A similar strategy is used by people who take rag weed tincture in the spring and early summer, before this plant flowers. The Heritage Store in Virginia sells products recommended by Edgar Cayce, the American psychic whose well documented medical insights cured thousands during the 1930s and '40s. Edgar Cayce recommended rag weed to over a hundred individuals as a liver tonic and nonhabit-forming laxative and prescribed it to help desensitize pollen-sensitive systems when taken ahead of pollen season. Users have reported relief from other allergies after taking rag weed tincture for several weeks.
The Heritage Store's product contains only rag weed and grain alcohol. Inspired when I read this at the peak of rag weed season as I was sneezing my head off, I gathered blossoms from the inconspicuous common rag weed (Artemesia artemisifolia) and the tree-tall great or giant ragweed (A. trifida), covered the pollen-rich flowers with vodka and made my own tincture. The following spring I began taking half a dropperful daily. All through ragweed season, which lasts to the end of October, I continued the ragweed experiment and seldom sneezed, even when pollen counts hit record highs.