A member of the apiaceae, or carrot, family, osha has for centuries been used medicinally
by American Indians. It is an herbaceous perennial growing to more than 3 feet tall. It has lance-shaped leaves and white flowers that appear during the late summer. They are followed by small reddish fruits that are oblong in shape. The root is most often used as a remedy.
WHERE IT CAN BE FOUND:
Mexico, Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, California, Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, Utah
PROPERTIES AND USE:
Febrifuge, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, expectorant, antiviral, antivenomous, tonic, and treats respiratory infections, flu, rheumatism, sore throat, hangover, diarrhea, gastrointestinal conditions, wounds, skin conditions, heart conditions, sinus infections, altitude sickness, earache, catarrh, insect stings or bites, allergies, nicotine addiction
For altitude sickness, chew the raw root. To make a decoction, boil 1 teaspoon chopped root in 1 cup water for 20 minutes. Steep for 20 minutes. Strain before drinking. This can also be used as a gargle, compress, rinse, or bath. It is available in tea, tincture, and vinegar forms. To break a nicotine habit, the hollow stems are smoked.