Skullcap Nerve Tonic

In the words of herbalist David Hoffman, “Skullcap is perhaps the most widely relevant nervine available to us in the materia medica.” This beautiful member of the mint family is native to North America and has a long history of use in this area. Herbalists today favor it as a powerful nervine, sedative, painkiller, and […] Read more »

Peaceful Passionflower

You may know of Passionflower as a premier herb for stress, anxiety, and insomnia. This gorgeous flowering vine relieves pain, calms the mind, and relaxes the muscles. You can often find bees drowsing in the beautiful blossoms, proof of the passionflower’s soporific effect! Passionflower was used by tribes in the Americas for millennia before making […] Read more »

Healing the Whole Heart

You may know of hawthorn as the “heart herb”, and for good reason. It strengthens the heart muscle, regulates the heartbeat, and raises or lowers blood pressure depending on the need. Clinically it is used with heart problems such as angina, mild congestive heart failure, and recovery from/prevention of cardiac arrest. But hawthorn has another […] Read more »

Mistletoe Medicine

Mistletoe has been part of human culture and medicine for millennia, appearing in mythologies and medicine books across the world. There are hundreds varieties of mistletoe with different medicinal qualities, and today the focus is on the European variety, Viscum album– Viscum for the viscous stickiness of mistletoe berries, and album for their whiteness. Before […] Read more »

Rosemary for Remembrance

Rosemary has been used throughout the ages as an herb to promote memory and mental clarity. It was used by ancient Greek scholars during examination times and worn by newlyweds to ground them in fidelity, loyalty, and the happy memories of their wedding day. Rosemary’s health benefits for the mind and body are far-reaching, but […] Read more »

A Calming Tea for Kids

It’s good to know a few herbal allies for creating calm, especially for children, and especially these days. We all do our best to manage the stress and over-stimulation of our modern times, but young people can use a little extra help. Anxiety can manifest itself in a variety of ways, and hyperactivity is one […] Read more »

Rejuvenation In A Cup: Pacifying Vata in the Fall

In Ayurveda, Vata dosha is characterized as “dry, light, mobile, subtle, rough, hard, changeable, and clear.” Sounds a lot like Fall, doesn’t it? The leaves dry out and a cool, dry wind blows them away, the days become colder and shorter, the air is more subtle and changeable. In Ayurveda, Fall is the Vata time […] Read more »

Relaxing With Passion Flower

Passiflora incarnata (with bee) Passion Flower’s fantastic beauty is a medicine in itself, but this lovely vine has much more to offer than its stunning, dramatic blooms. This time of year in the garden, Passion Flower vines are 4-5 inches tall with a few tiny leaves. But given time, sunlight, and water, they will climb […] Read more »

Getting To Know Catnip

Catnip in Smile's gardenCatnip, Nepeta cataria, is a perennial herb, a member of the mint family, and one of the friendliest plants around. Its soft, aromatic leaves give you an idea of its gentle, calming effect on the mind and body. The square stems are a dusky purple color and grow quickly and abundantly with lots […] Read more »