Black Sage: The Natural Anti-Inflammatory
Disclaimer: This article is meant to be for the discussion of and the medicinal uses of a plant and not medical advise. Those who choose to test run such is doing so at their own discretion. It isn't recommended to just go out and grab plants to test with if you aren't an experienced hiker or botanist or know what you are doing. It also is not advised to use in the instance of a serious medical emergency or as a treatment for underlying conditions. You have been warned.
Known as the Salvia mellifera by scientists, the black sage plant grows commonly in California, generally in areas between sea level and 3,900 feet up in elevation such as the coastal sage shrub. Terrain doesn't affect it much as it has been found to grow in a variety of soil from sandstone to basalt. When growing around other sages, it has the chance to cross breed and hybridize with others forms of sage such as white or purple sage. However, despite the hybridization of the plant, the non hybrid form holds a couple of uses when it comes to medicinal application.
In the plant is a number of chemicals including such as diterpenoids and ursolic acid. These chemicals, when applied to the skin or ingested as a tea, are great for anti-inflammatory effects and is said to help with colic and coughs. Even the native people known as the Chumash used this plant both as a topical applicant or as a sun tea and it relieved those afflicted with some form of pain caused by inflammation. And while inflammation is necessary in the attempt of the body to heal itself, a lot of underlying disease starts with unmanaged inflammation.
This means that is holds a possible use for people afflicted with diseases such as arthritis or anything involving the swelling of joints and joint pains. Outside of that, the plant still holds some other useful purposes. In terms of scent, it has a strong aroma, and much like white sage: can be burned to cleanse an area. In terms of processing, it can produce what is known as black sage honey, but specific conditions are required for there to be enough nectar to get the process started. It is said to be strong and peppery tasting.