My Native American Heritage
August 2, 2017
This morning as I walked down my woods road, I started seeing plants in bloom that I had not seen in a while. These are amazing, powerful healing plants. Here they are on my land, in flower and speaking to me! These are plants I know! Plants I have used to help me heal over the years. When I woke up this morning, I felt pain in my neck and lower back. As amazing as it may seem to some, these are plants that help with neck and back pain. The plants I need to heal.
As I stood there, I looked to get a count of the plants and took note where they chose to grow and thrive. Thinking to myself, should I harvest these plants? After some thought, I decided to leave them, hoping they would multiply in the future. I had a feeling that if I checked my home apothecary when I went inside, they would be there, ready to help me heal!
Sometimes I need a reminder to take care of my body! I feel Mother Gaia is always there, I just need to be aware somedays more than others. I’m grateful that I live in a house within the forest! As I walk, I like to think my Native American Great Grandmother is showing me the plants that will heal.
I live in the Piedmont of Virginia, close to the Fall Line that separates the Piedmont from the Coastal Plain. Most of the topsoil has been eroded away, due to the farming techniques that were used by the early settlers. By the time of the Civil War, approximately 10% of this area was left in forest. I’m happy to say that today, 60% of this land has reverted back to forest.
Two of the healing herbs I saw today are St John’s wort (Hypericum perforatum) (left) and Lobelia (Lobelia inflata). St. John’s wort flowering tops make a dark red tincture or oil. It has antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties and is used topically and internally for spinal injuries, nerve pain, sciatica and so much more.
Lobelia is used as a fresh herb in flower and seeds. It was used for thousands of years by Native Americans. Lobelia is a strong antispasmodic to the lungs, heart and musculo- skeletal system. Lobelia seed oil is used for muscle tension, muscle spasm, back pain and neck pain.
Both these plants are native to Virginia and grow in the forest. These plants are herbal medicine.
Talk to a qualified expert, before using any herbs you’re unfamiliar with. Make sure you can positively ID any plant before harvesting it and always make sure you leave enough of the plant to prevent the extinction of its present on our earth.