Many of the plants growing around our county can be used to make herbal teas. An herbal tea is a mixture of anything other than leaves from a tea plant that can be boiled in water for consumption. Besides enjoying the aroma and taste of these concoctions, many of these teas have medicinal value or are loaded with vitamins.
Herbal teas can be made from a number of fresh or dried plant parts including flowers, seeds, root, or bark. These teas can be purchased at various local stores, online, or you can collect them yourself. Some Frederick County native plants that can be made into teas include alfalfa, bay berry, bee balm, black cohosh, boneset, blueberry, chicory, red clover, chamomile, dandelion, elderberry, ginseng, hawthorn, Joe-pye weed, persimmon, pine needles, sassafras, spruce needles, and wild carrot to name a few. Before using any of these herbs you should read up on them in books or on the internet to learn how to prepare them for consumption. You should also be careful where you collect these herbs, choosing someplace where pesticide application was unlikely.
Nature Notes for 8/15/2010