published: June 2019

There’s No Such Thing As A Weed: Microdosing herbs

When using herbal medicine, we are accustomed to having 3 cups of tea per day, or several milliliters of tincture two or three times a day as a standard dose.  European dosing is even higher, with tincture measured in teaspoons, which is seen as an effective dose.  But what if someone is sensitive to the alcohol in the tincture, or for some other reason finds it difficult to take a sufficient quantity of herbs?  Are there other ways to take herbs that don’t require the quantities usually used?

Yes!  The plant world is so generous and so flexible that many ways exist to microdose herbs.  Let me tell you a story.

Years ago, I was leading an herb walk for the herb school that I had gone to in Boulder.  We were going up a rather steep trail, and I began to get heart palpitations.  I knew that this particular class had gone on a different trail in the morning, a trail that had ample motherwort plants.  This was before the days when everybody had cell phones with cameras, when students typically taped a leaf of the plant they were introduced to onto their notebook page.  When the palpitations started, I asked for a motherwort leaf and a student gave me a small one from her notes.  I ate it, palpitations stopped, and they all learned something that day. Another time in the same era, I was hiking in the mountains and had palpitations.  There was no physical motherwort in that area so I simply asked the motherwort plant spirit to share herself with me and again the palpitations stopped. I recommend developing an intimate relationship with the plants before counting on this. It is the way that plant spirit medicine works.

Homeopathy, developed by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann in the nineteenth century, is based on the idea that like cures like, so the substance or plant that causes certain symptoms can also be cured by the same substance, in a very dilute and potentized dose, which is basically more an energetic than physical medicine but can have a very physical effect.  Homeopathy is great for children because the medium is usually a small sugar pellet which even babies can take easily.

Flower essences were developed in the early twentieth century in Britain by doctor and homeopath Edward Bach.  He discovered that an energetic medicine made from certain flowers could benefit certain emotional states.  Because many physical conditions have emotional roots, they can benefit physical issues too.  Since Bach’s time, many systems of flower essence have been created.

Another method of using low dose herbal medicine are called  homeobotanical medicines, a combination of homeopathy and herbal medicine that combines the benefits of both systems.  The system uses minute amounts of herbs which are then potentized and used in drop doses.  Alcohol, glycerin, or vinegar are used to preserve the medicine since there is such a small amount of tincture used.

Consider trying some of these forms of small dose herbal medicine!

Dorje Root, RH (AHG) is an herbalist and natural healer, also working with Plant Spirit Medicine, Intuitive Energy Healing and ‘The Journey’ cellular healing.  For an appointment call 719-937-7786 or visit