One of the most popular and well-loved herbs, basil's warming and aromatic qualities calm the nervous system, settles the stomach and digestive issues, clears the mind, and wards off colds, coughs and allergies as it destroys phlegm. Have more of it during the late summer/early fall to prevent wintery sinuses and bronchial congestion. It is great as pesto, or in a cup of tea. It's also so easy to grow. Buy a plant and be sure to pinch off the flower heads, as doing so encourages larger growth (which I haven't been good about doing)!
This photo was taken on an amazing hike in Point Reyes along the Tule Elk Trail. This plant is unlike anything I've come across in nature. Certainly unique, the root of the burdock plant is rich in nutrients and minerals and has multi-healing properties. It is high in calcium, phosphorus, iron, chromium and magnesium, regenerates cells, and resolves skin ailments like eczema, psoriasis, boils, and other inflammatory conditions. Burdock root is also helpful in supporting sluggish digestion. This root is great in teas, soups, and even baths!
This jagged-edged green weed is a powerhouse of healing and full of nutrients. These leaves love parks and lawns and thrives in moist, dried or disturbed soil. They're bitter in taste- a flavor we need more in our diet, and make such great spring salads. Bitters increase salivation, which is beneficial for nutrient assimilation and the breakdown of food. Dandelions are a tonic to the liver and kidneys, contains high amounts of Vitamins A, C, and E, and stimulates the flow of digestive substances.
This antibacterial root helps fight colds and flu's, relieves nausea and motion sickness, increases circulation, prevents mucus congestion, soothes sore throats and upset stomachs, lessens menstrual cramps, constipation and inflammation, and stimulates digestion. Best in tea, stir fry's, morning porridge, salads, and even baths! It certainly is one the main ingredients in my flu-be-gone tonic that I whip up for myself (and household) whenever the ickies come along...
This wise plant can be found in most Thanksgiving turkey stuffing around the world. It is used in heavy meat feasts because it is an antidote to many digestive problems associated with eating meat, as it helps facilitate easy digestion and the breakdown of bacterial pathogens commonly present in meat. Like many herbs, sage fights colds and coughs, and aids in deep sleep. Its aroma kills airborne bacteria: pick some for your dining table's centerpiece! Perfect in tea and like others- in a bath to keep sickness away...
One of my favorite spices, Cayenne is well known for its pain-relieving properties, as it contains Capsaicin- found in many topical pain reliever creams. Apply cayenne-infused oils to arthritic joints, sore muscles and any nerve pain (including shingles). This medicinal herb stimulates blood circulation and the delivery of oxygen and nutrients throughout the body, and increases the blood supply to the brain- thereby clearing the head, drowning out congestions, and lessening headaches and mental fog. Cayenne adds a wonderful touch sprinkled into salads, stir-fry's, grain salads, lemon ginger teas, and even in the bath
8 quarts water
1 cup fresh Basil or 1 cup dried Basil leaves
1/2 cup fresh Burdock pieces or 1/2 cup dried Burdock
1/4 cup sliced fresh Ginger
Let the herbs help your body do its job of letting go of what it no longer needs.