Indian warrior is one of my favorite plants to find. It is a gorgeous wispy little bud of magenta red goodness. The dark green leaves almost remind me of ferns because of their feathery texture. Sometimes there are streaks of dark purple in the leaves, which make them very unique.
This flower can be found from March until April growing in clusters in wooded areas. I’ve mostly seen them growing out west from Redding to Humboldt. They are partially parasitic plants and have been known to get nutrients by tapping into roots of other plants nearby.
This is a good medicine for people who need to relax a bit. The flower buds hold most of the medicine. I have usually made the buds into tea, but I’ve heard of people drying and smoking them as well. Of course, you can also make a tincture with them.
When harvesting, be sure to leave an abundant supply behind to go to seed, so that you can come back year after year without ever exhausting the supply.
If you decide to make tea with them, you will notice something very interesting. During the process of brewing, the magenta color is drawn out of the flower buds and into the tea. The tea becomes a beautiful rose color, and the flower buds are left dull and colorless. This color is the medicinal part of the plant.
I usually drink this tea in the evening after a hard day of work to unwind and relax. It can be used to help calm anxieties, induce sleep, or relax sore muscles. The tea has very pleasantly distinct earthy flavors.