Common names-

Old Mans Beard, Papas Beard

Usnea barbata

Usnea is a lichen and a powerful antibiotic. It is found all across the world. Usually found on dead or dying trees, usnea tells the story of the health of the tree it lives on. It is a pale green to light grey in color.

At Home- You can steep Usnea in hot water and drink 3-4 cupfuls a day to cure strep throat. Usnea is also recommended for upper respiratory infections as well as pneumonia.

In the Wild- You can use Usnea to heal open wounds. Crush the lichen into a workable form and lay across the wound or, if the wound is deep, place in water and steep for as long as possible to leach out the properties. Pour the liquid onto wound. Usnea has rapid healing abilities and will help prevent the wound from getting infected.

Contraindicated for Pregnancy


For strep throat-Steep ½ ounce of herb to 6 ounces of water. Mix lemon and honey. Drink 1, 4ounce cupful 2-3 times a day. 


                                                                          Look Alike Alert!

Usnea can resemble Spanish moss. Pull apart the lichen, if its core is white it is usnea, if it has a black core you have Spanish moss. Also, Spanish moss does not grow in the northern regions of the US.

*For educational purposes only. Always discuss with your doctor when starting an herbal regimen.