Medicine of Birch Trees


Standing stark up the land glowing white, silver, golden and black the graceful birches sing to our souls. Lost in the white of winter the paper birch is not forgotten, nor is the black birch standing deep in dark moist forests like shadows. Up to 60 species of Betula, commonly known as the birches exist in the world today. In most locations of moist woodland they are the grand pioneers of elder forests to come. As I wander through the wet woodlands and see the spreading stands of graceful birches I feel their energy in my heart and a smile comes to my face. Tracking through ancient hemlock and white pine forests I know that long ago the gentle birch stood gleaming in the landscape which supplied the medicine needed for the older forests to take hold.

For thousands of years the graceful birch has been used medicinally and is certainly a favorite of the winter months in the far north as well as the rest of the year. Let me list some of the fascinating aspects of the birch medicine that we can all utilize today for aliment and complications.

  • Febrifuge
  • Anti-arthritic
  • Anti Rheumatic
  • Anti Spasmodic
  • Anti Depressant
  • Analgesic
  • Anti Septic
  • Astringent
  • Disinfectant
  • Tonic
  • Depurative
  • Insecticide
  • Stimulant
  • Detoxifier
  • Diuretic
  • Germicide

And what does all that really mean? Well quite simply and powerfully it means that the birch can alleviate and cure the following ailments:

  • Sluggish circulation
  • sluggish digestion/low metabolism
  • stressed nervous system
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • endocrine system sluggishness
  • diabetes
  • high blood pressure
  • fever
  • colds
  • flu
  • muscle and joint aches
  • inflammation
  • bruises
  • sprains
  • cramps
  • toothaches
  • fungal infections
  • arthritis
  • Rheumatism
  • edema
  • skin toner
  • gum strengthener
  • hair health
  • purifies blood
  • increases sweating
  • kidney detoxification
  • kidney stones
  • internal cold
  • and so much more!

The birch is a warming medicine in general and can support the system in the winter like very few natural herbs can. (that grow in the regions of birch) The oil found within the birch trees is the source of this powerful medicine. It can be found as an essential oil but you can also get the benefits from this tree by making tea from the leaves, twigs and inner back (cambium layer). There are some who like to extract large amounts of the oil themselves through a process of compression heat. The oil also makes great fire starters, sealants, candle and lamp fuel.

If you are seeking a boost to your vitality this winter or heal from any of the ailments listed above, why not look to the medicine of the Graceful Birch? Let its spirit song fill your heart as you wander through the forests or drink a hot cup of birch twig tea.

Please be aware that if you are using the oil of the Black Birch, otherwise known as the Sweet Birch (Betula Lenta) use caution as the oil is toxic to the liver in the wrong doses. Pregnant woman should avoid using birch oil but can enjoy the tea without issues.

Looking for natural medicines based around oils? Check out Ways Of The Wild Institute articles.

To your health ~ White Wolf Von Atzingen ~ Ways Of The Wild Institute


White Wolf Von Atzingen