine, menopausal symptoms, chronic fatigue, irritable bowel syndrome, and cancer, among others. Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba) has been used in traditional medicine to treat circulatory disorders and enhance memory.
Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens) is used for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), a non cancerous enlargement of the prostate gland. Valerian (Valeriana officinalis) is a popular alternative to commonly prescribed medications for sleep problems because it is considered to be both safe and gentle. Echinacea preparations (from Echinacea purpurea and other Echinacea species) may improve the body’s natural immunity. Buying standardised herbal supplements helps ensure you will get the right dose and the effects similar to human clinical trials. Used correctly, herbs can help treat a variety of conditions, and in some cases, may have fewer side effects than some conventional medications. The Elder, with its flat-topped masses of creamy-white, fragrant blossoms, followed by large drooping bunches of purplish-black, juicy berries, is a familiar object in English countryside and gardens.
The generic name Sambucus occurs in the writings of Pliny and other ancient writers and is evidently adapted from the Greek word Sambuca, the Sackbut, an ancient musical instrument in much use among the Romans, in the construction of which, it is surmised, the wood of this tree, on account of its hardness, was used. The popular pop-gun of small boys in the country has often been made of Elder stems from which the pith has been removed, which moved Culpepper to declare: 'It is needless to write any description of this (Elder), since every boy that plays with a pop-gun will not mistake another tree for the Elder.' Pliny's writings also testify that pop-guns and whistles are manufactures many centuries old! In consequence of these old traditions, the Elder became the emblem of sorrow and death, and out of the legends which linger round the tree there grew up a host of superstitious fancies which still remain in the minds of simple country folk. In earlier days, the Elder Tree was supposed to ward off evil influence and give protection from witches, a popular belief held in widely-distant countries.
Green Elder branches were also buried in a grave to protect the dead from witches and evil spirits, and in some parts it was a custom for the driver of the hearse to carry a whip made of Elder wood. In some of the rural Midlands, it is believed that if a child is chastised with an Elder switch, it will cease to grow, owing, in this instance, to some supposed malign influence of the tree. In Denmark we come across the old belief that he who stood under an Elder tree on Midsummer Eve would see the King of Fairyland ride by, attended by all his retinue.
The whole tree has a narcotic smell, and it is not considered wise to sleep under its shade. Apart from all these traditions, the Elder has had from the earliest days a firm claim on the popular affection for its many sterling virtues. The leaves have an unpleasant odour when bruised, which is supposed to be offensive to most insects, and a decoction of the young leaves is sometimes employed by gardeners to sprinkle over delicate plants and the buds of the flowers to keep off the attacks of aphis and minute caterpillars. The leaves, bruised, if worn in the hat or rubbed on the face, prevent flies settling on the person. The bark of the older branches has been used in the Scotch Highlands as an ingredient in dyeing black, also the root. The botanist finds in this plant an object of considerable interest, for if a twig is partially cut, then cautiously broken and the divided portions are carefully drawn asunder, the spiral air-vessels, resembling a screw, may be distinctly seen. Linnaeus observed that sheep eat the leaves, also cows, but that horses and goats refuse it.
Elder Flowers and Elder Berries have long been used in the English countryside for making many home-made drinks and preserves that are almost as great favourites now as in the time of our great-grandmothers. In Kent, there are entire orchards of Elder trees cultivated solely for the sake of their fruit, which is brought regularly to market and sold for the purpose of making wine. The Romans, as Pliny records, made use of it in medicine, as well as of the Dwarf Elder (Sambucus Ebulus).
It has been termed 'the medicine chest of the country people' (Ettmueller) and 'a whole magazine of physic to rustic practitioners,' and it is said the great physician Boerhaave never passed an Elder without raising his hat, so great an opinion had he of its curative properties. He also, as we have seen, recommends Elder flowers infused in vinegar as an ingredient of a salad, 'though the leaves are somewhat rank of smell and so not commendable in sallet they are of the most sovereign virtue,' and goes so far as to say, 'an extract composed of the berries greatly assists longevity. Some twenty years before Evelyn's eulogy there had appeared in 1644 a book entirely devoted to its praise: The Anatomie of the Elder, translated from the Latin of Dr. Evelyn refers to this work (or rather to the original by 'Blockwitzius,' as he calls him!) for the comprehensive statement in praise of the Elder quoted above.
The interest in the Elder evinced about this period is also demonstrated by a tract on 'Elder and Juniper Berries, showing how useful they may be in our Coffee Houses,' which was published with The Natural History of Coffee, in 1682.
An emollient ointment is made of the green inner bark, and a homoeopathic tincture made from the fresh inner bark of the young branches, in diluted form, relieves asthmatic symptoms and spurious croup of children - dose, 4 or 5 drops in water. Though the use of the root is now obsolete, its juice was used from very ancient times to promote both vomiting and purging, and taken, as another old writer recommends, in doses of 1 to 2 tablespoonsful, fasting, once in the week, was held to be 'the most excellent purge of water humours in the world and very singular against dropsy.' A tea was also made from the roots of Elder, which was considered an effective preventative for incipient dropsy, in fact the very best remedy for such cases .
De Sanctis claims to have isolated the alkaloid Coniine from the branches and leaves of Sambucus nigra. Oil of Elder Leaves (Oleum Viride), Green Oil, or Oil of Swallows, is prepared by digesting 1 part of bruised fresh Elder leaves in 3 parts of linseed oil. The use of the leaves, bruised and in decoction to drive away flies and kill aphides and other insect pests has already been referred to.
The flowers are collected when just in full bloom and thrown into heaps, and after a few hours, during which they become slightly heated the corollas become loosened and can then be removed by sifting. In domestic herbal medicines, the dried flowers are largely used in country districts and are sold by herbalists either in dried bunches of flowers, or sifted free from flower stalks.
The dried flowers, which are so shrivelled that their details are quite obscured, have a dingy, brownish-yellow colour and a faint, but characteristic odour and mucilaginous taste.
The flowers of the Dwarf Elder, a comparatively uncommon plant in this country are distinguished from those of the Common Elder by having dark red anthers. The flowers of the Yarrow (Achillea millefolium), and other composite plants, which have been used as adulterants of Elder flowers differ still more markedly in appearance and their presence in the drug is readily detected. Elder Flower Water (Aqua Sambuci) is an official preparation of the British Pharmacopoeia, which directs that it be made from 100 parts of Elder Flowers distilled with 500 parts of water (about 10 lb.
Elder Flower Water is employed in mixing medicines and chiefly as a vehicle for eye and skin lotions. Here is a recipe that can be carried out at home: Fill a large jar with Elder blossoms, pressing them down, the stalks of course having been removed previously. Elderflower Water in our great-grandmothers' days was a household word for clearing the complexion of freckles and sunburn, and keeping it in a good condition. Elder Flowers, if placed in the water used for washing the hands and face, will both whiten and soften the skin-a convenient way being to place them in a small muslin bag.
The flowers were used by our forefathers in bronchial and pulmonary affections, and in scarlet fever, measles and other eruptive diseases.
Elder Flower Tea, cold, was also considered almost as good for inflammation of the eyes as the distilled Elder Flower Water. Tea made from Elder Flowers has also been recommended as a splendid spring medicine, to be taken every morning before breakfast for some weeks, being considered an excellent blood purifier. A lotion, too, can be made by pouring boiling water on the dried blossoms, which is healing, cooling and soothing. A salad of young Elder buds, macerated a little in hot water and dressed with oil, vinegar and salt, has been used as a remedy against skin eruptions.
A good ointment is also prepared from the flowers by infusion in warm lard, useful for dressing wounds, burns and scalds, which is used, also, as a basis for pomades and cosmetic ointments, Elder Flower Ointment (Unguentum Sambuci) was largely used for wounded horses in the War - the Blue Cross made a special appeal for supplies - but it is also good for human use and is an old remedy for chapped hands and chilblains.
Elder Flowers, with their subtle sweet scent, entered into much delicate cookery, in olden days.
The blue colouring matter extracted from them has been considerably used as an indication for alkalis, with which it gives a green colour, being red with acids.
English Elder Berries, as we have seen, are extensively used for the preparation of Elder Wine. In The Anatomie of the Elder, it is stated that the berries of the Elder and Herb Paris are useful in epilepsy.
Parkinson, physician to James I, also tells us of the same use of the seeds, which he recommends to be taken powdered, in vinegar. Elderberry Wine has a curative power of established repute as a remedy, taken hot, at night, for promoting perspiration in the early stages of severe catarrh, accompanied by shivering, sore throat, etc. Almost from time immemorial, a 'Rob' (a vegetable juice thickened by heat) has been made from the juice of Elderberries simmered and thickened with sugar, forming an invaluable cordial for colds and coughs, but only of late years has science proved that Elderberries furnish Viburnic acid, which induces perspiration, and is especially useful in cases of bronchitis and similar troubles.
Both Syrup of Elderberries and the Rob were once official in this country (as they are still in Holland), the rob being the older of of the two, and the one that retained its place longer in our Pharmacopoeia.
There were six or seven robs in the old London Pharmacopceia, to most of which sugar was added. An old prescription for sciatica (called the Duke of Monmouth's recipe) was compounded of ripe haws and fennel roots, distilled in white wine and taken with syrup of Elder. The use of the juicy berries, not as medicine, but as a pleasant article of food, in jam, jelly, chutney and ketchup has already been described. Parkinson tells us that fresh Elder Flowers hung in a vessel of new wine and pressed every evening for seven nights together, 'giveth to the wine a very good relish and a smell like Muscadine.' Ale was also infused with Elder flowers. The berries make good pies, if blended with spices, and formerly used to be preserved with spice and kept for winter use in pies when fruit was scarce. The Fruit Preserving Section of the Food Ministry issued during the War the following recipe for Elderberry and Apple Jam: 6 lb.
When the fruit is not quite ripe, it may be preserved in brine and used as a substitute for capers.
The juice from Elder Berries, too, was formerly distilled and mixed with vinegar for salad dressings and flavouring sauces. This is an old-world simple, but rarely met with nowadays, but worth the slight trouble of making. One seldom has the chance of now tasting the old country pickle made from the tender young shoots and flowers.
The pickle made from the tender young shoots - sometimes known as 'English Bamboo' - is more elaborate. The young shoots can also be boiled in salted water with a pinch of soda to preserve the colour, they prove beautifully tender, resembling spinach, and form quite a welcome addition to the dinner table. Good use can be made of the berries for Ketchup and Chutney, and the following recipes will be found excellent.
All parts of the tree - bark, leaves, flowers and berries - have long enjoyed a high reputation in domestic medicine. Bear in mind "A Modern Herbal" was written with the conventional wisdom of the early 1900's. The leaves are shiny and without hairs, the margin of each leaf cut into great jagged teeth, either upright or pointing somewhat backwards, and these teeth are themselves cut here and there into lesser teeth.
There is some doubt, however, as to whether it was really the shape of the leaves that provided the original notion, as there is really no similarity between them, but the leaves may perhaps be said to resemble the angular jaw of a lion fully supplied with teeth. In the pictures of the old herbals, for instance, the one in Brunfels' Contrafayt Kreuterbuch, 1532, the leaves very much resemble a lion's tooth. The name of the genus, Taraxacum, is derived from the Greek taraxos (disorder), and akos (remedy), on account of the curative action of the plant.
There are many varieties of Dandelion leaves; some are deeply cut into segments, in others the segments or lobes form a much less conspicuous feature, and are sometimes almost entire. The shining, purplish flower-stalks rise straight from the root, are leafless, smooth and hollow and bear single heads of flowers.
Many little flies also are to be found visiting the Dandelion to drink the lavishly-supplied nectar.
The blooms are very sensitive to weather conditions: in fine weather, all the parts are outstretched, but directly rain threatens the whole head closes up at once.
When the whole head has matured, all the florets close up again within the green sheathing bracts that lie beneath, and the bloom returns very much to the appearance it had in the bud.
Small birds are very fond of the seeds of the Dandelion and pigs devour the whole plant greedily. The young leaves of the Dandelion make an agreeable and wholesome addition to spring salads and are often eaten on the Continent, especially in France.
Young Dandelion leaves make delicious sandwiches, the tender leaves being laid between slices of bread and butter and sprinkled with salt. The young leaves may also be boiled as a vegetable, spinach fashion, thoroughly drained, sprinkled with pepper and salt, moistened with soup or butter and served very hot. The dried Dandelion leaves are also employed as an ingredient in many digestive or diet drinks and herb beers. In Berkshire and Worcestershire, the flowers are used in the preparation of a beverage known as Dandelion Wine.
The roasted roots are largely used to form Dandelion Coffee, being first thoroughly cleaned, then dried by artificial heat, and slightly roasted till they are the tint of coffee, when they are ground ready for use.
Dandelion roots have long been largely used on the Continent, and the plant is cultivated largely in India as a remedy for liver complaints.
Only large, fleshy and well-formed roots should be collected, from plants two years old, not slender, forked ones. Dandelion root can only be economically collected when a meadow in which it is abundant is ploughed up.
In collecting cultivated Dandelion advantage is obtained if the seeds are all sown at one time, as greater uniformity in the size of the root is obtainable, and in deep soil free from stones, the seedlings will produce elongated, straight roots with few branches, especially if allowed to be somewhat crowded on the same principles that coppice trees produce straight trunks. The roots are generally dried whole, but the largest ones may sometimes be cut transversely into pieces 3 to 6 inches long. The roots should be kept in a dry place after drying, to avoid mould, preferably in tins to prevent the attacks of moths and beetles. Dried Dandelion root somewhat resembles Pellitory and Liquorice roots, but Pellitory differs in having oil glands and also a large radiate wood, and Liquorice has also a large radiate wood and a sweet taste. During recent years, a small form of a Dandelion root has been offered by Russian firms, who state that it is sold and used as Dandelion in that country.
Bentley, on the other hand, contended that it is more bitter in March and most of all in July, but that as in the latter month it would generally be inconvenient for digging it, it should be dug in the spring, when the yield of Taraxacin, the bitter soluble principle, is greatest. On account of the variability of the constituents of the plant according to the time of year when gathered, the yield and composition of the extract are very variable. In former days, Dandelion Juice was the favourite preparation both in official and domestic medicine. The leaves are not often used, except for making Herb-Beer, but a medicinal tincture is sometimes made from the entire plant gathered in the early summer. When collecting the seeds care should be taken when drying them in the sun, to cover them with coarse muslin, as otherwise the down will carry them away.


The tops should be cut on a dry day, when quite free of rain or dew, and all insect-eaten or stained leaves rejected.
The tincture made from the tops may be taken in doses of 10 to 15 drops in a spoonful of water, three times daily.
It is said that its use for liver complaints was assigned to the plant largely on the doctrine of signatures, because of its bright yellow flowers of a bilious hue. In the hepatic complaints of persons long resident in warm climates, Dandelion is said to afford very marked relief. A strong decoction is found serviceable in stone and gravel: the decoction may be made by boiling 1 pint of the sliced root in 20 parts of water for 15 minutes, straining this when cold and sweetening with brown sugar or honey. Dandelion is used as a bitter tonic in atonic dyspepsia, and as a mild laxative in habitual constipation. Dandelion combined with other active remedies has been used in cases of dropsy and for induration of the liver, and also on the Continent for phthisis and some cutaneous diseases. Tradition maintains that English plantain springs up wherever English people set foot, no matter what the climate. The Smoky Valley Shoshones made a tea from the whole plant and used as poultices for battle wounds and bruises.
Old timers used to kill spiders with plantain tea sprinkled on their webs and around the rooms. The Magic of Herbs, by David Conway, published by Jonathan Cape, Thirty Bedford Square, London, England. Buckthorn, a shrub to 20 feet, or a tree to 25 feet; the spreading, thornless branches have green bark when young, turning to brownish-gray when older. Found in swamps and damp places in northern and northeastern United States, as well as Europe. Picked when they are black make a green dye if they are bruised and put in a brass or copper kettle for 3-4 days, some alum added and mixture heated a little, then dried. The third color is purple, made from berries ripened on the vine to maturity, usually until the end of November and are ready to drop off. Good for constipation without irritating the system, with no backlash as other purgatives do.
The dried, ripe berries of the common buckthorn were used as a purgative in the 9th century.
Indian Uses of Native Plants, by Edith Van Allen Murphey, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, copyright 1958, print 1990 Chinese Medicinal Herbs, compiled by Shih-Chen Li, Georgetown Press, San Francisco, California, 1973. Lemon balm originates in the Mediterranean region, southwestern Siberia, northern Africa, and western Asia. Whether in regular garden soil or in a pot the seeds are sown it must be taken care that the soil is moist enough to provide the perfect condition for lemon balm plant’s proper growth.
Lemon balm extract is used as a flavour in ice-cream, pudding, and herbal tea, both hot and cold. Ancient Chinese and Egyptian papyrus writings describe medicinal uses for plants as early as 3,000 BC. Later, chemists began making their own version of plant compounds and, over time, the use of herbal medicines declined in favor of drugs.
In Germany, about 600 – 700 plant based medicines are available and are prescribed by some 70% of German physicians. Whole herbs contain many ingredients, and they may work together to produce a beneficial effect. Although not all studies agree, ginkgo may be especially effective in treating dementia (including Alzheimer’s disease) and intermittent claudication (poor circulation in the legs). A number of studies suggest that the herb is effective for treating symptoms, including frequent urination, having trouble starting or maintaining urination, and needing to urinate during the night. Echinacea is one of the most commonly used herbal products, but studies are mixed as to whether it can help prevent or treat colds. Ask your doctor or pharmacist about which herbal supplements are best for your health concerns.
But because they are unregulated, herbal products are often mislabeled and may contain additives and contaminants that aren’t listed on the label. Click here to book your place on our “Introduction to Herbal Medicine” course 15th to 16th November! It has been said, with some truth, that our English summer is not here until the Elder is fully in flower, and that it ends when the berries are ripe. In Anglo-Saxon days we find the tree called Eldrun, which becomes Hyldor and Hyllantree in the fourteenth century. The difficulty, however, of accepting this is that the Sambuca was a stringed instrument, while anything made from the Elder would doubtless be a wind instrument, something of the nature of a Pan-pipe or flute. Shakespeare, in Cymbeline, referring to it as a symbol of grief, speaks slightingly of it as 'the stinking Elder,' yet, although many people profess a strong dislike to the scent of its blossom, the shrub is generally beloved by all who see it. Even in these prosaic days, one sometimes comes across a hedge-cutter who cannot bring himself to molest the rampant growth of its spreading branches for fear of being pursued by ill-luck. The wood of old trees is white and of a fine, close grain, easily cut, and polishes well, hence it was used for making skewers for butchers, shoemakers' pegs, and various turned articles, such as tops for angling rods and needles for weaving nets, also for making combs, mathematical instruments and several different musical instruments, and the pith of the younger stems, which is exceedingly light, is cut into balls and is used for electrical experiments and for making small toys. By clipping two or three times a year, an Elder hedge may, however, be made close and compact in growth. In order to safeguard the skin from the attacks of mosquitoes, midges and other troublesome flies, an infusion of the leaves may be dabbed on with advantage.
The leaves yield, with alum, a green dye and the berries dye blue and purple, the Juice yielding with alum, violet; with alum and salt, a lilac colour.
If sheep that have the foot-rot can get at the bark and young shoots, they will cure themselves. The berries make an excellent home-made wine and winter cordial, which improves with age, and taken hot with sugar, just before going to bed, is an old-fashioned and wellestablished cure for a cold. The berries are not only used legitimately for making Elderberry Wine, but largely in the manufacture of so-called British wines - they give a red colour to raisin wine - and in the adulteration of foreign wines. Both kinds were employed in Britain by the ancient English and Welsh leeches and in Italy in the medicine of the School of Salernum. How great was the popular estimation of it in Shakespeare's time may be gauged by the line in the Merry Wives of Windsor, Act II, Sc. It sets forth that as every part of the tree was medicinal, so virtually every ailment of the body was curable by it, from toothache to the plague. It can be compounded as follows: Take 3 parts of fresh Elder leaves, 4 parts of lard and 2 of prepared suet, heat the Elder leaves with the melted lard and suet until the colour is extracted, then strain through a linen cloth with pressure and allow to cool. An ointment concocted from the green Elderberries, with camphor and lard, was formerly ordered by the London College of Surgeons to relieve the same complaint. The Elder 'flowers' of pharmacy consist of the small white wheel-shaped, five-lobed, monopetalous corollas only, in the short tube of which the five stamens with very short filaments and yellow anthers are inserted. As a rule, imported flowers have a duller yellow colour and inferior odour and are sold at a cheaper rate.
It is obtained by distilling the fresh flowers with water, saturating the distillate with salt and shaking it with ether. Every lady's toilet table possessed a bottle of the liquid, and she relied on this to keep her skin fair and white and free from blemishes, and it has not lost its reputation.
Such a bag steeped in the bathwater makes a most refreshing bath and a wellknown French doctor has stated that he considers it a fine aid in the bath in cases of irritability of the skin and nerves.
An infusion of the dried flowers, Elder Flower Tea, is said to promote expectoration in pleurisy; it is gently laxative and aperient and is considered excellent for inducing free perspiration. Equal quantities of the fresh flowers and of lard are taken, the flowers are heated with the lard until they become crisp, then strained through a linen cloth with pressure and allowed to cool. Formerly the creamy blossoms were beaten up in the batter of flannel cakes and muffins, to which they gave a more delicate texture. Fresh Elder Berries are found to contain sudorific properties similar to those of the flowers, but weaker. French and other Continental Elder berries, when dried, are not liked for this purpose, as they have a more unpleasant odour and flavour, and English berries are preferred.
They have aperient, diuretic and emetic properties, and the inspissated juice of the berries has been used as an alterative in rheumatism and syphilis in doses of from one to two drachms, also as a laxative in doses of half an ounce or more.
Like Elderflower Tea, it is one of the best preventives known against the advance of influenza and the ill effects of a chill. In 1788, its name was changed to Succus Sambuci spissatus, and in 1809 it disappeared altogether. They were thicker than syrups, but did not differ materially from them; among them was a rob of Elderberries, and both Quincy and Bates had a syrup of Elder. Quite a delicious jam can also be made of them, mixed with apples, which has much the flavour of Blackberry jam.
As it is a juicy fruit, it will not need the addition of any more liquid than, perhaps, a squeeze of lemon.
Vinegars used in former times frequently to be aromatized by steeping in them barberries, rosemary, rose leaves, gilliflowers, lavender, violets - in short, any scented flower or plant though tarragon is now practically the only herb used in this manner to any large extent.
John Evelyn, writing in 1664, recommends Elder flowers infused in vinegar as an ingredient of a salad. During May, in the middle of the Elder bushes in the hedges, large young green shoots may be observed. Elderberries, 1 large Onion, 1 pint vinegar, 1 teaspoonful salt, 1 teaspoonful ground ginger, 2 tablespoonsful sugar, 1 saltspoonful cayenne and mixed spices, 1 teaspoonful mustard seed. Put them into an unglazed crock or jar, pour over the boiling vinegar and leave all night in a cool oven. This should be taken into account as some of the information may now be considered inaccurate, or not in accordance with modern medicine. The maximum amount of water is in this manner directed towards the proper region for utilization by the root, which but for this arrangement would not obtain sufficient moisture, the leaves being spread too close to the ground for the water to penetrate. It is this somewhat fanciful resemblance to the canine teeth of a lion that (it is generally assumed) gives the plant its most familiar name of Dandelion, which is a corruption of the French Dent de Lion, an equivalent of this name being found not only in its former specific Latin name Dens leonis and in the Greek name for the genus to which Linnaeus assigned it, Leontodon, but also in nearly all the languages of Europe. Some authorities have suggested that the yellow flowers might be compared to the golden teeth of the heraldic lion, while others say that the whiteness of the root is the feature which provides the resemblance. The root is not illustrated at all in the old herbals, as only the herb was used at that time.
On picking the flowers, a bitter, milky juice exudes from the broken edges of the stem, which is present throughout the plant, and which when it comes into contact with the hand, turns to a brown stain that is rather difficult to remove. This strap-shaped corolla is notched at the edge into five teeth, each tooth representing a petal, and lower down is narrowed into a claw-like tube, which rests on the singlechambered ovary containing a single ovule. By carefully watching, it has been ascertained that no less than ninety-three different kinds of insects are in the habit of frequenting it. It closes against the dews of night, by five o'clock in the evening, being prepared for its night's sleep, opening again at seven in the morning though as this opening and closing is largely dependent upon the intensity of the light, the time differs somewhat in different latitudes and at different seasons. Its shape being then somewhat reminiscent of the snout of a pig, it is termed in some districts 'Swine's Snout.' The withered, yellow petals are, however soon pushed off in a bunch, as the seeds, crowned with their tufts of hair, mature, and one day, under the influence of sun and wind the 'Swine's Snout' becomes a large gossamer ball, from its silky whiteness a very noticeable feature.
Goats will eat it, but sheep and cattle do not care for it, though it is said to increase the milk of cows when eaten by them.
The full-grown leaves should not be taken, being too bitter, but the young leaves, especially if blanched, make an excellent salad, either alone or in combination with other plants, lettuce, shallot tops or chives. The seed of a special broad-leaved variety of Dandelion is sold by seedsmen for cultivation for salad purposes. If considered a little too bitter, use half spinach, but the Dandelion must be partly cooked first in this case, as it takes longer than spinach.
Dandelion Beer is a rustic fermented drink common in many parts of the country and made also in Canada. All parts of the plant contain a somewhat bitter, milky juice (latex), but the juice of the root being still more powerful is the part of the plant most used for medicinal purposes.
Roots produced in good soil are easier to dig up without breaking, and are thicker and less forked than those growing on waste places and by the roadside. Under such circumstances the roots are necessarily of different ages and sizes, the seeds sowing themselves in successive years.
Time is also saved in digging up the roots which can thus be sold at prices competing with those obtained as the result of cheaper labour on the Continent. Dried Dandelion is exceedingly liable to the attacks of maggots and should not be kept beyond one season. It is a plant with hairy, not smooth leaves, and the fresh root is tough, breaking with difficulty and rarely exuding much milky juice. The root contains no starch, but early in the year contains much uncrystallizable sugar and laevulin, which differs from Inulin in being soluble in cold water. The British Pharmacopceia considers the autumn dug root more bitter than the spring root, and that as it contains about 25 per cent insoluble Inulin, it is to be preferred on this account to the spring root, and it is, therefore, directed that in England the root should be collected between September and February, it being considered to be in perfection for Extract making in the month of November.
If gathered from roots collected in autumn, the resulting product yields a turbid solution with water; if from spring-collected roots, the aqueous solution will be clear and yield but very little sediment on standing, because of the conversion of the Inulin into Laevulose and sugar at this active period of the plant's life. Provincial druggists sent their collectors for the roots and expressed the juice while these were quite fresh. They are best collected in the evening, towards sunset, or when the damp air has caused the heads to close up.
It is a general stimulant to the system, but especially to the urinary organs, and is chiefly used in kidney and liver disorders. A broth of Dandelion roots, sliced and stewed in boiling water with some leaves of Sorrel and the yolk of an egg, taken daily for some months, has been known to cure seemingly intractable cases of chronic liver congestion. When the stomach is irritated and where active treatment would be injurious, the decoction or extract of Dandelion administered three or four times a day, will often prove a valuable remedy.
WI 53181., Copyright 1988, published 1992 Indian Uses of Native Plants, by Edith Van Allen Murphey, Meyerbooks, publisher, PO Box 427, Glenwood, Illinois 60425, copyright 1958, print 1990 Indian Herbalogy of North America, by Alma R. If the seedlings are sown in a pot then it requires to be watered daily since in pots the shrub roots do not get to pull water on their own from the ground, and moreover the added water also drains through the earthen pores.
Adding a tablespoon full of leaves in to boiling water can do the wonder of getting refreshing lemon balm tea. It is becoming more mainstream as improvements in analysis and quality control along with advances in clinical research show the value of herbal medicine in the treating and preventing disease.
Indigenous cultures (such as African and Native American) used herbs in their healing rituals, while others developed traditional medical systems (such as Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine) in which herbal therapies were used. In the past 20 years in the United States, public dissatisfaction with the cost of prescription medications, combined with an interest in returning to natural or organic remedies, has led to an increase in herbal medicine use. For example, one study found that 90% of arthritic patients use alternative therapies, such as herbal medicine. Unlike many prescription sleeping pills, valerian may have fewer side effects, such as morning drowsiness. A review of 14 clinical studies examining the effect of echinacea on the incidence and duration of the common cold found that echinacea supplements decreased the odds of getting a cold by 58%. Some herbs may cause allergic reactions or interact with conventional drugs, and some are toxic if used improperly or at high doses.
Pliny records the belief held by country folk that the shrillest pipes and the most sonorous horns were made of Elder trees which were grown out of reach of the sound of cock-crow.
In countrysides where the Elder flourishes it is certainly one of the most attractive features of the hedgerow, while its old-world associations have created for it a place in the hearts of English people. An old custom among gypsies forbade them using the wood to kindle their camp fires and gleaners of firewood formerly would look carefully through the faggots lest a stick of Elder should have found its way into the bundle, perhaps because the Holy Cross was believed to have been fashioned out of a giant elder tree, though probably the superstitious awe of harming the Elder descended from old heathen myths of northern Europe. It is also considerably used for holding small objects for sectioning for microscopical purposes. Trans., 1772, LXII) that if turnips, cabbages, fruit trees or corn be whipped with bunches of the green leaves, they gain immunity from blight. Gather a few fresh leaves from the elder, tear them from their stalks and place them in a jug, pouring boiling water on them and covering them at once, leaving for a few hours.
Elderberries are eaten greedily by young birds and pigeons, but are said to have serious effects on chickens: the flowers are reported to be fatal to turkeys, and according to Linnaeus, also to peacocks. Elder still keeps its place in the British Pharmacopoeia, the cooling effects of Elder flowers being well known. It was used externally and internally, and in amulets (these were especially good for epilepsy, and in popular belief also for rheumatism), and in every kind of form - in rob and syrup, tincture, mixture, oil, spirit, water, liniment, extract, salt, conserve, vinegar, oxymel, sugar, decoction, bath, cataplasm and powder. When ready for use, it is a light grey, soft and corky externally, with broad fissures; white and smooth on the inner surface. They also contain cane sugar, invertin, a considerable quantity of potassium nitrate and a crystalline substance, Eldrin, which has also been found in other white flowering plants. If left too late exposed to the sun before gathering, the flowers assume a brownish colour when dried, and if the flower bunches are left too long in heaps, to cause the flowers to fall off, these heaps turn black. When the microscope does not reveal tufts of short hairs in the sinuses of the calyx, the drug is not of this species.


The product has at first a distinctly unpleasant odour, but gradually acquires an agreeably aromatic odour, and it is preferable not to use it until this change has taken place. Its use after sea-bathing has been recommended, and if any eruption should appear on the face as the effect of salt water, it is a good plan to use a mixture composed of Elder Flower Water with glycerine and borax, and apply it night and morning. The liquor can be applied as a lotion by means of a linen rag, for tumours boils, and affections of the skin, and is said to be effective put on the temples against headache and also for warding off the attacks of flies. For use as a Face Cream, (This preparation is hardly suitable as a cosmetic, as lard induces the growth of hair. They were also boiled in gruel as a fever-drink, and were added to the posset of the Christening feast. Chemically, the berries furnish Viburnic acid, with an odorous oil, combined with malates of potash and lime.
Possibly this may be due to the conditions of growth, or variety, or to the presence of the berries of the Dwarf Elder.
Brookes in 1773 strongly recommended it as a 'saponaceous Resolvent' promoting 'the natural secretions by stool, urine and sweat,' and, diluted with water, for common colds. They mix to very great advantage with Crab Apple, or with the hard Catillac cooking Pear, or with Vegetable Marrow, and also with Blackberries or Rhubarb.
If you use your own flowers, pluck carefully their stalks from them and dry them carefully and thoroughly. The pickled blossoms are said by those who have tried them to be a welcome relish with boiled mutton, as a substitute for capers. Cut these, selecting the greenest, peel off every vestige of the outer skin and lay them in salt and water overnight. Next day, strain the liquor from the berries through a cloth tied on to the legs of an inverted chair and put it into a pan, with the peeled and minced shallots, the ginger peeled and cut up small, the mace and peppercorns. Flückiger and Hanbury in Pharmacographia, say that the name was conferred by Wilhelm, a surgeon, who was so much impressed by the virtues of the plant that he likened it to Dens leonis.
In this tiny tube is a copious supply of nectar, which more than half fills it, and the presence of which provides the incentive for the visits of many insects, among whom the bee takes first rank. The stigma grows up through the tube formed by the anthers, pushing the pollen before it, and insects smearing themselves with this pollen carry it to the stigmas of other flowers already expanded, thus insuring cross-fertilization. It is made up of myriads of plumed seeds or pappus, ready to be blown off when quite ripe by the slightest breeze, and forms the 'clock' of the children, who by blowing at it till all the seeds are released, love to tell themselves the time of day by the number of puffs necessary to disperse every seed.
As a variation, some grated nutmeg or garlic, a teaspoonful of chopped onion or grated lemon peel can be added to the greens when they are cooked.
Workmen in the furnaces and potteries of the industrial towns of the Midlands have frequent resource to many of the tonic Herb Beers, finding them cheaper and less intoxicating than ordinary beer, and Dandelion stout ranks as a favourite.
The prepared powder is said to be almost indistinguishable from real coffee, and is claimed to be an improvement to inferior coffee, which is often an adulterated product.
Dandelion was much valued as a medicine in the times of Gerard and Parkinson, and is still extensively employed. The root is fleshy and brittle, externally of a dark brown, internally white and abounding in an inodorous milky juice of bitter, but not disagreeable taste.
Collectors should, therefore only dig in good, free soil, in moisture and shade, from meadow-land. The roots then collected after washing and drying, have to be sorted into different grades.
The edges of fields when room is allowed for the plough-horses to turn, could easily be utilized if the soil is good and free from stones for both Dandelion and Burdock, as the roots are usually much branched in stony ground, and the roots are not generally collected until October when the harvest is over. A rather broad but indistinct cambium zone separates the wood from the bark, which latter exhibits numerous well-defined, concentric layers, due to the milk vessels. The use of this tea is efficacious in bilious affections, and is also much approved of in the treatment of dropsy.
The cut out part will produce more bunch of leaves for more harvesting in the same season itself. Add a few drops of lemon or honey according to taste and get rejuvenated both mentally and physically in moments. Researchers found that people in different parts of the world tended to use the same or similar plants for the same purposes. For example, the type of environment (climate, bugs, soil quality) in which a plant grew will affect it, as will how and when it was harvested and processed. Laboratory studies have shown that ginkgo improves blood circulation by dilating blood vessels and reducing the stickiness of blood platelets. John’s wort may be an effective treatment for mild to moderate depression, and has fewer side effects than most other prescription antidepressants. However, Valerian does interact with some medications, particularly psychiatric medications, so you should speak to your doctor to see if Valerian is right for you. At the present day, Italian peasants construct a simple pipe, which they call sampogna, from the branches of this plant. When the infusion is cold, it is fit for use and should be at once poured off into a bottle and kept tightly corked. Doctoring port wine with Elderberry juice seems to have assumed such dimensions that in 1747 this practice was forbidden in Portugal, even the cultivation of the Elder tree was forbidden on this account. In many parts of the country, Elder leaves and buds are used in drinks, poultices and ointments. It deals very learnedly with the medicinal virtues of the tree - its flowers, berries, leaves, 'middle bark,' pith, roots and 'Jew's ears,' a large fungus often to be found on the Elder (Hirneola auricula Judae), the name a corruption of 'Judas's ear,' from the tradition, referred to above, that Judas hanged himself on the Elder.
Some of these were prepared from one part of the plant only, others from several or from all. It has been much employed as a diuretic, an aqueous solution having been found very useful in cardiac and renal dropsies. The juice of Elder leaves is stated by the old herbalists to be good for inflammation of the eyes, and 'snuffed up the nostrils,' Culpepper declares, 'purgeth the brain.' Another old notion was that if the green leaves were warmed between two hot tiles and applied to the forehead, they would promptly relieve nervous headache.
The pickled flowers, however, gradually acquire an agreeable fragrance and are therefore generally used for the preparation of Elder Flower Water. If the inflorescence is only partly open when gathered, the flower-heads have to be sifted more than once, as the flowers do not open all at the same time. An almost infallible cure for an attack of influenza in its first stage is a strong infusion of dried Elder Blossoms and Peppermint. John Wesley, in his Primitive Physick, directs it to be taken in broth, and in Germany it is used as an ingredient in soups. Clusters of the flowers are gathered in their unripened green state, put into a stone jar and covered with boiling vinegar.
Each individual length must be carefully chosen, for while they must not be too immature, if the shoots are at all woody, they will not be worth eating, The following morning, prepare the pickle for the Mock Bamboo.
The Dandelion takes an important place among honey-producing plants, as it furnishes considerable quantities of both pollen and nectar in the early spring, when the bees' harvest from fruit trees is nearly over. When all the seeds have flown, the receptacle or disc on which they were placed remains bare, white, speckled and surrounded by merely the drooping remnants of the sheathing bracts, and we can see why the plant received another of its popular names, 'Priest's Crown,' common in the Middle Ages, when a priest's shorn head was a familiar object. It is valuable food for rabbits and may be given them from April to September forming excellent food in spring and at breeding seasons in particular. If covered with an ordinary flower-pot during the winter, the pot being further buried under some rough stable litter, the young leaves sprout when there is a dearth of saladings and prove a welcome change in early spring. An agreeable and wholesome fermented drink is made from Dandelions, Nettles and Yellow Dock.
Of late years, Dandelion Coffee has come more into use in this country, being obtainable at most vegetarian restaurants and stores. Dig up in wet weather, but not during frost, which materially lessens the activity of the roots. The crops should be kept clean by hoeing, and all flower-heads should be picked off as soon as they appear, as otherwise the grower's own land and that of his neighbours will be smothered with the weed when the seeds ripen. The largest, from the size of a lead pencil upwards, are cut into straight pieces 2 to 3 inches long, the smaller side roots being removed, these are sold at a higher price as the finest roots. The roots gathered in this month have stored up their food reserve of Inulin, and when dried present a firm appearance, whilst if collected in spring, when the food reserve in the root is used up for the leaves and flowers, the dried root then presents a shrivelled and porous appearance which renders it unsaleable. This structure is quite characteristic and serves to distinguish Dandelion roots from other roots like it. The latter is of a paler colour, more bitter and has the laticiferous vessels in radiating lines. These woolly hairs are mentioned in Greenish's Materia Medica, and also in the British Pharmaceutical Codex, as a feature of Dandelion root, but no mention is made of them in the Pharmacographia, nor in the British Pharmacopceia or United States Pharmacopceia, and it is probable, therefore, that Russian specimens have been used for describing the root, and that the root with brown woolly hairs belongs to some other species of Taraxacum. The most active preparations of Dandelion, the Juice (Succus Taraxaci) and the Extract (Extractum Taraxaci), are made from the bruised fresh root.
The Rodale Herb Book: How to Use, Grow, and Buy Nature's Miracle Plants (An Organic gardening and farming book), edited by William H.
During pregnancy due to hormonal changes women often tend to get anxious and lemon balm should ideally help in these situations. By the same token, this means ginkgo may also increase the effect of some blood thinning medications, including aspirin. But the herb interacts with a wide variety of medications, including birth control pills, and can potentially cause unwanted side effects, so it is important to take it only under the guidance of a health care provider. Echinacea can interact with certain medications and may not be right for people with certain conditions, for example people with autoimmune disorders or certain allergies. In its branches was supposed to dwell a dryad, Hylde-Moer, the Elder-tree Mother, who lived in the tree and watched over it. The practice proving so lucrative, however, is by no means obsolete, but as the berries possess valuable medicinal properties, this adulteration has no harmful results. It is of a purplish tint, resembling in shape and softness the human ear, and though it occurs also on the Elm, it grows almost exclusively on Elder trunks in damp, shady places.
Their properties are summed up as 'desiccating, conglutinating, and digesting,' but are extended to include everything necessary to a universal remedy. Assoc., 1900) found undoubted evidence of an alkaloid in the roots of the American Elder (S. The best and lightest coloured flowers are obtained at the first sifting, when the flowers that have matured and fallen naturally are free from stalks, and dried quickly in a heated atmosphere. This appearance may be due to their having been collected some time after opening, to carelessness in drying, or to having been preserved too long. Put a handful of each in a jug, pour over them a pint and a half of boiling water, allow to steep, on the stove, for half an hour then strain and sweeten and drink in bed as hot as possible. Simmer with the lid on for about an hour and finally let the mixture boil with the lid off until all the water has evaporated; this will have happened when, on stirring, no steam arises. One or two tablespoonsful mixed with a tumblerful of hot water, taken at night, promotes perspiration and is demulcent to the chest. Make a pulp of the apples by boiling in water till soft and passing through a coarse sieve to remove any seeds or cores.
When the juice begins to flow, add the Apples and one-third of the sugar and bring slowly to the boil. Close the vessel hermetically, keep it in a very warm place and shake them from time to time. To a quart of vinegar, add an ounce of white pepper, an ounce of ginger, half a saltspoonful of mace and boil all well together. It is also important from the beekeeper's point of view, because not only does it flower most in spring, no matter how cool the weather may be, but a small succession of bloom is also kept up until late autumn, so that it is a source of honey after the main flowers have ceased to bloom, thus delaying the need for feeding the colonies of bees with artificial food. Some of these stand up to support the florets, others hang down to form a barricade against such small insects as might crawl up the stem and injure the bloom without taking a share in its fertilization, as the winged insects do. Cultivated thus, Dandelion is only pleasantly bitter, and if eaten while the leaves are quite young, the centre rib of the leaf is not at all unpleasant to the taste. Formerly it used occasionally to be given for medicinal purposes, generally mixed with true coffee to give it a better flavour. The smaller roots fetch a less price, and the trimmings are generally cut small, sold at a lower price and used for making Dandelion Coffee.
The medicinal properties of the root are, therefore, necessarily greater in proportion in the spring. There are several flowers easily mistaken for the Dandelion when in blossom, but these have either hairy leaves or branched flower-stems, and the roots differ either in structure or shape. In the fresh root, the Inulin is present in the cell-sap, but in the dry root it occurs as an amorphodus, transparent solid, which is only slightly soluble in cold water, but soluble in hot water.
Should the tree be cut down and furniture be made of the wood, Hylde-Moer was believed to follow her property and haunt the owners. The leaves are said to be valued by the farmer for driving mice away from granaries and moles from their usual haunts. It is curious that on account of this connexion with Judas, the fungus should have (as Sir Thomas Browne says) 'become a famous medicine in quinses, sore-throats, and strangulation ever since.' Gerard says, 'the jelly of the Elder otherwise called Jew's ear, taketh away inflammations of the mouth and throat if they be washed therewith and doth in like manner help the uvula,' and Salmon, writing in the early part of the eighteenth century, recommends an oil of Jew's ears for throat affections. The book prescribes in more or less detail for some seventy or more distinct diseases or classes of diseases, and the writer is never at a loss for an authority - from Dioscorides to the Pharmacopoeias of his own day-while the examples of cures he adduces are drawn from all classes of people, from Emylia, Countess of Isinburg, to the tradesmen of Heyna and their dependants. Canadensis), its odour being somewhat similar to that of coniine and also suggesting nicotine. They may be very quickly dried in a heated copper pan, being stirred about for a few minutes.
Heavy perspiration and refreshing sleep will follow, and the patient will wake up well on the way to recovery and the cold or influenza will probably be banished within thirty-six hours. Place on one side to cool a little and then pass the liquid fat through a piece of muslin so that it may be well strained and free from impurities. Remove the Elder shoots from the salt and water, dry in a cloth and slice up into suitable pieces, laying them in a stone jar.
It is then covered over and allowed to stand two days until it has ceased 'working,' when it is placed in a cask, well bunged down for two months before bottling. Shake off as much of the earth as possible and then cleanse the roots, the easiest way being to leave them in a basket in a running stream so that the water covers them, for about an hour, or shake them, bunched, in a tank of clean water. Dandelion roots shrink very much in drying, losing about 76 per cent of their weight, so that 100 parts of fresh roots yield only about 22 parts of dry material. Inulin being soluble in hot water, the solid extract if made by boiling the root, often contains a large quantity of it, which is deposited in the extract as it cools. In 1899 an American sailor informed a physician of Prague that getting drunk on genuine, old, dark-red port was a sure remedy for rheumatic pains.
Return the pulp to the pan, add the rest of the sugar, the grated lemon rind and juice and boil for half an hour, or until the jam sets when tested. Pour the boiling mixture over them and either place them in an oven for 2 hours, or in a pan of boiling water on the stove. If the flower-buds of plants reserved in a corner of the garden for salad purposes are removed at once and the leaves carefully cut, the plants will last through the whole winter. This wine is suggestive of sherry slightly flat, and has the deserved reputation of being an excellent tonic, extremely good for the blood.
Dandelion Coffee is a natural beverage without any of the injurious effects that ordinary tea and coffee have on the nerves and digestive organs.
Cut off the crowns of leaves, but be careful in so doing not to leave any scales on the top. The root before being dried should have every trace of the leaf-bases removed as their presence lessens the value of the root. Place in 2 quarts of water and gently simmer down to 1 quart, strain and take a wineglassful every two hours. This unedifying observation started a long series of investigations ending in the discovery that while genuine port wine has practically no anti-neuralgic properties, the cheap stuff faked to resemble tawny port by the addition of elderberry juice often banishes the pain of sciatica and other forms of neuralgia, though of no avail in genuine neuritis. It exercises a stimulating influence over the whole system, helping the liver and kidneys to do their work and keeping the bowels in a healthy condition, so that it offers great advantages to dyspeptics and does not cause wakefulness.
Do not cut or slice the roots or the valuable milky juice on which their medicinal value depends will be wasted by bleeding.
Cases of cure have been instanced after many tests carried out by leading doctors in Prague and other centres abroad, the dose recommended being 30 grams of Elderberry juice mixed with 10 grams of port wine. At the end of that time, strain the whole through a coarse cloth and when cool, the ointment will be ready for use. Canadensis has been found extremely poisonous, producing death in children within a short time after being eaten with symptoms very similar to those of poisoning by Hemlock (Conium).
The great art of obtaining and retaining the essence of the plant lies in excluding air from the tied-down jar as much as possible.



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