Stimulant, aperient, rubefacient, pungent, condiment, diaphoretic, diuretic. Horseradish is one of the most prolific stimulant herbs there is, especially to the digestive organs (dried root), kidneys, skin and circulation.
A perennial, with a long, white, cylindrical or tapering root, which produces a 2-3 feet high stem in the second year. The large basal leaves are lanceolate with scalloped edges. A panicle of numerous, small, white 4-petaled flowers appear during June, July. Found throughout the U.S. and widely cultivated. Only the fresh root is effective. It can be preserved in the fridge, packed in damp sand for months or pickled. It is made into a cream sauce for a condiment. The young leaves are added to salads. It is a antiseptic, antibiotic, aperient decongestant, diuretic, ruberfacient, stimulant, and ruberfacient. Steep 1 teaspoon of the root in 1/2 cup boiling water in a covered pot for 2 hours, strain, add honey to a syrup consistency. For a poultice, spread the fresh, grated root on a linen cloth and lay on the affected area with the cloth against the skin, until a burning sensation is felt. For a vinegar, cover the finely grated or blended root with vinegar and let stand 10 days. Take 1 teaspoon, 2-3 times a day, well diluted with water (can also be applied externally).
Origin(s): China, United States.
Latin Name(s): Cochlearia rusticana, Armoracia rusticana.
Also known as: cochlearia armoracia, mountain radish, great raifort, red cole, moutarde des allemands.
Plant Part(s) Used: Root (Fresh).
Appearance: Cream to light brown.
Aroma: Sharp, pungent, smoky.
Taste: Slightly acrid.
GMO Status: Non-GMO.
Additives: Free of any additives or preservatives.
Applications / Preparations: Can be put into capsules, sauces, dressings, sandwich spreads, condiments or infused as an herbal extract.
Storage: Store in a sealed container in a cool, dry place.
Shelf Life: It is very difficult to pin down an exact expiration date for most single herbs as they do not really expire, they lose potency or strength over time but will still have value. Unlike synthetic material or drugs, herbs can contain many constituents that contribute to their medicinal effects. Even if when we know what the active constituents are, there are often many of them in a single herb, each with different rates of degradation. Some herbs lose their effect more easily. Other herbs that possess more stable compounds such as alkaloids or steroids will last much longer.
A huge part of the degradation rate of herbs depends also on the storage conditions of the herb, & even on the quality of the herb before storage – how it was grown, harvested, dried & processed. If the product is left in hot places or open to sunlight then it will degrade much quicker than if it was stored in cool, dry place & sealed tightly.
A good rule of thumb is that herbs should be stored no longer than 2-3 years but many herbs will have great strength much longer than that. To determine if a an herb is still good you can check the appearance & aroma. Herbs that are no longer acceptable will have lost much of its vibrant color & will instead appear dull & faded. The bigger key though is to smell the raw materials to see if the potent aroma is still present.
Warning: Excessive doses may cause GI irritation. Avoid exposure to skin & eyes..