Sea Buckthorn (Hippophaë rhamnoides)

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP – Living in Natures Love Lifestyles @reneelindstrom

Pic by Renee Lindstrom

Photo taken July, 2021

Pic by Renee Lindstrom

Photo taken June, 2020

Also known as:  Sea Buckhorn, Sha Ji

  • Symbolizes:  Beauty & Vitality
  • Associated with:  Venus & Mars, (Scorpio & Libra),
  • Element: Air
  • Chakra: Crown & Sacral Plexus
  • Uses:  Culinary, Dye, Flower Essences, Medicinal, Skin Products, Spells, Tea
  • Parts used:  Seeds, Berries, Flowers, Leaves, Shoots & Roots
  • Preparation: Jams, Jellies, Juices & Sauces, Cosmetics & Anti-Aging Topicals, Oils, Tea

Yellow Dye Plant

I picked up these two pots of Sea Buckthorn from a nursery at the end of the season a few years ago They were small, not well cared for and priced to sell. I thought that these were native shrubs that grew off the coastal shores of Vancouver Island and I wanted to bring them back to life. I soon learned that Sea Buckthorn is originally from the higher altitudes of the Himalayas that spread across Europe, Asia and North America. They reduce soil erosion and add nitrogen to the soil. They are a good as a nutritional food and medicinal crop. These two potted shrubs are each a male and a female. For every 3 female shrubs one needs a male for pollination. These are hardy plants that I have discovered grow in the Canadian Prairies which is hot in summer and cold in winter.

Health & Wellness

​Sea Buckthorn berries are becoming recognized as a modern superfood. The berries and leaves are high in quercetin making them popular in Tibetan, Ayurvedic and Chinese medicines which have traditionally used them to promote digestion, enhance one’s immune system, as an expectorant and demulcent in the treatment of colds and flu.  The Ancient Greeks recognised its anti-aging and beautifying properties, The berries are a source of potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron​, phosphorus​m ​folate, biotin and vitamins B1, B2, B6, C and E​.​ Oil from the leaves and seeds may be one of the only plant foods known to provide all four omega fatty acids — omega-3, omega-6, omega-7 and omega-9.

Alexander the Great is said to have witnessed his horses eating the berries and then noticed afterwards noticed their shinier coats, their increased vitality and quicker recovery times from injuries. He named these berries Hippophae, which comes from the Greek words hippos and phaos, meaning “shining horse.”

Pedanius Dioscorides, ancient Greek father of Pharmacology wrote about the healing qualities of sea buckthorn berries in his 5-volume pharmacological encyclopedia De Materia Medica, which was a text on herbal medicine used for over 1,500 years during the first century AD.

Personal cultivation of Sea Buckthorn & recommendations

After caring for a male and female shrub for the past two seasons I have recognized their hardiness even while in pots. Learning about them through this relationship, while researching their edible and medicinal uses, my intention is to begin drying the leaves and berries for remedies, teas and snacks while using them fresh from the shrub. I will try to propagate them from cutting and seeds and explore how to increase the number of plants while exploring them as a superfood and the medicinal attributes. My hope is to expand my relationship with these plants by integrating them more fully into my lifestyle. I believe they could become a beneficial food and medicinal staple. I would recommend them to those yearning to create a self sustaining food, healing, dye or crop garden.

Buy Canadian Sea Buckthorn Plants

Sea Buckthorn Oil
Sea Buckthorn Berries

Recommended Reading

Sea Buckthorn Berry Ideas

Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.  Do not use if you are pregnant!

Copyright 2014 – 2021  Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000