The Herbal Encyclopedia - H green tea herbs obesity - weight and associated problems Disability UK


Crataegus oxycantha
MEDICINAL: Hawthorn is effective for curing insomnia. Hawthorn is used to prevent miscarriage and for treating nervousness. Hawthorn has been used for centuries in treating heart disease, as regular use strengthens the heart muscles, and to prevent arteriosclerosis, angina, and poor heart action.

RELIGIOUS: The leaves are used to make protection sachets. They are also carried to ensure good fishing. In Europe, Hawthorn was used to repel witchcraft spells. Bringing branches of it into the home is supposed to portend death. It is incorporated into spells and rituals for fertility. It will protect the home from damaging storms.

GROWING: Hawthorn is a deciduous tree or shrub, that can reach 40 feet tall. It grows throughout North America. It is tolerant of most soils, but prefers alkaline, rich, moist loam. Consult a nursery for the best species to use in your area. The fruit is the part used in healing.


Coylus spp.
RELIGIOUS: Hazel's forked branches are used for divining, and the wood makes wonderful wands. Hazel nuts hung in the house will bring luck, and can be carried to cause fertility. Eaten, the nuts bring wisdom.

GROWING: Hazelnut trees do best when planted in a well-drained, fertile, slightly acid soil. They do best where the winter temps are above -10.


Calluna spp.
MEDICINAL: A tea made of heather blossoms is used to suppress coughing, and as an aid for sleeplessness.

RELIGIOUS: Heather is carried as a guard against rape and violent crime. In potpourri, it adds protection. When burned with fern, it will bring rain.

GROWING: Heather prefers rocky or sandy soils and full sun. It is an evergreen shrub that grows 1 -2 feet tall.


Hyosycamus niger
MEDICINAL: Henbane stops pain, and lessens perspiration. Henbane is very toxic, so it should not be used by pregnant women or the weak or children, and should be used in only extremely small amounts for external use only, and not on a regular basis. A poultice of leaves is used briefly to remove pain from wounds.

RELIGIOUS: Henbane is sometimes thrown into the water to bring rain. In olden times, it had many more uses, but is seldom used today due to its poisonous nature.

GROWING: Henbane grows wild throughout temperate North Americal. Due to its toxic nature, it is not advisable to grow in the home garden.


Ilex spp.
RELIGIOUS: Holly is used as a protective plant, and used as decoration during the Yule season. Planted outside the home, it will also afford protection. Sprinkle holly water on newborn babies to protect them.

GROWING: Holly likes slightly acid soils, and can tolerate poor, sandy soil. It needs full sun, and grows to about 4 feet tall.


Humulus lupulus
MEDICINAL: Hops is a sedative. Therefore, it is useful in treating insomnia and nervous tension. It is mild and safe. It is used in brewing beer and ales. Hops is also used for treating coughs, bladder ailments, and liver ailments. Externally it is used to treat itching skin rashes and hives. It also removes poisons from the body.

RELIGIOUS: Hops is used in healing incenses. Sleep pillows often include hops to induce sleep and pleasant dreams.

GROWING: Hops prefers full sun, and will adapt to many soils. It is a perennial vine that reaches to 30 feet in height. The portion of the plant used in healing are the dried flowers.


Marrubium vulgare
MEDICINAL: Horehound is used in children's cough remedies, as it is a gentle but effective expectorant. It acts as a tonic for the respiratory system and stomach. In large doses it acts as a laxative.

RELIGIOUS: Horehound is used in incenses for protection. It is also used in exorcisms.

GROWING: Horehound likes dry sandy soils and full sun. It is a perennial (except in very cold climates) that reaches to 3 feet tall. It is a vigorous grower and can become a pest if not carefully controlled. It needs little water, tolerates poor soils, and does best in full sun. It blooms during its second year.


Armoracia lapathifolia
MEDICINAL: Grind some of the fresh root, combine it with a carrier oil, and use it to massage away muscular aches, and help loosen chest congestion. It can be used to warm a cold body, and to clear up drippy sinuses.

RELIGIOUS: Horseradish is part of the Jewish Passover ritual. It also repels evil around the home and property.

GROWING: Horseradish is a perennial plant that is cultivated throughout the world for its long, tasty root. It will grow two to three foot tall by its second year.


Equisetum arvense
MEDICINAL: Horsetail is used in treating urinary tract infections. It aids in coagulation and decreases bleeding. It will also help broken bones heal faster, and will help brittle nails and hair, due to its high silica content. It has also been used as part of a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. The plant alone, boiled in water, makes an effective foot soak for tired feet, or for the treatment of athlete's foot. Do not use if pregnant or nursing.

RELIGIOUS: Whistles made from the stalks of Horsetail are used to call the spirits.

GROWING: Horsetail needs swamps and damp places to grow, in full sun to partial shade. It grows to 1 - 2 feet tall. The plant itself is used in healing.


Hysoppus officinalis
MEDICINAL: Hyssop is used in treating lung ailments. The leaves have been applied to wounds to aid in healing. The tea is also used to soothe sore throats. It has been used to inhibit the growth of the herpes simplex virus.

RELIGIOUS: Hyssop is used in purification baths and rituals, and used to cleanse persons and objects.

GROWING: Hyssop prefers dry conditions, tolerates most soils, and full sun. It is a member of the mint family. It is a perennial shrubby plant growing to 3 feet tall.

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