Betula papyrifera Marsh., Betulaceae
Birch bark is known to be a natural pain reliever and a blood cleanser. Used internally or externally, birch bark assists with rheumatoid arthritis, eases muscle pain, and tonifies the whole body. Its properties are antibacterial and anti-inflammatory. The outer and inner bark are combined to prepare a cup of tonifying birch bark tisane. The taste is almost cinnamon-like. For bark tisanes, it's best to pulverize the desired quantity of plant material in a coffee grinder or food processor, then prepare the infusion, and strain the liquid through a coffee filter. Bark tisanes tend to be strong infusions. You can add a strong birch bark infusion to a relaxing bath. Lovely birch bark indeed.
Birch bark is rich in betulin, enzymes, minerals, and vitamins. We wild-harvest birch bark in early spring and late fall in the wilderness of northern Saskatchewan.
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