Entries by Katya

Red Clover Herb & Blossoms

This common field plant, Trifolium pratense, is a member of the legume (Fabaceae) family and grows wild and weedy in meadows and roadsides throughout the U.S., where it has been naturalized from mid-to-northern Europe and Asia. I remember as a child going out in our sheep and cow pastures to collect the purple-pink-reddish blossoms throughout the […]



Marshmallow – a plant that grows well in wet, marshy areas and is native to salt marshes along the ocean in Europe and western Asia, its Latin name is Althea officinalis and it is a member of the Malvaceae (Mallow) family.  The leaf and root are both used medicinally.  It is highly likely that the […]

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Schisandra berry

One of my absolute favorite herbs, this flavorful berry has been a lifesaver for me personally, as it excellent for the adrenal glands and the stress response, helping to increase resiliency and stabilizing energy levels. As an herbal “adaptogen,” schisandra berry is in a category dominated mostly by the roots of plants, such as ginseng, […]

Red Root

It’s interesting how in herbal medicine we sometimes refer to the part of the plant we use medicinally when naming it. Here, I am writing about the herb we call red root, which is the root of the plant called many common names such as Snow Bush and New Jersey Tea. The Latin name is […]

Homemade Gift Ideas – for the Holidays and Beyond

Homemade gifts are a thoughtful way to share natural products and are fun to make! These are some of my favorite, simple recipes that I’ve shared over the years in classes and to inspire people when they want to make something themselves for friends, family, and coworkers. The first recipe is for a simple salve […]


Herbal Approaches to Stress Relief

When looking at herbal approaches to stress relief, the adrenal glands and the nervous system are the primary systems to support. The adrenal glands are located on top of the kidneys and produce some hormones, including the “fight or flight” hormones epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine (noradrenaline), and the stress hormone cortisol. The adrenal glands become […]

Our Favorite Spring Green Herbs Here in the PNW

When wandering through the parks and gardens around Kirkland and the whole Seattle area, you will likely see these plants in the early spring onward, if you know what to look for. Maybe you are fortunate enough to have them growing in your own yard or garden. Make sure to properly identify the plants, find a […]


Cardamom – this herb is possibly a familiar flavor, due to its use as a spice in Indian chai as well as pastries, particularly from Sweden where this herb is used a lot.  This herb grows well in tropical regions, and it is grown most intensively in southern Indian and Guatamala.  A member of the […]


Cinnamon is a very familiar spice/herb to most people.  Often, I find that people are surprised to see it in cut bark form for use in a tea, however, as it is most familiar in powder form.  It has a long history of medicinal use and was shipped from the Spice Islands to Europe, the […]

Astragalus root

Astragalus root A medicinal plant whose use comes to us from Chinese medicine, its Latin name is Astragalus membranaceus and it is a member of the Fabaceae family, also known as the legume/pea family.  The root is the part that is used, and it is considered a quintessential immune tonic or immune modulator.  This means […]