|Solomon's seal in early spring|
Solomon's seal is declining along with the eastern North American forests. Fortunately, a plant or two from a healthy native patch can be transplanted to a shady spot in the yard where it's rhizomes will readily replicate. The young plants look alot like the non-medicinal false Solomon's seal (Smilacina racemosa) but can be distinguished by flowers hanging down from the stem. The roots are considered a nutritive tonic (alterative) for the respiratory and musculoskeletal systems, helping joint pain by providing lubrication and easing tendon and ligament strain.
|True or false Solomon's seal?|
|False (left) and true Solomon's seal|
|Ripe cayenne peppers in late summer|
HERBALIST'S NOTE: Chronic joint pain is best treated as a systemic condition with possible gastrointestinal, renal, cardiovascular, or immune influences.
JOINT EASE TINCTURE (2oz)
Solomon's seal tincture - .5oz
burdock root tincture - .5oz (substitute black cohosh or yellow dock)
willow bark tincture - .5oz (substitute cayenne or wild yam)
boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum) tincture - .5oz (substitute goldenrod)
|Solomon's seal roots|
1) Clean and chop Solomon's seal roots and place in a jar with a tight fitting lid;
2) Cover with high-proof alcohol (50% or greater), seal the lid, and place in a warm dark room for 2-4 weeks, swirling the jar whenever you pass through;
3) Strain the tincture into an apothecary jar and label with plant name, date, tincture method (folk or 1:2), and alcohol percentage and type;
4) Combine .5oz each of tinctures of Solomon's seal (alterative), burdock (adaptogen), willow bark (analgesic), and boneset (joint specific) into a 2oz dropper bottle;
5) Take 1-2 droppers three times a day for joint pain.
JOINT EASE ROLL-ON (1oz)
cayenne tincture - .5oz
willow bark tincture - .5oz
1) Chop dried cayenne peppers and place in a jar with a tight fitting lid;
2) Cover with apple cider vinegar or vodka, seal the lid, and place in a warm dark room for 2-4 weeks, swirling the jar whenever you pass through;
3) Strain the tincture into an apothecary jar and label with plant name, date, tincture method (folk or 1:5), and alcohol percentage and type;
4) Combine .5oz each of cayenne and willow bark tinctures into a 1oz bottle with roller-ball top;
5) Apply to painful joints every two hours, avoiding contact with eyes or mucous membranes.
DOCTOR'S NOTE: Acute joint pain with swelling, heat, or redness can be caused by an injury, infection, or inflammatory disease and is best evaluated by a health care professional if unresolved after one week.