Properties and Uses of Herbs (A thru H)

Properties and Uses of Herbs

ALOE VERA – Aloe vera syn. A. barbadensis (Liliaceae)
Native to Africa, aloe vera is commonly cultivated elsewhere. The clear gel found inside the plant’s leaf and the crystalline part found alongside the leaf blade, which contains aloin, are both used for medicinal and cosmetic purposes. The clear gel is a remarkably effective healer of wounds and burns, speeding up the rate of healing and reducing the risk of infection. The brownish part containing aloin is a strong laxative, useful for short-term constipation. Aloe is present in many cosmetic’s formulae because its emollient and scar preventing properties.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Heals wounds, emollient, laxative.ANGELICA – Angelica arcangelica (Umbelliferae)
Angelica has a long-standing record as a prized medicinal herb and has been mentioned by European herbalist since the 15th Century. Angelica has been used to reduce muscular spasms in asthma and bronchitis. It has also been shown to ease rheumatic inflammation, to regulate menstrual flow and as an appetite stimulant. The stems are candied for culinary use.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antispasmodic, promotes menstrual flow.

ANISE – Pimpinella anisum (Umbelliferae)
Anise has been cultivated in Egypt and known to the Greeks, Romans and Arabs, who named the plant anysun. Since Antiquity it has been used as a flavoring spice in recipes and as a diuretic, to treat digestive problems and to relieve toothache. Anise seeds are known for their ability to reduce flatulence and colic, and to settle the digestion. They are commonly given to infants and children to relieve colic, and to people of all ages to ease nausea and indigestion. It also has an expectorant and antispasmodics action that is helpful in countering period pain, asthma, whooping cough and bronchitis. The mild hormonal action of anise seeds may explain its ability to increase breast-milk production and its reputation for easing childbirth and treating impotence and frigidity. Anise essential oil is used externally to treat lice and scabies.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Reduces colic and flatulence, promotes digestion, antispasmodic.

ARNICA – Arnica montana (Compositae)
Arnica has been used extensively in European folk medicine. The German philosopher and poet Goethe (1749-1832), claimed arnica for ease his angina in old age. Herbalism and homeopathy use arnica extracts, ointments and compresses to reduce inflammation and pain from bruises, sprains, tendons, dislocations and swollen areas. Arnica improves the local blood supply and accelerates healing. It is anti-inflammatory and increases the rate of re-absorption of internal bleeding. The internal use of arnica is restricted to homeopathic dosages as it is potentially toxic.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-inflammatory, germicide, muscular soreness, pain re-leaving.

ARROWROOT – Maranta arundinacea (Marantaceae)
Arrowroot is native to South America and the Caribbean. The local indigenous people use its root as a poultice for smallpox sores, and as an infusion for urinary infections. Arrowroot is used in herbal medicine in much the same manner as slippery elm (Ulmus Rubra), as a soothing demulcent and a nutrient of benefit in convalescence and for easing digestion. It helps to relieve acidity, indigestion and colic, and is mildly laxative. It may be applied as an ointment or poultice mixed with some other antiseptic herbs such as comfrey.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-inflammatory, digestive, antiseptic.

ARTEMISIA, WORMWOOD – Artemisia absinthium (Compositae)
The name of this plant derives from its bitterness, from absinthia, the Roman word for “bitter”. This property is used for providing bitter taste to some well known beverages and liquors. Wormwood has a marked tonic effect on the stomach, the gallbladder and in adjusting weak digestive problems. It is used to expel roundworms and threadworms. By improving the functions of the digestive system it helps in many conditions, including anaemia. It is also a muscle relaxer occasionally used to treat rheumatism. The leaves of wormwood have antiseptic properties which may derive from the azulenes that the plant contains.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Bitter, carminative, muscle relaxer, antiseptic.

BASIL, HOLY BASIL – Ocimum sanctum (Labiatae)
Holy basil, like sweet (culinary) basil, comes from India where it is revered as a sacred herb. The Egyptians burned a mixture of basil and myrrh to appease their gods. Sweet Basil (Ocimum basilicum) was introduced in Europe as a seasoning for food. The herb has very important medicinal properties – notably its ability to reduce blood sugar levels. It also prevents peptic ulcers and other stress related conditions like hypertension, colitis and asthma. Basil is also used to treat cold and reduce fever, congestion and joint pain. Due to its anti-bacterial and fungicide action, basil leaves are used on itching skin, insect biting and skin affections.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Lowers blood sugar levels, antispasmodic, analgesic, lowers blood pressure, reduces fever, fungicidal, anti-inflammatory.

BELLADONA, DEADLY NITIGHTSHADE – Atropa belladonna (Solanaceae)
Deadly nightshade is native to Europe, western Asia and northern Africa. Herba bella dona, or “herb of the beautiful lady” is known for its poisonous effects (belladonna increases heartbeat and can lead to death), like many other plants it is an important and beneficial remedy when used correctly. Belladonna contains atropine used in conventional medicine to dilate the pupils for eye examinations and as an anesthetic. In herbal medicine, deadly nightshade is mainly prescribed to relieve intestinal colic, to treat peptic ulcers and to relax distended organs, especially the stomach and intestine. Deadly nightshade is also used as an anaesthetic in conventional medicine.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Smooth muscle, antispasmodic, narcotic, reduces sweating, sedative.

BENZOIN GUM – Styrax benzoin (Styraceae)
Benzoin is a tree native to South-East Asia. Its trunk exudes a gum well known for its strong astringent and antiseptic action. For this reason it is used externally to fight tissue inflammation and disinfection of wounds. When taken internally, benzoin gum acts to settle griping pain, to stimulate coughing, and to disinfect the urinary tract. Benzoin gum is widely used in cosmetics as an antioxidant in oils, as a fixative in perfumes and as an additive to soaps. When steam inhaled, it helps healing sore throats, head and chest colds, asthma and bronchitis.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antiseptic, astringent, anti-inflammatory.

BERGAMOT – Citrus bergamia syn. C. aurantium var. bergamia (Rutaceae)
Bergamot oil, expressed from the peel, assists in avoiding infectious diseases. In cosmetics it is used in preventing oily skin, acne, psoriasis and acne. The oil (or constituents of it) are sometimes added to sun-tanning oils. Bergamot oil is also used to relieve tension, relax muscle spasms and improve digestion.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Disinfectant, muscle relaxant.

BITTER ORANGE – Citrus aurantium (Rutaceae)
The bitter orange, native to tropical Asia, has provided food and medicine for thousands of years. Its oil contains flavonoids which are anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antifungal. Bitter orange juice is rich in vitamin C which helps the immune system. As an infusion, it helps to relieve fever, soothe headaches and lower fever. It yields neroli oil from its flowers, and the oil known as petitgrain from its leaves and young shoots. Both distillates are used extensively in perfumery. Orange flower water is a by-product of distillation and is used in perfumery and to flavor sweets and biscuits, as well as being used medicinally to reduce heart rate and palpitations, to encourage sleep and calm the digestive tract.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-inflammatory, antifungal, antibacterial, digestive.

BOLDO – Peumus boldus (Umbelliferae)
Boldo is a tree original from the Chilean Andes. It activates the secretion of saliva and gastric juices. Boldine, one of its constituents, induces the flow of bile as well as the total amount of solids that it excretes. Its protective action over the hepatic cells has been demonstrated “in vitro” and “in vivo”. Boldo stimulates liver activity and bile flow and is chiefly valued as a remedy for gallstones and liver or gallbladder pain. It is normally taken for a few weeks at a time, either as a tincture or infusion. Boldo also has antiseptic properties which help in combating cystitis.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Bile and liver activity stimulant, digestive.

CALENDULA, MARIGOLD – Calendula officinallis (Compositae)
Marigold is one of the best herbs for treating local skin problems. Infusions or decoctions of Calendula petals decrease the inflammation of sprains, stings, varicose,veins and other swellings and also soothes burns, sunburns, rashes and skin irritations. These remedies are excellent for inflamed and bruised skin, their antiseptic and healing properties helping to prevent the spread of infection and accelerate the healing. Marigold is also a cleansing and detoxifying herb, and the infusion and tincture are used to treat chronic infections. Taken internally, it has been used traditionally to promote the draining of swollen lymph glands such as tonsillitis.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-inflammatory, astringent, heals wounds, antiseptic, detoxifying.

CAMPHOR – Cinnamomum camphora syn. Laurus camphora (Lauraceae)
Camphor trees are native to China and Japan and are cultivated for its wood for the extraction of camphor oil. Marco Polo was the first to note that the Chinese used camphor oil as a medicine, scent and embalming fluid. Camphor crystals have strong antiseptic, stimulant and antispasmodic properties and are applied externally as unguents or balms as a counter-irritant and analgesic liniment to relieve arthritic and rheumatic pains, neuralgia and back pain. It may also be applied to skin problems, such as cold sores and chilblains, and used as a chest rub for bronchitis and other chest infections.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antiseptic, antispasmodic, analgesic, expectorant.

CARDAMOM – Elettaria cardamomum (Zingiberaceae)
Cardamom has been praised as a spice and medicine and used in ancient Egypt to make perfumes. It is an excellent remedy for many digestive problems, helping to soothe indigestion, dyspepsia, gastralgia, colon spasms and flatulence. It has an aromatic and pungent taste and combines well with other herbs and helps to disguise the less pleasant taste of other herbs.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Eases stomach pain, carminative, aromatic, antispasmodic.

CARDUS, MILK THISTLE, MARY THISTLE – Carduus marianus syn. Silybum marianum (Compositae)
Milk thistle is native to the Mediterranean and has been in use as a remedy for liver problems for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. It is used in a whole range of liver and bladder conditions including hepatitis and cirrhosis. Recent research has confirmed traditional herbal knowledge, proving that the herb has a remarkable ability to protect the liver from damage resulting from alcoholic and other types of poisoning. Today, milk thistle is widely used in the West for the treatment of a range of liver conditions.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, liver tonic, stimulates secretion of bile, increases breast-milk production, antidepressant.

CELERY, SMALLAGE – Apium graveolens (Umbelliferae)
More familiar as a vegetable than as a medicine, celery find its main use in the treatment of rheumatism, arthritis and gout. Containing apiol, the seeds are also used as a urinary antiseptic. Celery is a good cleansing, diuretic herb, and the seeds are used specifically for arthritic complaints where there is an accumulation of waste products. The seeds also have a reputation as a carminative with a mild tranquilizing effect. The stems are less significant medicinally.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-rheumatic, antispasmodic, diuretic, urinary antiseptic.

CHAMOMILE, GERMAN CHAMOMILE – Chamomilla recutita syn. Matricaria recutita (Compositae)
Chamomile grows wild in Europe and west Asia. Related species are found in North America and Africa. Its flowers help to ease indigestion, nervousness, depressions and headaches, being ideal for emotion related problems such as peptic ulcers, colitis, spastic colon and nervous indigestion. Chamomile’s essential oil have anti-inflammatory,anti-spasmodic and anti-microbial activity. It is an excellent herb for many digestive disorders and for nervous tension and irritability. Externally, it is used for sore skin and eczema. Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) is a close relation, used in a similar way.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, relaxant, carminative, bitter, nervine.

CHICORY – Cicorium intybus (Compositae)
Chicory is native to Europe and have been cultivated through the ages. As a tea or extract, chicory root is a bitter digestive tonic that also increases bile flow and decrease inflammation. Its roasted root is commonly used as a coffee substitute. Chicory is an excellent mild bitter tonic for the liver and digestive tract. The root is therapeutically similar to dandelion root supporting the action of the stomach and liver and cleansing the urinary tract. Chicory is also taken for rheumatic conditions and gout, and as a mild laxative, one particularly appropriate for children. An infusion of the leaves and flowers also aids the digestion.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, liver tonic, anti-rheumatic, mild laxative.

CINNAMON – Cinnamomum verum syn. C. zeylanicum (Lauraceae)
Cinnamon is native to Sri Lanka, growing in tropical forest and being extensively cultivated throughout the tropical regions of the world. Cinnamon has a long history of use in India and was first used medicinally in Egypt and parts of Europe from about 500 BC. The infusion or powder is used for stomach pains and cramps. Traditionally, the herb was taken for colds, flu and digestive problems, and it is still used in much the same way today.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Warming stimulant, carminative, antispasmodic, antiseptic, anti-viral.

CLOVE – Eugenia caryophyllata syn. Syzgium aromaticum (Myrtaceae)
Clove trees are original from Indonesia. The dried flower buds, clove, are extensively used as spice. The buds, leaves and stems are used for the extractions of clove’s oil. Both the oil and the flower buds have been valued as a herbal medicine for a long time. The oil contains eugenol, a strong anaesthetic and atiseptic substance. Cloves are also well known for their antispasmodic and stimulative properties.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antiseptic, mind and body stimulant, analgesic, antibacterial, carminative.

COMFREY, KNITBONE – Symphytum officinale (Boraginaceae)
Comfrey’s name derives from the Latin con firma, i.e. “with strength”, from the belief that it could heal broken bones. Comfrey leaves and roots contain allantoin, a cell multiplication agent that increases the healing of wounds. Today, it is still highly regarded for its healing properties. Externally it is used for rashes, wounds, inflammation and skin problems. Internally, comfrey has action over the digestive tract helping to cure ulcers and colitis. It is also used for a variety of respiratory problems.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive problems, anti-inflammatory, wound healing, astringent.

CORIANDER – Coriandrum sativum (Umbelliferae)
Coriander use has a medicinal plant has been reported since 1500 B.C. both as a spice and as a medicine. It has now spread well beyond its native Mediterranean and Caucasian regions. It aids digestion, reduce flatulence and improves appetite. It helps relieving spasms within the gut and counters the effects of nervous tension. Coriander is also chewed to sweeten the breath, especially after consumption of garlic (Allium sativum). It is applied externally as a lotion for rheumatic pain. Coriander essential oil is used in the manufacture of perfumes, cosmetics and dentifrices.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, antispasmodic, anti-rheumatic.

CYMBOPOGON, LEMON GRASS – Cymbopogon citratus (Gramineae)

Native from Sri Lanka and South India, lemon grass is now widely cultivated in the tropical areas of America and Asia. Its oil is used as a culinary flavoring, a scent and medicine. Lemon grass is principally taken as a tea to remedy digestive problems diarrhea and stomach ache. It relaxes the muscles of the stomach and gut, relieves cramping pains and flatulence and is particularly suitable for children. In the Caribbean, lemon grass is primarily regarded as a fever-reducing herb. It is applied externally as a poultice or as diluted essential oil to ease pain and arthritis.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, antispasmodic, analgesic.

DAMIANA – Turnera diffusa syn. T. diffusa var. aphrodisiaca (Turneraceae)
Native from the Gulf of Mexico, damiana has an ancient reputation as an aphrodisiac and is an excellent remedy for the nervous system acting as a stimulant and tonic in cases of mild depression. Damiana has a strongly aromatic, slightly bitter taste. The leaves are used to flavor liqueurs and are taken in Mexico as a substitute for tea.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Nerve tonic, antidepressant, urinary antiseptic.

DANDELION – Taraxacum officinale (Compositae)

Occurring naturally in Asia, Dandelion is now a common plant everywhere. Its medicinal virtues were probably introduced in Europe by the Arabs in the 10th Century. Both the Persians and the East Indians used it for liver complaints. Known principally as a weed, dandelion has an astonishing range of health benefits. The leaves, which can be eaten in salads, are a powerful diuretic. The roots act as a “blood purifier” that helps both kidneys and the liver to remove impurities from the blood. This effect seems to be due to its potassium content. It also acts like a mild laxative and improves appetite and digestion.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Diuretic, digestive, antibiotic, bitter.

DILL – Anethum graveolens syn. Peucedanum graveolens (Umbelliferae)
An ancient Egyptian remedy in the Ebers papyrus (c. 1500 BC) recommends dill as one of the ingredients in a pain-killing mixture. The Romans knew dill as anethum, which latter became “anise”. Dill has always been considered a remedy for the stomach, relieving wind and calming the digestion. Dill’s essential oil relieves intestinal spasms and griping and helps to settle colic, hence it is often used in gripe water mixtures. Chewing the seeds improves bad breath. Dill makes a useful addition to cough, cold and flu remedies, and is a mild diuretic. Dill increases milk production, and when taken regularly by nursing mothers, helps to prevent colic in their babies.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, antibacterial, antispasmodic, diuretic.

EUCALYPTUS, BLUE GUM – Eucalyptus globulus (Myrtaceae)
Eucalyptus is native from Australia, where it comprises more than 75% of all trees. A traditional aboriginal remedy, eucalyptus is a powerful antiseptic used all over the world for relieving coughs and colds, sore throats and other infections. The leaves cool the body and relive fever. Inhaling the vapors of the essential oils heated in water, clears sinus and bronchial congestions. Eucaliptol, one of the substances found in the essential oil, is one of the main constituents of the many existing commercial formulas of chest rubs for colds. The essential oil has also strong anti-biotic, anti-viral and anti-fungal action. Eucalyptus is a common ingredient in many over-the-counter cold remedies.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antiseptic, expectorant, stimulates local blood flow, anti-fungal.

FENNEL – Foeniculum vulgare (Umbelliferae)
Native to the Mediterranean, fennel has spread to surrounding areas, including India. Known to the Greeks and Romans, is was used as food, spice and medicine. The primary use of fennel seeds is to relieve flatulence, but they also settle colic, stimulate the appetite and digestion. Fennel is also diuretic and anti-inflammatory. Like anise (Pimpinella anisum) and caraway (Carum carvi), it has a calming effect on bronchitis and coughs. An infusion of the seeds may be taken as a gargle for sore throats and as a mild expectorant. Fennel increases breast-milk production and the herb is still used as an eye wash for sore eyes and conjunctivitis. Essential oil from the sweet variety is used for its digestive and relaxing properties.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Digestive, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory.

GARLIC – Allium sativum (Liliaceae)
Original from Central Asia, garlic is now cultivated worldwide. It was widely known by the ancients, being found in Egyptian tombs and used by Greeks and Romans. Recognized for its pungent odor and taste, garlic is a powerful home medicine for the treatment for a host of health problems. It is one of the most effective anti-biotic plants available, acting on bacteria, viruses and alimentary parasites. It counters many infections, including those of the nose, throat and chest. Garlic is also known to reduce cholesterol, helps circulatory disorders, such as high blood pressure, and lower blood sugar levels, making it useful in cases of late-onset diabetes.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Antibiotic, expectorant, diaphoretic, hypotensive, antispasmodic, expels worms.

GENTIAN – Gentiana lutea (Gentianaceae)
Native to Europe and Asia Minor, gentian properties as a medicinal plant go back to 180 B.C. Gentian is a powerful bitter that stimulates appetite and promotes digestion through the increased production of saliva, gastric juices and bile. It also decreases gastric inflammation and kill worms. Gentian is also used to treat liver and spleen problems and to promote menstruation. Medicinally, gentian strengthens a weak or under-active digestive system.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Bitter, digestive stimulant, eases stomach pain.

GINGER – Zingiber officinali (Zingiberaceae)
Ginger is original from Southeast Asia and is now cultivated in most tropical countries. Its citations in ancient texts go back to the 4th century B.C. The Greeks imported it from the East centuries before Discorides recorded its use in the 1st century A.D. Familiar as a spice and flavoring, ginger is also one of the world’s best medicines. The Chinese consider ginger as an important drug to treat cold and encourage sweating. Ginger brings relief to digestion, stimulates circulation, reduce headaches and kill intestinal parasites.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Diaphoretic, carminative, circulatory stimulant, inhibits coughing, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic.

GINKGO – Ginkgo biloba (Ginkgoaceae)
Ginkgo is thought to be the oldest tree on the planet, first growing about 190 million years ago. It is probably native to China, although there are no wild trees remaining. Though long used as a medicine in its native China, its therapeutic actions have only recently been researched. Traditionally known as an anti-microbial and anti-tubercular action, it has now been shown that ginkgo as a profound activity on brain function and cerebral circulation. This action is useful to prevent dizziness, tinnitus, short-term memory loss, depression and other symptoms related to poor brain circulation. Its effect on poor circulation also used to treat other related disorders like diabetes, hemorrhoids and varicose veins. Ginkgo is also valuable for asthma.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Circulatory stimulant and tonic, anti-asthmatic, antispasmodic, anti-allergenic, anti-inflammatory.

GINSENG – Panax ginseng (Araliaceae)
Ginseng is the most famous Chinese herb of all. It is native to north-eastern China, eastern Russia and Korea. The related species Panax quinquefolious, occurs in the eastern United States and Canada. Ginseng has ancient and rich history as a medicinal plant and has been praised for its remarkable therapeutic benefits for about 7,000 years. Its value was so great that wars were fought for control of the forests in which it thrived. An Arabian physician brought ginseng back to Europe in the 9th century, yet its ability to improve stamina and resistance to stress became common knowledge in the West only from the 18th century. Ginseng increases mental and physical efficiency and resistance to stress and disease. It often shows a dual response like sedating or stimulating the central nervous system according to the condition it is being taken to treat. In the West, ginseng is regarded as a life-enhancing tonic.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Tonic, stimulant, physical and mental re vitalizer.

GUMPLANT – Grindelia camporum syn. G. robusta var. rigida (Compositae)
Gumplant is native to the south-western US and Mexico and was used by Native Americans to treat bronchial problems and also skin afflictions such as reactions to poison ivy. The plant’s medicinal value was not recognized by traditional practitioners until the mid-l9th century. Gumplant was officially recognized in the Pharmacopoeia of the United States from 1882 to 1926. Its anti-spasmodic, expectorant and hypotensive actions find applications in treating heart conditions, asthmatic and bronchial conditions. It has been employed in the treatment of wooping cough, hay fever and cystitis. Externally in relieves and heals skin irritations and burns.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-spasmodic, expectorant, hypotensive.

HAMAMELIS, WITCH HAZEL – Hamamamelis virginiana (Hamamelidaceae)
Witch hazel is native to eastern North America, from New England to west Minnesota. It was a traditional remedy of many native North American peoples. Witch hazel acts mostly on the veins and circulation. For this reason it has been used to decrease the inflammation and pain of bruises, sore muscles, bleeding, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, phlebitis, and insect bites. American indians used poultices soaked in a decoction of bark to treat tumors and inflammations, especially of the eye, and took the herb internally for hemorrhaging and heavy menstrual bleeding. Hammamelis was introduced in Europe on the18th century.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Astringent, anti-inflammatory, stops external and internal bleeding.

HAWTHORN – Crataegus oxyacantha & C. monogyna (Rosaceae)
Hawthorn is native of Europe with close species found in North Africa and western Asia. The tree has been known and appreciated throughout the ages, by the ancient Greeks, Arabs and Europeans. Hawthorn is an extremely valuable medicinal herb. In the Middle Ages it was as a symbol of hope and taken for many ailments. It has been shown that its effects are only present when a whole plant preparation is used. Its applications are: the loss of cardiac function, feelings of congestions and oppression in the hearth region. Western herbalists consider it literally to be a “food for the heart”, increasing blood flow to the heart muscles and restoring normal heart beat. Recent research has confirmed the validity of these uses.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Cardiotonic, diuretic, astringent, dilates blood vessels, relaxant, antioxidant.

HYSSOP – Hyssopus officinalis (Labiatae)
Hyssop is found native in the Mediterranean region an is commercially cultivated in Europe, Russia and India. In the past, hyssop was so highly esteemed it was regarded as a virtual cure-all. Currently an undervalued medicinal herb, hyssop is potentially useful as it is both calming and tonic. It has a large spectrum of uses which are due to its anti-spasmodic action. It is used in coughs, bronchitis, tight-chestedness, respiratory catarrh, sore throat and common cold. As a sedative, hyssop is a useful remedy against asthma in both children and adults, especially where the condition is exacerbated by mucus congestion. Hyssop is used to flavor various liqueurs, including Chartreuse.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Anti-spasmodic, expectorant, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, hepatic.

JASMINE – Jasminum grandiflorum (Oleaceae)
Jasmine is probably native of Iran and is now well known and cultivated in Asia and Europe where it was in the l6th century, mainly as a source of perfume. Although it is rarely used today in the western World, flower syrups were used for coughs and leaf tea to rinse sore eyes and wounds. Jasmine flowers make a calming and sedative infusion, taken to relieve tension. The oil is considered antidepressant and relaxing. It is used externally to soothe dry and sensitive skin.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Aromatic, anti-spasmodic, expectorant.

JUNIPER – Juniperus communis (Cupressaceae)
Juniper is found in Europe, south-western Asia and North America. Juniper is tonic, diuretic and strongly antiseptic within the urinary tract. It is a valuable remedy for cystitis, and helps relieve fluid retention, but should be avoided in cases of kidney disease. In the digestive system, juniper is warming and settling, easing colic and supporting the function of the stomach. Taken internally or applied externally, juniper is helpful in the treatment of chronic arthritis, gout and rheumatic conditions. Applied externally as a diluted essential oil, it has a slightly warming effect on the skin and is thought to promote the removal of waste products from underlying tissues.
HEALING PROPERTIES: Diuretic, anti-microbial, carminative, anti-rheumatic.

 

From the Website, Coven of the Goddess.com

 

 

Daily Feng Shui News for Sept. 24 – 'Cherries Jubilee Day'

If you’re looking for one of the best fruits to help cleanse your body and release toxins, then you’re in for some just desserts. Seeing that today is ‘Cherries Jubilee Day’ prompted me to want to share some other medical agendas that cherries have proven terrific in treating. They are an all-natural diuretic and eating them also helps with the prevention of kidney or gallstones, as well as arthritis, anemia and osteoporosis, to name just a few. They promote healthy teeth and bones, so they’re the perfect fruit to feed children. Cherries are delicious too, and that’s yet another reason to be jubilant about eating this powerful antioxidant food.

By Ellen Whitehurst for Astrology.com

The Willow Knot Spell

THE WILLOW KNOT SPELL

To win the love of a young lady, according to the old Gypsy Witch lore, a young man must go into the woods on Saint Johns Day (mid- summer) and find some willow twigs that have grown together into a knot. With a sharp, white handled knife, he must cut the twigs, put them into his mouth, and repeat the following incantation with his eyes closed.

WILLOW TREE
WILLOW TREE
GIVE ME THE LUCK
OF THINE THEN
(NAME OF LOVED ONE)
SHALL FOREVER BE MINE.