Recommended Posts

So a few weeks back the inner voice was quite direct, clear and insistent and it said unmistakingly, 'start making herbal tinctures'.  So I put some thought into it, spoke a bit at work about it, but no one there is into this and I let it go.  Well a few weeks have passed and this morning my gal woke up and said "I was making herbal tinctures in my dreams last night... it was quite vivid.  I think we should start".  So, message backed up by secondary source... got it.  Time to act.

 

I've cursorily explored methods for making it and it seems quite a direct and simple process, but figured I'd post here and appeal to anyone who may have some experience already in making alcohol based herbal tincture infusions.

 

I'm planning on starting with a brandy or vodka base, but expect to play about a bit for a while before settling into what alcohol works best with what herb mixtures.  The process for making the tinctures is surprisingly simple, what to me is thick as weeds pun intended is the plethora of potential herbs and mixtures of herbs to use for various properties to play with... here's where any existing experience would be very welcome.

 

Anyway, just a light topic,  if anyone has info on good herbal guides, or remedies they've got from family recipes, I'd be chuffed for any offered info.

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A very worthy pursuit. :)

 

I made my last batch of herbal tinctures about a year ago.  This time around I followed the specs of a very competent herbalist and author, Stephen Harrod Buhner -- I was studying his "Herbal Antibiotics" and "Herbal Antivirals" at the time (the heyday of the first wave of you-know-what), among many other things, and came across the best explanation of what the concentration of the extractive alcohol for a particular type of plant material ought to be and why, so I decided to follow his protocols for my own extraction endeavors.  They're different for dry vs fresh herbs, and then there's individual nuances based on the individual herb and the shape and form it's in (cut or powdered or whole, etc.). 

 

Since "Everclear" is impossible to buy in CA, I experimented with ordering this and that online and settled on pure cane alcohol from Mexico -- the bonus being that it is suitable for people whose grain sensitivity extends to even grain alcohols (I have such folks in my human environment).  For some of my tinctures I was a bit at a loss as to the correct concentrations -- the task of figuring out how exactly to dilute 95% alcohol to get to, say, 55% or 60% proved not as mathematically straightforward as I hoped it would.  I wound up consulting two top-educated mathematicians who do math-involving stuff for a (very good) living and each arrived at a volume of water to add different from the other :D ...so I didn't feel so bad about my own lack of sure mathematical footing.  (In my own calculations I did get the numbers that were the same as those of one of the mathematicians', and the other one quickly acknowledged the mistake and confirmed, so it was settled.)  

 

What are you planning to make tinctures out of?           

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

@Taomeow I was hoping you'd stop by Sister!

 

I'm planning to start with vodka or brandy and fresh herbs, so I'm planning for 80p (versus 60p for dried which I've seen suggested).  I need to get a set of good mason jars or wide mouth glass jars, some cheese cloth and some amber tincture bottles as well. 

 

I haven't yet put much concrete thought into which particular herbs I'll start playing with, but I'll be checking out Mr. Buhner's work on your recommendation.  At this stage any herbal guides would be welcome.  I studied cursorily years ago but will be approaching as a noob for this endeavor... and then once some of the re-acquaintence work has been done, I'll wait for intuition to bring suggestions to the surface as to which herbs in particular.

Edited by silent thunder
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, silent thunder said:

So a few weeks back the inner voice was quite direct, clear and insistent and it said unmistakingly, 'start making herbal tinctures'.  So I put some thought into it, spoke a bit at work about it, but no one there is into this and I let it go.  Well a few weeks have passed and this morning my gal woke up and said "I was making herbal tinctures in my dreams last night... it was quite vivid.  I think we should start".  So, message backed up by secondary source... got it.  Time to act.

 

I've cursorily explored methods for making it and it seems quite a direct and simple process, but figured I'd post here and appeal to anyone who may have some experience already in making alcohol based herbal tincture infusions.

 

I'm planning on starting with a brandy or vodka base, but expect to play about a bit for a while before settling into what alcohol works best with what herb mixtures.  The process for making the tinctures is surprisingly simple, what to me is thick as weeds pun intended is the plethora of potential herbs and mixtures of herbs to use for various properties to play with... here's where any existing experience would be very welcome.

 

Anyway, just a light topic,  if anyone has info on good herbal guides, or remedies they've got from family recipes, I'd be chuffed for any offered info.

 

It can be a very simple process .

 

here is a great starter book for it and other simple processes .

 

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSthRI4OSRe6uuNYLpclNS

 

It can also be surprising . I remember the one we made with vervain  ...... I had no idea such a simple (in essence ) process could have such fantastic results !      (But then I read later , if you do a ritual with vervain, the plant's  'spirit' will take on  an  anthropomorphic form and communicate with you . )

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Have used brandy and other stuff  but  Isopropyl alcohol  was about the purest one we could buy for the chemist  over the counter . 

 

( But still, he goes   < frown >   "And what are you going to use that for ? "

 

Mind your own friggen buisness mate !    I can just imagine his disapproval at anyone making their own medicine  .

 

" Oh , I need to clean the recording heads on my home studio reel to reel  . "   - then he approved and handed it over . )

Edited by Nungali
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I noticed the PIne Pollen tincture I get from The Rural Apothecary says that '.. Before my pollen is tinctured, it goes through a quick freeze to crack the cell walls as well, again allowing more of the essential nutrients to tincture into the alcohol.' which I find interesting.  

 

The recipe for the last tincture I made required recommended 190 proof and wanted you to freeze the herb and the Everclear before sealing up a small jar.  In Chicago not only was Everclear strangely cheap $17, but the place had a knockoff for $14.  Cheap for potential poison.   Everclear should not be messed around w/ lightly.  It was banned at my college due to deaths.

 

Anyhow I used 6 oz, and when done let about 1 ¬Ĺ oz of that evaporate, to concentrate it.¬† A dropperful¬†burns pretty nasty¬†beneath the tongue.¬† Next time I wanna experiment w/ ice chips for a few minutes before using.¬†¬†¬† ¬†¬†

 

Before the last one,¬† I simply bought cheap herbal tea bags, in this case Ginger/turmeric and left 6 or 7 of them in ¬Ĺ pint¬†of vodka.¬† Left it there a week or two.¬† ¬†Worked nicely.¬† For health and digestion.

Edited by thelerner
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Nungali said:

 

It can be a very simple process .

 

here is a great starter book for it and other simple processes .

 

images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSthRI4OSRe6uuNYLpclNS

 

It can also be surprising . I remember the one we made with vervain  ...... I had no idea such a simple (in essence ) process could have such fantastic results !      (But then I read later , if you do a ritual with vervain, the plant's  'spirit' will take on  an  anthropomorphic form and communicate with you . )

 

I have Frater's book on spagyrics.  Do you actually use a still?  Simple as it is, I never got around to using one.  A double boiler is as far as I would typically go, have also made some simple evaporative concentrates, fermented decoctions, emulsions for medicinal baths, stuff like that.  I think a still might be my next endeavor.

 

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Nungali said:

Have used brandy and other stuff  but  Isopropyl alcohol  was about the purest one we could buy for the chemist  over the counter . 

 

Not for internal use I hope.  

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Taomeow said:

 

I have Frater's book on spagyrics.  Do you actually use a still?  Simple as it is, I never got around to using one.  A double boiler is as far as I would typically go, have also made some simple evaporative concentrates, fermented decoctions, emulsions for medicinal baths, stuff like that.  I think a still might be my next endeavor.

 

 

 

Simpler still   .....   (  :D )    we mostly used  a home made solar evaporator .

 

A local guy has a huge mobile  steam distillation    unit on a trailer,  with its own water tank and gas bottle -  he has a lemon myrtle  plantation and extracts the oil on site  .

 

Like this but  hopper and shredder /crusher  and with a stainless still cover all  around it

 

 

distillertl_1.jpg?v=1571438527

 

Leaves in one end  - oil out the other .

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Backhousia_citriodora

 

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Taomeow said:

 

Not for internal use I hope.  

 

 

 

I think the 'girls'   used it for some 'witchy'  type   balm .  They wanted to make something ' in a magical way'  - it involved astrological timing, a small silver sickle , a ritual at the harvesting site, a later processing rite *   and a later 'consecration rite '  ....  I just went along for the 'ride'   :) .  

 

* 'Processing rites are interesting ;  a 'valid process' should contain steps convertible to 'ritual steps' .   A   blacksmith showed me once;  he did his work in a  'magic circle '  with  the forge as fire altar,  bellows as air , anvil as earth, and quenching trough as water  .... his 'circumambulations'  where interesting .

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Magical Attributes

Vervain resonates with the energy of Gemini, the planet Venus and the element Water. It is considered feminine in nature. Vervain is associated with Cerridwen, Isis, Thor, Jupiter. It can also be used in Midsummer celebrations.

 

Vervain combined with any other herbs in magical work is believed by some to enhance the action of these herbs.

 

The vervain plant may be bruised and worn about the neck for protection from both headaches and snakebites. This charm is also said to bring help to you when you need it, no matter how dire your situation. A fresh sprig carried on your person helps protect from baneful magick spells cast against you.

 

Vervain may be planted or placed around your property to protect it from damage by bad weather.

 

Vervain may be used in rituals to Thor or Jupiter. It may be burned as an offering or infused into water and sprinkled on the altar for purification. In Hellenic rituals, the plants may be bundled and used to sweep the alter or ritual area or dipped into sacred water to asperge the altar or ritual area.

 

It can also be used in a wash to rid an area or person of negative energies and may be combined with dill for this purpose.

Vervain may be used in love spells to rekindle a dying love. It may also be woven into bridal wreaths or carried in bridal bouquets to ensure love to the couple.

 

Drinking a tea made of vervain is said to ward off vampires.

 

A vervain plant buried in the garden will bring abundant crops.

 

The leaves may be burned to attract wealth.

 

-  Source  ;   Witchipedia     :) 

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Nungali said:

Magical Attributes

Vervain resonates with the energy of Gemini, the planet Venus and the element Water. It is considered feminine in nature. Vervain is associated with Cerridwen, Isis, Thor, Jupiter. It can also be used in Midsummer celebrations.

 

Vervain combined with any other herbs in magical work is believed by some to enhance the action of these herbs.

 

The vervain plant may be bruised and worn about the neck for protection from both headaches and snakebites. This charm is also said to bring help to you when you need it, no matter how dire your situation. A fresh sprig carried on your person helps protect from baneful magick spells cast against you.

 

Vervain may be planted or placed around your property to protect it from damage by bad weather.

 

Vervain may be used in rituals to Thor or Jupiter. It may be burned as an offering or infused into water and sprinkled on the altar for purification. In Hellenic rituals, the plants may be bundled and used to sweep the alter or ritual area or dipped into sacred water to asperge the altar or ritual area.

 

It can also be used in a wash to rid an area or person of negative energies and may be combined with dill for this purpose.

Vervain may be used in love spells to rekindle a dying love. It may also be woven into bridal wreaths or carried in bridal bouquets to ensure love to the couple.

 

Drinking a tea made of vervain is said to ward off vampires.

 

A vervain plant buried in the garden will bring abundant crops.

 

The leaves may be burned to attract wealth.

 

-  Source  ;   Witchipedia     :) 

 

Interesting.  I have to check out vervian, Venus is my planet in the Western tradition and Water is my lucky phase in the Chinese. 

 

I have a couple of books on witchcraft plants, and also a Russian encyclopedia of medicinal herbs that includes astrological (and some magical) considerations and procedures for each of the listed herbs.  Neither is my go-to cup of herbal tea though, but the idea of using herbs in a magical/ritual infused way is quite appealing.  Although I would resort to the taoist methods of course.

 

The cleansing/consecrating stuff I use for the altar and to clear the space etc. is my favorite resins, copal and frankincense.     

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

*take notes*

 

Quote

I have a couple of books on witchcraft plants, and also a Russian encyclopedia of medicinal herbs that includes astrological (and some magical) considerations and procedures for each of the listed herbs.

any chance there's an english translation of said?

 

 

*mumbles*  Man i love this place!

Edited by silent thunder
  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, silent thunder said:

*take notes*

 

any chance there's an english translation of said?

 

 

*mumbles*  Man i love this place!

 

:wub:

 

No English translation, unfortunately.  Apparently there's just one Russian Herbal in existence in English, at least that's what I found on Amazon, and that one seems to be (according to reviews) very good but beginner-level timid and somewhat generic -- which is unfortunate, considering the magnitude of the tradition, one of the strongest in existence.  Not as theoretically systematized as classical Chinese herbalism or Ayurveda, but as mature and time-honored, and in possession of materia medica of the same stupendous magnitude.  Besides, it's taught as a fairly extensive course in nearly all Russian medical schools, and a lot of it has been widely and systematically researched by modern scientific methods, so a conscientious MD typically has (or at least used to have, don't know about now) a clue and is free to use it too.  I don't know how things stand today, but "in my time" it was neither encouraged nor discouraged, it was just part of medicine, and a doctor could choose to go deeper in that direction or not go there at all.  Which I think is a better model -- also used in China -- than what we have here.  My initial early exposure, besides the ubiquitous folk knowledge and family tradition, was via MDs who suggested (and explained) herbal treatments as readily as they prescribed pharmaceuticals.  

 

 

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I made some wacky herbals when I worked for Biodynamics Oz .  Not tinctures   .... but some unusual processes,  like the compost additives / preparations   ;

 

Dried yarrow flowers stuffed into a ram''s bladder and hung in a tree over  summer  and buried over winter .

Chamomile flowers stuffed to cow’s intestine and buried over winter.

Stinging nettle packed into a clay pot  encased in peat and buried  over winter.

Oak bark placed in a cows skull and placed in a swamp over winter. *

Dandelion flowers wrapped up in a cow’s mesentery and buried over winter .

Valerian tea , poured directly over the compost heap .

 

 

* This one was probably the most fun    :)   

 

Step 1 , How to get a supply of cow skulls . And its supposed to be , not just a skull , but inside the skull of a fresh cow's head .  So , my co-worker and I  take the work utility and drive down the coast  ( and stop off at a beach for a while  ......     we needed to 'cleanse our auras   ' in the ocean for a while    ;)  )  to an abattoir  to pick up our order   .... urk  and yikes !

 

So now we are driving back up the coast with the back of the ute full of  freshly butchered and slightly 'trimmed' cow's heads .  Its a bit hot and we dont want them to go 'off' so we call in at this  fuel stop with a big ice machine and  buy about 20 bags of ice and start throwing them in the back .  The attendant is  ' what do they need all that ice for and comes and has a look  .... oh man, the look on his face !   Occasionally  a car would go past and the passengers  look in  the back of  our ute  ....

 

134655004-asian-child-girl-about-to-thro

 

Then you gotta bake a little hole in the bottom and stuff the oak bark in - tricky , then supposedly leave it in a swamp where it gets cycles of being covered and uncovered in water and sludge.  Then  retrieve it and get the 'preparation'  out . My boss, who was insane ,  decided not to bury them in a swamp but place them in huge plastic barrels immersed in water .   Man ... the 'gas' that started coming out of those barrels ! I am glad they where at the back of the 'farm' in the far end of the yard !

 

Come retrieval day and we have waited for this date as the local agricultural college  where having a day tour of the place and seeing what we do . So we get a bent  metal rod and start fishing out these now , mostly , cleared off skulls with some rotted goop attached to them. Boss goes ; "Now we open the skull  to retrieve the preparation ."  and places it on a table in the yard, the crowd presses in to get a better look and  he takes up a small hand axe , positions the skull facing towards him and lifts the axe up over his head . I am WTF !  and slip to the back of all the people and duck down a bit  .....

 

Wham !  ...  (right between the horns !  probably the hardest most solid bit of the whole animal  ... ummmmm dude !  )  and   splatter  ..... year long fermented cow head goop sprays all over the people watching - their faces , their clothes  ....

 

:D       -  fuckin eeedyot !

 

Then he does it again !       :D       Then he goes for a third one but I reach up and take his arm  and lower it . "Here , give it to me ."  I pick up a nearby stone  and place one corner of the hand axe blade in the middle of the junction of the skull pieces at the suture, tap it with the rock and twist and and it cracks open .

 

Boss; " How did you know how to do that  ? "

 

Me;  " Common sense  ....  you where hitting it on the butty bit  .... thats the hard part . " 

 

Well, we didnt have any shower facilities there , so  they just had to do the best at the garden tap .

 

But I am sure those ag students will remember their day  with biodynamics    :)

  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites