Physick Herbs of Early America

Copyright 2020, Ruffin Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.
Garden rue is visited by a lady bug
© 2020, Colonial Botanicals

Physick herbs of early America were used medicinally for healing various ailments, and commonly used as ingredients for tinctures and teas. The following list comes from famous botanist Leonard Meager. While not all of the botanicals listed here are advisable for healing uses nowadays, it is interesting to note that many of today’s synthetically produced pharmaceuticals are based on extracts or derivatives found in nature.

  • Angelica
  • Asarabacka
  • Bears-foot (Setterwort)
  • Carduus
  • Dragons
  • Dittander
  • Elecampane
  • Fetherfew (Feverfew)
  • Goats Rue
  • Germander
  • Garlick (Garlic)
  • Harts tongue
  • Horse radish
  • Liverwort
  • Lavender Cotton (Santolina)
  • Liquorish
  • Master-wort
  • Marshmallows
  • Mother-wort
  • Pelletary of the Wall
  • Pionies (Peony)
  • Rubarb
  • Rue
  • Solomon’s Seal
  • Scordium
  • Scorsonera
  • Scurvy-grass
  • Southern-wood
  • Smalage
  • Sneese-wort
  • Tansie
  • Greek Valerian
  • Great Valerian (or Setwell)
  • Winter Cherries
  • Wormwood (both English and Roman)

How to Make Fresh Herbal Tea

Fresh herbs such as mint, lemon balm, chamomile, catnip, ginger, anise hyssop and holy basil make delicious, soothing, relaxing tea. Try them individually or in combinations that suit your taste.


  1. Pick 1-2 teaspoons of fresh leaves, flowers and or roots.
  2. Gently bruise by rolling in hands.
  3. Drop into cup of hot water.
  4. Cover and let steep for a few minutes.

Tip: Smaller, finer leaves should steep for 3 to 5 minutes, while larger leaves and flowers should steep a bit longer, up to 10 minutes. Roots should be steeped longest and may even be boiled for maximum potency.

  1. Sip and Enjoy!

Natural Home Remedies for Cold & Flu

If you or a loved one are experiencing the dreaded sensations of a cold or the flu (also known as the grippe) coming on, consider turning to nature rather than big pharma.

Maybe you have reservations about subjecting yourself to potentially harmful vaccines, chemically manipulated panaceas and costly doctor bills?

If so, you will be pleased to know that there are quite a few easily obtainable, surprisingly powerful natural options that not only help you cope with the symptoms, but also target their cause. Best of all, you may have some of the most useful natural ingredients already in your kitchen cupboards!

Copyright 2019, Ruffin Associates, LLC. All rights reserved.

Here are a few ways to incorporate natural home remedies when managing a cold or the flu.

Herbal Tea – Keep a mug of warm herbal tea nearby for sipping. The best options for cold and flu include ginger, echinacea, elderberry and lemon.

Soup – Enjoy a big pot of broth or soup made with lots of fresh garlic, ginger, oregano and thyme. Miso is also very nourishing.

Over the Counter Tonics – A few doses of elderberry syrup, homeopathic Oscillococcinum or liposomal vitamin C can prove especially helpful.

Honey – While sweets are not advisable during times of illness, a spoonful of raw, unfiltered, local honey can soothe a raw throat and, when added to teas, can “help the medicine go down”. Garlic fermented in honey is also a great option.

For best results, always attend to maladies as soon as possible.

And, of course, if your condition does not improve or worsens after your best attempts to remedy, do not hesitate to seek professional medical assistance.

Note: Please refer to Colonial Botanicals Legal Disclaimers for important details about health related information provided on this blog.