Summer is the time for getting outdoors, hanging out with friends and family, and enjoying heaps and heaps of stone fruit. One of my favorites of course, is a perfectly ripe juicy peach that runs down your arm as you bite into it. I can often be found eating them over the sink with a look of pure bliss on my face. It’s the epitome of hot summer days.
Did you know that peach is also an incredible herbal medicine? Being a member of the rose family, this unassuming fruit shares many of the cooling and soothing properties of rose, is safe for everyone to use (even pregnant women), and is exceptionally effective at what it does. It’s the perfect herb to explore and experiment with during the summer months.
Peach is known to soothe away irritability caused by heat, treats nausea and motion sickness, diarrhea, dry cough, insomnia, and even the lack of appetite the accompanies long periods of heat.
Interestingly enough, peach is also a noteworthy topical treatment for insect bites and stings and can be used in this way as a tincture, elixir, or poultice. In fact, if you are able to take a peach preparation internally (about a dropperful) as soon as you get stung, it can help with pain, itching, and swelling for a person who reacts normally to bug bites and stings. Peach can even help those with seasonal allergies in this way when taken daily.
Rose, as you may well know, is probably my favorite herb as it’s an excellent remedy for so many things! It’s soothing, comforting, cooling, restorative, rejuvenating, mood enhancing… the list goes on. In fact, if I could choose just one herb to use for the rest of my life, it may just have to be rose.
Paired with peach, rose exudes even more soothing qualities that will help you stay cool all summer long.
Peach and Rose Summer Heat Elixir
This elixir is really easy to make. All you need is a local peach tree and some fragrant roses. Make sure that neither source is sprayed with chemicals.
When you find a peach tree, either feral or local, the first thing you will want to do it do a “scratch and sniff” test on a twig. If the scent is strong with floral undertones, that means good medicine! The stronger the scent the better as it means the tree has strong medicinal properties.
Once you find some fragrant twigs and leaves, start snipping them off. If your tree is blooming, be sure to grab some peach blossoms as well!
Here’s what you need to make my peach and rose summer heat elixir:
• A mason jar
• Enough peach leaves, twigs, and blossoms (if available) to fill the jar ½-3/4 full
• Fresh or dried rose petals – I shoot for a good handful
• Brandy – the better the brandy, the better your elixir will taste!
• Light raw honey (darker ones change the flavor too much)
• A chopstick
Loving Preparation – Peach and Rose Summer Heat Elixir
1. Begin by thoroughly rinsing your plant material in order to remove bugs, dirt, and any other residue.
2. Pat dry with a paper towel to remove excess water.
3. Next, snip the peach leaves, twigs, blossoms, and rose petals with some garden scissors. This will make extraction easier.
4. Fill the jar ¾ of the way full, pressing down as you go.
5. Next, pour in the raw honey, using the chopstick to get rid of any air bubbles, until the jar is half full.
6. Now pour in the brandy until everything is covered. Again, use the chopstick to remove any air bubbles.
7. Cap closed and allow the elixir to sit for 4-6 weeks.
8. Strain and bottle, then store in a cool dark place. Don’t forget to label your elixir!
One dose equals one dropperful of elixir. Take one dropperful as soon as symptoms surface and again 15 minutes later. For topical applications, still take the elixir internally while also applying some topically to the affected area.
Use internally for occasional insomnia, when feeling over heated, or when irritable during the summer heat.
This elixir is also an excellent companion during travel as it relieves nausea and motion sickness.
Use internally when there is digestive upset or diarrhea where there are signs of over-heating.
Can be used for relieving tension, anxiety, and irritability that is aggravated by heat.
Use topically on insect bites and stings.
What’s your favorite way to cool down over the summer?
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