On today's episode I narrate jim mcdonald's wild cherry monograph.
Here's a sampling from his monograph which you can find here: www.herbrally.com/monographs/wild-cherry
When considering wild cherry, most will immediately think of its use in the address of coughs and colds; indeed, such a staple it was that when plant medicine was being replaced by chemical drugs "wild cherry" was retained as the flavor of cough syrups and drops, because, well... that's just what those things were supposed to taste like. The actual bark, though, does much more than provide flavor. Wild cherry is a respiratory relaxant/antispasmodic and, in varying degrees, an astringent tonic. A cooling sedative to lung tissue, it excels when heat and irritability undermine healthy expectoration.
Now, here's where I want to paint a little word picture that really sums up wild cherry's respiratory sphere of influence perfectly; that's really what all herb writers want to do when we write these things. But, darnit, Michael Moore did it so well I can't resist quoting him: "Chokecherry or wild cherry bark is a simple sedative for cardiopulmonary excitability. If your child is lying in bed, glowing a dull infrared and breathing rapidly with a dry cough, give him/her chokecherry. That hot, vibratile pulse of blood through the lungs can be counterproductive, not nourishing the membranes as well as needed and maybe even slowing the defensive responses to a viral infection. The hectic breathing can dry out mucous membranes and harden secretions, making them little more than dried blobs adhering to the bronchial membranes---difficult enough for an adult to expectorate, very difficult for a respiratory-impatient child to handle."
Yeah, Moore was awesome.
jim mcdonald offers a knowledge of herbalism that blends western folk and indigenous views with the Vitalist traditions of the 19th century, presented through story, humor and common sense. He has taught classes throughout the US, hosts the website www.herbcraft.org and has written for Plant Healer Magazine, the Journal of Ontario Herbalist Association and Llewelyn's Herbal Almanac. He is currently writing a "Great Lakes Herbal" and "Foundational Herbcraft". jim is a manic wildcrafter and medicine maker.