Overdose from Kidney Cleanses?

So, I’m on day 5 of my parsley tea regimen and I’m feeling much better, though the pain is more localized now (movement of another stone?). So, I went to Google and am just wondering if I could overdue it with cleanses. I actually found some Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar on sale, so I’ve started that also (just downed a Tablespoon in some water, then added 2 Tablespoons to 8 cups water and that will replace my water for the next few days). via http://www.examiner.com/article/apple-cider-vinegar-kidney-stone-remedy

Then I see this (which I have a lot of celery seed):


And this (which I don’t have a lot of watermelon seeds but good to know I can save them for something like this):


So, if I started another one, it would be the celery seed tea. Does anyone know if that would be overdoing it?

Basic Liver Tonic

Well, today is day 4 of my parsley tea and it’s working!  I feel much better (and think it may be a small kidney stone … sure hurts and moves like one).  So, I can’t do much moving around.  I’ve decided to finally finish cleaning up my website and found this little tidbit hiding amongst the huge numbers of text files I have stored on my server.  I do not know who originally shared it nor who wrote it (if you do, please let me know).

Liver Tonic

* 2 T Wild Yam root
* 2 T Milk Thistle Globes
* 2 T Oregon Grape root
* 2 T Dandelion root
* 2 T Chicory root
* 2 T Goldenseal Root (optional)

Simmer in water 20 min, Golden seal may lower blood sugar and may be deleted from this remedy.

From Mouth Care to Bloating

These last few medicinal recipes from my website do not warrant individual pages, so here they are! Rose Hip Tea to mouth washes to a tonic for bloating and osteoporosis herbs, they are here! 🙂


Herbs for Oral Hygiene

page 143 The New Age Herbalist. (1988 edition) Richard Mabey ed.

Herbs for Oral Hygiene

Many herbs have cleansing and antiseptic properties that make them suitable for oral hygiene. The most important herbs for oral hygiene are:

* sage (astringent)
* cloves
* peppermint
* thyme (antiseptics)
* parsley
* marjoram
* bramble and blackcurrant leaves
* juniper berries.

Chewing juniper berries, peppermint, or parsley will kill the odors of onion, garlic, or alcohol; rubbing the teeth with sage will clean them and sweeten the breath. Strawberries will whiten and clean the teeth, and remove plaque. You can make an effective mouthwash with a normal infusion of sage, mint, thyme, or marjoram. Another useful herb for the mouth comes from the tree Salvadora persica. Its stems are traditionally used in Africa, India, and the Middle East to clean the teeth and gums. Some of the herbs used for oral hygiene should not used under certain circumstances.

Leaf Mouthwash

Source: page 147 The New Age Herbalist. (1988 edition) Richard Mabey ed.

* One large handful of blackcurrant or bramble leaves
* 1 pt (1/2 litre) water
* 2 teaspoons lemon juice.

Pick the leaves when they are young and fresh, taking the bramble leaves from the tops of the stems. Put the leaves and water into an open saucepan and boil until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the lemon juice, strain, and use immediately.


Herbal combinations for bones, teeth, and calcium deficiency

From Today’s Herbal Health (2nd Edition) By Louise Tenney

* No. 1 Comfrey, Horsetail, Oat Straw, and Lobelia
* No. 2 Comfrey, Alfalfa, Oat Straw, Irish Moss, and Lobelia
* No. 3 White Oak, comfrey, Mullien, Black Walnut, Marshmallow, Queen of the Meadow,
Wormwood, Lobelia, and Scullcap

I don’t know where it came from, but we have used Horsetail, Yellow Dock, and Rose hips in a capsule against gum disease. Worked well, too.




From: sonshine
Date: Sun Jan 2, 2000 0:50am

Melana: you are correct, diet has much to do with our general health. And Henrietta is 100% correct, one cannot give general “one size fits all” recommendation via email based on very general data. And there is a belief that milk or increased calcium will “build strong bones” which is not really the case. For an interesting article on the subject of calcium see http://www.notmilk.com/deb/092098.html

Below are some quotes from the referenced webpage:

Society stresses the importance of calcium, but rarely magnesium. Yet, magnesium is vital to enzymatic activity. In addition to insuring proper absorption of calcium, magnesium is critical to proper neural and muscular function and to maintaining proper pH balance in the body. Magnesium, along with vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), helps to dissolve calcium phosphate stones which often accumulate from excesses of dairy intake. Good sources of magnesium include beans, green leafy vegetables like kale and collards, whole grains and orange juice. Non-dairy sources of calcium include green leafy vegetables, almonds, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, oats, beans, parsley, sesame seeds and tofu.

Osteoporosis is NOT a problem that should be associated with lack of calcium intake. Osteoporosis results from calcium loss. The massive amounts of protein in milk result in a 50 percent loss of calcium in the urine. In other words, by doubling your protein intake there will be a loss of 1-1.5 percent in skeletal mass per year in postmenopausal women. The calcium contained in leafy green vegetables is more easily absorbed than the calcium in milk, and plant proteins do not result in calcium loss the same way as do animal proteins. If a postmenopausal woman loses 1-1.5 percent bone mass per year, what will be the effect after 20 years? When osteoporosis occurs levels of calcium (being excreted from the bones)in the blood are high. Milk only adds to these high levels of calcium which is excreted or used by the body to add to damaging atherosclerosis, gout, kidney stones, etc.



Rosehip Tea

I gather and use rosehips all the time. However, the best time I have found to gather them is after a frost (if you live up north that is).

I dry them (they should be hard when gathered and turned to either a brown or red color.

You can then make a tea with them that is one of the best sources of vitamin C. We try to drink at least one cup a day during the winter months and have not had a cold for years. You just crush up about 1 teaspoon full (I use wild rose hips, from the multiflora rose, so it would be hard to say by the number count of rose hips) Put them in a pot on the stove and boil gently for about 5 minutes. It can also be stored for a day or so in the refrigerator if you like making more at a time.

God bless and be well,



Sunburn Spray

Quick Sunburn Spray recipe—it’s quite soothing:

* 20 drops lavender essential oil
* 20 drops geranium essential oil
* 2 drops rose essential oil (expensive; can also use tea tree oil)
* 4 ounces aloe vera juice

Add the oils to the aloe in a spritzer bottle. Shake before using. Other optional oil, peppermint.


Water Tonic to reduce bloating

* 2 T fresh parsley leaves
* 2 T dandelion leaves
* 2 T chicory leaves
* 2 t corn silk from fresh corn

Steep for 15 min in 2 C of boiled water and drink 1 C daily.

St. John’s Wort Oil and Tincture

St. John’s Wort Oil

Morning Pam,

The shelf life when in olive oil, which has a long shelf life itself, if airtight and kept in a cupboard out of light is years. I’m still using a bottle of it that I made 2 years ago.

The recipe is not exact measurements, but proportions of. Ingredients are chopped if fresh, crumbled if dry.

* 2/3’s St Johns Wort flowers & leaves of top 4″
* 1/3 Feverfew flowers & leaves
* 2 small Mullein leaves
* 2 big pinches of dry Chamomile flowers.

Cover herbs until submerged with olive oil, gently heat without allowing it to simmer. If necessary, turn flame off and let oil cool a bit, turn heat on.

Again…repeat this to keep the oil warm for an hour. Let oil cool, strain out herbs, add 10 drops of Lavender EO to each 1 cup of oil. Store in and air tight bottle or jar, and keep out of light (oil will be a red brown from the herb combination).

CA zone 8a


Melana, you are so lucky to have tons of St. John’s… I suggest infusing some in olive oil and tincturing what’s left. The infused oil can be used for: massage for sciatic pain or any nerve pain in a large body area (pinched nerve in the back); incorporating into a combination salve with plantain and/or marigold for skin ailments from chapped skin to eczema; mixing a little with your mullein or chamomile oil for earache. The tincture is effective for depression, but even if you don’t suffer from that, it’s good to have because it’s effective for nerve pain (fingertip caught in a drawer, stubbed toe, sciatica – I use St. John’s orally and topically for that). Need instructions for making the preparations? I can post them to the list, if you want. However, most of the modern herbals carry detailed instructions: David Hoffman, Rosemary Gladstar, Susan Weed, Penelope Ody are the first author’s names that come to mind.

For herbal education and lots of fun, search for Henriette Kress’s Herbal Homepage, the best on the Net.




St. John’s Wort Tincture

To Make St. John’s Wort Tincture

You will need:

* 8 oz. 100 proof Vodka
* Pint Jar with lid.
* 2-3 oz. Dried St. John’s Wort Tops or Whole Herb fresh or dried (enough to fill jar)

Stuff jar with dried herb, cover with vodka. When using fresh plants as opposed to died, it is probably best to use a higher proof alcohol. Put the lid on tight and give it a good shaking. Shake jar every day for two weeks. Strain liquid.

Using a press is a very effective method to get the most tincture out of your herbs, and with the price of alcohol, pays for itself in only a few batches!

Store in bottles and use same dropperful doses as you would tincture from the Health Food Store. This method works for a variety of wild herbs, and is the best way to preserve the potency of the herbs. You can get dropper bottles from your local pharmacist.

Recommended dosage of tincture is two droppers full 3 times a day. When to take it depends on the person, some may find it better to take with meals to avoid upset stomach.

To test the strength of hypericin in a capsule against my home made tincture, I put 1 tbs. vodka in one small glass bottle, to another I put in 1 tbs. of my tincture. I opened two store bought capsules of St. John’s Wort and poured them into the plain vodka, covered it and shook it for a few seconds. The first thing I noticed was the capsules contained a lot of residue of some kind, as that mixture was a cloudy, brownish red compared to the ruby red of my home made mixture. So I remain convinced that the home made product is superior, also I like knowing that I chose these herbs myself as ones I would take for myself as well as give to friends and family.


All-Purpose Salve

These reciepts are Rosemary Gladstar’s work:

All Purpose Salve:

* 1 part Golden Seal
* 1 part Myrrh
* 1 part Echinacea
* Olive oil
* Beeswax.

Excellent for wounds, cuts, burns and rashes.

Please if using Golden seal, obtain it from a source that grows and harvests it ethically and with respect, as it is an endangered species in the wild.

As always,


Burn Salve

From: Ela Younger
Date: Sun Jan 16, 2000 0:56pm

This reciept is Rosemary Gladstar’s work:

Burn salve:

* 1 part St. John’s Wort
* 1 part Calendula Flowers
* 1 part Comfrey
* Olive oil
* Beeswax
* *optional: 10,000 I.U. Vitamin E per cup of salve
* 1/8 part Aloe Vera Powder (not fresh aloe)

Prepare as directed for basic salve recipe. Pour in glass jars and store in shaded area. Excellent for all first and second degree burns, sunburns, diaper rash, cuts, and wounds.

(When I make the above I do not use the Aloe vera powder because it is not an easily gotten ingredient for me and I also use a bit of the Essential Oil of Lavender in it as well).


Chickweed Salve


I use chickweed infused olive oil to make a nice salve and also to make a hand cream for my hands when they are badly chapped. No real measurements,though.

I drop a tablespoon of beeswax in a pan and let it warm on a medium stove setting until melted, then I lower the heat or turn it off and pop in a spoon full of shea butter, a few drops of lavendar or tea tree oil if it’s for wounds. Let that all melt, remove from heat and add the strained infused oil a bit at a time as it cools. When it is nearly cooled completely, I check the consistency, adding more oil if needed.

If you want a stronger more medicinal salve, then you’d want to measure carefully and add the maximum amount of eo per ounce of salve, I suppose. The hand cream is a bit more complicated because it has water added.. LOL did that help at all?



Throw In The Kitchen Sink Salve

Having received a good amount of very nasty blackfly bites this weekend I set out to make a ‘ Throw in the kitchen sink salve’ last night.

In a double boiler, I put a handful of plantain, comfrey (wilted and chopped), dried calendula blossoms, and on very low heat kept it on the stove for about 3 hours. Than added some SAW oils, EOM’s of helichrysum, chamomile, lavender and tea tree.

It took the swelling down right away and curbs the urge to itch. But the itch returns regardless find it amazing how easy we forget every year how nasty those buggers are and darn it, every year I get zapped before I learn to put stuff on myself before I go out, so I won’t have to deal with it afterwards.

I keep a pot with wormwood right by my back door and when going out, pick a few leaves, rub them with my hands and swish them over the exposed parts of my body and hair, but only learn that lesson after I had a few good bites.

Also make a 4 thieves vinegar that works pretty well, when misting on every so often while in the woods. Best on my bursitis.

On Lake MIchigan in summer we get very nasty flies, that look like houseflies and bite our ankles.They bite right through the shoelace holes of your sneakers and have on my body an affinity for the top of my hands, ankles and top of my head. They like to live close to the beach and if you see someone beachcombing wearing a goofy hat, leather gloves and plastic breadbags over their ankles, that’s me! Good thing is that when applying the 4 thieves vinegar the bites about vanish in their itching capacity.

Bugs, they need to be there to become food for the birds…but they surely are a nuisance.



Healing Herb Salve

* 1 oz dried comfrey leaves
* 1 oz dried calendula flowers
* 2 cups olive oil
* 1 oz pure beeswax
* 4 drops tea tree
* 4 drops lavender essential oils
* 1 400 vit E

Heat herbs in olive oil over low heat for about 5 hours. Do not let the oil boil or bubble. A Crock-Pot or the lowest temperature setting on a range should be suitable for heating this mixture. (If the lowest setting is too hot, turn off the heat once it has warmed the oil…it should keep warm for at least and hour….then repeat the process twice.) After cooking, strain out the herbs while oil is still warm. Place 1 1/4 cups of the herb oil in a pan, add beeswax and heat just enough to melt the wax. Add essential oil and stir. Finally, pour the salve into wide mouthed jars. Store at room temperature. Use for minor scrapes and cuts, to protect and promote healing.



Roxanne’s Salve

* 1/2 oz beeswax
* 1/2 oz emu oil
* 3 oz double infused comfrey oil
* 1 oz calendula oil
* 1 oz plantain oil (I used sunflower for the three above)
* 10 d vitamin E oil
* 20 d vitamin C serum
* 2 Tbl honey
* 10 d lavender eo
* 1 tsp tea tree eo
* 5 CoQ10 caps squeezed out.

The vitamin C and CoQ10 are optional.

Elderberry and Influenza (the Flu)

Elderberries – A tasty way to fight viruses

Posted by anke under General
Ripe elderberries (Sambucus) in Rochester, Min…

After the recent spade of sickness in our house I have decided it is time to stock up on disease fighting remedies. Surely I am not the only one who always leaves things to the last minute and then finds that the very thing they need takes 6 weeks to make?

Traditional and scientific research indicate that elderberries promote disease resistance and that they also have the ability to prevent and even treat a virus. Elderberries have been used for centuries in the treatment of colds, viral infections and upper respiratory conditions including asthma. These little powerhouses are said to build the blood, cleanse the system, ease constipation, enhance the immune system function, fight inflammation, increase perspiration, lower fever, soothe the respiratory tract, and stimulate circulation – oh and they are a powerful antioxidant! Did I mention they taste great too? In the old days a syrup or a hot cup of elderberry wine would be often be prescribed before bed to ward off cold and flu related symptoms.

I popped over to The Medicine Woman’s Roots for her Elderberry Elixir recipe. I took Kiva’s suggestion and added some rosehip as well plus 1/2 a cinnamon stick. As this recipe takes a good month (and more) to mature I have also put some elderberries to soak for an Elderberry Syrup. I understand Kiva’s preference for the elixir but when compared to the elixir the syrup is much faster to prepare and contains no alcohol – which of course is a bonus when treating small children. While the elixir is soaking I can fall back on the syrup in the meantime. It may not be as powerful but it does still possess a lot of the virus fighting benefits.

Elderberry Syrup

2 cups dried elderberries
1 litre of boiling water
1/4 cup raw honey
1/4 lemon juice

Put the elderberries in a non reactive saucepan, add boiling water – cover and leave to soak overnight. The next day simmer berries for 30 minutes, cool a little then blend. Once blended add honey and lemon juice. Cool, then pour into a clean bottle. Store in the fridge. NOTE: I havent decided if I am going to blend all the berries or whether I will strain the pulp out as I have seen in a few other recipes. I might do one of each and see if there is any added benefit from keeping the pulp. Will keep you updated on results down the track.

As with the elixir I chose to add a small handful of rosehips as well. We love the taste and it is high in Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C & K – helpful in the treatment of colds and infection.

Updated to add: If you are going to add dried rosehips like I did do add some extra water or else you will end up with slush in the morning as all the dried plant material has soaked up the water and there is nothing left to simmer.



Clean Quart Jar add 1/4 pound dried elderberries (Must be Sambucus nigra)
Now fill to top with vodka. Put lid on tight.
Store in a dark cupboard and shake once every few days.
Label and date your jar.
Let it sit for at least 30 days before you strain it.
You can use it without straining it too and it will just continue to get stronger.

Preventative – Adult – 1 teaspoon in water once a day
Children scale back by weight.



Elderberry Tincture
From LoveToKnow Herbs

Elderberry tincture has long been known as the ‘poor man’s medicine chest’ for its usefulness, but especially its efficacy in treating cold and flu symptoms. Long used throughout Europe and the Americas, elderberry has a long and respected history as an herbal remedy. Both Pliny the Elder and Hippocrates mentioned and recommended elderberry as a medicinal herb in their writings.

Research indicates Elderberry fights the flu.

The Poor Man’s Cure

Elderberry(Sambuca nigra) grows throughout Europe, North America, parts of Asia and Africa. Other names for elderberry include elder, black elder, elder flower and sambucas. The berries and flowers of this tree are used to make herbal medicine as well as flavors to enhance beverages. The berries taken straight from the tree are poisonous, but when properly cooked, are safe to eat. You may even come across recipes for elderberry pie in older cookbooks as many housewives made special pies after properly preparing the berries.

The plant parts must be prepared properly to eliminate potentially poisonous toxins, but elderberry purchased through a reliable supplement or herbal products manufacturer should be fine for most people to take. Unless you have a known allergy to elderberry, simply consult your doctor to ensure no potential drug interactions or other negative impacts on your health before using elderberry tincture. The only known potential side effect of elderberry is that it acts as a diuretic, so if you are taking diuretics or have bladder or kidney problems, discuss using elderberry with your physician before taking this herbal remedy.

Uses of Elderberry

Elderberry has a very long history in herbal medicine as a cure for colds, coughs and flus. Elderberry tincture, capsules or dried powdered are often taken along with several other herbs when a cold or flu threatens. According to the National Center for Complimentary and Alternative Medicine, the European elder is most commonly used for supplements. It’s also the elderberry tincture most frequently studied for its effect on cold and flu viruses.

The most common uses for elderberry tincture include treatment for:

* Common cold
* Influenza (flu)
* Coughing
* Bronchitis
* Sinus infections
* Infections
* Constipation

Scientific Research on Elderberry

Promising scientific research has begun on the use of elderberry tincture to shorten the duration and severity of colds and flus, but no reliable conclusions may be drawn from the preliminary studies.

According to Prevention Magazine, elderberry “fights (flu) virus and speeds recovery.” Scientists from Hebrew University – Hadassah Medical School in Jerusalem conducted a study in which 60 men and women who were suffering with the flu took either elderberry tincture or a placebo. Those who took the elderberry got better faster, on average about twice as fast as those who received the placebo. They also used fewer pain medications such as aspirin and other medications to control flu symptoms.

Another study conducted in Oslo, Norway, showed similar results. In this study, those who received the elderberry recovered more than twice as fast as those who did not receive elderberry, on average three days as compared to seven days for the placebo group.

Combining Elderberry Tincture With Other Herbs To Combat Flu

Two studies are too small a research pool for serious scientists to draw conclusions and make recommendations. The results, however, neatly back up many centuries of folkloric use of this wonderful herb.

If you choose to use elderberry tincture to combat a cold or flu, you may wish to combine it with other healing herbs useful to boost the immune system. Echinacea and goldenseal, for example, are recommended for infections, particularly upper respiratory infections. Other herbs may be comforting herbal teas, such as chamomile, and herbal remedies for bronchitis. Whatever natural remedies you choose, be sure to see your doctor for advice and especially if symptoms persist for several days.

Four Thieves Vinegar

Four Thieves Vinegar

4 Thieves is named after 4 thieves that robbed people during the plague and never got it, they got immunity for revealing their secret. I have seen all kinds of different recipes for it and mine is usually somewhat like this. ( I rarely use recipes).

* Handful of lavender buds
* Handful of wormwood
* Some thyme
* Rosemary
* Sage
* A bit of rue
* Several cloves of garlic
* Cider vinegar

I use a gallon jar for this concoction but do not fill it all the way up, just use one of those regular cider bottles, think it’s a 32oz bottle.

Soak all for 2 weeks, strain and use spray bottles to douse yourself with it when going outside or clean with it.



Legend has it that there were Four Thieves who would go in a loot home etc during the plague as people passed on or lay dying, but did not get ill themselves…..once caught they agreed to hand over the herbal formula that protected them in order to have their own lives spared from hanging or the like…

One version is:

* 2 quarts apple cider vinegar
* 2 tablespoons lavender
* 2 tablespoons rosemary
* 2 tablespoons sage
* 2 tablespoons wormwood
* 2 tablespoons rue
* 2 tablespoons mint
* 2 tablespoons garlic

Combine the dried herbs except the garlic which should be fresh and steep in the vinegar in the sun for two weeks. Strain and re-bottle. Add several cloves of garlic. Close lid. When garlic has steeped for several days, strain out…melt paraffin wax around the lid to preserve the contents.

The thieves drank and washed with the solution every few hrs as they were on there merry tirade.

Linda M.

Cough Care

Borage Cough Syrup

* 1/2 cup of borage leaves
* 1/2 cup water
* 2 cups of honey
* Juice from 2 lemons

Put borage leaves in a blender along with water. Blend until mixture is smooth. In a non reactive pan, pour borage and honey. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add the lemon juice.

Take 1-2 Tblsp as needed for coughs.


C-M’s Cough Syrup

This is how I make my cough syrup.

* Mullein
* Dry Wild Cherry bark
* Hyssop
* Plantain
* Elderberries
* Wild Cherries
* Thyme
* Sage
* Mahogany Birch bark
* Mint
* Honey
* Brandy or Vodka

Start with mullein and ‘stirfry’ it in a dry pan, add water. I use with it dry wild cherry bark, hyssop, plantain,elderberries, even wild cherries, thyme, sage, a bit of mahogany birch bark, mint and bring to a boil, than simmer for a good while. Strain add about 10:4 honey and 10:3 parts brandy or vodka. I do not have an exact measure really, it varies a bit every year. Can’t give you a dose for willowbark, it’s an individual thing. You might want to scour some books and see what is the most common dosage. That’s what I do, when in doubt. Get 4 o 5 out and see what the common denominator is. I found that the ‘Herb book’ by John Lust has pretty safe and accurate advice for dosages.

Although I have more than a 100 books relating to herbs etc. this is the one, I almost often grab for a fast reference. It has lousy drawings, but is comprehensive in material. Not a coffee table book, but a good one to look things up fast. Scour Michael Moore’s website and Henriettes, and you will find solid material there as to tincturing and dosages.



Elderberry Brandy

Elderflower tincture has a strange taste that I’m not fond of. I prefer to dry the flowers and combine them with yarrow and mint for a fever-reducing, flu-easing tea. The berries, when I’ve been lucky enough to find them here, I usually pop into the freezer (still on the stems). Once frozen, it is easy to strip off the berries for use in muffins and other baked goods. Here is a recipe from Judith Berger’s ‘Herbal Rituals’ that may be helpful:

* elderberries
* brandy
* jar with good lid

Steep the berries in the brandy for six weeks, adding some brandy every couple of days, to keep the jar filled to the brim. After six weeks, you will have a warming cordial which acts as a superb iron tonic while opening the sinuses and reducing fever.


Elderberry Syrup

Elderflower tincture has a strange taste that I’m not fond of. I prefer to dry the flowers and combine them with yarrow and mint for a fever-reducing, flu-easing tea. The berries, when I’ve been lucky enough to find them here, I usually pop into the freezer (still on the stems). Once frozen, it is easy to strip off the berries for use in muffins and other baked goods. Here is a recipe from Judith Berger’s ‘Herbal Rituals’
that may be helpful:

* 1 ounce dried elderberries
* 1 quart jar
* honey
* brandy

Infuse the berries in boiled water for eight hours. Then heat two cups of the infusion under very low flame until you are left with one cup of decocted berries. Add several teaspoons of honey and a teaspoon of brandy to preserve the syrup. This syrup is an excellent expectorant.


Horehound Cough Drops

Here’s another recipe for horehound cough drops that was given to me by a friend, I don’t know the orignal source (where she got it from) but it is a really good recipe and has worked well for me.

Love & Happiness

Horehound Cough Drops

* 2 cups sugar
* 2/3 cup light corn syrup
* 2/3 cup water (strong herb tea)

Blend in saucepan, the sugar, corn syrup and tea. Place over low heat, stirring until mixture boils. Now put in candy thermometer, cook, stirring occasionally, to hard crack stage (300 degrees). You may add flavoring such as cherry, licorice, eucalyptus, mint or horehound. Pour into candy molds or onto a greased sheet and when hard break into pieces.


Here is a recipe for Horehound Cough Drops from ‘Magic and Medicine of Plants’ from Readers Digest

Horehound Cough Drops

* 1 c boiling water
* 3/4 c dried horehound herb
* 2 c refined sugar
* 1/3 tsp cream of tartar

Pour the boiling water over the horehound: cover and let steep for 30 min. Strain the infusion into a heavy saucepan, pressing to extract all the liquid. Add the sugar and cream of tartar and stir over low heat until the sugar is fully dissolved. Cover the pan and let it cook for 3 or 4 min. until the steam has melted any sugar crystals clinging to the pan’s side. Then remove the lid and cook the mixture, without stirring, over high heat; skim off any scum. When it reaches the hard-crack stage-when a candy thermometer reads 300 degrees F. or when drops form brittle threads in ice water-immediately remove it from the heat. Brush a marble slab or a baking sheet with butter or oil and pour out the mixture. As it begins to set, score it into small squares with a sharp knife. Cut it along the lines when it is cold and brittle. Store the pieces in an airtight container.



Horehound Cough Syrup

Betty, I’ve always heard you use the dried leaves for this, I am hoping my clump will be big enough this year to make a batch

In ‘The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants’ by Andrew Chevallier, it lists the parts used as the leaves. Also, in ‘The Healing Herbs’ by Michael Castleman, he says the parts used are the leaves and flower tops. He says, ‘For a cough-remedy infusion, use 1/2 to 1 tsp of dried leaves per cup of boiling water. Steep for 10 min. Drink up to 3 c a day. To offset its bitter taste, add sugar or honey. In a tincture, take 1/4 to 1/2 tsp up to three times a day. Horehound should not be given to children under age 2. For older children and people over 65, start with low-strength preparations and increase strength if necessary. Considered safe for healthy nonpregnant, nonnursing adults who do not have heart disease.



John Cramer’s Cough Syrup

Hi guys, I’ve made this for many friends, and it’s very good for the throat and sinus cavities.

* 1/4 C honey
* 1/4 C FRESHLY squeezed lemon juice
* 5 cloves
* 1 good shake cinnamon (or stick of it)

Bring all to a boil. Remove the cloves (and cinnamon stick). Then use 1/2 – 1 Tbs in a cup of HOT tea.

Abundant blessings,


Red Clover Cough Syrup

Source: Judith Berger’s ‘Herbal Rituals’

* 1 once of whole dried red clover blossoms
* boiled water
* honey

Though most flower infusions only require ten minutes to two hours of infusing time, red clover blossoms sit for the full four hours, because the plant’s mineral richness requires a lengthier time to seep into the water.

After the infusion has sat for four hours, take a pint of the infusion and decoct it [strain and cook over low heat till reduced by half]. Add some clover honey and a bit of brandy and use this syrup when experiencing the type of cough that sounds like a car engine trying to turn over (this is known as a “dry, hacking cough”).

Live Happy, Live Long

Leda Meredith


Violet-Mullein Cough Syrup

Hello Everybody, With all the wonderful post on violets, I thought you might be interested in the cough syrup I am making It is great.

Make a Tincture with Violets by filling a jar with violet flowers and covering with your preference of Alcohol, I use Golden Grain as I can not find Everclear, wait a week and drain off liquid and change flowers and por liquid back over them, do this 3 times (you will be suprised as the liquid is emerald green) strain and then on the fourth poring add liquid to a jar packed with mullein leaves leave 1 wk and drain liquid and add liquid to a jar which has lemon, orange and lime slices . agin leave a week no longer as it will get to bitter, drain and bottle, to make the syrup add half of the tincture and half honey It is also good for sore throats.

Linda in Ga.

Bronchitis Care And Tobacco Substitutes

Bronchitis Recommendations

From a website that is no longer in existance.


Again…know what you are doing with these herbs before messing with them…some of these deserve due respect…Alternate among several of the following herbs to get all oftheir medicinal benefits.

* Lobelia is a very effective expectorant and is used in the treatment of bronchitis.
* Hollyhock, marsh mallow and pleurisy root are good for irritated conditions of the mucous membranes, especially bronchitis.
* Inhaling the vapors of eucalyptus oil from a vaporizer produces a stimulating expectorant and helps to relieve chronic bronchitis.
* Other herbs that may help relieve bronchitis include cinnamon, thyme, wall germander, ginger, rosemary, and cloves.
* Alcohol-free echinacea and goldenseal extract helps to fight viruses and bacteria and enhance the immune system. Goldenseal relieves congestion and is soothing to inflamed mucous membranes of the bronchial tubes, throat, nasal passages, and sinuses. Caution: Do not take goldenseal on a daily basis for more than a week at a time, and do not use during pregnancy. Do not give goldenseal to children under two. Do not use goldenseal without consulting a physician if you have had heart disease, diabetes, glaucoma, a stroke, or high blood pressure.
* Grindelia, yerba santa, fenugreek tea and horehound are all good expectorants relieving mucous congestion of the lungs and bronchia.
* St. John’s wort is a good expectorant and has a calming effect on the body.
* Catnip may help relieve bronchitis.
* Mullein reduces irritation due to bronchitis.
* Astragalus strengthens the body’s resistance to disease. Caution: Do not use astragalus in the presence of a fever.
* Boneset is good for inflammation of the mucous membranes. Drink it hot and mix with brown sugar to make it palatable. Caution: Do not use boneset on a daily basis for more than one week, as long-term use can lead to toxicity.
* Licorice is an excellent demulcent and is soothing to the mucous membranes and respiratory passages. Licorice also has immune-enhancing and anti-viral properties. Caution: Do not use licorice on a daily basis for more than seven days in a row, and avoid it completely if you have high blood pressure.
* Slippery elm bark lozenges or raspberry tea may help to soothe a scratchy throat.
* For a sore and irritated throat, gargle with tea tree oil or fenugreek.


* Drink lots of fluids. This helps loosen up any mucus in your lungs and helps you to breathe easier.
* Chicken soup can help clear airways
* Chew on a chili pepper or eat a spicy Mexican meal. Do so three times a week if breathing problems are chronic.
* Sprinkle ten to twenty drops of Tobasco sauce in a glass of water and drink it or gargle with it.
* Add whole peeled garlic cloves to your soup. Heating the garlic in a microwave oven first helps preserve alliin, the primary therapeutic substance.
* Decrease your salt intake


* Vitamin C: 200 milligrams

A well balanced diet is a more natural source of nutrients and it is best to get as much as possible from food. If you are not eating a varied mixture of the main food groups or foods high in a certain nutrient needed for your health situation then make up the remaining through vitamin and mineral supplementation.


* Blowing up balloons could help you relieve some of your symptoms.
* Take a hot shower. The steam helps loosen up mucus in your lungs.
* Do not smoke, smoking irritates the bronchiole tubes and causes vessels to constrict.
* Try to exercise daily.

In some cases, herbal products can interact negatively with other medications. Such interactions can be dangerous. Herbal remedies are not regulated and their quality is not controlled. Moreover, while there is an abundant supply of information circulating about herbs, not much of it has been scientifically proven. Consult your physician.

Informing your doctor and pharmacist of what herbal products you are using is just as important as letting them know what drugs you are taking. Your physician and the pharmacist on duty at your pharmacy can assist you in deciding which herbs are safe.

Edible Wild Kitchen


Brochitis Teas

These blends came from a website that is no longer in existence.

Herbal Medicine Formulas and Recipes

Make sure you know what the herbs are you are taking…some of these I have never heard of myself…like what is Althea? Time to break out my books I think…


* Althea leaves (1 part)
* High mallow (1 part)
* Licorice root (1 part)
* Flax seed (2 parts)

Bring 1 tsp. in 1/2 cup water to a boil. Sweeten with honey; take 1/2 cup, 2 or 3 times a day, as hot as possible.


* Anise
* Licorice root
* Lance-leaf plantain leaves
* Fennel seed
* Coltsfoot leaves

Mix in equal parts. Bring 1 tsp. in 1/2 cup water to a boil. Sweeten with honey or brown sugar; take 1/2 cup, 3 times a day, as not as possible.


* Mallow leaves and flowers
* Mullein leaves and flowers
* Coltsfoot leaves

Mix in equal parts. Steep 1 tsp. in 1/2 cup boiling water. Sweeten with honey; take 1/2 cup, 3 or 4 times a day, hot.


* Mullein
* Licorice
* Althea root
* Althea herb
* Coltsfoot leaves

Mix in equal parts. Steep 1 tsp. in 1/2 cup boiling water. Take 1/2 cup hot, sweetened with honey, 3 or 4 times a day.


* Elecampane root
* Thyme
* Nettle leaves
* Lungwort

Mix in equal parts. Steep 1 tsp. in 1/2 cup boiling water. Take 1/2 cup hot, sweetened with honey, 3 or 4 times a day.

Edible Wild Kitchen


Herbal Smoking Mixtures

by Howie Brounstein


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Medicinal Uses

People often ask me how smoking herbs can possibly be good for your lungs. I tell them the peanut butter story. Is peanut butter good for you? If you wake up to coffee and a maple bar (it has the sugar I need to get up and go in the morning), a quick coffee and some sugary lunch snack bar, followed by a processed dinner with an extra serving of tensions, then replacing the lunch with a peanut butter sandwich will be healthy. If you’re on a strict vegan diet of raw fruit only, a peanut butter sandwich will clog your digestive tract like super- glue. Peanut butter is bad. It all depends where your body is.

It is the same with smoking herbs. If you have never smoked and your lungs are healthy and clean, then smoking anything will not be healthy. On the other hand, if your lungs are filled with crud that won’t come out from cigarettes and a mild respiratory cold, smoking some lung herbs will help your body’s natural expectoration. Smoking will be good for your lungs. It all depends on where your body is.

Herbs for the Lungs

Mullein, Verbascum thapsus

Mullein is a fine medicinal for the lungs, even when you smoke it. It soothes inflamed or infected lungs, and prevents coughing until infection or inflammation is broken. Then it aids in expectoration, helping to break up congestion and promote “effective” coughing. It was smoked to stop the coughing of tuberculosis years ago. It is wonderful for any kind of lung cleansing. Very gentle and non-toxic, you can use it anytime. If you are a smoker, and you are sick and can’t stop coughing from a cold, you can smoke some Mullein instead of Tobacco. It may help you to stop coughing, and you will have smoked one less cigarette. If you are not a smoker, stick with tincture (extract) or Mullein tea. After all, there’s no need to smoke when you’re sick in your lungs.

It also has almost no flavor and is a very light smoke. I have never seen anyone become addicted to smoking Mullein, as after a while it is very unsatisfying. The average smoker would feel as if they’re smoking air.

Crispy dried crushed Mullein is a lousy smoke. Be sure to keep it ever so slightly moist. Dried Mullein should be rubbed for the best results. It will become very fluffy and puffy. This fuzzy rubbed Mullein will burn evenly when smoked in a paper or pipe. It will hold other herbs that are in the form of small pieces and powder, and keep them evenly distributed. And it has no flavor! Ideal for a smoking base; I use it in almost
every smoking mixture.

I like the light green baby leaves found in the center of the first year basal rosette, but it’s a matter of personal choice. Any leaf will work.

Horehound, Marrubium vulgare, and Coltsfoot, Tussilago farfara

These commonly used smoking ingredients are expectorants. They promote coughing and aid in the upward flow of mucus. Let me repeat this: these herbs will make you cough. Let me relate to you a story I have heard more times than I can count on my hands and my feet. The person hears that Coltsfoot was smoked by the Native Americans. They run to the health food store, roll up a cigarette of dried raspy Coltsfoot, and proceed to smoke it as if it was marijuana. After they cough a piece of their brains out, they decide that perhaps this wasn’t such a good idea. However, the difference between poison and medicine is dosage. If used properly, these herbs are very effective healthful herbs.

Mix these herbs in medium amounts with other herbs. If the mixture makes you cough too much, use less of the expectorant. They are ideal for a general lung cleanse, for the ending of respiratory flus and colds, when you’re quitting Tobacco, and to get the crud out of you lungs in general. Do not use them when you are coughing up blood or if it hurts when you breathe. See a qualified health professional if this is the case. Also, do not use them when you can not stop coughing. If this is the case, stick with Mullein. Ideally theses mixtures should not make you cough incessantly, but just cough effectively once in a while, bringing up some of that excess phlegm.

Jimson Weed Seeds, Datura sp.

One good reason to smoke an herb as a preferred method of ingestion is regulation of dosage. You can smoke an herb that is very strong and regulate the dosage safety. The difference between medicine and poison is dosage. Many plants are too strong to take internally safely. If you take a tea, it may take half an hour or more before you can tell how strong of a dosage you took. At that point it is too late to take less. When you smoke an herb the effects or side effects become apparent quickly. If the herb doesn’t agree with you, you can stop before overdosing.

Jimson weed is definitely a strong hallucinogen, poison, medicine any way you look at it. The dosage is all important. I do not recommend internal use of Datura without the guidance of a shaman. The use of Datura for a high by pimply adolescents looking for some fireworks is deplorable. Too many of them end up as newspaper reports. I personally know of people who have landed in the hospital for extended stays because of this plant.

Used in the proper dosages, Datura can be a very effective treatment for a variety of problems. Smoke the crushed seeds only. The seeds are the mildest part of the plant. Just a few puffs will anesthetize your throat and lungs. This could be very helpful with some lung problems. You will not feel psychological effects from this small a dosage. I have used this method of taking this herb and will guarantee that you will not get high from two puffs. This plant does not agree with some people. If you feel light headed or nauseous, then stop smoking it. No harm will be done.

In some oversea countries, you may find that the cigarettes still contain Datura leaf. Datura has been used as smoking mixtures in a variety of cultures. Generally this is for their hallucinogenic effect and doesn’t concern us in this book.

Herbs to Quit Smoking Tobacco

Let’s face it, herbal smoking mixtures will not cause you to quit Tobacco. Only you can cause you to stop. Smoking mixtures can aid in the process if you are ready. A variety of mixtures can be helpful. At first, a thick bodied flavorful smoke with Lobelia and calming herbs is indicated. After the physical withdrawal is finished with, drop the Lobelia smoke and use a calming smoke with lots of astringent herbs for a heavy “Tobacco” smoke. In reality, no herbal smoking mixture tastes as “thick” as Tobacco. Be sure to add some Mullein and possibly some expectorants to aid in the cleansing process. Finally, you may wish to cut the astringents and just go with the very light Mullein alone. Mullein is so light it will feel as you aren’t really smoking anything, and you
will eventually lose interest in it. This regimen is an example, and can be modified to your own personal needs. Some examples of these mixtures are found in the recipe section.

Other herbs, taken as tea or tincture, may be helpful during the withdrawal process. A liver stimulant like Oregon Grape Root or Goldenseal may help your body remove the nicotine quicker. This won’t make the withdrawal symptoms easier, but it will just speed it up. Salicylate herbs, like Willow and Oak, can help with headaches. Calming herbs like Skullcap, Valerian, and Parrot’s Beak, are definitely indicated. After the physical addiction is broken, it’s up to you to break the psychological addiction.

Lobelia, Lobelia inflata

Lobelia is another example of a strong herb whose dosage can be regulated by smoking. It is a very strong muscle relaxant and tranquilizer that should not be mixed with any other pharmaceutical tranquilizers or alcohol. It also is an expectorant. As an added bonus it is an alterative that increases your body’s own natural defense mechanisms. All this makes it ideal as an herb to stop smoking with.

Your body sees Lobelia’s main ingredient, lobeline, as nicotine. Certain receptors in your body are waiting to be filled with nicotine and so you feel nicotine fits. Lobeline is the same shape as nicotine and fits into these receptor sites, fooling your body into thinking you’ve been smoking Tobacco. Lobeline, however, is not addictive when used properly for the short term. The prescription chewing gums that doctors prescribe to quit smoking have lobeline as the main ingredient.

Years ago I had a booth at a weekly fair where I sold my herbal products. Eventually I got very tired of this. Towards the end I could no longer stand being available for questions for eight hour stretches. One day I had a wicked headache and took some Lobelia. It was a good solid dose; I had to sit down but my headache was gone. I went to light a cigarette, but after one puff I could not smoke any more. My body felt as if I had smoked too many cigarettes already. It was just the Lobelia.

The important thing to remember about Lobelia is that it is so strong. When making tea, use a teaspoon per 1/2 gallon of water mixed with other herbs. For a smoking mixture add a pinch to a bag of other herbs. If you do take too much Lobelia will make you throw up over 90% of the time. Unfortunately, if you do not throw up, you can have respiratory failure from the sedative effects. This is a very difficult thing to do because you’ll feel so wretched long before it’s dangerous. Unfortunately, Jethro Kloss in Back to Eden recommends an insane fasting regime that includes using Lobelia every day to throw up.
This recommendation has sent a few alternative minded folks to the hospital. My suggestion: don’t use Lobelia as an emetic (causes vomiting), use something that is safe and effective like syrup of ipecac.

In the United States Lobelia is illegal to sell for internal consumption. Certainly official reasons include the possibility of poisoning. Strangely enough Lobelia is extremely effective for a significant amount of asthmatics. For some people the tincture is useful in place of inhalers. I am sure that the powerful pharmaceutical companies losing a significant percentage of inhaler business has nothing to do with this law.

When I was a pimply adolescent looking for psychic pyrotechnics, I found this ad in the back of High Times for legal highs. My friends and I purchased some Lobelia touted as a mild LSD type feeling. Leaving our parents and going on a camping trip, we promptly rolled thick joints of Lobelia which we smoked endlessly. After puking our guts out, we were left with headaches and not so vague feelings of depression. We were so bummed out we canceled the camping trip. The difference between poison and medicine is dosage. Personal note: almost all of the 15 or so herbs we tried during that time period had similar results.

Lobelia is the herb for stopping smoking with its calming, expectorant, alterative, and nicotine mimicking effects. When making your mixture, add a pinch of Lobelia. If it’s not satisfying, add more. I once tried to quit smoking. It was very difficult for me, so I smoked a too strong Lobelia cigarette. It made me dizzy, light headed, and nauseous. However, when I smoked my first cigarette after quitting Tobacco, it made me dizzy, light headed and nauseous. These herbs are very similar in some ways.


Melana’s Smoking Blends

My smoking mixture is pretty easy to do and never quite the same each time since I am always learning something new. Generally I collect and dry all my herbs for teas and such later on so when I need a blend I hit those containers and see what I have around.

My basic blend foundation is Mullein and coltsfoot. Mullein helps expel junk in your lungs and coltsfoot helps suppress coughs…sort of a balance beam here…anyway…to this I add yarrow, mugwort, red raspberry leaf, blackberry leaf and plantain. From there I can add mints for flavoring if I want. (Any mints or sages will work good in smoke blends–pennyroyal I don’t know about…never messed with it myself).

Generally the measurements run into one part each herb I want to use. There are others you can add as well…sages, catnip…this one is great if you have cats and want to make them crazy…not that I would do that…here kitty, kitty, kitty…I stay clear of heavier herbs meant to alter your attention level. This blend does have a calming effect though..just mild…same sort of effect you would get sipping a good relaxing tea blend.

I almost always add a bit of commercial tobacco to my blends…just maybe 1/4 part to 1/2 part. This seems to feed the bodies cravings a bit and helps out as well. Cathy gave me some tobacco plant leaves I plan to add to my next blend I make…ought to be interesting to say the least.

The plantain as I said before is a good smoking suppressant…I have a friend in Montreal and her hubby is an even heavier smoker than I am…we got him to try a plantain smoke blend first thing in the morning without telling him much of anything and he didn’t smoke all day…just totally forgot about it. Granted the teas we gave him through the day probably helped as well…but he was floored at the end of the day when he realized he hadn’t smoked all day….keeping him busy and distracted helped to. Just an evil woman experiment…hehehe

Okay…so you have your dry herbs all blended and in a jar…now…if you where to smoke this your left lung would come unglued and land about a mile away from you in the ditch. Dry herbs are harsh to smoke so you will need to add a bit of moisture to the blend without making it to damp to work with or smoke. Good way to do this is tape a piece of gauze to the lid of your jar and get it wet…not soaking…just damp…as well I always toss a piece of apple into the mixture and let it set.

Seal up your jar and set it out of the sun for a few days…3-5….When you open the jar and feel the blend it would be pliable and not brittle in the least.

Melana Hiatt


British Herbal Tobacco

This is a pleasant tasting and aromatic mixture which I can heartily recommend for anyone anxious to find a less noxious substitute for tobacco. It can be smoked in a pipe or rolled into cigarettes. Pipe smoking, however, precludes the direct (and harmful) inhalation of saltpeter from the papers.

* 16 part dried coltsfoot leaves
* 2 part dried rosemarry leaves
* 8 part eyebright leaves (Euphrasia officinalis)
* 1.5 part dried thyme
* 1 part dried lavender flowers
* 8 part buckbean leaves
* 1 part rose petals
* 4 part wood betony leaves
* 1 part chamomile flowers (optional)

Although they do form part of the recipe, I usually omit the rose and chamomile as I find they distract from rather than add to the flavor. The herbs should be rubbed to a coarse powder through the fingers or the wire mess of a sieve. Make sure they get a good mixing too. If you prefer a milder blend, increase the proportion of coltsfoot leaves. Any of the aromatic smoking herbs can, of course also be incorporated to give your blend extra distinction.


Basic Smoking Herbs

Melissa Leavitt
Tuesday, April 30, 2002

I copied and pasted this article and since it could be freely reproduced and distributed here is it is. The permission is at the bottom of the page. This artice does not mention mullien but it can be smoked I hope this has helped. However some of these mixtures I would used at my own risk, some can cause side effects. I also found that one can smoke hops, marshmallow, red clover, catnip , mugwort.

Here’s a rundown on herbs you can use as tobacco substitutes:

* Bearberry leaves (Uva-ursi)
* Buckbean leaves (Menyanthes trifoliata)
* Chervil leaves (choerophyllum sativum)
* Coltsfoot leaves (Tussilago farfara)
* Corn Silk (Stigneta maidis)
* Dittany leaves (Cunila mariana)
* Eyebright leaves (Euphrasia officinalis)
* Life everlasting leaves (Antennaria dioicia)
* Marjoram leaves (Origanum marjorana)
* Mullien leaves (Verbascum thaspus; said to give relief from asthma.)
* Raspberry leaves (Rubus strigosus)
* Rosemary leaves (Rosmarinus officinals; mixed w/ coltsfoot to relieve asthma
* Sage leaves (Salvia officinalis; said to give relief from asthma.)
* Wood betony leaves (Betonica officinalis)
* Yerba santa (Eriodictyon californicum)
* Aromatic Smoking Herbs

Try adding any of these herbs and spices to your herbal tobacco to give it added aroma:

* Allspice berries (spicy aroma)
* Licorice root (sweet)
* Cascarilla bark (musky)
* Melilot flowers (vanilla aroma)
* Cubeb berries (spicy aroma)
* Sassafras bark (sweet)
* Deers tongue leaves (vanilla aroma)
* Thyme leaves (incenselike)
* Eucalyptus leave (menthol aroma)
* Tonka beans (vanilla aroma)
* Lavender flowers (very fragrant)
* Woodruff leaves (vanilla aroma)
* Intoxicating Smoking Herbs

Finally here is a list of some of the common herbs that are being used today to give herbal tobacco that something extra. Unlike cannabis, all these are legally obtainable (as of the time of this writing), but some of them at least could be harmful taken to excess. As with all powerful herbs an spices ,any good thing can be overdone.

* Boldo leaves (rather harsh on the throat)
* Broom tops (be careful with these; they can be dangerous)
* Catnip leaves
* Damiana leaves
* Ginseng leaves
* Hydrocotyle asiatica minor (stimulant in small doses, but narcotic in large)
* Lobelia leaves (herbalists use these in asthma preparations; I wouldn’t recommend them because, like broom tops, they can be dangerous.)
* Passionflower leaves
* Poppyheads and leaves (if they’re whit poppies, then they’re opium and very illegal; however, legal red poppies also have a mild effect)
* Wild lettuce juice (also known as lettuce opium; need i say more?)
* Yarrow leaves

This concludes this excerpt. I hope it proves useful or interesting to you.

To the best of our knowledge, the text on this page may be freely reproduced and distributed.