Oak Tree Uses
Tree Healing Therapy
Botanical name Quercus robur /Family Fagaceae
Native to most of Europe, Asia Minor, the Caucasus and parts of North Africa, the English oak is a massive, long-lived, deciduous tree with a wide-spreading head of rugged branches. Its green leaves turn gold to brown in autumn. The female flowers are pendulous catkins, while the female flowers are arranged in a spike. The fruits are acorns (nuts), green when young, turning a shiny golden-brown when mature.History, mystery and spiritual healing Held in high esteem throughout the major cultures of Europe, the oak was the most venerated tree to the Greeks, Romans, Celts, Slavs and Teutonic tribes. It is associated with their respective gods that had dominion over rain, thunder and lightning. In bygone times rulers wore oak-leaf crowns, symbolic of the god they represented on earth; Roman commanders were also presented with them as a sign of victory. Triumphal oak leaves continue to be insignias of military prowess. From the time of the Tudors, oak wood lay at the heart of Britain's building construction and industry and the fabrication of Queen Elizabeth l's conquering ships. Following the Battle of Worcester in 1651 , when King Charles II famously hid from the Roundheads in a large oak at Boscobel, Royal Oak Day celebrated the restoration of the monarchy. More recently, in 2001, the oak was adopted as the national tree of the US.
Oak bark, galls and acorns contain bitters, abundant tannins and are strongly astringent, antiseptic and anti- inflammatory; they are used to control bleeding. English oak bark is used externally as a decoction and applied as a wash, lotion or ointment to bathe weeping eczema and for skin eruptions, dermatitis, sweaty feet, ringworm, ulcers, varicose veins and haemorrhoids. It is also used as a compress for inflamed eyes, as a gargle or mouthwash for throat and mouth infections, and as a vaginal douche. Internally the drug is used in some proprietary medicines for diarrhoea, flatulence and dyspepsia, and for a prolapsed uterus or anus. Recently, American research into methanol extracts of Q. robur found that they demonstrated high activity against both thrombin (a blood-clot promoter) and cancer.
In homoeopathy, oak-bark essence is used for disorders of the spleen and gall bladder; it is also reputed to cause alcoholics an aversion to intoxicating drinks. In 2001, research on 41 cases of Cushing's disease in animals concluded that Q. robur used homeopathically may lend itself to the treatment of this disease.
Oak Bach Flower Remedy is used to promote common sense and inner strength, and to improve the ability to cope with worry and stress.
Common oak bark should not be taken internally without professional advice and supervision.