It’s often the case that the most beneficial plants and herbs are located in the most impenetrable jungles and swamps! This is certainly true for Rooibos (pronounced roy-bose). Rooibos in Afrikaans means red bush. Born in the jungles of South Africa there lives a plant resembling a broom. Its leaves form healing teas and can heal skin problems. Its name is Rooibos, or Red Bush Rooibos is located in a small corner of South Africa and must be harvested by hand, for the proliferation of plant life prohibits the entry and operation of machinery. Rooibos can be used when green for its beneficial health components, but in its mature state, when it’s red, it contains other varied health benefits. Rooibos can be used raw, when the leaf is cut, to rub onto the skin to treat rashes, cuts and abrasions. The leaves can be ground and brewed as a tea or they can be made into an aromatic for the alleviation of symptoms of bronchitis, asthma and allergies. The scientific name for Rooibos is: Aspalathus linearis. The plant closely resembles a broom and is a member of the legume family. The leaves are oxidized, producing the red color, which gives it a somewhat nutty flavor. When green, the leaves are not oxidized and have a grassy, malty type flavor. It is common to see Rooibos consumed as tea. Without milk and sugar, the tea is sweet enough but many people still choose to add milk as this is what they are used to. Rooibos makes a nice iced tea as well. Coffee shops even use it, brewing it into espressos and lattes; because it is caffeine-free, it makes an excellent before bed beverage.