This perennial flowering plant grows to more than a foot tall from a short, scaly rootstock.
It is hardy and able to grow in frigid conditions. It was used by the Vikings, Chinese emperors, and the Greek physician Dioscorides. This variety grows reddish purple flowers. Other varieties grow yellow flowers.
WHERE IT CAN BE FOUND:
Scandinavia, Europe, Russia, Asia, Quebec, Newfoundland, Nunavut, Maine, Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, North Carolina
PROPERTIES AND USE:
Antioxidant, adaptogen, antidepressant, stimulant, anti-aging, hepatoprotetive, aphrodisiac, and used to increase strength, mental capacity, and memory. It is also used to treat heart conditions, high cholesterol, cancer, tuberculosis, diabetes, colds, flu, impotence, deafness, poor immune system function, fatigue, altitude sickness
To make an infusion, boil 1 teaspoon chopped root in 1 cup water for 1 hour. Sip throughout the day.
RHODIOLA TINCTURE Makes 3/4 cup
This is a popular tincture in Scandinavia, where Rhodiola is used to treat conditions including depression, fatigue, and memory loss. You can grind Rhodiola root in a coffee grinder, or purchase it ground. You will need an 8-ounce jar with lid for this recipe.
1 ounce ground Rhodiola root
3/4 cup 100-proof vodka
• Place the ground root in the jar. Pour in the vodka.
• Tightly screw on the lid, and shake well. Allow to steep for 5 days at room temperature. Strain before use.
Take 1/2 teaspoon three times per day for 2 to 3 weeks.