Posted by kristenjoy on:
Feels like a good time to write about another local plant.
This one is hummingbird sage...given its name because of its magical and effortless ability to attract hummingbirds to its beautiful flowers.
But that's not it's only magic trick!
Hummingbird sage makes a great tea. It is an expectorant and can help if you have a cough or cold, to alleviate the annoying effects of excess mucus. It is highly antimicrobial, and can also be used as a gargle.
The Chumash were known to use this plant in their doctorings, and the Spanish later co-opted it into their pseudo-Catholic medical traditions and exorcisms. They revered it so highly that they gave it the name "diosita." They used it to cure diseases believed to have been caused by sorcery by rubbing the leaves on the patient's body. (This I have NOT tried).
Hummingbird sage is easily found in our local hills and mountains. You can also grow it in your garden - I have some in a pot so it doesn't take over the other plants. They survive well in sun and partial shade.
* The amazing photo I have will not load for some reason. So here is another one, taken from here: http://www.satoridesigns.net/wp-content/uploads/2009/12/hummingbirdsage2.jpg