Shield against Viruses

When we say oregano, we usually think of the fragrant Italian cuisine, but this plant is much more than a fragrant spice, especially its wild variant, the one that grows on the cliffs in the wider Mediterranean region. Origanum vulgare has also always thrived in the mountainous areas of the Balkans. Today, it is known as wild […]

Snake Tamer of the Praries

If we let this plant tell us about what its ancient roots have witnessed, the stories would read along these lines: imagine the prairies of Nebraska, endless desolate fields and dramatic rocks, as one sees in cowboy movies. Then imagine the Indians, the Sioux and the Pawnee, cruising across those plains on their wild horses, […]

Swaying Palm Trees

When we think of a palm tree, we probably immediately imagine sitting on a tropical beach with a coconut next to a deck chair in the dappled shade of this exotic tree. The palm is one of the most decorative plants, but its usefulness still exceeds its decorative value: it is known that palm trees […]

Hops and Ample Breasts

Beer and ample breasts are every man’s dream and often go hand in hand – although not as men would like them to. Everyone knows the term “beer belly”, but beer has been proven to lead to the appearance of gynecomastia in men, which in the same vein could be called “beer breasts”. Certainly, every […]

What Do Witches, Brooms and Kidney Stones Have in Common?

Witches have been flying on brooms since times immemorial, all the way to Harry Potter. The forerunners of “Nimbus 2000” were used by ancient peoples, from northern Europe to the American Indians. It is believed that druids, shamans and sorcerers used various hallucinogenic plants during spiritual rituals, with which they would create the illusion of […]

Loves Me… Loves Me Not

In our childhood we must have picked it and plucked its heart-shaped leaves while saying “should I, should I not” or “loves me, loves me not”. Shepherd’s purse is another widespread, resistant weed plant, a bit inconspicuous but extremely medicinal. In some languages it is also called “girl’s herb” for a good reason: it has […]

Gentleness and Strength

While picking raspberries, Zeus’ wet nurse Ida accidentally pricked her finger on a thorn. Raspberries were snow-white at the time, and her blood turned them red. That is what Greek mythology says. This plant, which originated in Asia and which was “sowed” by animals all over the place, is often found in archeological excavations, as […]

For Sound Sleep

Hops were given their scientific name – Humulus lupulus – because of the ancient Romans’ belief that this climber tends to strangle other surrounding plants, just as a wolf (lupus) does to its prey. Even though it was used by American Indians and Arabs for centuries, hops were first used  in Europe as a favourite ingredient for beer-brewing […]