CHEROKEE HERBOLOGY (A begining of understanding)
[Collected & Distributed by Joseph Teller of the
Pagan Information Network, Homeboard being the
Wonderland BBS 508-663-6220 Billerica MA. Open
for public non-commercial Distribution]
Agrimony (Agrimonia Gyposepala) DRink tea of burs to check bowels,
and for fevers; root tea to build up blood.
Alder, red/smooth/tag (Alnus Serrulata) For pains realted to birth,
ingredient in tea for menstrual period – acts as an emetic and a true
Alder, white (Clethra Acuminata) Decoction of bark and wild cherry
is drunk to break a high fever.
Aloe, false Aloe (Agave Virginica) Chew root for obsitant problems
with diarrhea. Also good for treating animals for worms.
Alum-root, American Sanicle (Heuchera Americana) Root is an
astringent; root tea for bowel complaints or dysentery (usually made
with honey to improve the taste).
Angelica (Angelica Atropurpurea) Root tonic for fevers and colds;
Gargle for sore throats and mouth pains/cold sores.
Bastard Toadflax (Comandra Umbellataa) Steep with roots of pink
lady’s slipper for kidneys; put juice on open cuts or sores.
Beardtongue, hairy (Penstemon Laevigatus) Tea for cramps.
Birch, cherry/mountain/red/river/sweet (Betula Lenta) chew leaves or
drink tea for dysentery; tea for colds.
Bittersweet (Celastrus Scandens) Bark tea to settle stomache; strong
tea combined with red raspberry leaves for pains of childbirth.
Blood leather/rock tripe (Gyrophora Dillenii) Stop bleeding from
Bluebellslungwortvirginia cowslip (Mertensia Virginica) for
whooping cough; consumption.
Bluets (Houstonia Caerulea) Tea to stop bedwetting.
Branch lettuce/saxifrage (Saxifraga Pensylvanica) Root poultice for
Sore swollen muscles.
Buckeye, red (Aesculus Pavia) Pounded nuts are poultice for swelling,
sprains and infected wounds. bark tea drank for facilitating woman’s
delivery in childbirth.
Buffalo nut/oilnut (Pyrularia Pubera) Salve for old sores.
Butterfly weed/Witch weed (Asclepias Tuberosa) Seeds or root are
a gentle laxative; boil seeds in new milk for diarrhea; also for pleurisy,
pains in breast, stomache and lungs.
Cinnamon tree (Cinnamomum Zeylanicum) Bark tea for flu.
Comfrey (Symphytum Officinale) roots in water for gonorrhea.
Coneflower/Black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia Fulgida) Root ooze for earache.
wash for snakebites and swelling caused by worms.
Fern, bracken (Pteridium Aquilinum) Root tonic used as antiseptic.
Fern, rattlesnake (Botrychium Virginianum) boil root down tyo syrup
and rub on snake bites.
Feverfew (Chrysanthemum Parthenium) Bathe swollen feet in a tea.
Geranium, wild (Geranium Maculatum) used for open wounds; astringent.
Goosegrass (Galium Aparine) Tea to move bowels.
Indian Pipe/Fit root/ice plant (Monotropa Uniflora) root pulverized
and given for epilepsy and convulsions.
Laurel, Mountain (Kalmia Latifola) INgredient in liniments.
New jersey tea/Red root (Ceanothus Americanus) hold root tea on an
aching tooth; hot root tea for bowel complaints.
**** Short Bibliography ****
Cobb, B. 1963 : Field guide to The Ferns. Boston. Houghton-Mifflin Co.
Fernald, M.L. : Gray’s Manual of Botany. NY
Hamel, Paul : Plants of The Cherokees. 1974.
Plowden, C.C. : Manual of Plant Names. NY 1970.
Sharp, J.E. : The Cherokees Past and Present. 1970. Cherokee Press.
[This is not meant to be a complete monograph on the subject of the
CHerokee plant lore, just a sampling of the available information.]