Herbal remedies from your garden
Not sure which plants to grow in your garden? Choose the healing herbs, fill your home with perfumes and take advantage of all the properties of the herbs to improve your health and live better. If you don’t have a garden, you can take advantage of the space on the balcony by growing the potted plants. The herbs are also excellent as an ornament!
There are plants that contain active substances and that can also be used for the preparation of drugs. In fact the herbs are synthesized and reduced to powder, ready for oral intake. The difference between drugs and herbs is the speed with which the active ingredient takes effect, if you want a quick solution, it is preferable to use a medicine, otherwise you may prefer the advice of the herbalist.
Using herbs for minor ailments or to prevent them is a great way to avoid using drugs whenever possible. In fact, with leaves, flowers, berry roots or extracts you can prepare herbal teas and essential oils. Among the most widespread techniques there is the decoction, using the suitable officinal plant boils part of it, generally the leaves or flowers, and left it in infusion for a period that varies between ten and fifteen minutes.
Let’s see some of the most common healing herbs you can grow in your garden.
Dandelion. Among the most used medicinal plants, the Dandelion with its orange-yellow flower and the characteristic fruit, grows spontaneously in the fields. However, you can grow it in the garden sowing it from March to May, or between the end of April and June directly in the ground. The distance between the dandelion seedlings must be between 15 and 20 cm. The harvest of this plant is done between May and November, ideal for medicinal use, it has the power to be an excellent balsamic vinegar. You can use the roots, which, after being dried in the sun, are used in decoctions and herbal teas with a diuretic and purifying effect.
Nettle. Another spontaneous herb is the Nettle. The harvest takes place between April and September and it is not recommended to act with bare hands as it is a stinging plant. It can be grown in the garden with sowing in the spring. It is important to always keep the growth of the crop under control which, if not followed, could cause serious damage as the nettle is infesting. The herbal tea with nettle leaves is indicated in case of inflammation of the urinary tract, it contains a good quantity of mineral salts and vitamin C. The nettle is particularly indicated for all those who suffer from anemia or iron deficiency. It also has a detoxifying effect on our body thanks to its diuretic and bowel regularization properties.
Passiflora. Excellent to grow both on the ground and in pots, the Passiflora or Passionflower, requires little care and enjoys optimal resistance for countries with a temperate climate. Passion flower is an excellent remedy in anxiety syndrome characterized by restlessness and insomnia, so the plant’s activities are mainly sedative and antispasmodic. For the decoction it is essential to use flower, leaf and fruit stems. The Passionflower is sown from October to February and blooms from July to September, its flowers are also beautiful as an ornament. The plant prefers bright and sunny places, so if you live in a cold climate you need to protect it adequately as it has poor resistance to low temperatures.
Lemon balm. Lemon balm leaves give off a delicious fresh scent and the presence of this plant on the balcony gives a touch of elegant and refined color. It can be used effectively to counteract anxiety associated with visceral somatizations and to combat insomnia, thanks to the sedative and antispasmodic properties it is endowed with. Furthermore, the irritable bowel syndrome can be cured with two cups of Melissa herbal tea per day, which is also useful for nausea and facilitates digestion. The balm leaves and the inflorescences are both used, the best moments for the harvest are July and October, the leaves can be consumed fresh or they can be dried in dry and dark rooms. This aromatic plant is also very well preserved in the freezer.
Mallow. It is sown in spring maintaining a distance of 25-30 cm between the seedlings. Of the plant the flowers are still gathered in bud and the younger leaves, which are dried in the dark to prepare herbal teas. The mallow herbal tea can cure both inflamed gums, calming discomfort and irritable bowel syndrome. Used with flax seeds, left to infuse, it can be used as a poultice to calm the cough.
Chamomile. One of the medicinal plants par excellence, it grows spontaneously in meadows, recognizable thanks to oblong leaves and delicate fragrance. It can be cultivated at home with sowing from July to February, in moist soil but protected from wind and rain, paying attention to stagnant water. Of the plant you can only use the flowers that you can harvest during the summer: better in July and August when they are more “balsamic” and better if they have only been opened for a few hours. Harvesting should be done in the morning, when the days are dry and free of dew. Chamomile is suitable for young and old, it is taken with decoctions and is excellent against irritation and sunburn. It is useful for relaxing and sleeping well, calming the stomach and helping digestion, countering menstrual pain. Used cold or just lukewarm it is ideal for external use as a soothing, decongestant, calming remedy in many types of tissue irritation such as dermatitis, wounds, conjunctivitis.
Stevia. Widely used in the in recent years and especially during the summer as a sweetener for drinks and desserts, Stevia contains zero calories. It is a herb easy to grow in your garden to make your homemade natural sweetener. It is a perennial medicinal plant that you can use natural buy harvesting the leaves and let them dry. Sowing starts from March, when temperatures start to remain constant. It needs constant light and watering, carried out only when the soil is dry and mind to keep it always well drained. Stevia can also be grown in a pot, its size normally does not exceed one meter in height, so even a balcony or terrace can go well, the important thing is that it is well exposed to light.
Geranium. Perfect for decorating balconies and terraces, but also for planting in the garden, Geranium is present in many varieties. Its petals hide important therapeutic properties. In fact, it is anti-inflammatory, soothing and antiseptic of the mucous membranes, and performs important antistress functions. Also you can make an essential oil and use a few drops in the bathtub to counteract heavy legs and circulation problems. Furthermore, geranium is a medicinal plant used as an essential oil, for infusion or as a fragrance in cosmetics. In addition The plant is an excellent summer insect repellent, its flowers are beautiful and available in many different colors.
Coneflower. It is a herbal remedy for the prevention of respiratory diseases, among those to increase the immune defenses and among the antibiotics given by nature. It is a perennial plant, easy to grow and resistant in all temperate zones. It prefers the sun, but it also tolerates shade. At the end of the summer, you can pick up the flowers. Coneflower is a very versatile plant: all its parts, flowers, roots and leaves are used, and it has innumerable properties. It is also an excellent remedy for infections of the urinary tract, when combined with the bearberry. It is generally used as mother tincture.
Sagebrush. The sagebrush is a very fragrant plant, preferably sown in the sunny edges of a garden. This plant in the summer assumes a white coloring, is large in size and can reach 5 m in height. The plant must be watered occasionally. Instead, the potted specimens should be wet more frequently. It seems that sagebrush is a very powerful antiviral and antibacterial. Moreover, it is very well known in the tradition of Chinese medicine. Some recent research would also attribute very interesting chemotherapeutic properties to it: its active ingredients would be useful in destroying lung cancer cells. It should be used as a tincture, extracted from fresh upper leaves and young flowers.
Final tips. Medicinal plants can be grown in the garden or on the balcony, they are easy to care but they have different needs, which is why it is recommended, use different pots for different plants.
Watering can, rake, dustpan, gloves and vases, represent the necessary to have your own herbal medicine.
Try not to expose the pots to the sun for too long, try to maintain a fair compromise with the shade area.
Water early in the morning so as not to make the plants suffer during the day. Avoid stagnation of liquids and chemicals, such as pesticides.
To keep insects away, use repellent plants. Happy gardening!