Making Burdock Root Tincture

Jan Erickson
4 min readNov 10, 2022

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Making tinctures is simple, especially if you use the folk method. The weight/volume method can also be used, but it’s a little more involved, what with the math and all. So I typically use the folk method. I’ve been growing greater burdock for a few years now, and I’m currently separating out the seed from the burrs. It’s an ongoing process and about as irritating as you can imagine. It’s bad enough that I have to practically wear a wet suit when around the plants if their burrs have formed. Trust me when I say, DO NOT GET THE BURRS IN YOUR HAIR. It’s a nightmare that you’ll never forget.

Anyway, I can only work on separating the seed from the burrs for short periods, so it will likely take most of the winter to get it done given the little fluff on the inside of the burrs that will stick to your clothing and will also work its way into your fingers. That’s why I wear clothing protection to keep them from working their way into my clothes and then into my skin. They’re like slivers and gloves may or may not be helpful. I may try using the gloves that have been dipped in rubber, but we’ll see. I really want to make some tincture from the seeds though. They’re good as a diuretic, so I’ll persevere.

My husband dug up two large burdock plants and brought me some really good-sized roots. The biggest tap root broke off of one plant, which is fine because it means more will grow there next year. After cleaning them, I cut them into small pieces and placed them into a half-gallon canning jar. They filled up most of the jar and then I poured in 100-proof alcohol to the top of the jar’s lip. Typically, I use grain alcohol when tincturing fresh plants or roots, but I didn’t have any. Fresh plants/roots contain water which can…

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Jan Erickson

Blogger at http://www.imsteppingaside.com/ Empath✵Witch✵Reiki Master✵Kenpo✵Herbalist — Author of Shifting Perception and more…