Alena Steen is a woman of herbal wisdom! We are so grateful to be sharing her herbal tinctures here at the shop, everything from "Cold Tender" to "Mood Mover"! Today Alena is sharing a highlight on herbal and nutritional care for the Autumn season with an emphasis on nervines.
Alena is a woman who has her hands deep in the soil, whether it be bringing the community together down at her local garden, or creating herbal goods from the plants she's harvested! There is so much magic under the surface of Alena and the goods she is creating, Alena is the co-creator of Earth Tide Botanicals, a beautiful line of homegrown botanical medicine! They also run a small CSA (community supported agriculture) share out of their organic garden!
Here are Alenas words below!
The cycles of our body are directly tied to the movement of sun and moon. Lunar and solar gravity pull waves to and from shore, exposing and covering.
The earth’s crust rolls in tides like the ocean, informed by celestial movements. The circular nature of the
other-than-human world is a constant call to embrace change, a continuing conversation with death and rebirth. Working with magical and medicinal plants supports us in honoring flux and rhythm while remaining grounded in a sense of place, centering creativity.
As you divine and offer your gifts to the world, entering a period of rich creativity and collaboration, you harvest the fruits of love and labor. There are many plants that open the way to deep wellsprings of joy and connection, sustaining creative and emotional fertility and nourishing you on your journey.
Nervines are medicinal plants that are particularly connected to your nervous system and emotions. Our nervous system, composed of brain tissue, nerve cells, and spinal cord in communication with a complex web of nerve cells running the course of our body, is the way in which we perceive and participate in the world. This is a system that is also particularly damaged by stress, overstimulation, or lack of sleep. Many of our nerve cells remain in our bodies our whole life, unlike cells in other body systems which are replaced many times throughout our lives. Nervines soothe and smooth our nervous system, keeping historical nerve memory alive and feeding our sense of self and well-being.
Chamomile eases nervous exhaustion and burnout, supporting our body’s ability to recover from daily stress. Chamomile is fragrant and bitter, an herb that tones our digestive tissues and allows our bodies to better assimilate nutrition. Our gut is filled with nerve cells—almost as many as our brain which are a testament to digestion’s importance and direct connection to mental health and stability.
Lemon balm’s sweet citrus fragrance is uplifting and calming. High in concentrations of volatile oils, lemon balm soothes the nervous system, and supports digestion due to the oils’ antispasmodic actions. Lemon balm is mildly sedative, an
important ally for moments of acute anxiety or stress where instant relief is
Tulsi/holy basil also reduces the effects of stress as a nervine, bringing a sense of calm and wholeness which combats sadness, anxiety, or depression.
Milky oats, the juicy seeds of wild oats, are
a nourishing nervine particularly adept at repairing nerves frayed from the long-term depletions of stress. The milky sap of ripe oats nourishes the myelin sheathing that surrounds our nerve ends, which can become frayed from stress, and once repaired can greatly increase our nervous system’s ability to communicate with itself and the rest of our body. Oats are also rich in minerals that feed our brains and nervous systems.
Rose medicine is a heart-centered relaxant, honoring the importance of emotional strength in keeping ourselves healthy.