Goldenrod (Solidago spp.) prospers abundantly on roadsides and meadows in late summer season and fall. Within the plant household, Asteraceae, the genus identify “Solidago” is derived from the Latin phrase “solidare” which interprets to, “make entire or heal.” This can be a useful clue into the numerous methods folks have been utilizing goldenrod for hundreds of years.

Aptly named, goldenrod flowers have a stunning golden hue and the plant can stand as much as four-feet-tall (Vorderbruggen, 2015). Goldenrod might be infused in oil and utilized in salves for irritation or utilized in tea or tincture to assist in respiratory congestion and seasonal allergic reactions. You can even make a luscious anise-flavored goldenrod cordial for fall sipping (hold studying for the recipe!).

The Advantages of Goldenrod

Goldenrod is a bitter fragrant herb with an anise taste. It’s nice for cleaning the kidneys, liver, and urinary tract, appearing considerably like a brush by sweeping out the system. It accommodates flavonoids, saponins, and tannins, making it an antimicrobial and antiseptic ally. Topically, goldenrod can be utilized as a salve to extend blood circulate to a selected space of the physique (Natural Academy, n.d.). 

How you can Harvest Goldenrod

Goldenrod is typically mistaken for ragweed (Ambrosia psilostachya)—the offender of allergic reactions. Nevertheless, there are some methods to tell them apart. Primarily, goldenrod flowers are a way more placing golden coloration in comparison with ragweed’s small, green-tinted buds, and goldenrod’s flowers are organized in a extra sturdy plume. (Be taught extra in Goldenrod vs. Ragweed: They’re Not the Same Plant!)

Goldenrod grows in disturbed areas throughout many of the United States typically lining roadsides and highways, flowering between July and August. It’s considerable close to my nice grandpa’s farm, and when the golden flowers change into clearly seen, I do know fall has formally arrived in Texas. It’s finest to reap the flowers and leaves within the morning when the flowers have simply opened. When harvesting, minimize above the spot the place the leaf joins the stem. It will encourage the plant to ship up three or 4 new shoots from the minimize. 

A book open on a table where someone is learning about using goldenrod

Utilizing Goldenrod

There are numerous enjoyable and artistic methods you could discover utilizing goldenrod in your house and apothecary. A number of of my favorites are: 

  • A placing centerpiece to your fall-themed desk 
  • Pure dye for silk scarves, desk linens, or wool yarn
  • Goldenrod-infused oil and/or salve 
  • Tincture 
  • Tea or infusion 
  • Infused honey
  • Garnish in soups, stews, and even omelets! 
  • A late-summer cordial

So What Is a Cordial?

goldenrod and pear cordial is a great way for using goldenrod in the kitchen

Cordials and elixirs are botanically infused alcoholic drinks or components made for sipping. Cordial is derived from Latin cordiālis, that means, “of the guts” and can provide a warming, gladdening feeling. The road between elixirs and cordials has change into blurred through the years, however most frequently, cordials comprise fruit and a extra pleasant-tasting alcohol, resembling brandy, bourbon, tequila, or vodka. After macerating herbs and alcohol collectively, including sweetener will lend the cordial a extra palatable taste for sipping. Cordials can last as long as 5 years if saved correctly, and so they make nice vacation presents for family and friends. 

Goldenrod and Pear Cordial

Like most natural preparations, there are a number of strategies for making cordials. The primary technique is fast and might be able to sip on in a number of hours, whereas the second takes a month to totally macerate, infusing the flavors of the alcohol and herbs collectively. I like to recommend the longer, extra conventional technique, however the fast one can work in a repair. 


1 cup recent, chopped goldenrod (Solidago spp.) flower (or ½ cup dried)
2 ounces chopped pear
1 cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum) stick
Brandy to cowl (about 6-Eight ounces). You can even use one other agreeable alcohol like bourbon, vodka, or tequila.
Honey, to style. You can even use easy syrup, molasses, or fruit focus. 

One 8-ounce glass canning jar with lid
Kitchen scale


For the fast cordial: Mix goldenrod, pears, and cinnamon in a big bowl with  32 ounces of distilled water. Cowl and soak for 3-Four hours. Switch to a saucepan and let simmer till the quantity is lowered by almost one-third, about (12 ounces). 

Take away from warmth and pressure by cheesecloth. Add honey as soon as it’s cooled, then add Eight ounces of brandy. Stir effectively to mix. Switch to wash, dried bottles with sterilized caps. Label the bottle and retailer within the fridge for roughly two weeks. Makes about 20 ounces. 

For the longer technique: Pack goldenrod, pears, and cinnamon in a clear, 8-ounce canning jar as much as ¾ of the best way full. Pour alcohol over the plant materials and canopy by not less than two inches. Be sure that all plant materials is totally submerged. Cowl with a chunk of parchment paper sandwiched between the lid and the jar, then retailer someplace cool and darkish for Three to Four weeks (longer if you need it to be stronger). 

Keep in mind to shake your jar each few days to maintain the plant materials submerged. After Four weeks, pressure by a cheesecloth, squeezing out the surplus liquid. Add about ¼ to ½  elements sweetener to the liquid (or add sweetener to style.) Bottle in clear, dry glass jars, label, and retailer for as much as 5 years. Makes roughly 7 ounces. 

To make use of, sip on a number of ounces of this pleasant goldenrod and pear cordial any time you want a particular deal with. It’s significantly great when served as an after-dinner aperitif! FYI, as a result of there’s no water on this longer technique, the alcohol content material is stronger. 

You can even…

  • Share it as a house-warming current 
  • Use in sauces or marinades 
  • Drizzle on fruit
  • Pour over ice cream 
  • Sip as a every day elixir for basic immunity throughout flu season 
  • Use as a sweetener in herbal cocktails 

In Closing,

Goldenrod is a farewell to summer season and it welcomes the primary blush of autumn. Shining shiny with its amber-colored aura, it is going to absolutely brighten any mid-winter blues. 

Natural cordials are straightforward to organize, make beautiful vacation presents, and may even supply useful properties when used with the appropriate herbs. I hope you take pleasure in these some ways of having fun with and utilizing goldenrod this season! 

For extra about utilizing goldenrod, see:

3 Tips for Foraging Goldenrod This Year
Health Benefits of Goldenrod
Goldenrod vs. Ragweed: They’re Not the Same Plant!

Using goldenrod in a cordial recipe - Pinterest Graphic


Natural Academy. (n.d). goldenrod monograph. The Herbarium. Retrieved from: 

Vorderbruggen, M. (2015). Foraging. Indianapolis, IN: DK Publishing.

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