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Plants - Navajo/Hopi Tea a/k/a Greenthread


Thelesperma megapotamicum is better known as either Navajo Tea or Hopi Tea. This herb has been gathered and prepared by these tribes for many centuries. The flower on this herb stands out in a radiant yellow beam extending from its long slender stalks. This perennial is also known as T. gracile. The leaves grow opposite to each other the majority being pinnately parted out in a few lobes that are narrow. The heads are small to medium in size and are bright yellow in color. ) The fruit is so small and is enbedded within the flower that it may remain unnoticed unless being specifically search for.


Thelesperma megapotamicum can be found on the Navajo and Hopi Reservations by the roadsides, on dry or grassy plains, and mesas at an elevation of ~ 4,000 to 7,500 ft. According to the Arizona Flora it can also be found in "Nebraska and Wyoming to Utah, south to Texas, Arizona and Mexico; southern South America."


Teachings are passed down from generation to generation about herbs and lifestyles. This is one that has been passed down. When Navajos gather this herb or other plants it is important to give a prayer and explain to the plant why it is being removed from its home. If this is not done then they have broken the balance and harmony of Mother Earth. Harvesting is done by, taking some herbs from all four directions (to keep balance); North, East, South and West. Never take more than can be used, always leave some behind, and give a prayer of thanks. In doing so, Mother Earth will continue to bear her fruits. Found most off in a sunny, well drained location.

Navajo TeaHopi Tea/Greenthread/Coda/Cota is a southwestern plant that produces a bright bold yellow tea that natives of the region say supports the kidney, cleans the blood and settles the belly. It's a refreshing drink that's for sure!


Sassafras's Note:  My Gramps (Cherokee and Natchez) called it Greenthread Tea.

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