How To Use Horsetail In A Healing Tea

Horsetail (Equisetum arvense) or Mares Tail is an invasive weed that has frustrated gardeners for Centuries! Here since the Dinosaurs and will be here long after we are gone! Try as you might it is almost impossible to eradicate this bottle brush weed from your garden (the roots can reach depths of up to 7ft!) So why not make use of it? Here are a few little known facts about this die hard weed….

How To Make Horsetail Tea

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Horsetail is Known by MANY names….Bottle-brush, Mares Tail, Horse willow; Paddock-pipes, Pewterwort, Scouring rush…Toadpipe !(that’s my favourite) Horsetail is a close relative of the fern and is a non flowering weed generally found throughout Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North America.

A Perennial plant, Horsetail returns each year with vigour! When it first breaks ground it has a close resemblance to Asparagus. It is later that the Plant develops its feathery, bottle-brush appearance.

Horse tail weed
How it starts!

Horsetail and the Dinosaurs!

Horsetail originally derived from large tree-like plants that grew over 400 million years ago during the Paleozoic era. Fossil records show that Horsetail was once a towering marvel reaching heights of 30 metres tall…thank god that changed! Can you imagine trying to pull 30 metre long weeds?…what a nightmare! What we have now, though thankfully much smaller is a distant relative of a plant that once grew alongside the Dinosaurs, how amazing is that!?

Small But Mighty!

Our modern day version of Horsetail may not be able to compete with its prehistoric relative when comparing stature, but it more than makes up for it with its wide array of medicinal benefits. For Centuries this ‘Weed’ was not loathed, but loved. Here’s why..

Horsetail Tea

Horsetail Ancient Medicinal Uses

  • There is documented evidence that Horsetail was once used by the Ancient Greeks and Romans on the battlefield, it was applied to wounds to speed up the healing process and pressed against the skin to stop bleeding. It also proved useful as a diuretic (helped the body get rid of extra fluid and salt through urination)
  • Horsetail Tea was also used by Native Americans as a kidney tonic to help treat painful urination, a popular herbal remedy among the Cherokee and Chippewa tribes.
  • In the 17th Century the Famous Herbalist, Botanist and Astrologer Nicholas Culpeper declared this about Horsetail..  “It stays all sorts of tasks and fluxes in man or woman, and bloody urine and heals also not only the inward ulcers, and the excoriation of the entrails, bladder, but all other sorts of foul, moist and running ulcers, and soon soldiers together the tops of green wounds. It cures all ruptures in children.”.

Modern Day Health Benefits Of Horsetail Tea

  • Like the Greeks, Romans and Native Americans we still utilise Horsetail Tea for its Diuretic capabilities. It is still to this day an effective remedy for ridding the body of excess fluid by increasing urine Output. This is attributed to Horsetails high antioxidant and mineral salt concentrations
  • The bone thinning condition Osteoporosis can be helped with Horsetail Tea. Horsetail contains a high amount of Silica an important mineral that supports bone health. Silica, improves the formation, density, and consistency of bone and cartilage tissue by means of enhancing collagen synthesis and improving the absorption of calcium.
  • Horsetail Tea can also be helpful for Kidney stones and Urinary tract infections, again due to Horsetails Diuretic capabilities

What Does Horsetail Tea Taste like?

Horsetail tea tastes a lot like a strong Earthy Green Tea. You can always add a drop of honey or tsp of sugar for some extra sweetening.

When To Harvest Horsetail For Tea

Early to late Spring is the best time to forage for Horsetail. If you wait until later in the year, the leaves will droop and the Horsetail will lose its medicinal potency, so harvest early! Use a clean pair of scissors to harvest.

Only Pick from Clean areas – Avoid Roadsides, Industrial areas & Top tip* Foraging from the base of a tree for example would not be wise, the likeliness of a dog previously cocking its leg there…is high!

Young Horsetail

Should You Dry Horsetail for Tea?

Yes. If you wish to Store Horsetail Tea long term then you must dry it completely first.

  • Do this by popping the the horsetail sprigs in a dehydrator on the lowest heat setting for 12+ hours, or alternatively lay the Horsetail sprigs on brown paper or newspaper out of direct sunlight in a dry environment for one week.
  • Once dry use a pestle and mortar to break up the dried sprigs.
  • Store in an Airtight container for up to 1 year.

Dried Horsetail Tea

How to make Horsetail Tea

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Place 1-2 tsp of dried horsetail in a Tea ball or drawstring tea bag, submerge in hot water and steep for 5-8 minutes. Remove tea ball or bag and drink.

Where does Horsetail grow?

It grows pretty much anywhere there’s dirt! If you have it in your garden, you know it! But if you need to go looking for it, here are a few places it thrives…

  • Horsetail particularly loves moist, marshy areas
  • Fields
  • Woodlands
  • Even in the Cracks of Pavement stones!

Who should not drink horsetail tea?

Pregnant or breastfeeding? There is very little research on the safety of horsetail use when pregnant or breastfeeding so I would avoid until there is. Diabetic? Horsetail is thought to cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) so I would not recommend for those with Diabetes

Useful Tools For Harvesting and Preparing Horsetail Tea

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Granite Pestle and Mortar

Tea ball

Drawstring tea bag

Other Ways to Take Horsetail

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Horsetail is mainly consumed in the form of tea, capsules, and tinctures. *Horsetail Tinctures and Capsules are particularly helpful for Nails, skin and Hair Health due to the Silica content.

BUY Horsetail Tincture

BUY Horsetail Capsules

Horsetail Tinctures and Capsules can help keep your nails hard and strengthens hair strands to prevent breakage. It has even been said to boost hair growth! It is also beneficial for skin because of its high silica content-Promoting collagen production in your body.

BUY Pre prepared Horsetail Tea

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*Any specific health claim or nutritional claims or information provided on the Website are for informational purposes only. Nothing on the Website is offered or intended to be a substitute for professional medical, health, or nutritional advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This Website is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. You assume full responsibility for consulting a qualified health professional regarding health conditions or concerns.

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  1. Laura March 15, 2023
    • Kelly March 17, 2023

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