Usnea

Usnea

Common name Old Man’s Beard

Latin name Usnea barbata 

Parts used whole lichen


System affinities

Usnea is particularly sympathetic to the respiratory and immune systems.


Energetics/characteristics/dosha

It is tightening and cold.  It is Antiviral, decongestant, and expectorant.


Taste/Quality

Usnea is astringent, and sour.


Indications

It is commonly indicated for a variety of chest colds and respiratory complaints, particularly anything accompanying a wet cough.


Warnings/contraindications



History/lore

This remarkable non-plant was used therapeutically over 3,000 years ago in Egypt, Greece, and China to treat bacterial and fungal infections. Today, it is still used by Asian and Russian herbalists to treat pulmonary tuberculosis, bronchitis, infected wounds, external ulcers, and scrofula. Native North Americans have used it as an expectorant and a dermatological aid for boils


Habitat

Frequently hangs from coniferous trees.


dosing/formulas