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.

SAFFRON


Latin Name: Crocus sativus

Alternate Names: Saffron Crocus, Spanish Saffron, Nagakeshara (Sanskrit), Zang Hong Hua (Chinese)

Family: IRIDACEAE

Parts Used: Flower stigmas and styles collected in autumn.

Properties: Abortifacient, Alterative, Anodyne, Antispasmodic, Aperient, Aphrodisiac, Carminative, Diaphoretic, Emmenagogue, Rejuvenative, Sedative, Stimulant, Stomach Tonic.

Internal Uses: Anemia, Arthritis, Asthma, Cholera, Cough, Depression, Diarrhea, Dysmenorrhea, Gout, High Cholesterol, Hypertension, Hysteria, Impotence, Infertility, Liver Enlargement, Measles, Menopause, Neuralgia, Rheumatism, Scarlet Fever, Shock, Spleen Enlargement

Internal Applications: Tea, Tincture, Capsules.
Saffron helps chronic coughs and chronic diarrhea. Crocetin increases oxygen content in the blood which may contribute to the prevention of plaque buildup in the arteries.

Topical Uses: Bruises, Neuralgia, Rheumatism

Topical Applications: Used in cosmetics as a coloring agent and as a compress for bruises, neuralgia and rheumatism. Used in perfume.

Culinary uses: Used as a food coloring and in Saffron rice, paella, Bouillabaisse, Cornish cakes, Pennsylvania Dutch cooking, Schwenkfelder cake, soups, breads, Chartreuse and liqueurs.

Energetics: Pungent, Sweet, Bitter, Neutral.

Chemical Constituents: Essential oil (cineole, safranal, terpenes), bitter glycoside (crocin), crocetin, picrocin, carotenoids, vitamin B-1 and B-2.

Contraindications: Excessive use may be damaging to the kidneys and central nervous system. Large doses may cause coughs, headache, as well as have narcotic properties. It is potentially lethal. Avoid therapeutic doses during pregnancy. Saffron is frequently adulterated with marigold, safflower or turmeric, so buy the whole stigmas, rather than the powder, so as to be sure of paying for the real thing. Avoid large doses during pregnancy.

Comments: The genus name is from the Greek krokos, meaning 'thread' in reference to the plant's stigmas. Sativa refers to the plant's long history of cultivation. Legend says that Crocus was the name of a beautiful young man that Hermes loved, but killed accidentally. Where his blood spilled onto the Earth is where the Crocus first bloomed. To the Greeks, Saffron represented beauty, life and youth and was thus given as a gift to newlyweds. Saffron is the world's most expensive herb. It requires at least 75,000 stigmas that, after flowers dry, yield just one pound of saffron, or over 4,000 stigmas for one ounce. After three years of growth each plant has only three stigmas, and after two years the Saffron bulb must be retired. Thus, it is an expensive business venture indeed! Adulterating Saffron in the 1400's was punishable by death. In Ayurvedic Medicine, it helps to enhance qualities of love and spirituality. Saffron is valued as an important dye plant. Crocin is the substance that yields the coloring and is so potent that only one gram can color 100 liters of water.

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