Plants & Farm StoriesFeb 2, 2022
Pharm Spotlight: Goldenrod Color
Goldenrod (Solidago spp.) was one of the first plants that Herb Pharm’s co-founder, Ed Smith, learned to identify in the hills around our Certified Organic farms in southern Oregon. He had read about the plant in books, but spending time in nature was how he and Sara Katz got to know the herbs they later used in Herb Pharm products.
The day that Ed first found Goldenrod in nature, he consulted the herbal reference guide he carried with him, smelled and touched the flowers and truly connected with the plant. This herb has a long history of use in herbalism, and he had read about it extensively. To see it in person was an amazing experience for the young herbalist.
Goldenrod offers traditional support for the urinary system and was used by folk herbalists to support the respiratory tract.* It grows abundantly in the wild, so Ed and Sara quickly filled a bag with its flowering tops. Goldenrod would become one Ed’s favorite herbs and play a role in our company’s history.
Around the same time, Sara and Ed needed to upgrade and preprint our labels. Since the start of the company, Sara had typed every single label for each and every bottle they produced on a typewriter at their dining room table. That’s how she memorized botanical names, from typing them hundreds of times each (or more)! They met with a printer and looked through the colorful options for paper. Both Sara and Ed were drawn to a vibrant shade of yellow. The name? Goldenrod!
They took it as a sign, and from then on, that rich yellow color became associated with our brand. It holds a deep connection to our roots and that first plant that we wildcrafted.
Herb at a glance
Botanical name: Solidago canadensis
Common name(s): Goldenrod
Plant family: Asteraceae
Native habitat: North America
Parts used: flowering tops
Botanical description: yellow flowers grow in thick clusters on stems with alternate leaves
Use(s): traditional support for the urinary system and used by folk herbalists to support the respiratory tract*
Flavor profile: Aromatic, balsamic, nearly pungent turning sweet