Herbs > Sarsparilla (smilax regelii)
Sarsaparilla is native to the
Tropical Americas. The roots contain the active
ingredients, and are long and tuber-like. The plant
itself is a ground-trailing vine, which grows as a
Sarsaparilla tea is made by adding 2 tablespoons
of dried sarsaparilla root to 1 litre of boiling
water. Simmer this mixture for 5 minutes, then remove
from the heat and allow to stand for an hour. Strain
This tea is pleasant tasting,
and is effective for skin disease such as eczema and
dermatitis. It will also ease liver disorders. Drink
1 cup of tea up to three times daily. In cases of
skin disease, the tea can also be used to bathe the
A similar tea will aid in the
recovery from venereal diseases such as gonorrhea and
syphilis. When adding sarsaparilla, also add to the
mixture 2 tablespoons of yellow dock root and 3
teaspoons of dried thyme. As well as drinking this
tea in dosages of 1 cup taken 3 times daily, use the
mixture to douche and/or wash the genitals.
Those suffering from kidney disorders should
avoid taking sarsaparilla internally.
Sarsaparilla root is often used as a flavouring
agent in foods. Sarsaparilla, or Sars, is a common
flavour for soda drinks in America. For home use, the
flavour will be extracted by boiling the root gently.
The liquid can be added for flavouring where desired.
It can also be added to other herbal teas to disguise
the bitter taste some herbs have.
Sarsaparilla is propagated by seed or root
division in Spring. It requires well-drained soil in
sun or partial shade, and will not grow at
temperatures of less than 12░C. Large roots can be
gathers by cutting them near the crown, leaving the
smaller roots to grow. The roots should be well dried
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