On my (+) Plus journey I discovered herbs. Not that “I” discovered herbs, it’s that I finally opened my eyes, ears and mind to the wonderment of herbs.
It’s a long journey that all began when I decided to reduce my exposure to harmful chemicals in my immediate environment. This led me to using essential oils. The essential oils led me to botanicals and herbs. When I learned simple things like mosquitoes don’t like peppermint, I started growing peppermint around the deck.
I then found that bugs don’t like the aroma of lemongrass, citrus and a host of other naturally occurring smells. This led me to exploring and growing plants which led me to growing culinary herbs. After all, the very same plants insects don’t like, I happen to like in my food.
Power of Plants
Aside from growing bug-resistant plants, I started growing edible plants such as kale, strawberries, basil, stevia and a host of other wonderful plants. As I studied the properties and benefits of each plant I learned that various herbs have wonderful healing properties. For example, did you know sage tea stops excessive sweating and hot flashes?
Jethro Kloss, in his book Back to Eden, says, “Sage is a wonderful remedy for many diseases. It could almost be called a “cure-all.” From excessive sweating, to tonsillitis, sage cures many ailments. The best part about sage is it’s easy to grow and turn into tea.
Milk thistle seeds, another favorite, is great for the liver. Not having milk thistle seeds in my yard, I went to the health store and bought some. I ground some to sprinkle in my green smoothie and planted some. Now I’ve got milk thistle growing in my yard. BTW, the leaves are edible and are said to taste like spinach.
Weeds, Nature’s Apothecary
The further down this (+) Plus journey road I traveled, the more I learned. It changed the way I thought about weeds. Wild plants like dandelion, clover, henbit and garlic mustard are actually nutritious medicinal plants. High in anti-oxidants, they each have special curative qualities.
Dandelion root is used as a diuretic and purportedly can balance blood sugar levels (among other things) according to Webmd. Henbit, applied topically can help to sooth minor burns and insect bites. Clover like henbit is good for insect bites and is high in vitamin C and minerals. Garlic mustard, if you’re fortunate enough to have some growing in your yard, is known to lower cholesterol and strengthen the immune system (among other wonderful benefits).
Learn and then Learn More
Not all plants are harmless. There are some look-alike wild flowers where one provides health and the other, well it could be deadly. Queen Anne’s Lace, for example is edible, but her look alike sister Hemlock, is not.
Queen Anne’s Lace
I’m still at the beginning of this particular journey, but I’ve quickly learned when identifying plants, herbs and wild flowers, “If in doubt, leave it out.”
This is one of several posts that came from a blog of mine that I decided to discontinue. Instead of letting all of the content go into oblivion, I decided to capture it here.