Hawthorn berries are abundant in the hedgerows at the moment. This is a very safe herb to harvest and use, but please do be absolutely sure that you are harvesting hawthorn and not Yew berries or any other toxic berry.
Hawthorn is famously used to reduce blood pressure and take care of an old or tired heart. It is a natural sedative to the heart, often helping to calm palpitations or what we may call an agitated heart. By dilating the coronary blood vessels, it lowers the blood pressure and delivers nutrients to the cardiac muscle, thus supporting it to make strong and regular contractions. I have used this herb for years to help my partner Adrian who has less than 40% of his heart which is able to work. His cardiologist is surprised but delighted that he is still alive, and I am absolutely thrilled. We believe that Hawthorn has a great deal to do with this, and are very grateful to this gracious tree.
Below is a recipe which you can make at home and take a teaspoon everyday to support your heart. If you are on medication, it would be sensible to tell your doctor that you are taking Hawthorn honey, but it is unlikely that s/he will find reason to recommend that you stop.
Collect the haws now, as they are red, ripe and plump.
Pull them off the twigs and place in a saucepan.
Just cover with water and simmer.
At this point, they develop an unappealing fishy smell. Just ignore that and keep going.
I added a tablespoon of cinnamon to sweeten the taste.
When the berry is soft, rub the berries through a sieve so that you have a fine puree.
The berries are quite starchy, so you may need to thin the puree down with a little water until you get all the pulp through and are left with only pips in your sieve.
Now add half honey to half puree, and cook down until it reaches a thick syrupy consistency, then bottle and enjoy.