While it’s not always on top ten lists of common healing herbs, comfrey deserves a spot up there with the rest of them. Although it may not be as popular today, comfrey has been used for millenia, and rightfully so. This is a versatile plant that is often grown not just for its healing properties, but for its ability to help your other plants grow.
The Backyard Medicine Cabinet: Catnip
When most people think about catnip, they (rightly) picture tipsy felines rolling around in a flower bed where it’s planted.
More accurately, most people probably don’t think about catnip… But if you did, I’m sure that’s what would pop into your head.
It is true that due to some chemicals contained within the plant, catnip does have a strange effect on many cats (which I’m assuming is where the name comes from). But most leave it at that, and don’t realize that the plant also offers a number of benefits for people.
The Backyard Medicine Cabinet: Stinging Nettles
Okay, I’m sure most of you aren’t sitting there thinking, “Gee, I think I’ll go take a walk and try to find some stinging nettles.” Searching for plants that cause skin irritation usually isn’t high on the list of fun things to do.
But you may want to reconsider in this case – while they can leave the unsuspecting passerby with a painful greeting, if you know what you’re looking for, stinging nettles are definitely a plant to seek out. Like many beneficial botanicals, they can be used for a variety of ailments, and in addition, nettles are one of the most nutritious vegetables out there.
Homemade Herbal Healing Salve
When you do a lot of stuff outside, you gets cuts, scrapes, and scratches. When you have kids, they get cuts, scrapes, and scratches, seemingly even if they’re in a padded room. During the summer, it’s rare if I don’t have some sort of minor skin wound or irritation, and of course, the kids can’t go more than a week without falling a scraping a knee.
Needless to say, we’re frequently in need of first-aid attention (although it doesn’t always happen, because I don’t like to stop what I’m doing at the time). Neosporin is nice and all, but in keeping with the household theme, we try to cut back on our petroleum by-products and antibiotic use. Since that’s out, what else are we to do but whip up our own healing salve? It’s 100% natural, effective, cheap, and almost everything comes from the backyard (I haven’t yet produced my own olive oil, which may be tough to do in Ohio, but don’t count me out yet).
Natural Flu and Cold Remedies
For many people, a case of the sniffles during the winter is inevitable, something that’s just accepted as another annual occurrence that coincides with Thanksgiving and Christmas. You know the deal: runny nose, congestion, and the dreaded sore throat. Cue the Nyquil… or not?
Over the past few years, we’ve tried to take a more holistic approach to our health, and while I will still admit to taking an occasional OTC decongestant for the worst cases, the drugstore is usually the last option. So before automatically turning to a bag of lozenges or antibiotics (which do absolutely nothing by the way, considering that both cold and flu are viruses), take a look at some of these natural cold remedies.