As children my brother and I played with
with this plant to make pretend coffee from the seeds. It was a fun toy
that kept us out of our mother's hair for hours. Little did we know the
weed was a virtual powerhouse of cure I could have been using for all
kinds of ailments.
This humble backyard plant I have been ripping out of my flower bed
for years has some other wild names such as Ripple Grass, Snakeweed,
Englishman's foot or my personal favorite, Cuckoo weed. It grows
anywhere, especially in the sun. It seems to like my rock garden. Guess
I'll quit pulling it out and throwing it over the fence to the goats now
that I know the weed is useful. It also seems I'll be leaving it
around the butterfly bush as it is good for the caterpillars- and I so
do adore butterflies.
As with dandelion the young leaves taste
best for eating. The plant is a power house for vitamin B1 and
riboflavin. The long seed spikes can be dried and used as an herbs. (So
much for this plant being poisonous Mom! You might have actually got us
to eat our veggies- not!)
The natural chemical Acubin, along with several others, is the
plants main reason for its healing powers. It has been used as an
antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, laxative and poultice.
Sufferers of asthma and other lung irritations such as bronchitis and
hay fever, rheumatism and blood sugar have been aided. The root has been
used to heal bowel ailments ranging from hemorrhoids to irritable bowel
Regular use of the herb creates a dislike for tobacco by the body
so your lungs might get to heal even faster by helping you to quit
The plant has been know to stop bleeding and take the swelling out
of insect bites. A great tip for camping. Chew the leaves and apply.
Carry some salve made of the plant, too.
Heat the leaves and use to dress wound,
skin inflammations, and malignant ulcers. Using as a poultice you can
draw out thorns, splinters and swelling. On the farm this plant will be
handy on critter cuts and sprains.
Indians carried as an anti-venom for rattlesnakes. Keep a root in
your survival pack and the next time you get bit you can chew while you
wait for help to arrive.
made from the plant by distilling the water can help with eye
contain mucilage and can be used as a laxative to soothe the bowels.
The seeds can also chase away parasitic worms. (A new plant remedy
I am adding to my Human VS Parasites page. Walnuts also are a good
source for this.)
To make Herbal Tea
1 TBLS dry or fresh- whole- seeds and all- Plantain
1 cup of water boiling.
Steep for 10 minutes then strain.
Sweeten to taste and drink as needed.
To make Salve:
Use a large non-metallic pan.
Add 1lb of whole Plantain chopped
Add 1 cup of lard
Cover and using low heat cook until it becomes a green mush.
While hot strain the mush into salve jars or small jars you can reach a
Use for burns, bites, sores, rashes and as a night cream for wrinkles.
Use as a drawing salve on splinters and thorns. I
will have to remember this with my usual bacon wrap which also will draw
swelling from sprains and splinters from fingers.
(I'm going to try it on this flare up of shingles and I will try the
night cream idea. Get back to you soon. Wonder if I yanked all the weeds
out of my rock garden or if there are a few left? Lard, going to need
lard. Oh piggy, piggy, piggy. Here Piggy.)
*Gather the best leaves you can find and thoroughly wash if they are dirty.
*You want the leaves to dry so pat them and give them a half hour spread out
with an occasional flip on a clean bath towel.
*Take the biggest leaf and layer the stack. Roll the stack and chop fine.
Place the fresh herb into a clean jar and fill with olive oil.
*Give the jar a good shake daily. It will take on the smell of pepperoni.
*After 4-6 weeks strain out the oil- ("decant" if you want to be technical).
A jelly strainer works
perfect for this.
*Let the oil set for a week then use dark jars (or wrap the jar in dark
heavy cloth) to take the
purest oil off the top. You don't want any of the sediment. Seal the and
store in a cool, dry place.
Good for Sunburn.
Plantain Baby Powder-
Hey guys who work in the sweat shops give this a try for
1/2 TBL Comfrey Leaf Powder
1/2 TBL Chamomile Powder
1/2 TBL Calendula Powder
1/2 TBL Plantain Powder
2 TBL Arrowroot Powder
Using a coffee grinder grind the ingredients.
Sift thru a very fine strainer.
Pour into a shaker style container.
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