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Clary Sage: Benefits, Using Tips and Side Effects
The Clary Sage is a biennial plant, its square, brownish stems growing 2 to 3 feet high, hairy and with very few branches. These leaves are arranged in pairs, almost stalkless and are almost as large as the hand, oblong and heart-shaped, wrinkled, irregularly toothed at the margins and covered with velvety hairs. The lipped corollas, are similar to the Garden Sage, but smaller, are of a pale blue or white. The flowers are interspersed with big coloured, membraneous bracts, longer than the spiny calyx. Both the corollas and bracts are generally variegated with pale purple and yellowish-white. The seeds are blackish brown and are contained in long, toothed husks, as an old writer describes the calyx. The whole plant does possess a very strong, aromatic scent, somewhat resembling that of Tolu while the taste is also aromatic, warm and slightly bitter. Clary Sage has its own place in medicine and has an antispasmodic, tonic and carminative effect. Thus, Clary has medical important and it is even use for sophisticating beer as well.
This herb was initially brought into use by the wine merchants of Germany, who employed it as an adulterant, infusing it with Elder flowers, and then adding the liquid to the Rhenish wine, which converted it into the likeness of Muscatel. It is still called in Germany as Muskateller Salbei.
It was also employed in the country as a substitute for the Hops, for sophisticating beer, communicating considerable bitterness and intoxicating property, which produced an effect of insane exhilaration of spirits, succeeded by severe headache. In some parts of the country, a wine has been made from the herb in the flower, boiled with sugar, which has a unique flavor, not unlike Frontiniac. The English name Clary had originated in the Latin name sclarea, a word derived from clarus. Clary was gradually modified into 'Clear Eye,' one of its popular names, and from the fact that the seeds have been used for clearing the eyesight. This clearing eye effect of clary is due to its antispasmodic, tonic effect. Clary is widely used by ophthalmologist and ayurvedic medicine for improving the eye slight. Sometimes we find the plant not only called 'Clear Eye,' but also 'See Bright' and even 'Eyebright,' though this name belongs to another plant - Euphrasia officinalis
Clary Sage is propagated by seed, which should be sown in spring. When they are fit to move, the seedlings should be transplanted to an open spot of ground, a foot apart each way, if required in large quantities. After the plants have taken root, they will not require any further care but to keep them free of weeds. The winter and the spring following, the leaves will be in perfection. As the plant is a biennial only, dying off in the second summer, after it has ripened seeds, there should be young plants annually raised for use. Clary has a unique method of its cultivation. It grows in specific weather as mentioned and then seedling then transplanted to open spot and then as soon as plant have taken root there is no need of roots, this unusual thing makes it unique from other plants.
Its medicinal indications are for Antispasmodic, balsamic, carminative, tonic, aromatic, aperitive, astringent, and pectoral effect. The plant has been used, both for fresh and dry, either alone or with other herbs, as an infusion or a tincture.
For violent cases of hysteria or wind colic, a spirituous tincture has been found to be useful, made by macerating in warm water for 14 days, 2 OZ. of dried Clary Sage leaves and flowers, 1 OZ. of Chamomile flowers, 1/2 ox. bruised Avens root, 2 drachms of bruised Caraway and Coriander seeds, and 3 drachms of bruised and also Burdock seeds, adding 2 pints of proof spirit, then filtering and diluting with double quantity of water, a wine glassful being the dose. Even using a Clary Sage scented candle will rejuvenate you completely and rise up your spirits. The soft aroma of Clary sage provides a unique ambience to the atmosphere. A few drops of the Clary Sage oil if applied on your wrists after a hectic day will help to release all the stress and rejuvenate you completely.
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