Thursday, December 30, 2010

Starting Off the New Year

Horseradish - 2011 Herb of the Year

Every year the International Herb Association chooses an Herb of the Year. This year it is horseradish. I suggest you go to the following websites to read about horseradish.

Herb of the Year

I love it with roast beef, but I also use mustard/horseradish in toasted cheese sandwiches to spice them up.

At the Master Gardeners Christmas Potluck this year, someone brought the most delicious cranberry salsa and I want to share the recipe with you. I made it for Christmas and it was a hit, even with teenagers! Fresh cranberries and cilantro make it a great source of vitamins and anti-oxidants as well. I used a little fresh orange juice to sweeten instead of sugar. Experiment and Enjoy!


1bag fresh cranberries, rinsed and chopped (best in food processor)
Half bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
2 Scallions, chopped
2 tsp. fresh lime juice
1/2 -- 3/4 C sugar
Pinch dried hot pepper flakes
1/4 tsp. ground cumin

Combine the above the day before you serve to 'marry' the flavors. Keeps well in the refrigerator.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Herbal Jellies - Yum!

Wondering what to do with the culinary herbs you grow? Here's an idea... make herbal jellies. Great as gifts. Make up a gift basket with jellies, vinegars and flavored olive oils. Who can resist?

Here's a recipe I recently received and have not had a chance to try yet. Go to Lemon Verbena Lady's blog for more...

I think you could use other culinary herbs as well as basils. Experiment with your favorites.
Scented Basil Jellies

Makes four 8-ounce jars

• 1½ cups packed fresh anise, cinnamon, opal or lemon basil
• 2 cups water
• 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
• Pinch of salt
• 3½ cups sugar
• 3 ounces liquid pectin

1. Wash and dry the basil in paper towels, then coarsely chop it. Put the basil in a large saucepan and crush the leaves, using the bottom of a glass. Add the water, bring slowly to a boil and boil for 10 seconds. Remove the saucepan from the heat; cover and let sit for 15 minutes to steep.

2. Strain 1½ cups of liquid from the saucepan and pour through a fine strainer into another saucepan. Add the vinegar, salt and sugar and bring to a hard boil, stirring. When the boil can't be stirred down, add the pectin. Return the portion that can't be stirred down to a hard boil and boil for exactly 1 minute; remove saucepan from heat.

3. Skim off the foam and pour the hot jelly into four hot, sterilized (sterilized in boiling water for 10 minutes) half-pint jelly jars. Leave ½-inch (or less) headspace and seal at once with sterilized 2-piece lids. I just leave my lids in hot water not boiling until you need them. Can the jars in a boiling water bath for 5 minutes.

Recipe from Recipes from a Kitchen Garden by Renee Shepherd & Fran Raboff, Berkeley (Ten Speed Press, 1993).

Friday, August 27, 2010

My Favorite Therapeutic Grade Essential Oils - Young Living

For therapeutic use, I have been using Young Living essential oils for over 12 years. I especially like their blends which I use all the time as perfumes or to affect my mood.

They also make some incredible personal care products and supplements. I love their deodorant and toothpaste, which I use every day.

Young living oils have a depth and complexity you never find in any other oils. I have been to their farm in Utah and seen how they distill their oils. Their Lavender oil is like a vintage wine, multi-layered and evocative.

Gary Young is the only person in the essential oil industry who personally goes to every location where the plants are grown and where oils are distilled. More and more, they are growing and distilling so as to ensure the supply and the quality.

Essential oils are like other commodities traded in the world. They are subject to political, economic and climate conditions just like food items and other raw materials. By growing their own plants and producting their own oils, Young Living is better able to control how plants are grown and processed, which makes all the difference in the final product.

Check out my personal Young Living website. Sign up for the essential rewards program where you get credits for everything you buy which you can redeem for free products. By becoming a member, you can get in on special promotions.

You can make money selling Young Living products. As a distributor, you get a percentage on all sales by people you sign up.

I also like Young Living for its ongoing training and customer support. They want you to know about their products and how to use them.

To start out, I recommend the Essential Seven kit. These oils are like a first-aid kit with so many uses, you'll wonder what you ever did without them. I have made a mini-set to take with me when I travel.

One summer, I went on a four day camel trip into the Sahara desert in Morocco. Obviously, you can't take much baggage on such a trip. I made a set of a dozen or so mini bottles of oils which I carried in a fanny pack. I passed around the Peppermint when people got headaches or nausea, Lavender for wounds, and stress.

That was the 'trial by fire' - my test as to whether oils work or not. I can truly say they are the first choice in treatment, no matter what the issue. I even use oils for preventing the usual ailment travelers get.... I take a drop of Frankincense oil with every meal. It works for me. I never have to run to the bathroom.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Announcing: New Pluto Through the Houses Essences and Aroma-essence Spray

Launched at the recent Evolutionary Astrology Conference in Denver, my latest creation: a set of 12 Pluto Through the Houses Essences. Each one is a blend of flower, gem, and environmental essences intuitively selected to work with the issues related to Pluto in a particular house.
You may work with your natal house placement of Pluto, or where Pluto is currently transiting, or both.
A specially formulated Aroma-essence Spray contains essential oils and the Pluto blend.
See my astrology blog for more info. You can order here or there. Remember to specify which house you want.
To make the medicine go down easier, each essence contains Hazelnut and Pomegranate liqueurs. Yum! Transformation never tasted so good!
Each essence is 2 ounces. The aroma-essence spray is 4 ounces.

Salon des Plantes August - Sunflower

Today marks the 100th post on this blog. I used to post regularly, but life has gotten more complicated. One of my Summer Resolutions is to write on my blogs again on a regular basis.

Went to Annabella's Salon des Plantes yesterday at the Peralta Community Garden in Berkeley. My friend Huck met me there. Annabella makes wonderful essences and perfumes. To see her website click here.

The featured plant was Sunflower! I realized this is a plant that I take for granted. In listening to what Annabella told us about its history and uses, going through the attunement to the plant, and doing the guided visualization, I got a whole new perspective.

Sunflower originally came from Peru. It spread throughout the Americas and was brought to Europe during the Conquest. It nativized in many area and became the signature flower for Louis XIV. It became an integral part of Russian cuisine, where sunflower oil was used extensively. In addition, a cordial was made using Sunflower in vodka. Who knew?

Sunflower oil can be used both in beauty products and in cooking. The seeds of some species are used in baking and cooking. The serve as a healthy snack which contains a high percentage of protein. Sunflower seeds also feed birds and animals.

My guided visualization had me climbing a huge sunflower stalk like Jack and the Beanstalk. When I arrived at the top, I found myself on the central disk of a huge flower. I saw the spiral form of the central flowers (sunflower is a complex flower with each petal and each black/brown section as complete flowers in themselves), as a crop circle. I realized that these recurring patterns to be found in nature are there to remind us of that everything is connected. There is a plan to the Universe. We are not alone, but part of a multi-leveled Creation. The spiral at the center of the Sunflower is a hologram.

I also learned to look beyond the superficial. To deeply see the worlds within worlds. And to listen. I heard the buzzing bees of the Peralta Community Garden and realized they speak a language and that they communicate with the plants and flowers in a parallel universe that exists here and now. We live in a multi-tiered world right here on Earth.

Now when I look at the face of Sunflower I know that I am seeing the mystery hidden in plain sight.

Sunflower flower essence from FES

Positive qualities: Unique individuality, spiritualized ego forces infused into a sun-radiant personality
Patterns of imbalance: Distorted or vacillating sense of Self; inflation or self-effacement, low self-esteem or arrogance; poor relation to father or solar aspects of Self

After the Salon, Huck and I took BART to San Francisco to the Mission where we ate at Gracias Madre, an organic vegan Mexican restaurant. OMG! Incredible! One of the best, if not the best meals I have every eaten. SO GOOD! We ordered way to much food and had to bring our entries home. The first three were the appetizers and they were so good and there was so much of it that we could not even touch the last two which were our entries. Handmade tortillas from non-GMO corn! The prices were good too. We actually had ordered four meals and didn't realize it. I'm having my Enchiladas con Mole Poblano for brunch today.

Guacamole con Tostadas
Mashed avocado with cilantro, onion, chile and lime

Quesadillas de Calabaza
Butternut squash and caramelized onion folded into tortillas with cashew nacho cheese a pumpkin seed salsa

Papas al Horno
Be Love Farm Potatoes roasted with olive oil and garlic topped with cashew nacho cheese

Enchiladas con Mole Poblano
Mole enchiladas topped with mushrooms and cashew cheese, served with sauteed greens and beans

Prickly Pear cactus from Rivenrock Farms grilled with garlic and fresh herbs, served with rice, beans, pico de gallo, cashew crema and corn tortillas

Monday, July 26, 2010

Lavender at the Salon des Plantes

Yesterday at Annabella's Salon des Plantes we worked with one of my favorite plants - Lavender.

After calling in the directions in Italian, Annabella showed us how to make lavender wands. She offered us lavender tea from both fresh and dry plants and lavender madelines....yum!

Lavender is one of those herbs that has many uses. If you lived on a desert island and could only have one herb, lavender should be your choice. It has both medicinal and culinary uses. Of all scents, lavender is the most popular. Most people like it.

Anti-bacterial, anti-spasmodic, slightly sedative, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory. I use it almost everyday. It helps with burns, poison oak, and insect bites. This is interesting because bees love the flowers and yet lavender oil can soothe bee stings. I make a spray called 'burns and bites' using lavender oil.

According to Wikipedia, "Lavender was commonly used in Roman baths to scent the water, and it was thought to restore the skin. Its late Latin name was lavandārius, from lavanda (things to be washed), from the verb lavāre (to wash). When the Roman Empire conquered southern Britain, the Romans introduced lavender. The Greeks discovered early on that lavender if crushed and treated correctly would release a relaxing fume when burned."

There are many varieties of lavender which have different properties and they all have a slightly different scent.

The guided visualization we participated in took me to a cave near the ocean. While in the cave, the spirit of lavender spoke to me and reminded me that the most potent lavender plants are those grown in harsh environments with little water. The less water, the better the oil. Lavender is here to remind us that the challenges of life can bring out either the best or the worst within us. Like lavender oil, let us bring out our healing essence!

I have grown lavender both from seed and from cuttings, although growing from seed is very slow.

Here are some  recipes using culinary lavender:

Lavender Lemonade

2 ½ cups of water
¼ C culinary lavender
1 can frozen lemonade concentrate
Sugar to taste
Bring water and lavender to boil over medium heat. Turn off heat and let stand for 20 minutes. Strain the mixture. Pour into lemonade. Add sugar to taste.

Lavender Roasted Beets

with Garlic and Lemon

Makes 6 Servings

1 pound medium beets, with 1 inch of stems remaining

6 unpeeled garlic cloves
¼ cup plus 1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. plus ½ tsp. dried culinary ‘Provence’ lavender buds, finely ground in a spice grinder
¼ tsp. finely grated lemon zest
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup Italian parsley leaves chopped

Preheat oven to 375º F.

Place the beets and garlic on a large sheet of foil and sprinkle with ¼ cup of the oil and 1 Tbs. of the lavender; toss to combine. Fold up the foil to make a sealed packet. Place on a baking sheet. Roast for 30 to 45 minutes, or until tender when tested with a sharp knife. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Slip off the skins.

Cut the beets into quarters and place in a large skillet. Squeeze the garlic over the beets. Stir in the lemon zest, lemon juice, the remaining 1 Tbs. oil, and the remaining ½ tsp. lavender. Season with salt and pepper. Warm through over medium heat. Sprinkle with the parsley.

Serve hot or warm.

And here's my recipe for a healing spray:

Burns and Bites Spray

1 oz. aloe vera gel
1 oz. lavender hydrosol
1 oz. roman chamomile hydrosol
30 drops of lavender essential oil
15 drops of ravensara essential oil

Combine all ingredients in a 4 oz. spray bottle.
Shake and spray as needed.
Keep out of eyes.
Alleviates pain.
Promotes skin healing.
Diminishes itching.

The best lavender essential oil comes from Young Living. Visit my new young living website to order some. They have many other products using Lavender. Check them out.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Salon des Plantes with Luna Fina - Elder

Black Elder Sambucus nigra

The Salon des Plantes with Annabella this past Sunday, June 27, focused on Elder.

We began with Annabella calling in the directions in Italian. The first time I heard her do this, it really struck a chord with me. I grew up in a bi-lingual, bi-cultural home. My maternal grandparents spoke Italian all of their lives. My step-father came from Italy and so Italian was often spoken in my childhood home. Hearing Annabella singing out boldly in Italian warmed my heart. I think one reason I have gotten involved in her monthly Salons is just to hear her sing.

Elder is an herb that has been used for centuries by many cultures. The black berries contain high levels of vitamin C and anti-oxidants known as flavonoids.

David Hoffmann in Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine, says " The elder tree is a medicine chest in its own right." The leaf can be used for bruises, sprains, and wounds. The flower is an ideal treatment for colds and flu. Standardized extracts of black elderberry has antiviral properties.

Tinctures and teas can be made of the flowers. Juice or syrups can be made of flowers and berries. My Cold Season Syrup and Immune System Tonic both include decoctions of elder flower and berries.

Tradition says that Elder has magical properties as well.

Wikipedia says: The Elder Tree was supposed to ward off evil influence and give protection from witches, a popular belief held in some cultures. If an elder tree was cut down, a spirit known as the Elder Mother would be released and take her revenge. The tree could only safely be cut while chanting a rhyme to the Elder Mother.

The most powerful wand in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter is a wand made of sambucus known as the "Elder Wand".

For in depth information go to A Modern Herbal by Mrs. M. Grieve here

Every session of Salon des Plantes, we experience the plant on many levels. There are washes, teas, and dry and fresh plant on hand. There is at least one growing plant at the Peralta Community Garden for us to visit and commune with.

We observe the plant, then draw it. We do a guided visualization where we are encouraged to meet the spirit of the plant and find out if it has a message for us.

This time during the journey, I found myself in a Greek temple on a hillside overlooking the sea. Elder told me that she stores ancient wisdom and that I could spend a lifetime learning her secrets. I was inspired to wildcraft the flowers that are abundantly available near my home.

A few years ago I planted an elderberry in my garden. It is quite small and doesn't seem to flourish despite the fact that so many of them grow wild in my area. This year it didn't return, or so I thought. This morning, after the Salon, I found it. I was so thrilled to see that it had survived the wet winter.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Salon des Plantes with Luna Fina - Mugwort

On Saturday, March 20, my friend Huck and I went to the first Salon des Plantes put on by AnnaBella aka Luna Fina.

Marvelous! It took place at the Peralta Community Garden in Berkeley, the perfect spot.

AnnaBella will offer these salons once a month in different locations around Berkeley and Marin County. In July, she will be in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

It was a delight to hear her sing in the four directions in Italian! The first time I have heard it in the language of my ancestors and it was truly inspiring.

This first month we focused on Mugwort. We had a guided visualization, drank mugwort tea, had mugwort oil rubbed on our wrists and were smudged with mugwort. Meanwhile, we were surrounded by mugwort growing in the garden.

AnnaBella teaches classes in many locations. She is also the creator of the Rose Chakra Flower Essences which can be purchased from her Website - click here - and many other wondrous products to heal your heart and soul.

She gives sacred footbaths, leads vision quests and showers you with love and joy.

I first met her at the Sonoma County Herb Association Herb Festival on the campus of Santa Rosa Junior College in 1996. Since then she has served as an inspiration to me in many ways.

So what about Mugwort?

This plant grows in the temperate regions of Europe, Asia, Africa and North America. There are many species in the genus known as Artemisia (plants named for the goddess Artemis).

The species we worked with in AnnaBella's Salon was douglasiana. It happens to grow wild near my house and is so easy to propagate through cuttings. I just put sticks of it in the ground and they grow. They die back in winter, but come up in early March, even in the woods where I live.

It has both medicinal and spiritual qualities, but should never be used in excess since it contains thujone.

Should be avoided by pregnant and nursing women.

It is an effective digestive and has been used in Europe to flavor drinks.

Moxa is made from pulverized mugwort and used in acupuncture.

It can repel insects.

It is used for lucid dreaming and is often found in 'dream pillows' or potions to bring on dreaming.

It has protective qualities and put with rosemary can be put in a pouch near the door of your house and/or in your car to keep out unwanted visitors or thieves. But as the saying goes: "Pray to Allah and tie your camel" remember to lock your doors too!

I make a dream potion which includes mugwort and it is part of my Lunar Salve (one of the Three Egyptian Sacred Schools Salves).

FES makes a mugwort flower essence - click here

Start your search with this entry from Wikipedia

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Dill - Herb of the Year - 2010

What does the old Chinese proverb say: May you live in interesting times? Well, I guess this is it for me. Last year I had many challenges including breaking my ankle while taking a Plant Spirit Healing class with Pam Montgomery. It was 'the perfect time' to break my ankle since I was surrounded by healers and deeply connecting to the plant beings.

But it meant that I was not able to do any of my shows, work outside in my own garden, or make any products for several months. I was not even able to get outside for months. I looked longingly out the window.

Then one of my beloved cats, Grace, who had a thyroid condition, developed a heart condition which worsened and finally led to her death.

It seemed like there was one thing after another. And I know that others had a tough year too. In fact, many of my friends and associates died or developed grave illnesses.

I felt I was under a black cloud and was not able to write in my blogs because I was so uninspired. Life felt meaningless. There is nothing worse for a person who has devoted their life to spiritual pursuits, seeking truth and light, but it happens. I was in the wasteland, so to speak. Having a dark night of the soul.

I was also financially challenged because I had been unable to work for several months. I felt stuck. Surrounded by herbal remedies, flower essences, essential oils, I forgot to take them. Duh.

But then one day, the cloud lifted. I felt a shift in energy. I knew this year would be a better and so it has been. I had gone through an ordeal and had learned the lessons.

One thing that helped shift the energy was helping someone else. Giving what I had to give, expecting nothing in return.

One of my teachers was going through cancer treatment. I had not been able to go to my astrology class for months - first because I could not drive, then because I had no money to pay for them. I didn't know what was happening to him until one of my classmates called and told me. One night I just had to go. Since so many people and pets had been dying around me, I thought "what if I never see him again?" I scraped up the money and went. After class I asked him about his situation and he told me what was going on. When I got out to my car I suddenly had a 'download' about his condition and its 'energetic' cause. I went back in and offered what I had seen and suggested flower essences, since they are so powerful when dealing with energetic causes - even to physical conditions.

The next day I worked on the formula, made it up and brought it to him. We continued over a period of a couple of months or so, making new remedies as needed. He said he could feel their healing qualities while holding the bottles. He continued to get his treatments - radiation and chemotherapy - and took his flower essences. He told me that they were the only thing that gave him any relief from the side effects of his medical treatments.

He came through the ordeal completely healed and I learned that flower essences 'work'!

I also remembered to take them myself!

Now I am so busy with scheduling my classes, workshops and craft shows, I have been neglecting my blogs again, but this time for a 'positive reason'. I apologize to my readers.

The Herb of the Year for 2010 is Dill.

One of my favorite herbs, I use freeze dried dill in salads such as cole slaw (my version), egg, macaroni/pasta, and of course, in deviled eggs. I also use it on baked fish.

If you are interested my cole slaw recipe: It's really not cole slaw, but this is one of my favorite salads.

Chopped or shredded cabbage green and red if you have it.
Diced red peppers
Diced carrots
Diced celery
Dried Dill
Oriental dressing - with ginger, soy, sesame oil either homemade or store bought.

You can also use it fresh. Click here for an article on dill in the Herb Companion that includes recipes.

Dill seed is sometimes used in bread where it lends a pungent flavor.

Dill essential oil is most used for the digestive system and may help lower glucose levels and normalize insulin levels. If you have these issues, please do not self-medicate, consult a physician first.

It can also be helpful when dealing with constipation or indigestion and headaches related to digestive issues.

It has been used historically to promote milk flow in nursing mothers. It also supports liver and pancreas function.

Dill essential oil is 'generally regarded as safe' (GRAS) for internal consumption by the FDA, but as is the case with all essential oils, it is quite strong and should be diluted when taken orally. Use 1 drop of oil in 1 tsp. of honey or 4 oz. of beverage. When giving to children over 6 dilute further.

Dill essential oil calms the autonomic nervous system and when diffused with Roman chamomile may help calm fidgety children.

Put a drop or two on the wrists to help curb sugar cravings.


FES has this to say about Dill Flower Essence:

Positive qualities: Ability to experience and absorb a wide variety of sensory experiences, heightened awareness of taste, touch, hearing, sight, smell, etc.

Patterns of imbalance: Overwhelm due to excess stimulation, hypersensitivity to environment or to outer activity, sensory congestion

Go to the FES website here to purchase and learn more.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Showing of 'Numen - The Nature of Plants'

Thursday night, United Plant Savers hosted a viewing of a new film on our relationship to plants called:

Numen, The Nature of Plants

This is taken from a description of the film by UpS staff:

'The film focuses on the healing power of plants and the natural world. Filmmakers Terrence Youk and Ann Armbrecht traveled the U.S. to speak with doctors and herbalists, ethnobotanists and others about how our disconnection from nature affects human and environmental health, and to discover how healing is made possible by embracing our place in the wider web of life. Numen features stunning footage of medicinal plants and thought-provoking interviews advocating a re-awakening of traditional knowledge about plants and their uses.

The film provides viewers with a sobering view of conventional healthcare and the dangers of environmental insults as well as a new vision of safe, effective and sustainable medicine. In addition, it offers concrete steps to improve individual health and well being while enhancing the health of the earth. Interviewees include herbalists Rosemary Gladstar, former owner of Sebastopol's Rosemary's Garden, Phyllis Light, Dr. Tieraona LowDog, Larry Dossey and Martha Herbert, Kenny Ausubel founder of Bioneers and local herb champions , David Hoffmann, Lynda LeMole, Executive Director of United Plant Savers, Drake Sadler and Josef Brinckmann of Traditional Medicinals Herb Tea.

"Numen is a magnificent depiction of the healing essence of plants. The filmmakers captured the magic, the mystery, the beauty of plants and their importance as herbal medicine in our contemporary health care system. Inspiring and educational, Numen has a place in the library of anyone interested in medicine, plants, gardening and earth ecology.It?s a powerful film that I?ll recommend that everyone see? Rosemary Gladstar'

I was privileged to go on an herbal tour to Morocco with Rosemary in 2007. What a sweet and special person she is. She seems quiet and even shy and yet she has had such an impact on herbalism in America. She started so many businesses, and organizations, that have been huge successes and yet she is so humble and unassuming.

I was proud to be a vendor at the event which was a great success. I really felt like an herbalist! My company Wise Women of the West has been around for 14 years now. Someone asked me how long I have been making things out of plants and I realized I started as a small child. I used to try to make perfume all the time. What I was actually making were flower essences! She said, "Did anyone lead you in that direction?" My answer..."it was a past-life thing," which I truly believe... at least in my case.

They got a much bigger crowd than expected, and the place was packed. The film was a tad bit long and a little redundant, but well worth seeing. It should be on PBS!

Try to see it if you can.

United Plant Savers will host a conference called Planting the Future in Santa Rosa, California May 15. For more info click here.

Friday, January 22, 2010

20 Herbs You Must Have - Part III

Here is the third and last part of the series that Karyn Sanders did on her show, "The Herbal Highway" on KPFA radio. After the 20 herbs, she talks about some flower essences she uses a lot.

Sweet Leaf also known as bee balm, monarda, or wild bergamot

Used much more in south east and east. It is cooling. You can use the leaves, stems and flowers, fresh or dried. When you use the stems, use them dry.

Good to use when there is shut down energy which tends to 'shoot all over the place' and heat up. It re-organizes and calms down energy. Very good to use when you get burned. Best to use the flowers. Chew it, because your saliva contains enzymes that help. Then apply to burn. Don't leave on more than three to five minutes. It draws out the heat and the pain. After 3-5 minutes remove and discard, put fresh poultice on as needed. If you leave it on too long, it will start burning and thus add to the problem.

Great wash for wounds, keeps them clean and prevents infection. Good for poison oak and poison ivy as a wash to cool off the rash and dry it out. It helps with nerve pain, especially surface pain. She has used it for teeth. Takes the pain away. Short term relief.

Useful with menstrual cramps, nausea, sore throats, gas, intestinal discomfort and coughing. Use as a tea. It is a nice under-utilized plant. A good muscle relaxant if you are really tense or you have overdone it.

With burns, it will prevent scarring and will also soften old scars, so she uses it when people are trying to get rid of old scars. Well known for this.

The leaf or flower good for kidney, bladder, or yeast infections. It mixes well with yerba buena for a hangover. Make an infusion/tea and drink it. An infusion is steeped overnight and is medicinal in strength.

You can make a tincture using fresh or dried plant. You can make capsules out of dried powdered plant.

It enters through the arms, so, spiritually that is where it works. Think about where plants enter the body as to what plant you will use. It calms down agitation.

Spiritual use: It is ghost medicine, so used when there is 'corpse sickness.' She gives it to people who work around death a lot, such as morticians. Also good for PTSD, especially for corpse sickness in soldiers. She has used a lot with veterans. Inhale the flowers, don't need to ingest. Bundles of flowers. Flowers also calm down negative thoughts. It invites internal passion to come through when it is stuck deep inside.

Not used much on this coast, but very popular in the east.

True Solomon's Seal

Becoming endangered, because it likes to grow on the edge of forests and meadows. That land is less available as population increases. When it comes to putting plants (or animals) on the endangered list - you have to do it way in advance, because by the time they truly are endangered, it is too late. If the territory it normally resides in is rapidly diminishing, it is a sure bet that it will soon become endangered or extinct. While plants and animals have known to adapt to new conditions, it takes decades or longer for that to happen. They can't just pick up and leave like humans can.

Also known as "High John the Conqueror". It is wolf medicine and works where there is a lot of fracturing going on and a lot of energy splitting off from the body, way too much heat. When people are too 'edgy' that is often caused by too much heat.

Native to east, mid-west, heading down into the south. It has large leaves, flowers and berries grow in clusters. Good for relaxing joints and muscles. Good for tendon and connective tissue repair. Use when there is any kind of tendon issue, when having surgery. Use for carpal tunnel.

Repairs inflammation and tears, which occur during body building as well, since you are constantly ripping muscle - part of what occurs in the 'building' process. Can be used as a liniment or tincture. Not easy to find. For those whose joints or vertebrae pop out of place, use externally or internally. It helps keep them in place by keeping the fluidity in the area. Bones pop out of place when they are rigid. It dissolves excess cartilage and calcium deposits in the body. Good for people who are not assimilating calcium and start to get bumps on their fingers and other bones.

Works well with rheumatoid arthritis pain. She uses figwort for the disease long term and true solomon seal for the pain. It also works well with osteo-arthritis, because of its effects with bones, calcium density and similar issues.

Use with broken bones, back injuries such as herniated disks.

It can be used for easing the pain of fibromyalgia. Does not remove the illness, just the pain. The plant can be useful when there are back and neck injuries. It is slightly anti-inflammatory... not her first choice however. Since it is becoming endangered, she only uses it when she needs it specifically. Many other better anti-inflammatories, so best not to waste in this way.

Has laxative properties if you take a lot of it. It works for dry cough. It helps with indigestion or sour gut. It is a nice tonic for irritated mucus membranes. It reduces excess mucus. It is a blood balancer to bring the ph back to balance. To remain in good health, the blood should be alkaline, not acidic. Blood acidity can develop due to diet although some people tend that way naturally. Sugar, meat, and junk foods make the blood acidic.

Make a tincture of fresh root. You can also use it dry. You don't need a lot. 10 to 15 drops twice a day.

Spiritual use: This is wolf medicine and conjuring medicine. Good for creating substantial change when you are called to make a big change in who you are and the direction of your life and you don't know how to do that.

This next year is going to be very intense energetically. It is going to be a 'Kali' year, a year of change - what has been in personal structure, work, relationships, self is not going to be there anymore. A good time for True Solomon Seal because you want to go with that kind of change even though it is hard and going to feel intense. Many people are already feeling this. It started in November and will continue for a year. It is "Kali" time. Best to go with the change which is required, rather than resist. I believe, like Karyn that Kali tells us "resistance is futile".

True Solomon Seal provides protection against enemies and it equalizes power in an unbalanced situation such as business deals, banks, landlords. If you have to take an exam, put a little Solomon Seal in your pocket to even the playing field. Put some in your pocket if you are going into a casino.

Not a hard plant to grow. It is a beautiful plant. It has notches on its root to tell its age, like ginseng. It grows at the edge of the trees and likes to have really good drainage. If you keep it in a pot, it must be half gravel otherwise it rots out easily.


Another cooling plant. Use the aerial parts, anything above the ground, fresh or dried. It works where energy is splitting off and the light is too intense. Light not diffusing but intensifying in the body and you need to tone it down.

A great tonic for the nervous system. It is mildly sedative, not hugely so, but because it tones the nervous system down and even it out, it feels sedating. When you are ampted up and are then brought down to 'normal' it feels sedating. Hard for people who are used to being overstimulated to get used to a 'normal, healthy' degree of energy.

Vervain a great one for 'mind chatter' especially when grief or depression is present. When you are going over the same story over and over all the time, vervain can stop that.

It works well with OCD Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Here we are talking about small amounts - 1 to 3 drops - spirit doses. Anxiety and paranoia can benefit from vervain.

Use where there is cramping during menses. It helps with hard painful heavy bleeding. Good to give to young girls when they first begin to have their menses 2 to 5 months.

It makes you sweat if you drink a hot cup of it, so use for bringing out a fever and breaking it. Use to sweat out an illness to release toxins. Unless working with babies, where you must be very careful about fevers, but with adults and older children, you want to let them have a fever because fevers are a way for the body to kill viruses and heal itself. But this should not continue too long. You want to break the fever before it gets to a dangerous level. During the early stages of an infection, vervain is anti-viral. At this stage, most people do nothing. They tend to ignore until they are really sick. Because of this, they tend to miss a lot of plants that could be used to stave off the illness at the early stages. By the time you are 'full-blown sick,' vervain won't help.

It cools the liver and stimulates it slightly, so it is a good one for stagnation, especially where it is really hot. People don't realize that stagnation can create heat because you have blocks then you have build-up.

It helps with gall bladder inflammation, especially when the inflammation is associated with jaundice and headache. This type of headache can occur when you have eaten a really greasy meal too late at night or you are not used to it. It might taste great, but an hour later you have a huge headache and your right side hurts. Usually caused by the gall bladder not happy with the meal.

A tincture of the root can be used for irritable bowel syndrome.

It is a great one for animals who have nervous tension and insomnia. For animals that pace and carry nervous tension. use 1 or 2 drops in their drinking water. They really respond to this plant.

It is the antidote for poke poisoning.

You can drink it as a tea. She prefers them that way and prefers to give them that way, but because some plants don't taste good, people have a hard time complying. so she tends to do tincture in her practice. She would love to just use teas.

A good one for mind chatter, especially when it is negative. It helps when mind chatter gets in the way of sexuality and you can't shut the mind up and relax and be present.

Spiritual use: It was used in Europe quite a bit to cleanse an area to make sacred space. it was either burned or put in water and sprinkled. It tends to promote visions and prophetic dreaming. It has been used to conjure love and sexual fulfillment. When you are doing this, be very specific and what you ask for. You will get what you want, but if you leave something important out.... This is a plant for poets, writers, and singers. It also removes unnecessary burdens and emotional pressure. She uses it for type A people a lot - people who push themselves and always feel pressured. She also uses it for people who like to stay on the surface and don't like to go deep. It helps to send people down into deeper realms.

It enhances the effect of gem and flower essences.

It can be found in dry fields and meadows.


Easy to grow. Will grow in blazing hot full sun and in partial shade. Vervain is not picky. She thinks people should grow their own plants, developing an association with the plant that they can then use for medicine.

Yarrow Achillia millifolium

She believes every herbalist in the west would have this one one their list, if you had to pick 10 or 20 herbs. It does so much. It grows on every continent except for Antarctica. It is Wolf medicine. Used by Achilles to heal his soldiers' wounds on the battlefield. Millifolium means 'thousand leafed'. It does not have a thousand leaves but it does have delicate, fern-like leaves.

Most people recognize yarrow when they see it. It grows in many conditions. Easy to grow - wet or dry and at all altitudes.

The Druids used the stalks to divine the weather. In China the stalks were used to make the sticks for the I Ching.

It works on fractures and densities, it forms light. It goes in and does what it has to do in the body.

It stimulates the uterus, so good for women who have density and stagnation.

It is extremely anti-bacterial, works on staff. Wash with yarrow then use golden seal and chamomile, or golden seal and marshmallow internally. This is one you think about for any kind of wound. Probably one of the best wound healers there is. Yarrow will start closing a wound within half an hour. She has seen that on deep cuts out in the middle of nowhere - just chewing it and putting it on a wound. Stops bleeding. (In my own herbal medicine kit, I keep a jar of dry powdered yarrow for this use.) It is a great plant to stop bleeding both internally and externally. Put yarrow on a bad cut as quickly as you can.

It is good in the lungs and throat and pulls out mucus. If you have a lot of excess mucus use yarrow. It is an astringent.

Great when there is a fever but no sweating, a hot cup of yarrow tea will bring on sweating.

It helps with the menstrual cycles that are very long with extended blood flow or when there is periodic flooding. Especially during menopause when menses are getting off the usual pattern.

Good for blood vessel elasticity if there is any issue with that. It lowers blood pressure because it dilates the blood vessels in the fingers, toes, and the periphery of the body. It works well on hemorrhoids by tightening them up and toning and elasticity to the blood vessels. Beneficial to the venous system because it keeps it from becoming brittle. Every smoker should be taking because smoking takes away elasticity and creates brittleness.

It is a tonic, promotes bile flow for digestion, and is a good cardio-vascular tonic because it reduces inflammation in the heart area.

It helps with fibroid and uterine prolapses. Can be used with varicose veins externally. It improves the integrity of the blood vessels. Use it for nose bleeds
It moves, removes and breaks up old stagnant blood. Bruising is blood stagnation. Even if the wound was years ago, yarrow will go to that sight and break up and remove remaining stagnant blood. You need to move stagnant blood. That's where injury and illness happens. Cancer cells go to stagnated blood. Cancer starts where there has been bruising or puncturing. If you get hurt or bruised use yarrow with the arnica.

Good for chronic cystitis and urethritis when there is inflammation. Use for bladder, kidney and prostate irritation. Any chronic reproductive congestion where there is dull pain. This is for both male and female.

Use when there is tearing after child birth or post-partum bleeding. Do a sitz bath. Helps with anal fissures, use in a sitz bath.

Yarrow root is good for tooth pain. You can chew it. Mixed with white oak bark. Can store in alcohol and water so they don't dry out as fast.

Use when there is chronic dysentery where there is diarrhea caused from bacteria in the gut - 'traveller's gut.' It helps with intestinal flus because it is anti-inflammatory. Use when there are stomach ulcers.

It can be used with mild joint and muscle pain.

When there is blistering of the skin or skin rashes use yarrow.

The flowers make a yellow dye using alum as a mordant. if you use iron mordant, you will get an olive green color. Yarrow salve is good for joint inflammation. It enters through the arms.

Spiritual use: Used in love spells and wedding bouquets in other countries. A wish made on the first spring blossom you see will come true. Helps remove negativity in a person, place or thing. Use in a negative work environment. Helps with boundaries. No sense of personal boundary. Either spirit drops of tinctures (1 to 3) or as a flower essence. When there are problems with relationship boundaries. Helps you create healthy boundaries.

Some people get a rash from it if they are super sensitive.

Use when you are working with clients and you want to make and maintain good boundaries.

Not that good for animals who cannot deal with some of the constituents - cannot break down the oxalates.

Yerba Santa

Only see in California and dry areas. It is warming. It works on densities and blocks. In Mexico and Central America used for everything. It is a holy herb, it is used for just about any kind of illness.

She uses it for damp, wet lung conditions. Slightly stimulates the lungs so it brings things up. You think about it more when there is a lot of mucus and congestion.

Use for wetness in the lungs: wet pneumonia, bronchitis, lung infections, colds. If not wet, don't use because it could actually harm you by drying you up too much. Use when there is white phlegm and constant coughs. It is an anti-inflammatory in the lungs, sinus, bronchi.

It is good in the urinary tract and the gut. Another plant that likes to go in and 'do its thing.' Use when there is bladder and urinary tract infections.

It's a great wound wash because it is anti-bacterial. It will start the healing process going.

You want to harvest in late summer when shiny because contains a lot of sugars and resins then. Be careful because so sticky. it will clump up and mold before drying. Spread it out. It takes a lot of alcohol when you make a tincture. If you make an infusion, you want to cook it for hours and then let it sit overnight. Not good for kidneys or bladder long term due to the resin.

Not a tonic. Not for long term use.

Spiritual use: As an offering on all altars. It opens a person up to respect the sacred. It needs to grow in hot places, although it will grow in the worst soil and heat. Will grow in clay with no water. Will grow in disturbed soil.

Essences she uses a lot.

Lady's Tresses Alaskan

Spiral back into the self and into the body. For a person who is hig functioning on many levels but has unseen emotional blocks. People who are out of their body, but don't know it.

Peace Beach Hawaiian

For most type A westerners. People afraid to slow down and be in the quiet. Helps the self and the body slow down and really rest. It allows you to recharge and be on healthy energy. For the wired out and crackly people. To let all parts of the body rest.

Oriental Plane Tree Essences of Greece

Allows your emotional self to change to make better decisions. For those who make most of their emotional decisions based on old hurts, traumas, betrayals and pain. It allows you to let go of and break that pattern. Helps you to start living in present time.

Green Rose Luna Fina

Opens the heart. No way you can be in health and balance unless your heart is open. To know what you are feeling. EVERYTHING enters the heart first. Science is finally catching up with what indigenous peoples have always known.

Violet Rose Luna Fina

Lets light and love into the body and the soul. That is what we all are when we are in balance - light and love. The green and violet pair well together to work with softening the heart and bringing love in.

Liard Hot Springs Alaskan

Helps get rid of old patterns that don't work. Releases feelings of negativity. Melts away feelings of guilt or shame. Brings back the feeling of love and innocence to a person.

Glacier River Alaskan

Allows for release of old patterns. Want to change but can't because old beliefs are standing in your way. Creates movement so the energy can move to bring about change. Create new patterns.

Emerald Alaskan

Opens the heart to love. Lets in light and energy into the body and the heart. Love in the heart is the key.

Saguaro Cactus Desert Alchemy

Cacti have intensity because they survive harsh environments. It balances male and female energy. It gives self-empowerment. Use when there are/were difficulties with the father. Provides healthy male imagery. Helps you to father yourself. It restores will to live and heal. Use with wild animals.

Mariposa Lily Desert Alchemy

When you didn't have healthy mothering or didn't have a healthy relationship with you mother. Helps you to mother yourself. Helps when you are feeling alone and isolated.

This is my trascript from the recorded show. They archive the shows for a short time. Go to