The needles of the spruce are dark green and grow around the branches. In springtime new sprouts grow at the tip of the branches. In the beginning these sprouts are light green and soft.
You can apply this tincture against muscle and joint pain. Internal you can use it against problems of the respiratory system. Don’t overdose the tincture internally to not affect the kidneys.
You can dilute the essential oil of the spruce with vegetable oil and use it to apply on muscle spasms and pains.
The essential oil can also burn the skin, therefore it should only be used diluted.
To not disturb the trees to much, collect only sprouts in the lower area of the trees. Only take few sprouts from every tree.
All the parts of the spruce should be collected at dry days, because when wet the needles get stinky rather soon.
As an inhalation you can use turpentine against asthma and inectious diseases of the breathing system.
Evergreen conifer tree spruce is easy to identify. Its branches are sharp and pointy and each twig carries the needles singly. To further distinguish the difference between spruce and its cousin fir, you need to observe the needle, roll it between your fingers and if it rolls easily (meaning the needle has 4 sides) you have a spruce needle. If it’s flat and it doesn’t roll (meaning the needle has 2 sides only) it’s a fir.
the alcohol in tinctures acts as a preservative therefore they can last up to five years or more.
How to use it?
Lots of the conifers species are edible and I am lucky to have them (spruce, fir and pine) in my neighborhood. I enjoy a nice spring walk to the forest to collect some spruce tips. The best time to collect young spruce tips is in the spring time. If you feel that you miss it try higher locations, there might still be some fresh bright green tips available. Be careful with the trees, when I go to forage I leave young trees to grow and collect the tips from older trees and never pick the tips from the top. Also I pick only a few tips from various trees so they have time to recover. Although pruning makes the trees bushy. For our tincture we need to collect vivid light green tips that are no longer than 2 inches.
Young spruce tips contain large amounts of vitamin C, which remove toxins from the body and strengthens the immune system.
Pour over with alcohol. I used 100- proof alcohol which contains 50% of alcohol and 50% water. Proof tells you how much of the liquid is water and how much is pure ethyl alcohol (ethanol). If you want to use vodka or other liquor for your tincture simply divide the proof by two. Make sure you use at least 80 – proof alcohol to properly extract the plant constituents as well as to preserve the tincture.
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