Beth’s Natural Way – Pines

Posted by  //  November 25, 2014  //  Articles, Beth's Natural Way

Truxton, NY
Phone: 315-247-3279
E-mail: bethsnaturalway@yahoo.com

All spring, summer and fall all you can think about is picking herbs and getting them dry for the winter months. Now the snow starts to fly and you are thinking you have all your herbs picked and it is time to rest. But as the old saying goes “no rest for the wary.” Do not forget the only green thing left as you look through the snowflakes. The pines are a very important addition to your collection of herbs. And yes, these can be picked all winter long. The white pines (Pinus strobus) has the distinctive five needles per bundle and dark deep furrowed bark and the red pine (Pinus resinosa) has the two needles per bundle and broad scaly plates of a reddish brown bark. The cones of the pines have tiny seeds in them. these are too small to be considered a pine nut that is found in stores to add to your meals but they are very medicinal just the same. Pick the cones and place them in a basket near your woodstove and as they dry you will have a treat all in its own. As they dry, they begin to pop and the sound is wonderful to the ears. Use the dried cones for starting fires or add nut butter and bird seed for the wild birds. Collect the seeds in the bottom of the basket, and be sure they are dried completely before storing them in a jar. Chew on a seed and if they are dry, they will be crunchy. These seeds can then be added to herbal combinations of teas to add a high source of protein. These seeds are 14.5 percent protein and fats. All seeds, roots and bark need to be gently boiled for five minutes to get the value out of them. The needles are high in vitamin C, an expectorant and diuretic. This high antioxidant is very important to help support the liver detoxifying the body as a whole. The American Indians used this tea to help ward off scurvy in the Euopean settlers coming to America. Use one part needles to two parts water and gently boil for three minutes before steeping. The inner bark is a strong antibiotic for external sores, bites, strings or wounds that are getting infected or need healing. It is said to help tissue and skin grow faster. Making a salve with the inner bark will help boils, external ulcers and wounds. Pine bark is higher than any other plant except grapeseed in proanthrocyanidin, a powerful antioxidant and potentiator of Vitamin C. Free radicals are known to be present in many diseases such as cancer, alzheimer’s, parkinson’s, arthritis, cateracts, heart disease and strokes. the body’s immune system uses antioxidants to deactivate and eliminate free radicals from our bodies. Free radicals will also connect to your minerals in the body to help release them. So the presence of antioxidants will help to keep your bones and minerals stable. Make a tea by gently boiling the inner bark for five minutes and then steep for three hours before straining and drinking. If making an extract, after the cooked tea has cooled, add equal parts of vodka. Put in a jar and shake every day for a month. Strain the bark off and store in dark bottles till used. So on those sunny but cold days of winter, get your boots on and go picking.

Vibrantly,
Beth Hill of Beth’s Natural Way!

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