Magickal and Medicinal Herbs: Echinacea 101

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Echinacea Root

(Echinacea angustifolia)

Echinacea is not only one of the most popular herbs of our times, it is one of the top immune-enhancing herbs. A native of North America, it can be found in wild prairies and open woodlands. It also shines in the garden. There are nine species, three of which, E. purpurea, E. pallida, and E. agustofolia, have medicinal properties. The name Echinacea comes from the Greek echinos, which describes the nature of a hedgehog or sea urchin, in reference to the bristly scales of the dried seed head. Echinacea was used extensively by the Native American populations for all manner of ailments. The Plains Nations used it more than any other herb. Studies show this herb is ideal for use with any infection and the common cold. The average duration of the cold is reduced by 30% in those that take echinacea over those that use mainstream cold medications or nothing. To obtain these benefits, it is best taken at the onset of symptoms, not before. It is also especially beneficial for children with recurrent ear infections (otitis media).

Other Names: Purple Coneflower, Coneflower, Snakeroot, Black Sampson, Sampson Root, Comb Flower, Hedgehog, Indian Head, Kansas Snakeroot, Red Sunflower, Rock-up-hat, Scurvy root

Composition: Echinacea refers to the tincture of the root, as well as tea and other infusions. It can also refer the fresh or dried plant matter.

Medicinal Properties

  • anti-inflammatory
  • anti-viral
  • anti-fungal
  • antioxidant
  • antiseptic
  • tonic
  • immune stimulant
  • wound healing
  • lymphatic
  • sialagogue
  • diaphoretic

Holistic Uses

  • stimulates the immune system
  • general immune deficiency
  • cold, flu, and sinus infections
  • coughs, sneezing, hoarseness, and sore throat
  • bronchitis
  • earache
  • inflamed insect bites
  • diaper rash
  • fungal infections
  • tonsillitis
  • cold sores and canker sores
  • acne and boils
  • swollen glands
  • inflammations of the veins
  • infected cuts, skin abrasions, and burns
  • bladder or kidney infections
  • vaginal infections

Considered safe for children and the elderly.

Contraindications, Side Effects, and Interactions:

  • Do not take medicinal echinacea root if you are suffering from leukemia.
  • High doses can occasionally cause nausea and dizziness.
  • People with asthma or autoimmune dysfunction including AIDS and Lupus should use Echinacea with caution. No studies have documented negative effects, but the action of the active constituents of Echinacea could theoretically complicate autoimmune problems.
  • Those with allergies to other members of the daisy family, ex. ragweed should use Echinacea with caution.
  • Anyone taking immune-suppressing drugs should avoid echinacea as their actions contradict one another.

Method of Administration and Dosing:

  • At first sign of cold (not before) and no longer than 8 weeks without a break of 2-3 weeks: 2 g herb with 8 ounces of water OR 5ml tincture 3-5 times per day
  • For chronic infections, take 1/2 teaspoon in water three times daily.
  • Make a decoction of the root to treat throat infections – gargle with 2 1/2 tablespoon three times daily.
  • Capsules – 500 mg three times daily.
  • Make a mouthwash with 4 ounces of tincture with three ounces of water, plus two drops of spearmint or peppermint essential oil.

Magickal Associations

Deities: Athena, Venus, Cerridwen

Magickal Correspondences

Element: Earth
Gender: Male
Planet: Mars
Zodiac: Scorpio
Tarot Card: Temperance

Magickal Properties

  • Power
  • Success
  • Strengthening of spells
  • Money
  • Healing
  • Defensive Magic
  • Protection
  • Purification

Simple Spells and Household Uses

  • Place powdered root in shoes to bring success, admiration of colleagues, and increased physical strength.
  • Carrying Echinacea will provide inner strength during trying times.
  • Grow echinacea within and around the home to draw prosperity to the household and prevent financial hardship.
  • Brought into the home and placed in a vase, it draws prosperity and protects the family from suffering from poverty.
  • Echinacea petals and root can be burned in cleansing and purification rituals.
  • The flower essence can help one maintain a strong sense of self, especially when challenged with disease or stress.
  • Added to any ritual increases strength.
  • Echinacea is an appropriate flower for offerings, especially to place spirits and river God(dess)es.
  • Take internally or sprinkle externally to heal emotional wounds and strengthen resolve.
  • Use the seeds of the echinacea plant in spells for abundance or fertility.
  • Use as an amplifier and an opener of psychic perception.

To purchase dried echinacea root, visit the APOTHECARY.

Increase your herbal education by Digging Deeper into other herbs and essential oils.

Disclaimer: Please note that I am a not medical professional and everything written here is a product of my own research. Don’t take any advice given here over that of a trained doctor. If you ingest any herbs, always make sure that you’re 100% sure that they’re safe. If you’re pregnant or giving to a child, always consult a doctor before ingesting herbs and plant you aren’t familiar with. Magickal instruction and spells are for personal entertainment purposes only. The desired result/outcome cannot be guaranteed as a result of using any magickal item, and should not be used as a replacement for medical/professional assistance.

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