‘Oregon Grape’ (Mahonia aquifolium)

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP–Living in Natures Love Lifestyles insideawareness.com

Mortartea kettleEdibleDyedeer

by Renee Lindstrom

Oregon Grape

Also known as:  Mountain Grape, Rocky Mountain Grape, Holly Leaf Barberry, Mahonia, Sour Berry,

Uses:  Culinary,  Herbal, Tea, Medicinal, Dye

Parts used:  Flowers, Leaves & Roots

Preparation:  Culinary,  Dye,  Flower Essence,  Infused Water,  Oil, Tea, Tinctures, Vinegar

 

 

Recipes


  • Symbolizes:   Beauty, acceptance and forgiveness
  • Associated with:  3rd (Sacral) Chakra
  • Element:  Water
  • Governed by:  Jupiter

Oregon Grape (Berberis aquifolium)

On any walk around our Greater Victoria Communities you will discover the evergreen Oregon Grape Plant.   It is used extensively in landscaping and grows wild along trails and in the underbrush of the forest canapes.  In the forest it’s blooms are less abundant that is likely due to the lack of sun.  The one pictured above is one of two new plants to this garden that, with the wet spring, is heavy with flowers for it’s size.   These two plants will be the lower, spreading shrub type of Oregon Grape, while you can find taller bushes that grow to 6 to 10 feet high.  .

It is a good landscaping plant for our area as it is drought resistant, however, with lack of water over a long period it begins to look thirsty!


Health & Wellness

The roots, leaves and berries are used for medicinal remedies and the flowers are edible. This plant is sour therefore one’s liver would love it!  Most bitter herbs are considered to have some effect on the liver and the gallbladder.  In Chinese medicine the Liver is considered to be the General of the body because it directs so many physiological functions.

DSC_2833

Infused oil & tinctures using oregon grape berries

Oregon grape contains isoquinoline alkaloids which includes berberine, berbamine, and hydrastine. These alkaloids are strong antiseptics and reduce the severity of infection and skin conditions such as psoriasis.  Berberine can lower blood glucose levels, stop infections and modulate inflammation.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Infections Oregon Grape have been used to treat and currently being researched  for:

  • stimulate thyroid & balance hormone production
  • sore throats,
  • eye infections,
  • vaginal infections,
  • wounds on the skin,
  • mouth infections,
  • inflammatory bowel conditions,
  • infectious diarrhea ,
  • infections in the upper digestive tract,
  • urinary tract infections

Other uses of Oregon Grape are for:

  • headaches,
  • poor digestion,
  • blood purifier
  • acne,
  • boils,
  • eczema,
  • herpes,
  • psoriasis,
  • colorectal cancer,
  • liver cancer
Pic by Renee Lindstrom

Oregon Berries Plant Dye

I create tinctures, oils & dyes using all parts of the Oregon Grape; roots, leaves, flowers & berries.

Personal note – August 14, ’17

For an infection I picked Oregon Grape Leaves to make an infusion.  The infection was 40 percent cleared up the first day, over 80 percent the next and on the third day it was almost gone.  I did notice other area’s detoxing as well that were not the focus of taking Oregon Grape as a medicinal.  It appears I may have had a low grade sinus infection without knowing and it seems to be detoxing my elimination system!    On the evening of the 3rd day of drinking Oregon Grape’s infusion I began to notice a difference in my thyroid.  At first it was the swelling around this area of my neck had reduced.  Waking the next morning I began to become aware of a difference in my metabolism around my thyroid and through my adrenals!  I am pleasantly and happily surprised as it seems to be supporting an increase in energy and reducing fatique.     Renee Lindstrom

Infusion for Infection’s – Stronger than tea

I take 9 or so leaves and put in small pot of water.  Bring to a rolling boil, turn down and simmer until approximately half infusion is left.  Drink during the day. I drink up to 3 cups throughout the day spaced to support resolving infection.

It is recommended that one only take Oregon Grape remedies for up to 30 days before taking a break.


Harvesting Oregon Grape

The Oregon Grape is being used as a substitute for Goldenseal by many herbalists as it is no longer abundant in North America.  Currently science is trying to patent the complex Oregon Grape that is resulting in over harvesting.  This is what caused Goldenseal to disappear.  If you are foraging and harvesting the roots try and  leave roots behind to regrow.  If you are harvesting the leaves, do not strip the plant.  Leave enough for it to be vital over winter and regrow the following spring.  If you are picking the berries, leave 1/3 of them.

This post may contain Affiliate Links for your convenience, thank you in advance for your support!  Renee

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Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.


Copyright 2014 – 2019  Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since  2000

The Amazing Dandelion

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP – Living in Natures Love Lifestyles @insideawareness.com

Mortartea kettleEdibleDyedeer

Picture by Renee Lindstrom

Dandelion

by Renee Lidnstrom

Spring Dandelions

Uses:  Culinary, Pot Herb, Medicinal, Dye, Detox, Coffee Substitute, Love Potion, Weight Control, Anti Aging, Tonic

Parts used:  Flowers, Leaves, Roots

Preparation:  Fresh, Culinary, Dried,  Flower Essences,  Infused Water, Juicing, Oil, Tea, Tincture, Vinegar

Recipes


  • Symbolizes:   Circle of Life, Hope, Dreams, Well-being and Joy
  • Language of Flowers meaning:  Joy and Faithfulness
  • Associated with: Binding Love, Crown  and Solar Plexus Chakra’s
  • Element:  Air
  • Governed by:  Jupiter

Health & Wellness

Dandelions are increasing in popularity in mainstream health and fitness programs to the point of being called a super food due to the volume of goodness in each plant.  I recently discovered that the flowers are a mild pain reliever when they are infused with oil and used on joints, aches and pain.  As a Feldenkrais®Practitionerthis is good news for  many students and clients.  They would be relieved to learn more natural ways of controlling their pain.

Dandelions are a very rich source of beta-carotene and when consumed we convert this into Vitamin A. Their active ingredients are found in both the roots and leaves.  Dandelions are a good source of:

  • Vitamins: A,C, K and B-vitamins
  • Minerals: magnesium, zinc, potassium, iron, calcium and choline

Their chemical breakdown:

  • Sesquiterpene lactones (bitters): taraxinic acid (taraxacin), tetrahydroridentin B
    • Triterpenoids and sterols: taraxasterol, taraxerol, cycloartenol, beta-sitosterol
    • Other: Vitamin A, Vitamin C, tannins, alkaloids, pectin, inulin, starch, potassium, beta carotene, caffeic acid, flavonoids (apigenin)

Interesting to Know that Dandelion leaves are high in vitamin A, vitamin C and have more iron, calcium and protein than spinach!

Conditions Dandelions Have been used for and currently being researched  for:

  • Antioxidant
  • Digestive Aid
  • Inflammation
  • Immune System
  • Liver Detox and Cleanse
  • Gallbladder
  • Laxative
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Urinary disorders
  • Acne
  • Jaundice
  • Cancer
  • Anemia

How to use Dandelions

Each part of the plant is edible and can be used for creating medicinal remedies and  making tea. The flowers are used for fresh tea and the roots and leaves are mostly used as a dried herb for tea.  I have begun to dry the flower petals to use in tea. Fresh leaves and a few flower petals can be tossed into salads.

Did you know that,  you can cook the spring roots, leaves, flowers and buds or add the to a smoothie, make wine or use as a coffee substitute?

Buy Dried Dandelion Roots

Buy Dried Dandelion Leaves

Try stir frying fresh spring leaves with oil and garlic and toss the unfurled flower buds in.  As you eat the buds they pop in your mouth!  I notice that the bitterness is reduced with cooking.  In spring,  the roots also are soft and tender and can be added together with leaves into a stir fry or stewed dishes and soups.  Add flower petals to a grain dish to add colour and flavour.

Next time you weed your garden set them aside to try them in your own recipes.

Buy Canadian Dandelion Seeds


Read more:


Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.


Copyright 2014 – 2019  Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000