Calocedrus decurrens is the fragrant 'flat' cedar from the Northwest coast of North America.
Known as hanté blaska to the Lakota, Flat Cedar is a sacred herb often used in ceremony and during times of prayer ... and according to ancient legend, this dried herb is also a favorite of the Thunder Beings (Wakinyan).
Despite the cedar name, this herb does not come from true cedars. Most actually come from the Cypress family. The aroma of the Flat Cedar is sweet and extremely pleasant.
Burning Flat Cedar is said to purify a space by attracting good spirits and removing negative influences. As this herb is favored by the Thunder Beings, some people burn cedar as an incense during thunderstorms. And because of its use in ceremony and its close association with Thunder Beings, Flat Cedar is considered an essential herb during the Native American ceremonial seasons of spring and summer.
Fresh Flat Cedar also makes a wonderful tea, containing large amounts of Vitamin C.
FLAT CEDAR TEA RECIPE: Bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Add in 2 cups of fresh flat cedar leaf. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until the water becomes a golden color. Strain off the cedar leaf and sweeten with maple syrup, or honey, to taste. Delicious warm or cold.