Here’s my version of fortifying tea for autumn.
3 parts oatsraw,
3 parts nettle,
2 parts elderflower,
1 part mugwort (or 1/2 part white sage).
This tea tastes delicious even without the help of sweeteners.
If you’re feeling fancy, you can add 1 tsp to 1 Tbsp of the following: either raw honey, elderberry mead, or elderberry syrup, plus a dash of whiskey or brandy if one is extremely chilled.
Some info can be found below regarding the individual constituents. I chose this particular blend because it can be taken every day to fortify the nervous system and nourish blood, while at the same time it helps to cleanse the blood and lymphatic system. It is very warming during cold weather. It contains many vitamins and minerals, and it prevents the progression of colds or flus that may sneak up over the course of the season. It is perfect for taking in a thermos out mushroom hunting. And it makes me feel happy!
Give it a try and let me know how it goes!
Quick herb info below:
Oatstraw: From Local Harvest’s Herbalist, Sharon Hubbs-Kreft, Herbalist – Amazing Grace Herbals LLC.
Oat Straw is rich in calcium and magnesium. It can be used for both physical and nervous fatigue and is helpful for depression. Oatstraw also contains B-complex vitamins, silicia, calcium, flavones, saponins, and Vitamin A.
Oatstraw has been found to be an excellent toner for the whole system. Oat Straw is useful for thyroid and estrogen deficiency, for MS, osteoporosis, appetite loss, anorexia, urinary concerns, colds and chills and to encourage sweating. It’s secondary uses are boils, weak bones, bursitis, constipation, gallbladder, kidney problems, liver disorders, pancreatic concerns, rheumatism, and some skin conditions.
This herb increases internal heat, dispels internal chill and strengthens metabolism and circulation, relieves symptoms of depression, prevents and relieves spasms, softens and soothes damaged or inflamed surfaces such as the gastric mucous membranes, strengthens functional activity of the nervous system, helps with the process of assimilating food and has the property of nourishing, and restores, nourishes, and supports the entire body; it exerts a gently strengthening effect on the body.
Oatstraw is not a quick fix herb, it is an herb that can be quite effective if used on a regular basis over time. Every person and every situation is different, but a general guideline could be to drink two to three cups of infusion, three or four times a week. It is slow to act in the system but has a long lasting effect.
This tea may be used with the following Bach Flowers Essences for anxiety: A dose is 1-4 drops, taken as needed. Aspen (anxious about the future); Mimulus (anxious about the past); Red Chestnut (anxious about the safety of others); Elm (overwhelming anxiety); Rock Rose (anxiety that escalates into panic).
Oatstraw may also be added to the bath to help relieve overall nervous body tensions and combines well with Lemon Balm for this purpose.
Elder flower: Traditionally treats colds. It also has a diuretic and diaphoretic action when taken in concentrated doses. It helps warm the person who feels chilled yet has a fever, especially when consumed as hot as possible. It can also help relieve sore throat.
From Local Harvest’s Valley View Ranch – Healing Land:
The detoxification of the body is also achieved by taking the herbal remedies made from the flowering tops of the elder flowers. [This] remedy promotes perspiration and the production of urine in the affected individual. [As] a general remedy, the flowering tops of the elder aid the rapid elimination of metabolic waste products from the body – for this reason, arthritis patients often receive great benefits by taking the remedy.
Elderberry (in Mead): From Local Harvest’s Valley View Ranch – Healing Land:
The berries make an excellent home-made wine and winter cordial, which improves with age, and taken hot with sugar, just before going to bed, is an old-fashioned and well established cure for a cold.
The berries from contain a large amount of vitamins A, B and C, as well as flavonoids, sugar, tannins, carotenoids and amino acids. Warmed wine is a remedy for sore throat, influenza and induces perspiration to reverse the effects of a chill. The juice from the berries is an old fashioned cure for colds, and is also said to relieve asthma and bronchitis.
Infusions of the fruit are beneficial for nerve disorders, back pain, and have been used to reduce inflammation of the urinary tract and bladder. Raw berries have laxative and diuretic properties, however the seeds are toxic and may induce vomiting and nausea.
The herbal elder berry tea can be drunk twice every day of the treatment period.
Stinging Nettle: I already posted a page about harvesting nettles, but there are a ton of reasons why one should drink them regularly as tea.
From Local Harvest’s Herbalist, Sharon Hubbs-Kreft, Herbalist – Amazing Grace Herbals LLC:
Nettles have a long history of use in the home as a herbal remedy and nutritious addition to the diet. The Nettle has long been valued as a medicinal and nutritional treasure.
Nettle is rich in chlorophyll, and a good source of beta carotene; vitamins A, C, and E; tannins; iron; calcium; silicon; potassium; phosphates; and various other minerals. Rich in iron vital to circulation and helpful in high blood pressure.
Nettle leaf has recently become a popular treatment for allergies based on one preliminary study. Nettle leaf is highly nutritious, and in cooked form may be used as a general dietary supplement.
It is said that the “sting of the nettle is but nothing compared to the pains that it heals”.
Nettle is safe to administer during pregnancy and helps to keep the blood rich and used if anemia occurs during pregnancy.
Wild Mugwort: I wildcrafted this herb at the peak of summer in Montana, on a sunny, dry hillside in the Rockies. Drinking this tea reminds me of the beautiful warmth, comfort, and calm of the sunny hillside, and it helps dispel the cold, damp, dark Portland winter blues. Some actions attributed to mugwort: regulates female hormonal cycles, cleans the blood, combats asthma, stimulates digestion, and relieves bloating. It is considered antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic and haemostatic.