The Herb For All Seasons.

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Forums -> Herbalism -> The Herb For All Seasons.

The Herb For All Seasons.
By: Moderator / Adept
Post # 1
When I was a schoolboy there was a wild plant that mothers told the children not to pick! Perhaps that is why, for some strange reason, children referred to the plant as "Mother Die!".
The plant grows all over England (I found out in later years that it grows all over Europe and the USA!) and is a pretty plant.
It grows with many "stems", like a small bush, and has hundreds of tiny white flowers. The smell is very sweet; very "scented".
Anyway, children were told to avoid it. But then, we were told to avoid all plants except Buttercups,Daisies, and Dandelions! Even Dandelions were a bit suspect, and were known as "pee-the-beds!"
When I was about 12, on a visit to the village, I pointed out the plant to my witch teacher, and called it Mother Die.
She laughed, and said,
"Oh,no! It doesn't kill! It cures!".
Then she told me all about this wonderful herb. How witches had used it to cure all kinds of illnesses.How they would mix the oil from the root with licorice to cure coughs and colds. How the plant had been used by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Romans. And by witches for thousands of years.
She told me how the flowers could make perfume; and that the root had great healing powers,even though it smelled like very strong cheese!
She told me that the plant had been used for many illnesses, from headaches to "the falling sickness". (Epilepsy
I said that we had been told it was poisonous! She said. "All medicines are poisonous if you don't know how to use them!"
Then she told me the real name of the plant was not Mother Die! It was Valerian. And it was one of the great "cure alls" for many thousands of years. And is still used in modern medicine today!
So when you see that wild herb, with its pretty white flowers, give thanks to Mother Nature for providing us with one of the great healers!
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Re: The Herb For All Seasons.
By: Moderator / Knowledgeable
Post # 2
This thread has been moved to Herbalism from Misc Topics.
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Re: The Herb For All Seasons.
Post # 3
Just a side note. Not to deter from the topic at hand but the thought came to me reading your post.

Dandelion was originally referred to as "piss-the-bed" by Shakespeare due it it's diuretic properties. Interestingly enough it became known as "loves Oracle" or "the rustic Oracle" in the Victorian era. A puff on a dandelion was the equivalent of plucking the petals off of a daisy and reciting "he loves me, he loves me not" divination by dandelion is an interesting concept. I've always wondered how well that child's game was accepted in such a time when the word of the bible was held so highly.
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Re: The Herb For All Seasons.
Post # 4
That's so interesting! Your Witch teacher sounds like such a nice person! I used to say that as well when I was younger that dandelions would make you "pee the bed!". There's a plant that grows here, Elderflower or Elderberry, and it smells sweet so i used to make perfume from it when i was little, then there's one that people get mixed up with, they think its Elderflower but its not, it gives you a rash i think. Sorry i went a bit off subject!
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