Having taken on a house sitting assignment in Adelaide I have ventured out in the cold and often dreary winter weather to visit the Adelaide Botanical Gardens.  Every time I go I am drawn to one of my favorite and energetically powerful herbs, White Sage – Salvia apiana.  I deeply breathe in the aroma and my mind, body, and soul feel cleansed of any negative energy and totally blessed.

Just having a White Sage plant in the garden or in pots around the house brings positive energy into your home attracting positive vibes and good energy. Burning a White Sage smudge stick and letting the smoke float over you or in and around your home or workplace is another way to ensure a more positive vibe and clear the energy in your space.  This ancient ceremony has been around for thousands of years and was traditionally used by the American Indians to rid a person, people or space of negative energy and restore balance.

A White Sage smudge stick can be easily made by drying a large bunch of its leaves and tying them into a tight bunch with cotton.  I love to make them with different colored cotton and give them as gifts. The smudging ceremony should be done with total awareness and in a respectful and mindful manner.  Some people say to close windows and doors but I prefer them open to let in fresh air.  Place a candle on a table, light it and then place the tip of the White Sage smudge stick into the flame.  The smudge stick will send out a small flame which will quickly go out and a stream of aromatic smoke will follow. You must be very careful to use a fireproof dish, metal or stone are great, held under the smudge stick as you walk through the house, office or just circling a person.  Smudge sticks can be quite expensive to buy so sometimes I just burn a few leaves in a little brass bowl and this can be enough to do a room or just where you are sitting.

 A really beautiful way to nurture yourself and cleanse your physical body and aura, especially after an emotionally challenging day, is to break up a couple of handfuls of dried White Sage leaves and put them into a muslin bag.  Fill the bath with warm to hot water, the temperature you like, and place the bag of sage into the bath while it is running and then leave it to steep while you are in there.  I love to make the bathroom dark, light tea candles and place them around the bath and make a strong brew of herbal tea, my favorites being lemon balm or mugwort, so soothing to the nerves.

I also make an extremely powerful White Sage Mist, with a quartz crystal in every bottle to energize it fully, that can be used in places where there are smoke alarms and can be carried in your handbag for those moments when you know you need to detoxify yourself or your space around you.

But there is more to the White Sage than these amazing properties,  you can also use White Sage in a tea for clearing congestion in the lungs and sinuses, and as a sore throat and cold remedy. This is because White Sage contains eucalyptol which has antimicrobial and antibiotic properties.  White sage also has estrogenic properties and can also be taken internally as a tea for relief of strong pain and heavy bleed during menstruation, to reduce your milk supply when weaning baby and to treat symptoms of menopause such as hot flushes and sweating.

What a truly amazing herb but with all herbs, there can be contra-indications and cautions and because White Sage contains thujone its consumption can be contraindicated for people with pre-existing kidney and heart conditions, so it is important to consult your qualified herbal practitioner before taking it internally.

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