Morgan Botanicals

  (Loveland, Colorado)
Herbal Information and Recipes
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Need Something For That Cough Honey?

Jessica Morgan, M.H.

My boys kept me super warm last night with their perfectly running fevers and kept me up with their irritating coughs. So I'm off to give hugs and make soups, and syrups, and herbal pastilles and sleepy teas and probably some kinda cookies, maybe big soft ginger molasses cookies....because you've gotta have lots of herbaly goodness and hugs and kisses and cookies when this kinda madness goes down.

 

Herbal medicine is the medicine of the people,and plant medicines are not only simple, but safe, effective, and pretty much free. Our ancestors used plant medicines, and our neighbors around the world use plant medicines, and you can use plant medicines for healing just the same. It's super easy and super fun and I even let my littles help sometimes.

 

Syrups are really quite simple to make and whether you need it now or next month, you'll be happy you had a jar in the fridge waiting when the time comes.


I tend to grab a little of this or a little of that, typically whatever I have on hand or in the pantry or available outside. Today I roamed around the kitchen, the herbal pantry and out to the trees; I used wild cherry bark, slippery elm bark, marshmallow root, licorice root, elderberries, ginger root, spruce tips and orange peel. And of course honey is the magic ingredient in this yummy and soothing cough and sore throat syrup.

 

That makes my cough better just looking at it...... and I don't even have a cough!


Those who know me, know I'm terrible with herbal specifics and recipe amounts so this is approximate amounts....but here's what I like to do. Use what you have or, some favorite cough herbs are, elecampane, wild cherry bark, fennel seed, slippery elm bark, marshmallow root, valerian root, licorice root osha root, elderberry, ginger, thyme, yerba santa, coltsfoot, rose hips, sage, horehound, pine, fir, spruce, citrus peel, garlic, etc.

 

MAKE AN HERBAL SYRUP
To make an herbal syrup you will need the following supplies:

    •      2oz of herb (weight, not volume)
    •      A quart of water
    •      Measuring cup
    •      A heavy-bottomed medium-sized saucepan
    •      1½ cups honey
    •      A sterilized jar
    •      A little whiskey, brandy or vodka (optional)
    •      A label and pen



Simmer your chosen herbs in water for about 20 minutes. Cook this down to about 2 cups. Remove from the heat and strain out the solids, stir in honey (and or alcohol), then allow to cool. Pour into a sterilized bottle. Label.


 

 

Don't forget to label your jar! I like to keep a refillable smaller jar too. Take 2 tablespoons, as required, to soothe coughing. Keeps for quite a long time in the refrigerator. Sometimes I add a bit of whishey to mine, to keep it fresh and viable longer. And to...well you know.

 

 Homemade herbal Cough Syrups are wonderful tasting & great for everyone, including the kids. They are great for coughs, sore throats, dry throats, colds, flu, fever and are even delicious! I like to protect myself and my family from the ickies  with traditional healing and preventative herbal medicines....stuff I can easily make at home, and syrups are definitely one of them.

When I first tried the new herbal cough syrup, I really had no idea what to expectorate. :D

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As always, please email any questions to herbalist@morganbotanicals.com.

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Copyright 2012. All rights reserved. Jessica Morgan, Morgan Botanicals.

Disclaimer - The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. You should not use the information in this article for self-diagnosis or to replace any prescriptive medication. You should consult with a health care professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem, suffer from allergies, are pregnant or nursing.

Jessica Morgan, Herbalist

 

 
 

More Mullein Please!

Jessica Morgan, M.H.

Since antiquity, mankind has used the velvety mullein plant for many purposes. From Roman times, the stem- stripped of the leaves and flowers and dipped in tallow- was carried as a torch in religious processions. Why not make a giant torch eh? Well, they are smoky, stinky, and tend to drip hot flaming bits everywhere ...... Perfect for a cave? Maybe.

Mullein was known in Greek as Flego and Fluma, that is, "to set on fire." According to one writer, "it served as a wick to put into lamps to burn." The leaves were rolled and dried and used as wicks for oil lamps and candles, and made excellent tinder. John Parkinson, a seventeenth-century herbalist, "used the stalks dipped in suet whether to burn at funerals or otherwise, and so likewise the English name High Taper, used in the same manner as a taper or torch."

To me, mullein is an awkwardly beautiful, tall fuzzy plant with sweet smelling yellow flowers and typically blooms from March to November. The flowers are fragrant and taste sweet, and the leaves, even though a bit bitter, are still wonderfully useful. Apart from its medicinal use, I love mullein for its ornamental purpose in the garden; it attracts a wide variety of pollinators, including bees, flies, and butterflies. Mullein is widely available in the wild, and is easily identified by its spike of yellow flowers and huge, sometimes over a foot long, leaves. When you find them - the leaves, flowers, and roots of this plant are edible and easy to dry, and may be used to make your own herbal medicines.

Mullein has long been valued as a superior medicinal herb and the Greek physician-herbalist Dioscorides was one of the first to recommend its use in curing diseases of the lungs, and it remained thus employed for more than 1,800 years. The leaves, root, and the flowers are anodyne, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, astringent, demulcent, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, nervine, and vulnerary. What an amazingly useful plant...right? Well, Mullein leaf is a good respiratory remedy and traditionally used as a tea for treating a wide range of chest complaint including cough. When combined with water, the fiber in mullein produces a slippery substance called mucilage, which coats and soothes the throat and intestines. It combines well with other expectorants such as coltsfoot and thyme. Mullein helps reduce inflammation while stimulating fluid production and thus facilitating expectoration. It is considered a specific in bronchitis where there is a hard cough with soreness. Its anti-inflammatory and demulcent properties indicate its use in inflammation of the trachea and associated conditions.

 

The dried leaves are sometimes smoked to relieve the irritation of the respiratory mucus membranes an will ease the hacking cough of consumption. In our own country, several native American tribes used Mullein to cure chest diseases. Since the plant was not native to America, this usage was probably received by them (no doubt along with the lung ailments it was said to cure) from the early settlers. The Navajos called Mullein "big tobacco." They mixed it with regular tobacco and smoked the combination to relieve coughing spasms. It was also believed that this remedy would cure simple mental diseases, the use of evil language, and the thinking of evil thoughts.

But for me....I like it in tea. I like to steep a couple teaspoons of dried mullein in a cup of hot water for an infusion to treat cough, congestion, or diarrhea. You can drink three cups of hot mullein tea a day until symptoms disappear, or store the tea in the refrigerator.

Please email any questions to herbalist@morganbotanicals.com.

Copyright 2011. All rights reserved. Jessica Morgan, M. H., Morgan Botanicals.

Disclaimer - The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. You should not use the information in this article for self-diagnosis or to replace any prescriptive medication. You should consult with a health care professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem, suffer from allergies, are pregnant or nursing.

Jessica Morgan, M.H.

 
 

Running Around Looking For Horehound

Jessica Morgan, M.H.Marrubrium vulgaris is one of the first non-native herbs I learned when I was working as field biologist for Cal State Stanislas to protect native species. I knew the plant as a cough remedy and a candy, but didn't have much experience recognizing the plant back then. In college as a horticulture student we studied landscaping plants rather than "wild" plants; which is truly where my heart was. But none the less, I learned alot.

 Horehound is a perennial weed and member of the mint family. It's commonly found in disturbed, low-elevation areas throughout California. One plant can produce thousands of seeds, become very dense quickly, and is resistant to trampling. It is often times found flourishing on roadsides. In an ornamental landscape, this aromatic herb will attract bees to your garden.

Horehound is an amazing plant and useful to say the least. It is an excellent pectoral remedy for cough and colds, bronchitis, and sore throats as well as helping with unwanted phlegm in the chest. Horehound tea alone is effective for the common cold but I like to mix it with marshmallow and licorice root and make a syrup.

Beyond being an expectorant, it is a bitter tonic, diuretic, resolvent, diaphoretic, and laxative. A warm cup of tea will produce perspiration and urine flow; helps with asthma, jaundice, and hoarseness. A cold infusion is a great tonic for dyspepsia, and the powdered leaves are used as a vermifuge. Taken in large doses, it is laxative and will expel worms.

For harvesting and storing: The first year, cut the foliage sparingly. The second year, harvest leaves when flower buds appear, chop and dry them, then store in airtight containers. If you don't know this herb, you should- it's easy to fall in love with.

As always, email any questions to herbalist@morganbotanicals.com.

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Copyright 2009. All rights reserved. Jessica Morgan, M. H., Morgan Botanicals.

Disclaimer - The information provided in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. You should not use the information in this article for self-diagnosis or to replace any prescriptive medication. You should consult with a health care professional before starting any diet, exercise or supplementation program, before taking any medication, or if you have or suspect you might have a health problem, suffer from allergies, are pregnant or nursing.

Jessica Morgan, M.H.

 

 
 
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