Ginger Benefits and Uses

Ginger Benefits and Uses

Are you looking for something to take those aches and pains away? Ginger is part of the Zingiberaceae family. Most commonly you will find Chinese ginger or common ginger in your grocery store, you can definitely find wild ginger grown right here in Minnesota. Time to get out into your local forest and find some!

Identification

The most recognizable part of the plant grows below ground; you will want to familiarize yourself with its leaves and flowers. The plants sprout shiny, long narrow leaves. They have hairy bases to the stems like they are covered in fine white whiskers. They bloom in early spring and continue through to late spring. The flowers are tripartite, brown, and purple and grow from the base of the plant. They prefer woodland areas and tend to grow in the shade. 

Ginger ID

Medicinal Benefits

  1. Nausea; For generations, women have been using this root to ease “morning sickness”. Used for motion sickness and to settle the stomach flu. 
  2. Bloating and gas; It cuts down on fermentation, constipation causing bloating and intestinal gas. 
  3. Cells; It contains antioxidants, these molecules help manage free radicals, which are compounds that can damage cells when their number grows too high. 
  4. Anti-inflammatory; Contains anti-inflammatory compounds, applying a ginger salve or ingesting powdered ginger could greatly reduce pain and stiffness in joints. 
  5. Cardiovascular; being an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory can prevent the clotting of your blood. 

Harvesting

Use your hands to remove the roots growing on the outside edges of the root clump carefully. Trying not to disturb the other portions of the root. When you notice the leaves beginning to wilt and die, this is when it is ready to be harvested. Some varieties take 4-5 months, others 8-10 months. 

Fresh ginger

Creating Blends

One super fascinating thing I learned about is when you are creating tinctures, teas, creams, or oils the fresh or dried root makes a huge difference. Having a fresh root gives your tincture a softer approach, less heat, and a more soothing approach. Where dried ginger is hotter, stronger in flavor, and can be harsh on your stomach, but great for pain salves. 

Check out our shop, we have multiple tinctures containing ginger; Digestive Aid, Cough and Congestion, along with a single tincture!

Valerian Root Uses and Benefits

Valerian Root Uses and Benefits

Valerian root is in the Caprifoliaeae (Honeysuckle) family. There are many species of valerian, most medicinal, commonly used as an herbal sleep aid. Roots is the most commonly used but the leaves may also be used for medicine, though they are less potent than the roots. 

Identification

Valerian grows from 1 to 5 feet tall depending on the location and the soil conditions. It was straight round stem that is topped by an umbrella-like flower-head. Its opposite dark green leaves have an pinnate blade with 6 to 11 pairs of terminal leaflets. These leaflets have prickly margins and are hairy underneath. Valerian flowers are in branched batches and each flower is about ⅕ in long. They are tiny white to pink blossoms. The flower has three stamens and a distinctive scent. 

Valerian Root

 

Medicinal Uses

Insomnia: Many people, including myself, report that they get to sleep faster and can sleep longer without warning when consuming valerian root. They also report that they awaken refreshed without residual drowsiness. It can become habit forming so only use it when needed. 

Anxiety and Panic Attacks: Valerian root has a calming effect that is beneficial to people with panic and anxiety disorders. Known as a nerve tonic, calming and soothing to the nervous system.

Epilepsy:  Has a relaxing effect on the muscles of the body. For regular usage use dosage 100 mg to 1 gram of dried or powdered root. Start with low dosage, depending on the persons size and the severity of the disease and increase it gradually until you find a level that works. Consult with your herbalist or medical consultant to be sure it works with any other medications you could be taking.

Menstraul Cramps:  Because of valerian root’s analgesic properties and it s ability to relax the smooth muscles this herb makes a good treatment for pain and cramping during menstruation.

Quitting Smoking: Valerian root is calming and helps lessen the effects of nicotine withdrawal. It especially helps with the irritability people often experience when quitting. Use in tincture form for this. 

Harvesting

Cut the flowering tops off as they appear. This enables a better development of the root. In the first year, many of the young plants do not flower but produce a luxuriant crop of levas. Harvest enter root system; planting some back for utter harvests. Slice roots into small sections and dry for future use. 

Dried Valerian roots in wooden spoon

WARNING

Valerian exerts a quieting and soothing influence upon the brain and nervous system. However, in large repeated doses it can cause headaches, heaviness and stupor. It can become addictive, only use when needed. 





Valerian root is one of multiple herbs used in our Insomnia Tincture and Insomnia Tea. Releasing a sweet potent flavor to the blend. ORDER HERE

Comfrey Medicinal Uses and Benefits

Comfrey Medicinal Uses and Benefits

Looking for medicinal herbs to aid in wound and pain care? Comfrey can easily be grown in your home garden. This herb grows like a weed in many areas. It is known as a knit bone, boneset and slippery root. Comfrey is a great first aid herb to have on hand. 

Comfrey

Identification

Comfrey is a perennial herb with long lance-like leaves, each 12 to 18 inches long. They hairy leaves grow from a central crown on the ends of short stem. The pant reaching 2 to 5 feet in height and spreads to over 3 feet in diameter. It can be propagated from cuttings but it not invasive once planted. The flowers begin as a blue to purple bell, fading to pink. The leaves can be used to make a medicinal tea or gargle. 

Medicinal Use

This herb is a valuable remedy that accelerates healing of the skin and wounds. A compress of the roots and leaves a can be applied directly to the skin or make into a salve. It inhibits growth of bacteria, helping to prevent infections and minimizes scarring. It is mucilage our and contains the compound allantoin, which boosts cell growth and repair. Comfrey tea is best used to alleviate stomach pain, heavy menstrual bleeding, bloody urine breathing problems, cancer, and chest pain. It can also be gargled to treat gum disease or sore throat. 

Sprains, Bruises and Breaks

Comfrey salve or comfrey compresses are one of the best remedies for sprains, strains, bruised muscles and joints, and fractured ones. The herb speeds up the healing while increasing the saver or a poultice made from crushed comfrey root, up to 4 times a day. 

Minor Skin Injuries, Burns, Rashes and Wounds

One of the best uses for comfrey is in healing minor injuries to the skin. Rashes, eczema, burns, and skin wounds heal quickly when herb is applied. Leaves and root can be used for this application. Apply Comfrey salve 3 times a day or used bruised leaves or crushed root to make a poultice for the damaged skin. You can use comfrey tea or comfrey root decoration as a wash for the area, especially for rashes, acne, eczema, and psoriasis. DO NOT use for deep wounds or punter wounds as it heals the too quickly, blocking in infection. 

Our store front has a Healing Salve for you, using comfrey as one of the ingredients!

Harvesting

Leaves are best harvested in the spring or early summer, before the plant blooms. They can be harvested in serval cuttings and dried for later use. The roots can e dug at any time as needed. Leave behind part of the roots to encourage continued growth and an additional crop the next year. 

Warnings

Harmful toxins in comfrey are believed to cause liver damage, lung damage, or cancer when used in highly concentrated doses. For this reason, many healers do not recommend internal use of comfrey. However, small doses have been used safely in herbal medicines for hundreds of years with no reported ill effects. Use internally with caution or under care. 

It is recommended that bone fractures and bone breaks are properly set before using it. Do not use id you have liver disease or any liver problems. Not recommend for pregnancy or breastfeeding women. 

Genesis 3:18 

Every moving thing that live there shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. 

How to Use Passionflower Identification and Health Benefits

How to Use Passionflower Identification and Health Benefits

white and purple passionflower

Passionflower is a miraculous herb. Looks like something from Wonderland, if you ask me. How can you use this herb, you ask? Let me tell you. 

Identification: 

Passionflower is a herbaceous perennial, native to southern North America and introduced into Europe and other areas where is flourishes. American wild passionflower has a rhizome rom which spring several climbing steams, that reach a height of 20 feet!! The leaves are thee lobed and finely serrated. The sweet smelling flowers are purple. 

Edible Use: 

Many seeded fruit that are orangey when ripe and greenish-yellow when dried and shriveled. Leaves and flowers are prepped and dried for teas and tincture use. It’s yellow pulp is sweet and delicious to eat. 

Story Time: 

The generic name is derived from Latin flos passionis, ‘flower of the passion’. Alluding to the symbolic similarity of the slider to the instruments of Christ’s Passion. The corolla represents the crown of thorns, the three style of the postal are the nails, the stamens the hammer, the pointed leaves the spear and the tendrils the whip. 

Purple Passionflower

Medicinal Use: 

The flowers and the fruiting tops have mild sedative properties and used to relieve insomnia and soothe nerves. In homeopathic medicine for nervous insomnia and is also prescient for nerve disorders connected with menstruation and menopause. A small study in children suggests that passionflower may reduce ADHD symptoms similar to a prescription drug but with fewer side effects.

How Can I use Passionflower?

Take 1/4 teaspoon of Passionflower leaves and flower. Steep in boiling water for 5-8 minutes, creating a pleasant tea to sip on. Drinking up to 1-3 cups of tea a day. OR buy Ancient Medicine Cabinet’s Insomnia tincture and easily reap the benefits in seconds by taking a dropper full 1-3 times a day. 

Oregano Benefits Uses and How to Harvest Home Herb

Oregano Benefits Uses and How to Harvest Home Herb

Oregano is of part the Lamiaceae (mint) family. Pungent flavor is composed of earthy/musty, green, hay and minty notes. There are many different varieties of oregano; all are medicinal but very in amount of beneficial compounds. This herb is grown easily in your yard.

WHERE IT GROWS

You’ll find oregano growing in most herb gardens. If you are unfamiliar with it, look for bright-green, opposite oval leaves that are slightly hairy. It is a sprawling perennial plant that looks similar to a mint. It can take over an area. This herb grows close to the ground, reaching 8 to 32 inches tall. Each leaf is 1/2 to 1 1/2 inches long. The flowers are purple and tiny, growing on erect spikes above the leaves. 

HOW TO USE

Oregano is used as culinary her to flavor many types of foods. For medicinal use, it can be used in food, as tea, as tincture, or as an essential oil. The essential oil is very concentrate and should always be diluted with a carrier oil (coconut, olive or sunflower oil). 

Adding Oregano oil to water and create a facial stream for loosening congestion and treating bronchial infections, asthma, and coughing. It relives the inflammation in the air ways. 

BENEFITS

Oregano herb is an antiviral, anti bacterial and anti fungal. Used internally to treat infections and externally to treat skin pro meals and fungal infections. 

Oregano contains a wide range of antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties. This helps aid the immune system to heal the body faster. It contains vitamins A and C which are beneficial in boosting the immune system. Oregano help relieve stresses on the body and stimulates the immune system to produce white bloods cells. Which defends the body against bacteria, viruses, fungi and cancerous cells. 

This herb stimulates the metabolism causing the body to burn more calories. Can increase energy levels in some people and can help you loose weight.

WHERE TO START

You can typically find a starter plant at your local garden store, or the Walmart garden section. Starting from seed is also easy. Harvest the leaves and stems before the plant blooms for best flavor. It is still potent after blooming, but the flavor is more butter. 

WARNING: Do not take oil of Oregano when pregnant. It is concentrated and has not been proven safe for pregnancy. 

Mullein Benefits Uses Scrophulariacea Family

Mullein Benefits Uses Scrophulariacea Family

Mullein is part of the Scrophulariacea family. It is commonly known as a great mullein or common mullein. Mullein grows in meadow, by roadsides, on waste ground, especially on gravel, sand or chalky soil. This plants prefers disturbed ground. 

Mullein is used for many herbal remedies, with established emolleint ( softening and soothing) and astrinent (a substance  that draws together or constricts body tissues and is effect in stopping the flow of blood secretions) properties. This plant has been used to make dyes and torches. The leaf makes a lovely toilet paper substitute. 

Leaves and flowers are edible. Most people use mullein as a tea. Mullein are anti-inflammatory antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent(draw together or constrict tissue), demulcent(soothing mucous membranes), emollient(softening and soothing), expectorant(promoting the secretion of phlegm, mucus, or other respiratory matter) , anodyne (pain killing) and vulnerany (would healing). 

Mullein is commonly used for its respiratory treatment of chest complaints such as; bronchitis, tuberculosis, and asthma. It reduces the formation of mucus and stimulates the explosion of phlegm. It is a specific treatment for bronchitis. It also relives the cousin spasms and wheezing. People improve with long term use. 

This wonderful plant is also known for aiding in earaches and ear infections. An easy recipe is soaking mullein in olive oil for 3-4 weeks, straining and using that oil right into your ear to treat ear infections or earaches. Do not use mullein for punctured eardrums. 

Powered Mullein roots rubbed onto warts helps kill the virus to the roots and removes the wart. Rub it in serval times a day until the wart is completely hone and the skin is healed. The juice of the plant can also be used. 

For cramping and miles spams, try an internal Mullein Infusion. For muscle spasms, this oil you can also apply right unto affected area. 

WARNINGS; 

Do not used mullein if you are pregnant or breast feeding. In some people, it can cause skin irritations, stomach pain and breathing difficulties. Net sellers are allergic reactions, so discontinue use if these symptoms occur.