As My tea recipes grow, I add new comments to my recipe book to remind myself of some of the herbal secrets that every Witch should keep in mind. I don’t only make infusions, I also make decoctions and other herbal remedies. As I was making my Valerian root decoction and my favorite herbal tea blends, I thought about how plants have their medicinal properties.
Some of the medicinal properties are the essential oils that naturally occur from an infusion or decoction of plants. Most people know that Chamomile helps to relax us after a long day. It has its own mild medicinal values that many of us think we are getting when we brew a cup of tea. The only problem is that many people don’t realize that the essential oils are lost through the process of evaporation.
The process of evaporation can be used to our benefit such as when we are battling a bit of discomfort during allergy season. brewing a cup of chamomile tea while it steeps cover your head and cup of tea with a towel and gently breath in the steam but don’t get too close or you may get burned. Breathing in the essential oils that are released through the evaporation process can help give some relief.
It is believed that drinking Chamomile tea will lesson some allergy symptoms over the years. I tend to agree considering I had severe hay fever every year. I started doing this process regularly and my allergies seem to have decreased. It could just be that my symptoms are being somewhat relieved by the process during the season but in any case, even as a placebo, I enjoy chamomile tea.
When using an infusion or decoction as medication while brewing or decocting your ingredients, it is recommended to keep a lid on it. Keeping it covered helps to keep as much of the natural essential oils in your medicine. I use teas magically as often as I can but I also like to keep the essential oils from the plants because for me it just seems like a good idea to boost the physical and magickal properties of the plant.
I often use dried herbs that I get from the store. The fresher the herbs the more potent the medicinal and magickal properties remain. The older the harvest the weaker it gets. Garlic, for example, is great as a natural antibiotic but only if it is fresh and raw. Once the Garlic begins to dry, shrivel or sprout, it loses the chemistry to heal the infection. I would prefer to grow the plants myself, however, I am limited for growing space. Most of my space is in the shade which also limits my growing space for direct sun herbs.
I find that much of my store purchased herbs work well and with a growing epidemic of polluted soil, water, and air, it is also important to know where the plants are grown and how much toxins are in the final product. Knowing which company is most pure and accurate in its labeling is important too.
With all the herbs I have in stock and my stock is ever-growing, keeping them labeled properly helps a great deal. I may not know the Latin names of all the herbs I have but knowing the magical and medicinal properties, what they look like, smell like, and how to use them is vital when using herbs. Knowing which ones are strictly topical and which ones can be consumed is necessary.
Being aware of allergies and side effects are also important to know. The one thing that covers pretty much all herbs is when making your witch’s brew, save those essential oils by keeping a lid on it.
With Love and Light,