I’m hot, achy, and my head hurts-I’m not sure if it’s a cold, flu, or that those leftovers in the back of the fridge. I do know I need medicine. Lots of medicine.
It’s a been a long winter and a tough flu season, but spring is coming. Now is a great time to prepare to grow the medicine I need myself. This is why I chose to read Grow Your Own Drugs by James Wong. It’s a provocative title, but it’s a guide to growing home remedies-legitimate remedies for a variety of ailments, ranging from sore throats, cold sores and hot flashes to hangovers, immune boosters, and beauty products.
James Wong is a trained ethnobotanist* He sees plants as more than a frivolous decoration, but rather as a living pharmacy. Traditional plant-based remedies have provided modern medicine with many of its most important drugs.
In the last few years, there’s been a surge of interest in using herbs to treat common ailments. Plant based remedies can be cheaper and less harmful than pharmaceutical drugs. This book can be a guide to help you get the most out of plants and their various properties.
It starts off explaining how to grow and harvest suitable plants in your backyard and then make them into simple, effective remedies to treat common ailments. There are over sixty recipes for teas, creams, lotions, balms, and cough syrups-all pretty easy and inexpensive.
In the second half of this book, the author gives us a wealth of information on the top 100 medicinal plants offering first-class horticultural information as well distilling the knowledge of herbal practitioners with the latest scientific findings to bring us practical and reliable information.
Most of these plants can be grown in your backyard, or windowsill, but he’s included a few exotic plants, because of their effectiveness. You might not be able to grow these yourself, but he includes where you can find these dried or in extracts.
Some home remedies can give over-the-counter medicines solid competition, but it’s important to be safe and not medicate or diagnose without seeking medical advice. This is especially important of you have an existing medical condition.
It’s always a good idea to check with a professional. It’s just as important to make sure you have identified a species correctly if you are harvesting the plants yourself. Certain plants can be quite poisonous and deadly.
Modern medicine is effective for serious conditions, but plant-based remedies can give us gentle ways to manage everyday ailments and take charge of our health and get in touch with nature. After reading this book, you’ll never look at your backyard the same way again…
*Ethnobotany: A branch of botany that studies the lore and uses of plants in folklore, religion, and healing customs of a people
Feed a fever? Or Starve a cold? Comment and let me know!