Oregon Grape Root
Names: Mountain grape; Mahonia (French); Mahonie (German); holly grape, Rocky Mountain Grape Root, Creeping Barberry, Yerba de Sangre, Agrecillo, Berberi, Epine Vinette, Holly-Leaved Barberry, Holly-leaf Oregon-grape, Holly-leaved Barberry, Rocky Mountain Oregon Grape
Properties: bitter, astringent, alterative, cholagogue, laxative, anti-emetic, anticatarrhal, tonic, hepatic, Antibacterial; Antitumor; Blood tonic; diuretic; Ophthalmic.
History: Used by Native Americans for food and medicine. Medicine men used the crushed, dried yellow rootstock to cure a wide variety of ailments, including ulcers, heartburn, rheumatism, kidney disorders, scrofulous skin conditions, and poor appetite. The early settlers of the western frontier learned of the rootstock’s healing qualities from the Indians and Oregon grape’s popularity as a medicine boomed in the 1800s. One popular remedy concocted by early herbalists called for soaking the roots in beer that had been warmed to just below the boiling point. This tonic was said to relieve hemorrhaging and jaundice. It was listed in the official pharmacopoeias until 1950. State flower of Oregon