Botanical Name: Capsicum Annuum | Family: Solanaceae
Common name(s): Cayenne
- Annual; herbaceous | 24 inches | White, star-shaped flowers early to midsummer followed by green fruit that turns red at maturity.
- Full sun.
- Prefers dryish soil.
- Sow seeds indoors in a bright, sunny location, they prefer warmth for germinating, which will happen in about a week. Transplant outside after all danger of frost has passed.
Companions: basil and cilantro – will enhance each herb’s flavor.
- Harvest the fruit when ripe (beginning in late summer) with gloves! Dry in the shade.
PREPARATION / DOSAGE
Infusion: Pour 1 cup of boiling water onto 1/2 – 1 tsp ground pepper and let sit 10 minutes. Mix 1 Tbls of this into hot water and drink as needed.
Tincture: .25 – 1 ml 3x / day.
Constituents: capsaicin, carotenoids, flavonoids, essential oil, vitamin C
Actions: antispasmodic, astringent, carminative, stimulant
Uses: first aid, heart disease, immune support (useful for colds and flus), topical pain relief
Combinations: when combined with plantain and used as a poultice, it is very effective at drawing foreign objects out of flesh
Cautions: only use the pepper fruit. The other parts of the plant can be toxic.
- Holistic Herbal, David Hoffman
- The Way of Herbs, Michael Tierra
- Homegrown Herbs, Tammi Hartung
- Medicinal Herbs, Rosemary Gladstar
This herb found in most people’s cabinets packs a powerful punch! I’ve started adding it to a popcorn snack – air popped popcorn drizzled with a healthy oil (extra virgin olive oil, usually), and sprinkled with Himalayan salt, chili powder, and a pinch of cayenne. The picture above is dried and processed cayenne from my garden.