Curlycup Gumweed

Pteíčhiyuȟa. Grindelia squarrosa. Curlycup Gumweed.

This is one of the yellow flowers you’ll find growing by the side of the road this time of year — not just in the Dakotas, but across North America. This is the time of year to harvest it!

If you look at the underside of the flower, you can easily see the “curly cups” that give it that name:

When tinctured, this is one of the best, strongest, and fastest-acting medicines I know for breathing. A few people have asked me what it is recently, so I just thought I’d share.

I usually tincture it, which creates a very strong, easily portable medicine that doesn’t require much effort from the patient when they’re sick. (I sent a few bottles of my tincture to California to help friends who were sick from smoke inhalation during the fires last year. It also has helped me clear up a mild winter cough on multiple occasions.) You can also dry it out and make a decoction as needed.

Here is a view of the flower from the top:

It tends to grow in disturbed areas (like roadsides). The ideal time to harvest is when it has as many flowers open as possible.

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