How to Grow Your Own Plant Medicine

By Jessica Colon
Jessica Colon
Jessica Colon
June 22, 2021 Updated: June 22, 2021

We don’t have to travel far to get the medicine we need. Many people, especially in western cultures, believe that our prescriptions should be discovered “elsewhere,” yet they can be located right in our kitchen or backyard if we simply look. Instead of proceeding with the chemical copy of nature, get it directly from the source by having a medicinal garden.

Getting Started

Order a catalog, look online, or ask a gardener for a recommended herb with the healing properties of what you’re looking for. Determine whether or not the herb thrives in your location, and then make a list of herbs to plant. You can get some medicinal herbs from seed or buy some already grown. Some herbs take a long time to grow, and you may not need them in volume. Many herbs may be cultivated from cuttings, so ask around for specific cuttings to save money on your medical herb garden.

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Sanctuary of Love grows their own herbs and use them in all their recipes. (Jonathan Gutierrez)

When you’re ready to plant your seeds, lightly rake the dirt beds, level the soil, and remove any rocks or stones larger than a gumball. Then, using your thumb or the handle of a spade or rake, indent the soil with small holes, spaced to account for their growth. Two inches of spacing between seeds works well for little herbs, but you’ll need more room for plants like mint. After that, lightly coat the seeds in the soil and water them. Sprouts should appear in a couple of weeks.

Here’s a list of therapeutic herbs that are easy to grow for the average gardener.

Chamomile

Chamomile has been a staple in traditional medicine for years. It reduces inflammation and helps with sleep and relaxation. It also treats cold symptoms and reduces pain. Chamomile thrives in practically every environment, but it’s easier to propagate from a plant rather than a seed. They’re really simple to look after. They can survive with little water and once they’ve reached maturity, you won’t have to worry about them. Chamomile’s powerful fragrance makes it an excellent companion for any vegetable garden because it repels pests and insects!

Mint

Mint is known for its prolific growth and in the wild, as you can find mint almost everywhere in America. Not only is it strong and easy to grow, but it’s rich in nutrients and is used for remedies involving digestion, and reportedly can even improve brain function. Chewed, it can remove bad breath and in tea form, 0may relieve an upset stomach. To stop it from spreading so fast, this rich, rewarding herb can be effectively cultivated in containers and garden beds. You can cut the stem or divide it by the root. These plants thrive in full to moderate light. Maintain a constant moisture level in the soil and water if the top layer becomes dry. Plant in the spring or late summer when the evenings cool. The fresh-flavored results will delight you!

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Mint has many culinary and medicinal uses, can be grown easily and is pest and rot resistant. (Jonathan Gutierrez)

Basil

Basil contains a refreshing, pleasant aroma, as well as components that help to alleviate anxiety and depression, boost focus, and prevent memory loss. It’s a common herb in both the kitchen and the garden. Basil is a hardy plant that thrives in a range of environments. As long as your growing conditions are the same, growing it indoors will perform just as well as growing it outdoors. It can even be started indoors four to eight weeks before the latest frost date. You can plant basil from the seed with a starter pot.

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Basil is a flavorful herb which has been proven to have many health benefits. (Jonathan Gutierrez)

The seeds will sprout in a week if there is enough humidity. After that, you can harden off the seedlings by transplanting them and moving them outside. Basil thrives in warm weather with direct morning sunlight.

Turmeric

Turmeric has been utilized in Ayurvedic medicine for a long time. It is a powerful herbs that does it all. It’s purported to have anti-cancer, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal properties. Propagation should begin eight to ten weeks before the last average frost date. Transplant the growing fingers to the garden once the frost has passed. Plant in the early spring for garden cultivation and choose a spot with full to partial sun. It thrives on humidity and enjoys being in the presence of dampness. The soil, on the other hand, must drain efficiently to prevent root rot.

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Turmeric is a slow growing plant that also has a long history in Indian cuisine and ayurvedic medicine, usually taking about seven to ten months to grow and harvest.  (Jonathan Gutierrez)

These herbs can be eaten or used in beverages such as juices and tea. They can also be consumed as more concentrated extracts like oils and tinctures. Learn about your plants and try listening to them to figure out what they require. Check the label on your herb before bringing it home to be sure it will withstand the conditions in your climate and yard. Gardening will not only provide you with mind and body advantages but it will also provide you with a wealth of practical knowledge. When harvest season arrives, you’ll discover that nothing compares to preparing your own herbal treatments from the ground up!

Jessica Colon
Jessica Colon