Welcome to the Herbal Farm!

Welcome to The Herbal Farm website. We hope to help you benefit from the wonderful healing properties of plants as well as guide you to using them safely and effectively. Herbal medicine is one of the most time-tested human traditions on the face of the Earth.

Herbal medicine has benefited millions of people for thousands of years.

Health is a gift that makes life worthwhile. Herbs can certainly help us along that path, but they should not be relied upon simply as a band-aid to fix a health problem. We encourage you to look deeply at the causes of illness and seek to live a healthier lifestyle whenever possible. This includes having healthy relationships, eating a wholesome diet, and exercising. We must also avoid the things that damage health, such as stress, smoking, exposure to pollutants, and an unhealthy lifestyle.

Provided in this website is information on how to use herbs, as well as herbal blends. Each herbal description includes contraindictions, such as dangerous side effects, to which you should pay careful attention. Many of the contraindications only occur in extremely large doses and would never be a problem with normal use. However, there are some plants that should best be used with professional counsel, and many should be avoided during pregnancy. In listing contraindications. Remember – just because something is from a plant does not mean it is appropriate for everyone to use at all times.

In Chinese medicine, different foods have different characteristics, described as energetics. We must admit that not everyone agrees on whether an herb is cool, cold or warm. As American herbalism evolves the use of energetics will become a more genuine and accurate part of our own healing tradition, with more agreement between herbal practitioners.

Even though some of the constituents of the plants are listed, herbalists usually prefer to use plants in a more whole form. We firmly believe that using the entire herb, with all of its components, is more effective and often safer than using any one component.


Latin Name: Acorus calamus

Alternate Names: Sweet Flag, Singer's Root, Sweet Sedge, Vacha (Sanskrit), Shi Chang Pu (Chinese)


Parts Used: Rhizome, root.

Properties: Analgesic, Antibacterial, Antispasmodic, Aphrodisiac, Aromatic, Bitter Tonic, Carminative, Cerebral Stimulant, Demulcent, Diaphoretic, Digestive Tonic, Emetic, Emmenagogue, Expectorant, Febrifuge, Hallucinogen, Nervine, Rejuvenative, Sedative, Stimulant, Stomach Tonic, Tonic.

Internal Uses: Anorexia, Arthritis, Asthma, Bronchitis, Colic, Coma, Cough, Deafness, Depression, Diarrhea, Dysentery, Dyspepsia, Epilepsy, Fatigue, Fever, Flatulence, Gastritis, Headache, Hysteria, Memory Loss, Neuralgia, Rheumatism, Shock, Sinusitis, Stroke
Internal Applications: Tea, Tincture, Capsules.
It is hallucinogenic in large doses. Calamus is beneficial for the nervous system and digestion (it increases circulation to the stomach and intestines). Small amounts reduce stomach acidity, yet larger doses can increase gastric secretions.

Topical Uses: Cigarette Addiction, Parasites

Topical Applications: The powder is used as a deodorizing foot powder. The tincture has been used topically for skin parasites. Bath herb. Calamus root is reputed to help reduce the desire for tobacco when smoked.

Culinary uses: Leaf buds and inner stems are eaten raw. Leaves and rhizomes can be candied.

Root stock was used to make sweet flag candy by the Shakers.

Energetics: Bitter, Pungent, Warm, Dry.

Chemical Constituents: Beta-asarone, eugenol.

Contraindications: Calamus contains a constituent called asarone which when isolated may be carcinogenic. However, it has been used in India for thousands of years with no reports of cancer associated with its use. Use for no longer than a month, preferably with professional guidance. Avoid during pregnancy. North American varieties do not contain beta-asarone and are considered safest.

Comments: Calamus is beneficial for the nervous system and digestion. In ancient Egypt and India it was used as an aphrodisiac. It is an important herb in Ayurvedic tradition to help improve mental focus, sexuality and wisdom. In China it is used to aid in the recovery from stroke, especially in helping to improve speech. The folk name 'Singer's root' refers to the use of calamus to numb the throat so one can keep singing and to clear phlegm from the throat. Native Americans would hold a piece of Calamus root in their mouths when running long distances to increase their endurance.


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