General Rules

Majority Source: A Druid's Herbal, by Ellen Evert Hopman

When using Leaves or Flowers

Steep two teaspoons per cup of water for twenty minutes. Strain and store in a refrigerated, airtight container. The dose is generally one-fourth of a cup four times a day, not with meals. Children take one-eighth cup, and infants can receive the herbs through the mother’s milk or in very trace amounts. (taken from A Druid’s Herbal)

When using Roots, Barks, Seeds and Twigs

 Simmer two teaspoons of plant matter for twenty minutes, strain, and store as above. The does is one fourth cup, four times a day, not with meals. (taken from A Druid’s Herbal)

Herbal teas will stay fresh in your refrigerator for about one week when stored in an airtight container. (taken from A Druid’s Herbal)

If using a mortar and pestle to combine ingredients or crush material always remember to thoroughly wash both mortar and pestle with soap and water after each use. Rinse profusely to remove all remnants of soap. Always sanitize your mortar and pestle by boiling or lightly dowsing them in alcohol and allowing them to air dry before use. You may consider purchasing a separate mortar and pestle for resins like myrrh, frankincense, copal and dragon’s blood since these elements are difficult to clean out.

Cleanliness and sterility is of the utmost importance when dealing with open wounds, internal medicine and organic compounds that will be stored for long periods of time. Therefore it is of the utmost importance to use high quality alcohol in tinctures and sterilize all equipment to be used before hand.

Use the lowest temperature possible when using heat to prepare herbal remedies.

Simmering or boiling plant matter doesn’t mean to turn it to charcoal. Extreme temperatures can very easily destroy the active chemicals in an essential oil and therefore render them medicinally useless. A boil need not be a rolling boil and a simmer need not vaporize water on contact with the pan.

One tincture does not an herbalist make. Botany and homeopathic remedies cannot be mastered overnight. There are often hundreds and thousands of sub-species of plants that all have their own unique chemical properties. Never assume that you are correct when it comes to medicine and someone’s health. Doctors study intensely for many years to be licensed to begin to practice medicine. It can often take just as many years to gain mastery over herbalism.

Always be 100% sure when possible. Never take a risk with anyone’s health. If the situation is an emergency and it’s possible to get emergency medical attention from a qualified professional, then do so immediately.