Actually did some digging up at the old allotment! Dug out one of those pesky Inula roots – Inula helenium (Elecampane) is an ace remedy for coughs, chest weakness, pleurisy and the like. An aromatic bitter, it is restorative to the lungs and antibacterial to boot. Trouble is I have so much of the stuff on the allotment – leave one small piece of root in the ground and – Triffids around the place! It is related to Jerusalem artichokes Helianthus tuberosus (Asteraceae) which will also run and run! Both contain loads of inulin, a starch-like complex carbohydrate made of fructose rather than glucose, but you wouldn’t eat Inula as a vegetable, too bitter and strong tasting. Nice as a syrup but the tincture is tolerable.
Talking of tinctures, after last weeks’ allotment visit I started a tincture of fresh dandelion root. Hope to press out soon as need it urgently. Hard to keep ahead of stock supply when there are so many other things to do.