When we think of healing plants, our minds gravitate toward the plants growing at our feet – the garden herbs, weeds, and woodland plants of the forest floor – but there’s a veritable treasure trove of healing remedies towering above. Humans have been harvesting and using medicine from trees for millennia, and medicinal trees and shrubs probably already grow near where you live.
This Hibiscus Chutney is a favorite at my house any time of year, but it makes an especially nice stand-in for cranberry sauce on the holiday table. You can find this recipe and more in the upcoming Chestnut School Herbal Holiday Guide. Enjoy!
Why grow native woodland herbs? Growing our own medicine—in any setting—creates an intimate connection with healing plants. There are some important environmental reasons for cultivating rare woodland medicinals as well. Further, many of the woodland herbs are easy to cultivate, as compared to our garden herbs.
Need to get your urinary tract back on track? This tea blend is helpful for addressing the symptoms and the root cause (primarily, bacterial infection) of urinary tract infections (UTIs).
This goldenrod tincture blend is helpful as an internal remedy for sinus congestion due to seasonal allergies, head colds, or sinus infections.
Because so many of us experience chronic stress, we also require chronic (aka tonic) support. Tonic herbs are remedies that can be taken safely over a long period of time.
Herbal poultices are simple, traditional remedies used topically on the skin to relieve pain, infection, and swelling.
Fresh herbs will change the way you eat. They are the edible garden’s big bang for your buck. These plants have short “fresh” shelf lives, so what’s offered in a grocery store is often not only expensive but also less flavorful.
If you’re looking for an herb to soothe and repair digestive issues, the cheery flowers of calendula (Calendula officinalis) will be one of your primary allies. Calendula tea is commonly used to help remedy peptic ulcers, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).
Calendula’s sunny blooms are an external remedy for practically every manner of skin complaint. The flowers are used topically as a wound healing, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory herb.