Study Group 2010: Herbal Spotlight
Each month, we will focus on one herb. The study group will include reading the lesson, doing ‘experiments, discussing further study and advanced work options (that each person will do on their own at home over the course of the month), and ending with group discussion on general topics while enjoying refreshments. Each month we will discuss what was taught/studied the previous month before starting a new lesson.
December 8, 2010 Herbal Spotlight: Cinnamon
November 10, 2010 Herbal Spotlight: Sage
This month, we learned about Sage. As a culinary herb, Sage is a great herb for beginners since most people are already familiar with his taste and smell from cooking. Take a bite of a fresh sage leaf and find out just how well one of his main properties works: astringency! Sage works well for drying up excess secretions in the body including excess saliva (your mouth will be dry after eating that leaf!), excess breast milk (avoid if you DON’T want your milk supply to drop!), catarrh that has built up in the lungs and excess perspiration.
The next thing you’ll notice when you chew on that leaf is sage also has bitter properties which stimulate the digestive system and liver. Sage is a bit contradictory in these two aspects as bitters usually increase saliva production as a first step to getting the digestive process in motion.
Sage’s antimicrobial actions make him a perfect choice for any kind of throat ailments such as laryngitis and pharyngitis. Making a Sage infusion and adding sea salt for a gargle is a great course of action to take against these ailments! Sage also whitens teeth when used in a tooth powder regularly.
Sage Tooth Powder
Chop up some fresh sage and dry in an oven at 200 degrees until lightly dried. Grind in a mortar and pestle with coarse sea salt until clumpy and mixed. Place on a cookie sheet and continue to dry in the oven until the mixture forms a cake. Break it up and re-grind in the mortar and pestle until it becomes a fine powder. Store in an airtight jar. To use, wet your tooth brush down and sprinkle the mixture on your tooth brush. Brush as usual.
September 8, 2010 Herbal Spotlight: Rosehips
This month, our focus was on Rose hips. We took a quick walk to the edge of the woods to see Rosa rugosa and Rosa multiflora in person and see the differences between the two plants. Afterwards, we returned inside to learn all about the healing power of Rose hips and made a Rose Hip Elixir.
August 11, 2010 Herb Walk
July 14, 2010 Herb Walk
March 10, 2010 Herbal Spotlight: Garlic
This month, we learned about garlic. One of the most interesting facts is that one milligram of allicin (a volatile oil in garlic) is the estimated equivalent of fifteen standard units of penicillin, making it a highly effective antibiotic replacement without the harmful side effects that the usual antibiotics cause such as killing off the beneficial bacteria in the body.
Garlic is one of the oldest remedies known to humans and is among the few herbs that have a universal usage and recognition.
Nutritionally, garlic contains vitamins B1 and 2, C, Beta carotene, protein and minerals such as calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium ,manganese, copper, zinc, tin, germanium and selenium.
Sampling raw garlic can be a little rough, but if you have a cold or infection coming on, it’s one of the best remedies you can take. We tried garlic raw, dried and powdered, infused in both forms cold and hot and pickled. I think everyone agreed, the best was saved for last as the pickled garlic was quite the hit (both pickled in vinegar and tamari).
Pickled garlic: tamari-honey and vinegar-honey
January 13, 2010 Herbal Spotlight: Ginger
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