Uses for Holly Bush

WARNING(S)  Fruits can produce violent nausea and vomiting and 
should be considered poisonous.
American Indians use to use this in a cleansing ritual ( in small doses)

AMERICAN HOLLY (Ilex opaca Aiton 

Description - Holly is an evergreen tree with smooth, leathery leaves. Leaves (5-10 cm or 2-4 in) have many spine-tipped teeth, dull green above and yellow-green beneath. Bark is smooth and light-gray. Twigs are gray or brown. Flowers are small and white with four rounded petals, present April-June. Male and female flowers found on separate trees. Fruits are round, hard, red and berry-like, present September-November and remain on tree through the winter. Leaves and berries often used in Christmas decorations.

Thy plants are found in most of the country. More common in moist soils and floodplains.

Time of year  All year

Location most of the North America except really dry states
.Click here for map   If it does not grow in your area do a search to see what type does 

Nutrient Content
None that I can find

  • Leaves can be made into a tea that helps with measles, cold, flu and pneumonia. *
  • Leaves can be ground and used on itching skin and sores
  • The Bark  can be made into a tea to help with malaria and epilepsy.
  • And yes even these berry can be used if you need to endue vomiting.  
  • The tea is used to stimulate the heart and increase urine flow. (note below that it has caffeine)   
  • I read on web md that is also helps with coughs, digestive disorders, water retention and fevers
  Other holly species are used for treating heart disease, dizziness, and high blood pressure.

 Roasted and green holly tea

BUTTTTTTT here is why I love this plant!!!!!!!!
I always worry about my caffeine when it comes to prepping, I have a large amount of coffee but it is good to know what is out there in the wild. 
This Holly bush (which I have several!)  that I trim back, because it loves to grow right in front of my house....I now do not plan on trimming it so much. 

*How to make Holly tea
Holly use to be one of those popular crops before our food got in the hand of big daddy corporations.    But this bush/tree has yes CAFFEINE in it not to mention it has high levels of antioxidants. 
A tea  made from dried leaves is caffeinated, just collect some leaves, air dry or dehydrate them (that’s important). You can use them green or roast them in a slow oven until golden, then crush. Pour hot water over them, let them seep for two minutes, and enjoy.

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