Family: Tilliaceae (Lime family, not the citrus fruit - the lime trees of Europe)
Parts Used: flowers, bracts, leaves
Also known as lime tree, common lime and American basswood (wild species). Even though linden has no immune boosting actions, it does have an affect on the body's resistance to infection. I believe this is because of the positive, uplifting properties that affect the mood, which in turn affect the immune system. Just standing under the tree in bloom and inhaling the fragrance uplifts the spirit. Here are some other great benefits of using linden.
Actions and Properties
- diaphoretic (fever reducer)
- diuretic (increases urine flow)
- carminative (expels gas)
- nervine, relaxing
- hypotensive (stabilizes blood pressure)
- Affects heart, liver, nerves, and digestion.
- Calms stress, anxiety, nervousness, worry, and depression.
- Use for colds, flu, and fever.
- Balances blood pressure for either high or low.
- Relaxes and heals blood vessels, destressing the arterial walls.
- Relieves tension and aids in restful sleep.
- Warming and relaxing to digestive system.
- Helps with PMS pain.
- Cools hot flashes from menopause (drink cold tea or apply compress).
- Child friendly herb for colic, toothache, stomachache or pain, relaxing, trouble sleeping, calming.
- Mild pain-reliever.
- Inflammation relief such as boils, rashes, bites, burns and sore eyes (compress or massage tea into area).
Methods of Use
- honey, syrup
Care and Harvesting
- There is a small window during the summer months in which to harvest linden blossoms. Look for them in June and August.
- Harvest blossoms while fully open and fragrant, knowing the bees will be harvesting with you. You can rake your fingers through the blossoms to collect or use scissors.
- Sap can be boiled into syrup.
Linden Tea Benefits by Dr. Axe
The Way of Herbs by Michael Tierra
A Handbook of Native American Herbs
The Complete Medicinal Herbal by Penelope Ody