Member of the Lauraceae family. Northern spicebush is a shrub that reaches a height of 6-12 feet and grows in woodland areas of the central and eastern United States. Its leaves are ovate in shape, alternately arranged, and release a strong fragrance when crushed. Flowers are small and yellow, and bloom in the spring. Northern spicebush plants can be easily spotted due to their bright red berries, which provide food for various birds and insects. Originally used in Native American traditional medicine, Spice bush became used as a common household medicine for a myriad of ailments. Originally prescribed for typhoid, it has since been used in the treatment of colds, dysentery, intestinal parasites, and as a general pain reliever. Weiner. M. A. Earth Medicine, Earth Food. Ballantine Books 1980 ISBN 0-449-90589-6 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. 1990 ISBN 0395467225 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. 1998 ISBN 0-88192-453-9