Cannabis has become quite prevalent in the healing space. With states following in California’s legalization movement, cannabis is making a modern medicinal, and recreational, imprint on health and wellness. However, many are wondering how herbalists are responding to the national and global cannabis mania, with clients consistently requesting cannabis in formulas or turning to it over other plants. Is Michael Pollan right that perhaps cannabis has intoxicated us for its own reproductive benefits or have we simply co-evolved together? And so, the question remains – did cannabis take over the plant healing space? My answer is no. 

Cannabis is a plant medicine and should be acknowledged and admired as such. Most herbalists have been quite welcoming to it into the healing space. Our job is to HEAL with plants and listen to what our clients need. If cannabis will help, then we will prescribe it! I believe not only is cannabis helping heal humans, but we are also helping cannabis flourish and prosper. 

In addition, hemp itself is a very sustainable and versatile plant, with thousands of years of medicinal and practical uses in traditional Chinese, Native American, Muslim, Greek, Persian, and Roman cultures. Today, it remains essential for its immense potential for human and environmental health. And frankly, its stigma is pointless, rooted in segregation and racism.

A man holding a cannabis leaf.
Photo by David Gabrić on Unsplash

During the Mexico Revolution of 1910, the Mexican population was driven into southern states, where their culture recreationally used cannabis, calling it “marihuana.” At this time, even though white Americans were using cannabis medicinally, they were unfamiliar with the Mexican term or its recreational use. As prejudice against immigrants became more prevalent, so did fear over cannabis, with propaganda being spread about “marihuana” being a “killer drug.” As such, racial tensions continued to grow and so did the stigma against cannabis, which led the federal government to increase regulations on “marihuana” (now known as marijuana). Healers and enthusiasts alike have waited decades for not only legalization but the de-stigmatization of this herb.

I do not see cannabis and “other” herbs as separate. They are all plant medicines. In fact, many herbs enhance the medicinal properties of cannabis and vice versa. Cannabis’ cannabinoids are powerful and pair well with most herbs. Similar to cooking vegetables, individually, the ingredients such as potatoes, beets, garlic, tomatoes, etc. taste delicious, but when combined, each flavor elevates the other to create a unique, magical dish.

Great Cannabis and Herb Combinations.

Manage pain/relieve muscle spasms

  • Turmeric
  • St. John’s Wort
  • Devils claw

Combat addiction (alcoholism) 

  • California poppy
  • Fennel
  • Lemon balm

Regulate sleep

  • Lavender
  • Chamomile
  • Valerian
  • Passionflower
  • Skullcap

Improve mental health (depression, anxiety, adhd, add, ptsd)

  • Lemon balm
  • Holy basil
  • Hops
  • Oats
  • Linden
  • Mimosa
  • Hyssop

Lucid dreaming/enhance high/induce meditative states

  • Blue lotus
  • Mugwort
  • White sage
  • Damiana
  • Kava kava

Cancer

  • Jasmine blossom
  • Cat’s claw
  • Turkey tail
  • Reishi
  • Mesima
  • Royal sun
  • Poria
  • Shiitake
  • Maitake
  • Sheep sorrel
  • Cleavers

Mend bones 

Anti-Cancer Cannabis Tincture Recipe

Ingredients

⅛ oz Cannabis 

⅛ oz Red clover

¼ oz Cat’s claw

¼ oz Burdock

¼ oz Soursop

½ oz Sheep sorrel

½ oz Turkey Tail 

Method

  1. Decarboxylate your cannabis flower or concentrate (if you’re using flower, grind it to a fine consistency).
  2. Fill the jar with ¾ plant material and the rest of the jar with the vegetable glycerin (estimated amount of plant material listed above).
  3. Make sure to leave about 1-inch clearance space from the lid.
  4. Close the jar and let it sit for 6 to 10 weeks.
  5. Shake it every other day.
  6. After allotted weeks, strain it through a coffee filter.

Vegan MaryJane Mac and Cheese Recipe

Ingredients

½ to 1 cup cannabis oat milk to desired dosage

½ lemon

1 carrot

1 cup cashews

1 pasta box of choice

1 small sweet potato

2 tsp mustard powder

2 tbsp Nutritional yeast 

2 to 3 large cloves garlic

3 heaps tbsps pumpkin puree 

Salt and pepper to taste

Method

  1. Soak cashews for at least one hour before making the recipe.
  2. Steam sweet potato and carrots. Let cool before adding to the blender.
  3. Add all ingredients to the blender (use additional plain oat milk or hot water as needed for desired consistency).
  4. Cook and strain pasta.
  5. Add cheese sauce to cooked pasta.
  6. Combine and enjoy.

Sprinkle paprika, chilli flakes, culinary herbs and any additional cooked vegetables as desired.

Cigarettes with cannabis and other herbs.

Flower Infusions Herbal Smoke Blends 

In 2018, I founded New Zealand’s first herbal smoking brand, Flower Infusions, made with only legal, organic herbs. The company sold three blends of loose leaf bags and pre-rolled packs of biodegradable smokes in 100% recyclable materials. Two of the blends, Reherb-ilitation and Holy Smokes pair perfectly with cannabis.

Reherb-ilitation

This blend is a helpful alternative to a tobacco cigarette. It is meant to help overcome tobacco addiction and ease withdrawal symptoms related to quitting nicotine. It is specifically formulated to help reprocess nerves and calm the inflammation and adrenaline addiction in the brain. They are ideal for those who want to smoke a healthy version of tobacco and ground their present energy.

Ingredients 

10g Tulsi 

10g Gotu Kola 

10g Lemon Balm

10g Mullein 

5g Cannabis sativa 

2.5g Passionflower

2.5g Rose Petal

Holy Smokes

This spiritual blend helps promote lucid dreaming, enhance meditation and open your intuitive third eye. They are extremely calming, making them an excellent alternative or addition to cannabis. Be prepared to transport your body, mind and soul on a cosmic earthly journey.

Ingredients

10g Mugwort 

10g  Damiana 

10g Catnip

10g Blue Lotus

5g Bearberry

5g Cannabis indica 

Molly Helfend

Molly Helfend is an herbalist, ethnobotanist, and writer. She possesses a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies and Holistic Health, a Masters of Science in Ethnobotany, She started her journey as an environmental activist with Greenpeace and Rainforest Action Network. She later used her passion for plants to travel the globe, working as a clinical herbalist and using cultural competency to influence her work in USA, Australia, New Zealand, England, Indonesia and more. She has worked as a content writer, product developer and creative marketing consultant for prominent health and wellness companies around the world. Whether through the alchemy of herbalism, the research of indigenous plants, or the healing practices of being a practitioner, Molly has educated countless people about how to improve their own health and work with plants.

1 Comment
  1. These recipes are amazing! Cannot wait to try them all, they are all extremely practical. Very interesting history of cannabis as well – it needs to be legalized everywhere finally! What a beautiful plant medicine. Love Molly’s articles, cannot wait for more to come out.

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