Materia Medica

Materia Medica

Coalcracker Bushcraft Admin June 01, 2019

Want to set up a materia medica? Here is the outline I use.In a recent video I talked about setting up a materia medica (medicinal plant guide) that is specifically focused on plants and trees in your specific area that you are specifically comfortable using. 

Here are some of the reference notes/outlines I use to set up the entries and create the guide! 

Properties of Herbs

Alterative: Produces gradual beneficial change in the body. Usually, improving through nutrition/metabolism

Anesthetic: Deadens sensation

Anodyne: Soothes or relieves pain

Anthelmintic: Destroys or expels intestinal worms

Antiemetic: Counteracts nausea and relieves vomiting

Antibacterial: Destroys or inhibits bacteria

Antiseptic: Destroys or inhibits pathogenic or putrefactive bacteria

Antispasmodic: Relieves spasms or cramps

Aromatic: Having an agreeable odor and stimulating qualities

Astringent: Contracts and lightens tissues, reducing secretions and discharges

Carminative: Expels gas from intestines

Cathartic: empties the bowels, laxative

Choleretic: Stimulates the liver to increase the output of bile

Demulcent: Sooth, protects, heals, irritated tissue

Diaphoretic: Promotes perspiration

Diuretic: Increases the secretion and explosion of urine

Emetic: Causing Vomiting

Emollient: Used externally to soften and soothe

Expectorant: Promotes discharge of mucus from respiratory passages

Febrifuge: Reduces or eliminates fever

Nervine: Having a calming or soothing effect on nerves

Purgative: Promotes vigorous emptying of the bowels

Sedative: Soothing agent, reducing nervousness

Stimulant: Excites or quickens activity or physiological processes

Tonic: Strengthens or invigorates organs 

Outline For Listing Medicinal Plants/Trees

Plant Name

  • Description 
  • Parts used

Medical Use

  • Describe in terms of medicinal properties of plant
  • Define the term if not known


  • Describe the procedure for preparation 


  • Amount and frequency


  • List any associated dangers of the plant/tree

List of My Common Medical Needs with Medicinal Remedies

  • Blisters
  • Burns
  • Congestion/Sinus Pressure
  • Cuts
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Muscle Aches
  • Rash/Poison Ivy-Oak
  • Sore Throat
  • Upset Stomach