What’s the idea?
Grow healing plants and take advantage of Mother Nature’s very own medicine cabinet in your back garden.
What’s the story?
I like to grow my own healing plants to supplement my first aid kit.
Because although many healing plants are actually used in synthetic medicines
It’s good to have a supply of living, growing plants to call upon too.
Humans have used plants and herbs for their healing properties from the beginning of our existence.
From skin ailments to inflammation, arthritis to colds and flu, many of us have turned to natural remedies.
So I have created my top 10 favourite healing plants that you can try growing at home.
People should do this because…?
Today golden turmeric lattes, herbal teas and ginger shots appear as a common item on most trendy café menus.
But you can recreate these immune boosters and natural remedies at home too much cheaper.
They are easy to grow both in your garden or in pots.
Growing your own plant is a fun and satisfying activity
You will always have a supply of healing plants
How do you do it?
There are lots of plants and herbs you can use from the garden when you are feeling unwell.
You’ll be surprised at how many of them you might have in your back yard or herb garden already.
Here are my top 10 healing plants:
Ginger: The healing power of ginger is a great anti-inflammatory and decongestant.
It’s also commonly used for stomach ailments and nausea. Simply grate some ginger root into a cup of hot water, add a spoon of honey and a squeeze of lemon juice.
Ginger typically grows in a warm climate. If you live in a cold place, a greenhouse is your best option.
Turmeric: A popular ingredient in home cooking, turmeric is hard to miss with its bright yellow hue.
So avoid getting on your clothes as it will stain them.
Originating in India, it is a powerful anti-inflammatory and is believed to have anticancer properties.
And is also well known to help with joint issues including arthritis.
Make a delicious turmeric latte by heating up some milk, adding a teaspoon of turmeric, half a teaspoon of cinnamon and some honey.
You can also add the root to your favourite smoothie.
Dandelion: Considered a weed by many, the prolific dandelion plant is actually a wonderful medicinal herb used for boosting kidney and liver function.
Plus the delicious roasted roots can be added to tea and coffee
Or on their own, as a caffeine-free, bitter alternative to coffee.
Dandelion leaves are delicious when added to salads or vegetables.
Calendula (marigold): These sunny yellow and orange flowers are not only cheerful to look at but by infusing them in some olive oil, they are a perfect skin healer and strengthener
Great for rashes and burns.
Or you can also simply toss the flowers in a salad and enjoy!
Chamomile: I’m sure we’ve all heard that chamomile is a soothing and calming herb, great for sleep.
If you’re feeling stressed out simply have a cup of delightful chamomile tea by infusing 3-4 tablespoons of fresh or dried chamomile flowers
Then add a fresh sprig of mint in a cup of boiling water for added freshness.
A hardy plant, chamomile thrives outdoors or can be grown in a pot too.
Echinacea: Easy to grow and producing beautiful purple flowers, this is a strong immunity booster.
Used for treating cold and flu symptoms add half a cup of a mix of fresh roots, leaves and flowers to a cup of boiling water and let it steep.
Finally add honey or agave to sweeten.
Evening Primrose: Better known for its use in essential oil, evening primrose has been used to soothe mild skin conditions.
It is also useful for hormonal imbalances, inflammation and high blood pressure.
This is a winter plant with bright yellow flowers, so is best grown in well-drained soil in an open area with plenty of sun.
Wild Bergamot: Also known as bee balm, it tastes a bit like Earl Grey tea.
Its bright pink flowers are a beautiful bee-friendly addition to the garden and it can be used to soothe anxiety, nausea and vomiting.
It also makes a great garnish and is excellent for making potpourri.
A hardy plant, wild Bergamot prefers well draining soil and full sun.
Stinging Nettles: Now this doesn’t sound like a plant you’d want in your garden
But stinging nettles are actually a nutritious leafy green addition to soups or stir-fries.
And they also make a lovely tea when steeped with peppermint.
Full of vitamins and minerals the seeds and leaves are used for allergies, arthritis and kidney conditions.
Nettles typically enjoy wetter soil and should be planted in marshy and shady areas.
Aloe Vera: As well as making an attractive house or office plant, Aloe Vera is widely used for skin ailments such as sunburn and rashes.
Simply squeeze the gel like substance from the fleshy leaves directly onto the skin.
This is an easy plant to grow inside and requires very little water but lots of light.
Finally, why not include some edible flowers, which also have an abundance of healing properties.
Propagation is a great way to start off when growing your plants.
Stuff you may need
Depending on which plants you decide to grow you’ll need to have one of these:
- Pots or plant boxes.
- Plants and seeds from your local garden centre or nursery.
Learn more about what you need to grow your healing plants here.
And finally, if you really don’t have anywhere to grow these plants you can source them at supermarkets and health food shops.