A pot of tea is a pot of tea is a pot of tea…
Well, not really.
There are many variables that affect the strength and quality of herbal pharmacy, whether it is created in one’s home kitchen or in a larger industrial facility.
Included below are the points emphasized and addressed during our 10 Month Foundations program.
For alcohol tincture macerations, the time may range from 2 weeks to 6 months.
2. Heat – Warmth increases movement. Warming a carrier oil, glycerin, honey or water increases extraction.
Usnea (a lichen) is the only herbal preparation I know of that needs a hot alcohol extraction.
3. Agitation or movement – either continuous or intermittent.
Stirring, churning, simmering or percolating all apply here.
4. Surface to Volume Ratio – Within reason, the smaller the herb particles, the more surface area is exposed to the solvent.
Something similar to cornmeal size works well.
If the herb becomes too fine a powder, like powdered sugar, it can pack tightly and have the opposite effect.
5. Marc to Menstruum Ratio – Within reason, the more marc the better. However, there is a limit to how much a solvent can dissolve and hold.
6. The quality of the herb.
7. The quality of the solvent.
8. The care and mindset of the person creating the pharmacy.