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  • Ghost Pipe

Ghost Pipe

Ghost Pipe

Ghost Pipe  (Monotropa uniflora)

Mid- summer in the southern boreal forest finds us quietly stepping in the damp soft moss at the base of old spruce and balsam fir trees. This is where we may find the delicate pink-tinged, waxy-white “pipes” of Monotropa, in the dark understory of the evergreens.  After admiring the beautiful structure and ethereal glow of this untamed saprophytic perennial who depends upon certain mycorrhiza that live in the forest soil, we offer our thanks and gather a small cluster or two for preparing into an extract. 

This whole plant extract holds the energy of the place in which it rises; the calm, quiet, peaceful nature of the deep woods where it grows. Physical pain seems less intense, the mind quieter, the heart open to connection. Some herbalists use a few drops; others a dropper full in water to offer the essence of the forest, moss and soft light in times of distress.

 

 

  • Post author
    Kathleen Gilday

Comments on this post (3)

  • Feb 19, 2019

    I love this plant and its medicine. But I want to offer some perspective. Although this plant may seem “common” in some places, it is a rather uncommon plant across its range because mature forests are becoming less common. Please harvest with respect! Please take only the tops of the plant, leaving the roots and their complex relationship with trees and fungi intact for the plant to grow another year. Please respect this medicine.

    — Susan Marynowski

  • Feb 18, 2019

    I feel Indian pipe to be a yin/yang medicine. Balancing the light and dark within our souls and connection to our bodies. The plant itself is white and ethereal, sometimes with a hint of pink suggesting heart and blood, yet the tincture is black almost deep purple (maybe congested blood). The darkness can be revived by the light. Good for lightening strike victims, phantom pain of amputees…it is the ghost remedy.

    — Carrie Desmarais

  • Feb 18, 2019

    I found these in the woods I was amazed by their beauty. Extract – sounds interesting. Thanks for the post!

    — Sheila lee

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