I’ve put together a little list of my favorite hydrating summertime plants for you today. All of these plants are calming and cooling for the entire body, taking your hydration to the next level in a way that water alone can’t. Many of them act via mucilage, aka slimy gooey plant-constituents that coat and soothe tissues throughout the body. This nourishing plant goo delivers deep hydration, and is best extracted as a cold infusion, with the plant material steeped in tepid water and left overnight either on your counter or in the fridge, depending on the temperature of your house (we’re not trying to ferment it!).
Linden - A fantastic cooling, calming herb that’s supremely anti-inflammatory. It’s floral taste is amazing on a hot summer day, and it makes a fantastic beverage option for any picnic. Calms the mind and helps with focus.
Hibiscus - Tart and tangy, iced hibiscus tea is a classic summer treat. I like it steeped for hours with ginger and cinnamon for a bit of an herbal sangria. It’s bioflavonoids promote heart health, which is so important as dehydration can tax our ticker.
Marshmallow - The ultimate in plant-based hydration, and cousin of hibiscus, marshmallow is great to have at least once a week. It does have a bit of a strong flavor, so I like to hide mine by adding a cup or so to my fruit smoothie.
Corn silk - Oh my god, this plant is such a summertime treat. Dried corn silk pales in comparison to its fresh counterpart. It tastes a little bit like honeysuckle, but more earthy. All you need to do is take the fresh silk from your cobs, discard any brown, and save them in a jar in the fridge. When the jar is full, cover with filtered water and leave to steep overnight. Strain and enjoy the most delicious, hydrating, kidney-supportive tea I can think of.
Oatstraw - Feeling frazzled? There’s so much to do in the summer, whether that’s kids being home from school or harvesting your garden bounty. Oatstraw makes the most delicious iced infusion, immediately cooling to the head and heart. Grassy and sweet, you can drink it straight up, right out of the fridge.
Peaches - Don’t forget you can eat your water! Summer fruits and vegetables like peaches, watermelon, tomatoes and cucumbers are fantastic ways to get more water into your body without drinking gallons a day. Peaches in particular deliver essential sugars to keep us pepped throughout the hottest of summer hikes… or pool lounges.
Okra - The queen of all slimy plants, okra is fantastic for keeping our insides juicy when the sun is peaking. You can make okra tea and use that on a sunburn, or you can just cook up a mess and add some curry powder for a deeply nourishing meal that fills the inner well.