An overview of different herbal realities focusing on the medicinal value of plants, indigenous herbs of South Africa and aspects of the herbal industry that affect the person in the street.
Since time does not allow most of us to read long newsletters, this newsletter will only deal with one herb at a time starting with the series kitchenwise and streetwise.


• Street-wise----Medicinal herbs growing wild and recognised as weeds in the streets, garden and the wild.
• Malaria


Umhlonyane (xhosa); Umhlonyane (zulu); Lengana (sotho);
Lengana (tswana); Als, Alsem, Wildeals (afrikaans); African Wormwood (english)

South Africa has many traditions—both good and bad and an herbal inheritance that surpasses most of the world’s countries.

The Boers made a tincture with Als and witblits/brandy and that was a mainstay of the herbal medicines for chest and stomach problems.

The traditional medicine man or woman-the Sangoma and Inyangas also use this herb for Colds, Floo, Cough, and Nasal Congestion by either drinking a tea or by inhaling the fumes of the tea.

Lots of hype surrounds this bitter herb----it handles that because it is such a hardy shrub. It has been used for earache to piles and often it may be the strength of belief that cures.

Imagine seeing a person walking around with leaves sticking out their ears and nose—this is a traditional way for using W Als for nasal congestion and earache--wouldn’t you like to see the banks’ regional manager looking like a living tree – of course that also goes for the middle and upper management of Telkom, Eskom, SARS and most government organizations.


What has that got to do with herbs you may ask.
1. They may then hear what the public has to say and smell what people think of their service.

2. By their holistic nature herbs have a soul uplifting aspect often overlooked “and the leaf thereof for medicine” Ezekiel 47:12. Their wholeness promotes energy whereas procedure orientated organizations may tend to get you down. Try phoning Telkom or Eskom/SARS for a query.

Old man Liver likes bitterness and Als meets the requirements and because it is beneficial to the liver, it also increases energy (chi) and uplifts the spirit.

The malaria parasites are becoming resistant to the current allopathic drugs so big buck business has found a way to produce Artemisinin which is a constituent of Als for prevention and treatment of malaria—it is said that a cup of Als tea twice a day will have that effect. Awesome things can happen with herbal teas.

Some good research has been done and it has been found that Als decrease high blood pressure quite significantly.
So after a rigorous workout at the gym a cup of Als tea flavored with lemon and honey quenches that thirst and gives you the vooma and lowers the blood pressure for more partying.
Then when the heart is pumping madly, the Coumarin derivative in Wilde Als decreases the muscular contractions of the heart. A proudly South African herb.

Apart from the carminative effect on the intestines (gets rid of gas and colic) due to the combined effect of the volatile oils----it gets rid of intestinal worms. A capsule of powdered herb may be the way to get your dog to drink it.
Recommended dose for this is a cup of tea twice daily.


Wilde Als oil contains a high concentration of Thujone and should be taken with care as it is mildly hallucinogenic—good news for acidheads. With the oils it is wiser to go through a practitioner
The usual safe dose for tea is one teaspoon to 1 cup boiling water and if the fresh plant is used then the equivalent of two teaspoons to a cup.

In the next newsletter we will deal with Parsley in the series called Kitchen wise - talking about medicinal properties of the usual herbs found in the kitchen.

About Malaria

Schumacher envisaging a lifesyle, coined a philosophy “Small is Beautiful”: a truly awesome ideal. Yet in nature a small bug called the Anopheles mosquito transmits a parasite that inflicts huge damage and death.
In the process of infection by the mosquito, a harmful microorganism (Plasmodium), travels by bloodstream to the liver where it reproduces asexually and goes back into the cells via the bloodstrem, where it multiplies and eats the essential component of the red blood cells, haemoglobin.

The plasmodium parasite then escapes when the cells explode releasing more microorganisms.

The symptoms primarily start with intense fever and can be accompanied by headache, excessive weight loss and muscle wasting. An enlarged spleen can result.

For treatment, Tetracycline drugs are basically used, yet adapting and getting immunity is not limited to diplomats and politicians. Over time the parasite responds less to allopathic drugs so looking elsewhere, herbs have become a source of healing malaria.

Cinchona (Peruvian bark) successfully treats Malaria. The research indicates that the Quinine content of Cinchona bark interferes with the replication of the DNA of the various parasitic protozoa that cause Malaria.
The Wormwood herbs contain Artemisinin ---this is now used as a major preventative and treatment of malaria. Wilds Als has it, the Chinese Artemesia has it.
The force is strong with those herbs that have Artemisinin. Obtainable from your friendly pharmacist and health store.
Wilde Als is obtainable in the veld or from this friendly herb farm in tea form.

Experiments with extract of Neem seeds show anti anti-plasmodial effects. So much so that at every level of the parasites activity, Neem extract worked where other anti malarial drugs were resisted.

There are lots of herbs which have been used traditionally for malaria ---other herbs which have also been peer reviewed and found to be anti malarial are
Olive Leaf extract
• Pau D'Arco tincture
• Terminalia bellerica
(one of the Herbs in the Ayurvedic Herbal Formula named Triphala).

I have heard of a homeopathic medicine formulated from the poison of the Anopheles mosquito, which is quite effective. It should be obtainable from any good health shop.

Heading for the Victoria falls ? Consider preventative treatment beforehand. Non invasive and with no side effects, these herbs may just make your trip that much more enjoyable.

The process of cutting a herb generates heat so the finer the cut of the herb so too does the potency diminish that little bit. So I recommend the rough tea cut rather than teabags even though it appears to be a mission to make in the rush rush everyday world.

Guidance with professional health practitioners from the naturopath, sangoma, dietician, alternative healer to a MD is an responsible course of action when dealing with any substance affecting your health.

For more in depth details about Wilde Als and other herbs visit < our website > or go to <<herb info and pictures page.>>



We are also a mail order source for our own organic teas , singles and herbal products. Working with you, we can develop custom formulations specific to your practice. Our goal is long term working relationships that evolve over time.

If you have a problem getting the herbs contact us at << za 2>>and we will do our best to help you find them.
Outlets for our herbal teas are at this address----Shops that sell our teas
A list of our products can be viewed at Our Products on our website.


<<Other newsletters3>>

Glossary(meanings of some fancy words)

About us  Contact Us Herbal Products  Education and Herbs. Wonderherbs ]