Thursday, July 22, 2010

Echinacea: A True Farmaceutical


I recently realized that we've stumbled onto a farm unlike your average farm.  As we are quickly learning, there's more here than just food.  Thanks to Shannon, who is responsible for the full range of herbs, teas and flowers scattered beautifully throughout the property, we have learned some of the secrets this giving and fertile land can provide.
Personally, my only experience with Echinacea has been in a pill form from the local health food store.  Not only was I not aware of how vibrant and colorful Echinacea is, I actually had no idea it was a flower at all.  While being an attractive and edible plant, Echinacea Agustifolia is also well-known for its medicinal qualities acting as a painkiller, antiseptic and an immune system booster that many people believe helps ward off colds.  It grows throughout the summer and should be easy to spot with it's purple and yellowish coloring.

You can even make an Echinacea tincture at home with some freshly picked Echinacea plants or roots.  Just put the plants, or roots, into a glass jar and mix with 80-120 proof alcohol (vodka works well).  Leave it steep for 2-3 weeks in a dark, cold (if possible) place, shaking every few days.  Once its done, just strain out the plant parts and keep the homemade remedy in the jar.  I have yet to try this, but I'll be sure to provide updates on my progress.

It is believed that this tincture can be sprayed on open cuts or wounds as a natural antiseptic or directly in the back of your throat if symptoms of strep begin to develop as well.  Always remember, everything in moderation and I'm not a doctor.


Post a Comment