Botanical Name: Equisetum arvense
Common Names: scouring rush, shavegrass, field horsetail, toadpipe, Dutch rushes
What parts of horsetail are used?
All parts above ground are used dried, cut or powdered in teas, tablets, capsules and liquid herbal extracts.
How do you identify Horsetail and where is it grown?
A relative of ferns, Horsetail grows from an underground stem system that quickly spreads and can be quite invasive. Widespread in parts of the United States, Canada and Europe, Horsetail does not produce flowers or seeds. It reproduces by spores and by creeping rhizomes and tubers. This hearty perennial has hollow stems and shoots resembling asparagus. As they dry out, the branches start to look like the feathery tails of horses, hence its name.
It’s how old??
Horsetail is one of the oldest plants in recorded history, dating back over 400 million years. During the Paleozoic era, it grew as tall as palm trees. It is one of the most abundant sources of naturally occurring silica which is now universally used in beauty products and in dietary supplements.
Horsetail is traditionally prepared as any of these applications: capsules, poultices, salves, teas, tinctures, tonics, vinegars and in herbal baths.
Prepare the tea of Horsetail by combining one teaspoon of the plant matter with eight ounces of water. Steep for ten minutes.
When creating this tincture the general ratio of dried, chopped Horsetail to solvent is 1:3 (plant matter: alcohol or cider vinegar).
Usually Prepared With:
Other herbs that Horsetail may commonly combine with include Comfrey leaf, Echinacea, Hydrangea, Lamb's Quarter, Marshmallow, Mullein, Nettle, Oatstraw, Plantain, Red Raspberry leaf and Yellow Dock, depending upon individual needs.