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Old 06-28-2012, 03:31 AM
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krapgame krapgame is offline
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Default Necessary plants

I've spent some several weeks reading over this board and more time searching the net in general and find that I'm overwhelming myself to the point of confusion.

Let's say for the point of discussion that you felt compelled to have a "complete" medicinal herb garden, for whatever reason. What are the absolutely must-have plants that you would make sure were in it? I'm on the border of zone 5/6, depending on whose version of the map I look at and space, within reason, is not an issue. We're all on reasonably good health, so I'm not looking for anything to address a particular problem, just a good general purpose for whatever may come along assortment.

We have most of the plants common to southern Indiana available to us, many on our own property. I can identify a small percentage of them, but am learning. We've added some others that we knew of and are trying to learn how to use them. Lots of stuff out there though, lots to learn.

TIA for helping us sort some of this out.
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Old 06-28-2012, 06:59 AM
tomato204 Male tomato204 is offline
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Default plants

I think I know what you mean. You want to have everything that naturally grows in your area and has some medicinal use, right? Not being from there, I can't help with that list much but just wanted to throw this in: There are so many useful herbs that will grow if planted there, but not native. Then there's another group that you could coddle along and probably keep alive in a greenhouse situation. Last is the tropical plants, even trees like cinnamon and quinine that won't grow too far north or are not practical for other reasons. So for now you're making a list but maybe you could also include some sources for the dried/ground herbs that won't grow there. Sorry, I know I'm not helping, just mulling over the same problem. Good luck with it.
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Old 06-28-2012, 01:52 PM
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Pretty much. Looking for low maintenance plants, stuff that we can put in a permanent bed and require minimal attention. Doesn't have to be native, just something that will survive without us having to provide round the clock life support. Later we can add the higher maintenance plants, when we're better set up to deal with them.
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:58 PM
wildturnip Female wildturnip is offline
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I would want Echinacea and Goldenseal. German chamomile is an annual I think but I would want to have it. Catnip. I'll keep thinking.
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Old 06-29-2012, 01:31 AM
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Thanks wildturnip. I know we have goldenseal native around here, and there is quite a bit of it within walking distance of our house. Echinacea I don't know anything about. I remember reading about German Chamomile some years ago for something and it's on my list. I also think catnip may be native to here, but need to check on that.
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Old 06-29-2012, 11:38 AM
whitehairedidiot Female whitehairedidiot is offline
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Hyssop, horehound, lemon balm (be careful; it's a mint and invasive!), peppermint, spearmint, willow trees (aspirin comes from the bark), if you have a spot protected from north/nw wind and can keep it warmed in the winter: eucalyptus.

I've had success potting lemon verbena and bringing it in, winters, too. Raspberries (leaves are used for tea). A lot of our normal "food" crops have additional medicinal properties. A lot of the artemesias - like wormwood, have medicinal properties, too. Foxglove, for digitalis. Sage (has some antibiotic properties).

Johnny's Seed Catalog is a pretty good list for herbs. And because it's easy to use as a reference: Rodale's Encyclopedia of Herbs.

I know I've missed some of the easy ones, so someone else will have to fill in. But here's the thing with almost all herbs I've grown: the less you do for them and to them, the more they flourish. I do improve the soil, keep 'em watered at first - most aren't real thirsty plants, and mulch. Then it's just a matter of not waiting to harvest & dry (or start tinctures) - the oils that have the good stuff in it are at their peak, just before blooming.
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Old 06-29-2012, 01:30 PM
bookwormom bookwormom is offline
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First thing to consider, what will grow in your area. Second, what do you have to treat.

Burdock, comfrey, stinging nettle, verbascum do very well here.

You need plants for inside and outside the body. Healing, cleansing. Basically the body heals itself, you give it a boost, clear problems out of the way so the body can do it's job.

Nature, if left alone, will grow what you need. You got dandelion? Bless it. Elder? bless it. chicory, plantains, all wonderful plants God gives you without your effort. Some may grow wild in your vicinity, but may not be as outgoing as the ones above. Agrimony for instance. Have some wormwood growing. Slippery elm grows here without me lifting a finger. Echinacea, and Poke weed, Joe Pye weed. You just need to learn them, you can not store them up and let them get old and ineffective.
Red clover!

Peppermint you have to plant, but I would not be withuot it. If it grows, fennel, anise, Chamomile, people with hay fever often react to it. Black Walnut hulls. I am just naming plants off the top of my head that grow wild around here. Yarrow also does well here. In your area there may be other or additional plants. I wish veronika and bedstraw would do better here. But it is what it is and I am not wasting time, effort and money anymore trying to grow what does not like this environment, and just will not do very welll, even with much coddling and coaxing.
My mother at times would go out and come in with a few leaves she needed right then.
Thyme and Tussilago farfara. Do you have children that get coughs and earaches?
Keep garlic on the list. I would like to grow a lot of garlic and just have tough luck with it, my last bed the dogs dug up.

I am in a hurry, I am getting back to this thread later.
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Old 06-30-2012, 02:07 PM
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DavidOH Male DavidOH is offline
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Thumbs up Medicinal Garden

Great idea. There was a time when everyone had a herb garden.
It wasn't just flavorings, it was medicine. The list should be MUCH longer now.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...ed_as_medicine

http://altnature.com/gallery/

http://www.familyherbalremedies.com/...lant_list.html

That's a start. Now to sort through and see what I need, what I can grow...
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  #9  
Old 06-30-2012, 03:38 PM
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time, effort and practicality have to be considered. what good does it do if y ou invest in a lot of herbs that will not perform well in your area. I looked at the first list, a lot of the plants will not grow here and are difficult to propagate. Arnica for instance. I keep Arnica as homeopathic globuli. Mother however has a bottle of home made Arnica tincture.

the list is misleading, or rather, limiting in the use of herbs. Burdock for instance I use on wounds. takes the pain right away. Burns especially. It is a God send for burns. Comfrey, we add a leaf to our green juice occasionally, but the root is very poisonous, never take it internally. It will hurt the liver. I would not be without comfrey though, and made a gallon of tincture last fall. It's other name is Bonewell, for obvious reason. It was pure desperation that I found out that it really does a number on itching bug bites, and heals them fast, too. I keep it in a small mustard bottle with a spout to squeeze out.
Most of the plants I mentioned above grow wild. all you need to do is pick them.
Verbascum/mullein is great for asthma. I have a friend who has controlled her asthma for years with it.
Dandelion, root, leaves, stems. The roots you dry very well, until brittle. then grind them into a powder. this may sound silly to you or with a touch of witchcraft, but grand them in a clean, fat free cast iron dish, like a small skillet. Use an old, clean iron hammer to grind them. I am so sorry my Dad died and now I remember things I wish I had asked him and wrote it down.
some vegetable plants are "herbs" in their own right, too. Pumpkin for instance, grated raw. the seeds for worms, together with carrots.

Lemon balm will grow anywhere, Makes a good night time tea, calms the nerves. Here passiflora grows as a weed. A good one for insomnia. Hops flowers is another good one, but they drag along and do not really like this place. I have to respect that. I did what I could.
Parsley, plants lots of it. Not the curly kind. Lovage. delicious.
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Old 06-30-2012, 04:06 PM
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LIke I always say, there is more than one way to skin a cat. And different regions have different plants. I believe God gives us what we need where we are.

What grows here for the stomach. well, dandelion people spray it as a weed. Raw cabbage. Raw cabbage is wonderful, it also draws out inflammation if applied as a whole leaf poultice. Savoy cabbage will do as well. Juiced for ulcer, especially for the duodenum. But I learned that goatmilk is great for that too. Goatmilk is alkaline. Chicore flowers, the root and the fresh leaves. Bitter things like that are good for the liver.
Peppermint, fennel, caraway . When my first one had collic, mother did not know what I was talking about , then she said, oh, belly ache, . then she told me to make a tea out of caraway seeds. Worked great. No more collic for my baby.

I am wondering, the cedars here are so full of bluish berries. I tasted them and they have a slightly sweet after taste, like Juniper. I wonder if they work like juniper, for kidneys. Joe pye root is for kidneys. Don't forget cider vinegar.

My dad wound up with 13 gall stones and when he was checked again they were all gone. Dad was a great believer in raw onion and radish. He always grew big radishes in the garden, bigger than a turnip, some black, some red, some white. He had his own gathered tea every day for breakfast. I must say Dad was a bit casual. He put yarrow and coltsfoot in it, too.That was not necessary.

For years I tried to grow St John's wort here in my garden. Well, we both gave up, but I have seen it in Indiana growing wild beside the road. Around the Bloomington area. Prime specimens.

Beets are great for liver. Fermented juice especially.

There are a few things I buy. Cayenne pepper is one. Ginger is another.

If I was seriously ill I would first of all fast, and if I was very ill, use enemas with the fasting. Fasting is such a great tool. DH would fast two weeks at a stretch and feel great the whole time. We need to do it again. Well, here I am rambling on and on. Excuse me.
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Old 06-30-2012, 04:25 PM
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while I am at it, this grows all over the place.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunella_vulgaris

look at the list of possible uses.
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Old 07-01-2012, 01:42 AM
sbemt456 Female sbemt456 is offline
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I just looked at the pics of the prunella vulgaris and that is what my whole yard primarily consist of in early spring instead of grass. They bloom early here in spring. Wonder if they will also bloom again later. Cause I sure didnt harvest any this spring. As usual I just called em a "weed".

Have a great day!

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Old 07-01-2012, 08:01 AM
tomato204 Male tomato204 is offline
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Default cedar

Cedars growing wild in KY ARE JUNIPER. You might find a true cedar in somebody's landscaping, but otherwise, they're Juniperus virginiana. The fruit are used to get the flavor of gin.
http://plants.usda.gov/java/profile?symbol=JUVI

Last edited by tomato204; 07-01-2012 at 08:03 AM. Reason: incomplete
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Old 07-01-2012, 10:18 AM
whitehairedidiot Female whitehairedidiot is offline
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and... dried juniper berries are used quite a bit in middle eastern cooking. It's used to spice lamb and goat, I believe.
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Old 07-01-2012, 12:59 PM
bookwormom bookwormom is offline
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https://www.google.com/search?ie=UTF...w=1024&bih=572

I hope this link works, it looks kind of funny.

The second picture is the juniper I am familiar with. the berries are bigger, darker, and a bit glossy compared to the local cedar berries. I have no idea why they would call a berry a cone though. At home
Juniper berries are used in sour kraut, in the spice mixture to rub down meat for brining and smoking.For cooking some venison dishes, the fancy stuff, with red wine, etc. Well, I guess I'll give the berries a try. I'll tell Sam to let you know if it kills me.

To harvest, folks would put an old sheet on the ground and beat a branch with a stick over it. No need fooling with picking one berry at a time.
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Old 07-03-2012, 01:43 PM
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Many, many, thanks for the feedback everybody! I'm finding out that there is a lot to digest in this subject. I've been studying on everything that's been posted so far to learn what will be more or less self sustaining in this area and also how they are used. Lots of info to digest..

I'm still studying everything and will post questions as I come up with them. Anyone so inclined, please keep the info coming!
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:48 AM
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krapgame,

I'll give you a start of Echinacea (Purple Coneflower). DD planted some and it is prolific. Get a Sage plant or two if you like Sage in your sausage. We have a big one, so let me know before you butcher this year. I have a gallon of it dried and ground somewhere. Probably have more stuff around here, too.

Have chocolate mint, for sure, and others I'd have to get DD to identify. Plan on keeping the mint in a big tub to grow, or it will take over the farm! I poured 6" of concrete over our mint bed, and it crawled out from under there and is still spreading....
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Old 12-27-2013, 01:46 PM
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Default Turtlehead?

Quote:
Originally Posted by bookwormom View Post
while I am at it, this grows all over the place.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prunella_vulgaris

look at the list of possible uses.
That is the plant I have always called Turtlehead. Now that I know its real name and some uses, I shall pay more attention to it
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Old 12-31-2013, 02:59 PM
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CarolAnn Female CarolAnn is offline
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Here's my list of what I wouldn't do without:
Mint (any & all, but some are invasive) including Mountain Mint from the Ozarks (my favorite mint)
lemon balm
Wild heal-all (prunella vulgaris)
Mullein
Wild Yarrow (milfoil)
Wild Echinacea (whatever grows in your area, or several species)
Southernwood (safer than wormwood)
Wormwood (grow this where you don't mind killing off all other plants - it will!)
Rue
Pennyroyal
Thyme
Garlic
Chives
Jumping onions
Toothache plant (Spilanthes oleracea - annual; replant yearly)
Angelica
Borrage
Coltsfoot
Lady's Mantle
Wild Ginger
Butterbur
Motherwort
St. John's wort (wild)
Aloe Vera (not hardy)
Mentholatum Mint (not hardy)
Lovage

Except for toothache plant, these are all things I grew in my Arkansas (zone 6) garden and used medicinally. Right now I'm trying to grow a miracle berry tree and stevia inside. Toothache plant is an easy annual.
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Old 01-01-2014, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CarolAnn View Post
Here's my list of what I wouldn't do without:....
Wow! That's a virtual pharmacy and you've done great! Did you have exceptionally good soil and planting sites there or hill clay and stones like my location here? Are those Wolf Berries you're starting now?

oeb
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