Add These Medicinal Plants to Your Garden
Before modern medicine, people use traditional remedies to heal different ailments. These remedies are usually made from a concoction of medicinal plants and herbs. The fact is, nature is one giant pharmacy that provides healing to all sorts of diseases, even deadly ones. And if you’re the kind who appreciates natural healing, then consider growing medicinal plants to your garden. From healing simple burns to severe chronic diseases, here are some of the best medicinal plants to add to the garden:
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This plant is perfect for people who are just getting into gardening. Aloe Vera is a drought-resistant perennial plant that could survive severe growing environments. That’s because this herbaceous perennial is native to the dry regions of Africa. Aloe vera is distinct for its lance-shaped succulent leaves edged with small teeth.
The leaves are filled with a clear, gel-like sap that can be used to treat a variety of ailments, particularly skin problems. Simply scrape off the sap and use it to treat burns, wounds, and cuts. You can also use aloe vera to soothe eczema flare-ups, hives, and skin allergies. Mix the aloe vera gel with freshly squeezed fruit juices and it can heal common digestive problems as well as chronic constipation and ulcerative colitis. Aloe Vera can also help normalize blood sugar and minimize the risk of diabetes.
Calendula, best known as pot marigold, is a favorite among gardeners for its cheerful blossoms and graceful foliage. Calendula's blossoms are similar to daisies and they do add a nice pop of golden yellow to the garden. It's a great plant to grow if you live in places that get mild summers. This flowering plant is so easy to grow. All it needs is the full sun and well-draining soil.
Calendula can be used to treat a variety of skin issues ranging from insect bites and minor inflammation to wounds and stings. Calendula extract contains a powerful muscle relaxant that soothes painful muscle spasms, menstrual cramps, and stomach cramps. Calendula is also used as a treatment for jaundice, smallpox, and measles.
Lavender is a beautiful plant with blossoms that emit a soothing scent. It makes a great accent plant in the garden because of the blue-purple flowers. It's also drought, heat, and wind resistant so lavender will thrive in the harshest growing environments.
Every part of the lavender plant is infused with fragrant oil. The darker the flower color, the more intense the aroma. Traditionally, lavender infused remedies are used to treat migraine headaches, indigestion, common aches and pains as well as insomnia. It can be used to treat dandruff when the blossoms are steeped in boiling water.
Did you know that garlic is also called nature's antibiotic thanks to its antimicrobial properties? Garlic contains a potent microbe-killing chemical called allicin. This chemical is used to treat a wide range of ailments, including common cough, internal inflammation, common aches and pains, as well as intestinal problems. Garlic is also used to treat chronic diseases ranging from heart disease to certain cancer.
Garlic is one of the easiest plants to grow. This plant is best grown during the fall season when the weather is nice and cool. Garlic has to develop a strong root system to grow. By the spring and summer season, the garlic bulb will enlarge and it’ll be ready for harvest!
Basil is easily one of the most popular aromatic herbs for cooking. As a medicinal plant, basil could reduce your risk of developing hypertension, diabetes, and obesity. This herb helps lower the sugar level in the bloodstream, which minimizes the risk of diabetes and excessive insulin production. In addition, basil is an excellent remedy for high blood pressure, insulin resistance. This herb could also reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases.
Growing basil is easy; all it needs is a sunny spot in the garden. This herb could also tolerate partly shady growing environments. It only takes a few weeks before basil leaves are ready for harvest. You can use the leaves to spice up stews, soups, pasta dishes, and salads.
Onion is an easy to grow crop that adds amazing flavor to soups, stews, salads, and stir-frys. This plant is also packed with a diverse range of nutrients that keep the heart healthy. Onion contains a powerful anti-inflammatory chemical that minimizes the risk of blood clots, high blood pressure, and heart disease. It is also loaded with antioxidants that protect healthy cells from oxidative stress. Eating onion-based dishes may reduce the risk of certain cancers too.
Thankfully, it does not take much to grow onions. This vegetable comes in two varieties, long and short day varieties. Long day varieties require 14 hours of daylight or more to grow while short day varieties require 10 to 12 hours of daylight to thrive. Onions love the full sun and moist, well-draining soil. It will grow well in a pot and it can be planted indoors or outdoors.
Add a pop of vivid red to your tropical garden with passionflower! Treated as an annual plant in northern climates, passionflower is prized for its medium-sized blossoms that come in a myriad of colors. But passionflower that produces red flowers is the most popular varieties. This ornamental plant could grow in a variety of environments. Once established, passionflower is drought resistant.
Passionflower is a traditional remedy for sleep problems, anxiety, certain forms of pain, and fibromyalgia. It's often given to children suffering from hyperactivity disorder or adjustment disorder. When applied topically, passionflower soothes burns, swelling, and minor skin inflammation.
Ginger is a tropical root crop used as an herbal remedy in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries. This kitchen staple is used to treat a myriad of health problems, ranging from headaches, nausea, and minor pains to osteoarthritis, inflammatory ailments, and certain cancers. The ginger root contains 6-gingerol, a substance that reduces inflammation and oxidative stress.
Just like most plants in this list, ginger does not take much coddling to thrive. The ginger plant is considered as a tropical plant so it is best grown in warm to hot climates. It can be grown outdoors all year round but will require some shelter once the winter season starts. Ginger prefers moist soil and partly shady environments.
Did you know that dandelions are not just prized for their beautiful blossoms but of their medicinal properties too? All parts of the dandelion plant are loaded with essential nutrients, which is why the greens can be cooked or eaten raw. This plant is packed with powerful antioxidants that against cellular damage and oxidative stress, particularly beta-carotene and polyphenols. Traditionally, dandelions are used to treat liver disease, diabetes, urinary tract infections, and anemia.
Although dandelion belongs to a family of flowering plants, it is treated as a weed in many gardens because it grows rapidly. But if you want to build a medicinal garden or you’d like to attract bees and other pollinators to your garden or lawn, let the dandelions thrive. Just keep the growth under control so the dandelions won’t take over your outdoor space.
Lemon balm is used to calm and soothe frayed nerves since ancient times. This perennial plant is grown for its oil, which is used to treat anxiety and stress-related ailments including insomnia and other sleep disorders. Lemon balm is also a great treatment for cold sores, indigestion, boils, herpes, and fevers. Thanks to its beautiful bright green foliage and invigorating fragrance, lemon balm makes any garden setting even more eye-catching!
You can grow lemon balm to highlight walkways and pathways. Most gardeners grow lemon balm to attract bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Grill a few stems of the lemon balm plant and the smell will drive mosquitoes away! The leaves of the lemon balm plant are also edible so they can be used to make fresh salads, soups, and sauces.