Herb in season: Fresh Milky Oats

Fresh Milky Oats in Upstate NY, 2017

Fresh Milky Oats in Upstate NY, 2017

Making medicine with “fresh and in seaon” herbs is very special. When plants are in their peak time, that means their energy, vibration, and nutrient are in the highest point. Although many herbs carry its potency when in dry, some herbs only offer treasures in very limited period when in fresh. Oat is absolutely one of them! We already know oats as energy boosting food. Do you know that "fresh milky oats" have deeply nourishing and medicinal aspect?

"Fresh milky oats” are harvested when oat tops produce milky sap. This milky stage lasts only for a week or so (Depends on the weather. Late summer in general). This is why it’s worthy of special mention. How do you ingest them as medicine? — Tincture from fresh milky seeds gives you a great benefit.

This year (2017) in NY state had experienced cooler summer, so the milky stage had been later and lasted longer than usual years. Now it’s the time to make medicine with them. Here are benefits of fresh milky oats.

• Supremely moistening (super Yin nourishing), demulcent

• Nervine tonic

• Nervous system trophorestorative

• Anti-depressant

• Help withdrawal from addictive substances

The taste is very sweet and the texture is viscously smooth as infusion. Sweetness is nourishing and restorative flavor. For conditions related to anxiety, insomnia, severe fatigue, nervous debility... Fresh milky oats is definitely the go-to herb. In addition, menopausal conditions, including vaginal dryness and low libido, are in its indication.

Reishi Tincture

*The photo was taken right after reishi was immersed under alcohol.

*The photo was taken right after reishi was immersed under alcohol.

Reishi (Garnoderma lucidum) is a medicinal mushroom found on hardwood stumps and logs.

Luckily, I got a fresh reishi from one of our school teachers in Upstate NY this summer. Gotta make tincture!

Reishi is a known adaptogen, beneficial in immune system, hepatoprotective (protecting liver) and used in anti-cancer protocols.

My reishi had been sitting in my dark shelf to be extracted fully. Usually after 4~6 weeks, tincture is ready to be taken. However, reishi is ideally extracted twice. The reason is in its compounds. Some can be extracted in alcohol and other can be in hot water. This process is called 'double-extraction'. To make reishi extract with full benefits, I follow the double-extraction process. After the alcohol extraction, I decoct this reishi and mix both extracts. 

Alcohol % should be 25~35% for longer shelf-life at the end.

**My teacher RIchard Mandelbaum, very knowledgeable herbalist in NY, takes an opposite position on 'double-extraction'. So, you need to intuitively choose which process is right, if anyone wants to make mushroom tincture.

I use 190 proof organic grain alcohol to make tinctures.