Entries by Katya


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 […]


Refreshing Mineral Tea: August Tea of the Month

  Nettle (Urtica dioica) may well be my favorite herb, and is certainly one of my best and most consistent sellers are Herban Wellness.  An herb high in chlorophyll, minerals and vitamins, the leaf also acts as a diuretic, helping to move fluid through the kidneys, anti-inflammatory, and antihistamine, helping to relieve the symptoms of […]



A plant that grows abundantly and well in the Pacific Northwest, many people are familiar with it only because of its sting (its other name is Stinging Nettle).  This “sting” comes from little hairs that cover the stem and much of the leaves of this plant and when brushed against or grabbed will impart formic […]


Why and who uses herbs?

Herbs are plants, and contain many compounds, so unlike most pharmaceutical medications, they often do not have as dramatic an action, but they also usually don’t have as many negative side effects.  As humans, we have co-evolved with plant life for thousands of years.  Our bodies recognize and respond to plants because of this and […]

Herbal Preparations: some helpful terminology

I often get puzzled looks when I use the word “tincture” or describe an infusion of herbs.  What is an elixir versus a tonic?  Why do we extract in alcohol?  So I thought I would define a few terms commonly used in herbal medicine. TEA: First, let’s talk about “tea”, since it is a familiar […]


Devil’s club: the Northwest’s Adaptogen

Devil’s club is a familiar sight in our local woods, and a plant many hikers (or bush-whackers) know only as a nasty plant they may have grabbed once on accident.  Covered in spines, this plant is like our “native ginseng”.  Large leaves that are reminiscent of our big-leaf maple sit like umbrellas on top of […]


Stress Adaptation Tea

Stress is unavoidable at points in our lives.  The goal is to manage our response to stressors in such a way that it is not detrimental to our health or well-being over time. This is a tea blend for stress relief and adrenal support, containing herbal “adaptogens” that help the body better adapt to stress. […]


Hawthorn: The Heart Tree

The beautiful hawthorn tree, with its leaves that look like mini oak leaves and its spiny branches, is in flower right now, from snowy white to a medium pink depending on the species.  They produce prolific flowers, and later red berries, that are both used medicinally.  Crataegus oxycantha and C. monogyna are the two species […]


Tea of the month for April: Spring Tea

A tea designed with the fresh green growth of Spring in mind.  Nettle, Cleavers, and Dandelion leaf are all experiencing fresh new growth in the woods and fields around us.  These herbs are mineral rich and gently detoxifying, particularly to the kidneys, helping move the stagnation from winter. Add the green antioxidant, metabolism-boosting properties of […]

What is herbal medicine?

Let’s begin at the beginning, where all good stories begin.  Herbal medicine is the use of plants for therapeutic purposes, and human being have been using plants this way for as far back as we can tell.  Afterall, we share our planet with literally billions of plants and millions of different plant species all around […]