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Foraging Conifer Needles + Cough Syrup Recipe

What better way to make natural medicine than with the trees around us!
Pine needles, along with most other conifer needles, are high in Vitamin C. They can be used as an expectorant for coughs and relieve infections causing chest congestion. When combined with honey in a syrup, it has the added benefit of soothing a dry and scratchy throat. Not to mention, one may find that the cough has disappeared completely! Besides pine, other safe conifer needles include fir, spruce, or hemlock. Most pine and other conifer needles are edible with medicinal uses. Please be sure of identifying the needles and be certain of the species before preparing any edible recipes.
Foraging Guidelines
  • Search for foraging books and resources for your specific area. For instance, we live outside of the Appalachian Mountains in Northern Kentucky. So we’d search for “edible plants of the Appalachians” or “edible plants of Upstate Kentucky”
  • Only harvest from “clean” areas: Avoid busy roads
  • Do not forage without one hundred percent certainty that you've correctly identified what you know is edible
  • Learn from experts and guides
  • Always leave enough for the remaining population to easily recover. 

1 1/4 cup of water
1 cup whole, fresh pine needles 
1/2 cup of raw honey
In a small saucepan bring the water to a rolling boil and add the pine needles. Ensure they are all submerged. Cover with a lid and simmer for five minutes. Allow the mixture to steep until at room temperature, then strain out the pine needles and stir in the raw honey (preferably from your backyard or a local hive).
Pour the infusion into a clean jar and leave the lid off as it cools to room temperature. Once cool, add your lid and store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Alternatively, you can freeze into ice cube trays and thaw as needed. Discard your pine needles into a Lomi.
Two Recipes in one!
If you're feeling fancy, I recommend foraging enough conifer needles to make a batch of tea. It's quite divine with a dash of honey, too ;)
Dose: 5ml every 2-3 hours during an acute throat infection, not suitable for children under 2.
CAUTION: Only use the coniferous tree hemlock, not the toxic herbaceous plant by the same name! 
CONTRADICTION: Pregnant people should avoid using needles from ponderosa pine.   
Now go gather your needles, responsibly!  

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