Many vegetable gardeners love to grow herbs in their garden because of the delightful aroma, and to add to their favorite recipes. But did you know that many herbs have some medicinal qualities as well?
Herbs have been used medicinally probably ever since the first herb was discovered. Using herbs as a way to treat ailments can be dated all the way back to the Ancient Egyptians. Some of the uses have been relegated as folklore and myth, but here are 20 common herbs that you can grow (or are being grown) in your garden that are said to have medicinal purposes.
Note: This article is solely for entertainment purposes, and not meant to be medical advise. I am not a medicine man, witch doctor, mad scientist, nor a voodoo priest. Please consult your family physician before using ANY of the listed herbal uses below.
Angelica is very popular for flavoring desserts and liqueurs, but can also help to ease digestive problems, ulcers, and migraines.
Bee Balm, also called Bergamot, is a member of the mint family, and grow to a height of three to four feet. The flower that bursts into life atop the plant is strikingly beautiful, and resembles an exploded firework (that’s why they are also referred to as the “Firecracker Plant”). Bee Balm is often used in tea and helps to sooth sore throats, relieve cold symptoms, and helps to ease mild digestive problems.
Cilantro leaves are used to help combat loss of appetite and abdominal pains. It is also helpful with digestive problems, cough, heartburn, fever, and halitosis. So the next time you go on that first date, chew a little cilantro if you are worried about your breath.
Dill is sometimes used as an anti-inflammatory, and helps to ease flatulence. It is the herb recommended for colic in children. Chewing dill seeds can also help with halitosis.
Fennel also helps to relieve flatulence, and the build up of gas in the intestinal tract. Syrup produced with fennel juice was once given to ease chronic cough.
Garlic is sometimes applied to wounds to accelerate healing, and help fight ringworm. Raw garlic juice was used to ease whooping cough and pulmonary tuberculosis. A clove of garlic can be placed in the ear canal to help ease earache. Garlic is also used to keep those bloodsuckers away – vampires and mosquitoes.
The Ginger root can be used to help digestive problems, and used as a stimulant. Ginger tea helps to relieve cold symptoms and anxiety.
Lavender can be used in a tonic to help with spasms, fever, and digestive irritations. Lavender has also been known to help with bladder problems.
Majoram can be used to relieve bronchial and chest pains, headaches, anxiety, and painful menstruation.
Parsley is a good source of vitamin C. It also helps to relieve itching when applied to the affected area of the skin. It is also believed to help stunt tumor-cell growth, and stimulates the digestive system and uterus.
Periwinkle is known to stop, or slow, fluid and blood loss. It is used for nosebleeds, bleeding gums, mouth ulcers, and sore throats. It has also been used to slow bleeding during menstruation cycles.
Rosemary is used to relieve headaches, nervousness, and dandruff. Rosemary can also be used in mouthwashes and gargles. Rosemary rubbed on the skin can help with circulatory problems.
The flowers of the Safflower can be used as a laxative, and are effective in helping with measles, fever, and bug bites.
Sage has many uses such as treating indigestion and flatulence, anxiety, depression, treating bug bites, and throat, gum, and mouth infections.
Spearmint is mainly used in cooking, but can help to relieve indigestion, flatulence, hiccups, and upper respiratory infections in children. Blended in a massage oil, spearmint can help with muscles aches, stress, and fatigue.
St. John's Wort
St. John's Wort is a very popular herb can be used to relieve pulmonary conditions, bladder issues, diarrhea, hysteria, and nervousness.
Tansy can be effective in getting rid of intestinal worms such as threadworm and roundworm. It can also be used in a lotion on the skin to treat scabies.
Tarragon is widely used in salads, making pickles and in other dishes, but can be used to ease toothache pain.
Thyme can be used as an anti-septic of the mouth, plus helps relieve tonsillitis, and gum diseases. It has also been used as a tonic on the hair to treat dandruff and hair loss.
Yucca roots have been used in the treatment of some cancers, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Remember to consult your physician before trying any of these herbal uses!