Cut the branches containing the best leaves and flowers intact on stems up to a thickness of 8mm in diameter. Scaevola spinescens (Maroon Bush) is at its most potent when in both flower and fruit.
Wash the braches well as there is usually a lot of dust on the plant, particularly if it is growing near a road. Cut the branches into pieces about 3cm long, using all the plant – stems, bark, leaves, flowers and fruit.
Place all of this into a large pan and add water (rainwater or filtered water best as tap water contains chemicals that could reduce the medicine’s efficiency) until all the plant is just covered. Bring slowly to the boil and simmer for two to three minutes. Allow to cool slowly, and stand overnight.
Strain, and bottle in glass, not plastic bottles. The resultant brew should be a dark greenish brown, depending on the strength of the chemicals in the plant. At certain times of the year a small clot of residue may rise to the neck of the bottle. This is not a sign that the medicine has ‘gone off’, and it can be gently poured off.
Take twice a day, two tablespoons to one third of a cup (about 50mls) of medicine to the remainder of a cup of either hot or cold water, depending on taste and the severity of the complaint. The taste is similar to herbal tea with a little bitterness, but is quite pleasant to take. However, if the medicine has been boiled too long or if the plant is not at its most suitable time, the resultant tea may be more bitter. This can be made more palatable by adding a little fresh fruit juice. It is also possible to dilute the dosage with more water than medicine to weaken it, but in this case I recommend that you take it three times a day (still a total dose of 100mls of the raw medicine, with varying amounts of water, per day.)
Thank you to The Yamaji Language Centre in Geraldton for the book ‘Wadjarri Wisdom’ from which this extract was taken.
We have had several requests for how to make this powerful Aboriginal Bush Tea, so hope this assists those interested. Barry has not had this tea for a while as he is going very well on his green juicing and vegan diet. But everything must help. Keep sending us your ideas and updates too. Love to hear from all..