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Medical disclaimer: always check with a physician before consuming wild plants, and make positive identification in the field using a good source such as Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West.  Michael Moore also has a glossary of medical terms in his books, and maps in later editions. ) 
#103
Common Name: Borage
Latin Name: Borago officinalis
Family: Boraginaceae
Range: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=BOOF all of lower Canada, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Utah, California, Montana, N. Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Tennessee, Ohio, W. Virginia, Virginia and north to Maine.
Photos: (here)
Appearance and Habitat: Waste ground near houses in Britain. C. Europe. A garden escape in Britain. An annual growing to 0.6 m (2ft) by 0.3 m (1ft in). It is hardy to zone 7 and is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to October, and the seeds ripen from Jul to October.
Warnings: The plant, but not the oil obtained from the seeds, contains small amounts of pyrrolizidine alkaloids that cause cause liver damage and liver cancer. These alkaloids are present in too small a quantity to be harmful unless you make borage a major part of your diet, though people witn liver problems would be wise to aviod using the leaves or flowers of this plant.
Edible Uses: Leaves – raw or cooked. They can be used as a pot-herb or be added to salads. They are also added whole as a flavouring to various drinks such as Pimms and wine-based drinks. The leaves are rich in potassium and calcium, they have a salty cucumber flavour. Very hairy, the whole leaves have an unpleasant feeling in the mouth and so they are best chopped up finely and added to other leaves when eaten in a salad. The leaves should always be used fresh, because they lose their flavour and colour if dried. Flowers – raw. They are used as a decorative garnish on salads and summer fruit drinks. The flowers are very nice, both to look at and to taste with a sweet slightly cucumber-like flavour. A refreshing tea is made from the leaves and/or the flowers. The dried stems are used for flavouring beverages. The seed yields 30% oil, 20% of which is gamma-linolenic acid. Total yields are 0.35 – 0.65 tonnes per hectare. Unfortunately, the seed ripens intermittently over a period of time and falls from the plant when it is ripe, this makes harvesting the seeds in quantity very difficult. An edible blue dye can be obtained from the flowers. It is used to colour vinegar
 Medicinal Uses: Borage is a fairly common domestic herbal remedy that has been used since ancient times. It has a particularly good reputation for its beneficial affect on the mind, being used to dispel melancholy and induce euphoria. It is a soothing saline, diuretic herb that soothes damaged or irritated tissues. The leaves, and to a lesser extent the flowers, are demulcent, diaphoretic, depurative, mildly diuretic, emollient, expectorant, febrifuge, lenitive and mildly sedative. An infusion is taken internally in the treatment of a range of ailments including fevers, chest problems and kidney problems, though it should not be prescribed to people with liver problems. Externally it is used as a poultice for inflammatory swellings. The leaves are harvested in late spring and the summer as the plant comes into flower. They can be used fresh or dried but should not be stored for more than one year because they soon lose their medicinal properties. The seeds are a rich source of gamma-linolenic acid, this oil helps to regulate the hormonal systems and lowers blood pressure. It is used both internally and externally, helping to relieve skin complaints and pre-menstrual tension. Used for the treatment of phlebitis (inflammation of the veins)
Foot Notes:
all http://www.pfaf.org/user/Plant.aspx?LatinName=Borago+officinalis
(Blog Master’s Note: Although not mentioned by Plants For A Future, this website , claims it helps people with Addison’s disease.  )
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#104
Common Name: Osha, Porter’s Lovage, Colorado Cough Root
Latin Name: Ligusticum filicuimum, L. grayi and L porteri
Family: Umbellifereae

Range: http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=LIFI
 Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado (Ligusticum filicuimum)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=LIGR Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, California, Nevada and Utah (Ligusticum grayi)
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=LIPO Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico (Ligusticum porteri)Photos: (Ligusticum filicuimum) (Ligusticum grayi)
(Ligusticum porteri)
Appearance and Habitat: Rich moist soil in the upper mountain reaches of Sierra Nevada, Northern Nevada, Cascade Range in Oregon, Rocky Mountains (Montana to New Mexico) and the higher reaches in Utah. (1)Osha is related to parsley and celery with finely divided leaves and hollow stems. The root is large, dark brown and hairy. The insides of the root are yellow and have a celery-butterscotch scent. The flowers are white coming from the center of the plant to form an umbrella with a celery or parsley scent. The double seeds have a pleasant ‘celery soup’ flavor. If the plant is 2 to 3 feet tall, but the seeds have thin bracts reflexed downward it is not Osha, but Poison Hemlock. Poison Hemlock either grows in water or very close to water and is never found above 7,500 feet. Poison Hemlock (Water Hemlock) has an odor to its roots like dead mice and has purple splotches at the base of the plant.  (2)
Warnings: None. (3) If pregnant reduce the strength of  the tea. (4)
Edible Uses: Seed and leaves used as seasoning. (5)The seeds and leaves hold their flavor after drying and make excellent cooking spice, a mix of celery, parsley and chervil. (6)
Medicinal Uses: The root, seed and essential oil from the seed have been used internally in the treatment of eruptive fevers, bronchial infections, digestive complaints, toothache, painful menstruation and retained placenta. They have also been used to treat TB. and headaches. The root is harvested in the autumn and can be used fresh or dried. (7) One of the best anti-virals either tinctured or chewed. Collect the roots in the fall after the plant has gone to seed, but while it still has leaves.  Because of the roots being dark brown, they can be dried in the sun.  The oil within the root makes them resistant to bacteria and mold.  The root also makes an excellent cough syrup, grind up a dried root and steep it in twice the volume in honey.  You can also tincture the the fresh root at 1 part root to 5 parts 70% alcohol (vodka), or if the root is dried use 2 parts root in the same volume of alcohol.  You can take 20 to 60 drops of the tincture 5 times a day.  But remember it works best at the first sign of a virus.   You can also make a cold infusion, by bringing water to boil at a rate of 32 parts per one part of dried root.  Let it sit overnight, return the water level to 32 parts, and drink 2 to 6 ounces as needed.  The tea, tincture, or ground up root is antibacterial and hemostatic.  So it can also be used abrasions, cuts and external injuries.  Chewing the root also seems to increase an individuals respriatory volume which comes in handy at high altitudes. ( 8 )  
Foot Notes: (2, 4, 6, 8 ) Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West 2nd Edition, by Michael Moore, Pages 183-186, Publisher: Museum of New Mexico Press, Copyright 2003, ISBN # 978-0-89013-454-2(Blog Master’s Note:  (Now comes the confusion, books say it grows from 6,500 feet, but according to Moore, he has only seen it at 9,000 feet and higher.  Remember my mentioning the turn-out near the top of Lamoille Canyon, Ruby Mountains, Nevada, I dug Osha back in the aspens at that point which has to be lower than 9,000 feet.  So the characteristics to watch for are “does the plant hold it’s seed upright, doesn’t have purple spotches on the stems or at the base,  does not grow in or close to water, and grows above 7,500 feet”, next does the root, when split smell of butterscotch, if so it is Osha.  
On both of these plants the seed is being sold, do a search. )
Reproduced, in part, (as well as previous postings under this title) in accordance with Section 107 of title 17 of the Copyright Law of the United States relating to fair-use and is for the purposes of criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research.
 
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