Growing a Lavender Hedge Year 2

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There isn't much maintenance with my lavender hedge year 2, it's looking great. A bit of compost and a bit of cleaning and you’ll be enjoying a wonderfully fragrant summer harvest | PreparednessMama

Last year I put a new garden in my Central Texas yard. It’s a 30×50 foot experiment that’s been a lot of fun. I’ve had successes and failures a plenty as I learn to garden in the South. The biggest success is my lavender hedge. Year two looks to be even better than the last. […]

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5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

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5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

Basil. Image source: Pixabay.com

 

Summer is here, and that brings one unfortunate type of creature: bugs.

Mosquitoes and fleas, and other bugs and insects, can become a real annoyance and ruin anyone’s outdoor fun. But there is an all-natural way to fight back against these pests: with herbs!

The five herbs below, and their essential oils, can help repel those annoying bugs throughout summer.

1. Basil. Basil is not only a delicious herb but is also great for repelling bugs. Flies and mosquitoes hate basil. Use it to repel bugs by planting it, making a spray with it, or rubbing the leaves directly on yourself.

Learn How To Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

When plating the basil, put it near areas where you most want to keep those pesky insects away from you. A simple spray could be made by steeping the leaves in water for a couple of hours. Then, take just the basil-water and mix it with a small amount of apple cider vinegar and spray it on yourself.

2. Mint. Its intoxicating and overwhelming smell is what keeps mosquitoes away. Mint can be made into a spray by mixing its essential oil (a few drops of peppermint oil) with vinegar or water. The plant itself also can be utilized as a repellent by rubbing the leaves on your skin directly, or by placing the plant wherever you hang out most often.

5 Herbs That Mosquitoes Absolutely, Positively Despise

Lavender. Image source: Pixabay.com

3. Lavender. One of the best-smelling and beautiful plants is lavender, and it has one of the most beneficial attributes to be used in the summer months. Lavender is perfect at repelling moths, fleas, flies and mosquitoes! This is the one herb that can do it all. Yet it is beneficial to not only you but also your garden. Hang it in your house and even by the doorways to keep the flies away. It can also be made into a spray like the other herbs.

4. Lemon thyme. When using this herb it is important to bruise the leaves before rubbing it on the skin. The only way the aroma is released is by smashing it or bruising it to release the oils. Then it can be applied to the skin. Among bugs and insects, lemon thyme is best used to repel mosquitoes.

5. Lemon balm. Lemon balm is an amazing plant that not only repels “bad” bugs but also attracts good ones. It repels annoying insects like mosquitoes, gnats or flies and attracts insects like butterflies and bees. This allows for your garden to be cared for by the beneficial bugs and protected from the pesky bugs. This herb can be crushed and applied to the skin or put on a patio or deck, or even planted in the garden, so as to protect you when you work.

In nature, there is a balance of good and bad. Nature gives us those annoying bugs, but nature also provides us plants to repel them when needed. Now that you have discovered what herbs to use, you can keep those exasperating insects away and actually enjoy your evenings outside, bug-free.

What herbs would you add to this list? Share them in the section below:  

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

hydrogen peroxide report

10 Heal-Anything Herbs That Just Might Replace Your Medicine (No. 5 Is Popular During Summer)

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10 Heal-Anything Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Image source: Flickr

Growing herbs for use in the kitchen allows you to add a freshness to the table that store-bought herbs can never produce. Whether grown in a small plot designed especially for a kitchen herb garden, in containers along the patio or as companion plants in the family garden, herbs are an excellent addition to your homestead.

Although herbs add much to our culinary endeavors, they are also useful in many other ways. Many common herbs have great medicinal qualities, are helpful in caring for livestock, and some have the ability to control unwanted pests around the homestead. For the cost of a few seeds, or potted plants, and a bit of time for researching your options, you can grow a natural medicine chest in your backyard.

Below is a brief overview of 10 common plants that can be used to treat a wide variety of ailments. Some can be taken internally as an herbal tea, while some should only be used as an infused oil or as part of a poultice. Still others are best suited for pest management on the homestead.

1. Sweet basil

Sweet Basil is not only versatile in the kitchen, but also works as a repellent for flying insects such as flies and mosquitos. Basil reduces inflammation and has been shown to be effective as an antibacterial agent.

2. Calendula

Not to be confused with marigolds, which are toxic, calendula has many healing properties. It is best used as a salve in treating skin irritations, including rashes, bruising, cuts and scrapes. It is safe to use for everyone on the homestead, including livestock.

3. Comfrey

10 Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Comfrey. Image source: Pixabay.com

Comfrey contains allantoin, which aids cell formation, giving comfrey wonderful healing properties. Used to treat wounds, burns, skin irritations, sprains and even broken bones, comfrey can be used as a raw leaf, in a salve or more often as a poultice.

Need Non-GMO Herb Seeds? Get Them From A Company You Can Trust!

Please note that comfrey should not be taken internally, as it disrupts liver function.

4. Garlic

We all know that garlic has health benefits when added to our meals, but it is also helpful as a repellent for pesky mosquitos. A garlic poultice can be used to treat ringworm and other skin irritations. Painful ear infections can be eased by the application of warm, mashed garlic cloves.

5. Lavender

Even in ancient times, lavender was added to bath water to restore calm. Today, we recognize that it is helpful not only for relieving anxiety but it has beneficial properties that can be utilized to treat burns, cuts and insect bites.

6. Marsh mallow

Marsh mallow is a versatile healing plant. It can be used as a salve for insect bites, bruises and other types of skin inflammation. It works well as a poultice for chest congestion and can also be made into a syrup to further alleviate congested airways. An herbal tea, made from the root of the mallow plant, has been known to help multiple ailments, including excessive stomach acid and even the passage of kidney stones.

7. Painted daisies

Painted daisies, as well as other daisy relatives, contain pyrethrum, a natural insecticide. Whether it is used as a companion plant in the garden or planted around an outdoor living space, this plant is a colorful natural alternative to toxic insecticides.

8. Parsley

10 Herbs For Growing Your Own Off-Grid ‘Backyard Medicine Chest’

Parsley. Image source: Pixabay.com

Aside from garnishing your dinner plate, parsley aids in digestion, promotes optimal liver function and combats bad breath. It can be used as poultice to reduce swelling and bruising. Additionally, adding parsley when juicing other fruits and vegetables also helps to eliminate water retention.

9. Sage

A common addition to savory foods, sage, used as an herbal tea or as a syrup, is helpful in reducing fevers, easing headaches, and clearing sinuses. Relieve skin irritations, such as itchy rashes, with sage leaves.

10. Thyme

Thyme is a multipurpose plant, offering many medicinal uses, as well as being helpful for pest management. Adding thyme to your garden will draw bees for pollination. However, if you add thyme to a campfire, it will repel unwanted insects. Medicinally, thyme can be used a number of ways. As a poultice, thyme acts as an anti-inflammatory agent and is also antifungal. As a weak tea, it can be used as a mouthwash and gargle to relieve sores in the mouth and general sore throats. It works as an expectorant, helpful in relieving painful coughs.

Which herbs would you add to the list? Share your advice in the section below:

Bust Inflation With A Low-Cost, High-Production Garden. Read More Here.

Lavender Oil: The Off-Grid Way To Fight Anxiety, Heal Wounds And Sleep Better, Too

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Lavender: The Off-Grid Way To Fight Anxiety, Heal Wounds And Sleep Better, Too

Image source: Pixabay.com

Lavender essential oil is one of the more commonly used essential oils and is perhaps the most versatile of all oils.

It is a non-toxic, non-irritating and non-sensitizing essential oil, so it is safe for all skin types. It has both stimulating and relaxing properties, and is known as a powerful healer and an antiseptic. Lavender essential oil refreshes, calms, invigorates and lifts the spirits.

I use lavender essential oil to help with my insomnia, as well as to reduce periodic bouts of tension, anxiety and depression. I find it exceptional for calming itching due to eczema and minor skin irritations such as rashes or insect bites. Lavender essential oil also aids in soothing my sore muscles, backaches and headaches. It is an excellent first-aid treatment when used to help with the healing of minor wounds and the prevention of infection.

The best ways to use lavender essential oil is through massage therapy and aromatherapy. Here are some ideas and recipes to help combat the most common of health ailments.

Use it for Anxiety, Depression and Tension

Everyone experiences stress and anxiety from time to time. If not treated, anxiety can lead to feelings of depression. Treatments for anxiety and depression often involve unnatural, addictive medications which cause sleepiness and loss of interest. Why not seek a natural source of relief from anxiety with essential oils?

Learn How You Can Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Here are some recipes to try and help combat negative feelings …

Anti-Anxiety, Relaxing Combinations for a Massage Therapy Blend, Bath Water or an Air Diffuser:

  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops neroli essential oil
  • 2 drops geranium essential oil

Or

  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops rose essential oil

To create a massage therapy blend, simply add 2 fl oz. of your favorite carrier oil.

Tackle Insomnia

Lavender has a natural calming effect and it also contributes to improving your mood, so it helps you fall asleep and feel better while you sleep.

Lavender: The Off-Grid Way To Fight Anxiety, Heal Wounds And Sleep Better, Too

Image source: Pixabay.com

For a simple but effective aromatherapy idea to help with insomnia, before going to bed apply several drops of lavender essential oil to a tissue. Leave it beside your pillow so you breathe it in continuously while you sleep.

Create a Relaxing Atmosphere in the Bedroom by Using These Blends in an Air Diffuser:

  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops tangerine essential oil

Or

  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops sweet orange essential oil

Or

  • 3 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops geranium essential oil

Taking a hot bath using lavender essential oil or combined with other essential oils is another way to relax before bedtime. It also has healthy benefits for your skin, muscles and state of being when added to a steaming bath water. Light some candles around the room and play some soft music to create a relaxing atmosphere. Run your bath water, drop in about six drops of the essential oils and swirl it around. Relax and enjoy.

Restful Bath Combinations:

  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops Australian sandalwood essential oil

Or,

  • 3 drops lavender essential oil
  • 3 drops linaloe essential oil

Treat Cuts and Wounds

Lavender essential oil has high-quality healing and antiseptic effects, which calm and soothe the irritated area. It aids in healing by helping with new skin cell generation. It is also an anti-inflammatory agent, so that it will help with any swelling and pain, too.

Try using this lavender essential oil blend to help disinfect and heal …

To Heal Cuts, Wounds, Ulcers or Skin Infections:

  • Two drops myrrh essential oil
  • Two drops frankincense essential oil
  • One drops German chamomile essential oil
  • One drops lavender essential oil
  • One fl oz. grape seed carrier oil

Don’t Forget Massage Therapy

Massage therapy is a special way of using lavender essential oil blends. Some would say it is the most pleasurable, combining as it does the senses of touch and smell. It is also a therapeutic method, as essential oils are diluted in a carrier oil, like sunflower, and rubbed directly into the skin.

Beet Powder: The Ancient Secret To Renewed Energy And Stamina

Lavender: The Off-Grid Way To Fight Anxiety, Heal Wounds And Sleep Better, Too

Image source: Pixabay.com

Massage therapy using lavender essential oil blends has two further bonuses. First, it stimulates circulation, enabling the essential oils to disperse rapidly around the body, and second, the essential oils create a warmth with skin-on-skin friction, and this also causes the essential oils to smell stronger so that you get the therapeutic benefits of both the mind and the body.

Take a look at these therapeutic massage blends using lavender essential oil …

Recipe for a Rich Moisturizing Blend:

  • 7 drops rose essential oil
  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops sandalwood essential oil
  • 2 fl oz. sweet almond carrier oil

Recipe for Eczema, Itchy and Sensitive Skin:

  • 8 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops marigold essential oil
  • 5 drops violet essential oil
  • 2 fl oz. sweet almond carrier oil

Recipe for Backache:

  • 6 drops lavender essential oil
  • 6 drops eucalyptus essential oil
  • 3 drops lemon essential oil
  • 2 fl oz. safflower carrier oil

Recipe for Tense Muscles:

  • 8 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops petitgrain essential oil
  • 2 drops basil essential oil
  • 2 drops sunflower carrier oil

Headache Massage Blend:

  • 2 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops rose essential oil
  • 1 drop chamomile essential oil
  • 1 fl oz. sunflower carrier oil

Conclusion

By creating a mixture which you love to smell each time you use it, you will feel more fulfilled and at peace. Lavender essential oil combines well with many other essential oils, so feel free to experiment with your own combinations to discover your favorite, relaxing scent.

How do you use lavender essential oil? Share your tips in the section below:

If You Like All-Natural Home Remedies, You Need To Read Everything That Hydrogen Peroxide Can Do. Find Out More Here.

hydrogen peroxide report

5 Heal-Everything Essential Oils You Should Stockpile For First Aid

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5 Heal-Everything Essential Oils For Your First-Aid Stockpile

Image source: Wikimedia

 

Spring has arrived, and summer is rolling in soon. The much-welcomed, pleasant weather results in more activity, both indoors and outdoors.

It is also, unfortunately, the time of year which results in more accidents. Now is the time to create your all-natural first-aid kits so that quick treatment is available during your time of need!

I would recommend making two first-aid kits: one to take on the go, and one for your home. I always keep a well-stocked first-aid kit in my home, for quick retrieval in case of an emergency. Then, I also have one in my vehicle which travels with me everywhere I go. Having a well-stocked first-aid kit can save a life.

In this article, I have put together a list of which essential oils I use in my first-aid kits and an explanation of why they are beneficial for first aid. To help even further, I have added some personal recipes and remedies on how to use these oils in the event of an accident or a bothersome health ailment, such as a migraine.

Learn How You Can Make Powerful Herbal Medicines, Right in Your Kitchen!

Don’t forget to add a carrier oil to the kit, which is used for diluting 100 percent pure essential oils. I use sweet almond carrier oil, but there are many from which to choose.

Here is what is in my first-aid kit:

1. Peppermint essential oil

Properties: Antibacterial, Anti-Inflammatory, Antiparasitic, Antispasmodic, Analgesic, Antiviral, Digestive.

5 Heal-Everything Essential Oils You Should Stockpile For First Aid

Image source: Pixabay

Peppermint essential oil is nearly one-third menthol, which makes it excellent for soothing headaches, muscular pain, sunburn, insect bites, mental fatigue, nausea and indigestion.

Headache relief:

  • 4 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 4 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Massage this blend into your temples or scalp to relieve the discomfort of a headache.

Relief of Pain Due to Sprains or Strains:

  • 4 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 4 drops helichrysum essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Massage this blend into the area of the injury to relieve the pain.
  • This blend is also great for sore muscles after strenuous activity.

Relief of Indigestion, Nausea, Motion Sickness or Morning Sickness:

  • Place a drop of peppermint essential pil onto a tissue and inhale deeply for several minutes. The menthol significantly improves circulation, and this helps relieve indigestion.

2. Helichrysum essential oil

Properties: Anti-inflammatory, Analgesic, Antibacterial, Antioxidant, Anticoagulant, Antispasmodic, Antiviral, Expectorant, Mucolytic.

Helichrysum essential oil is useful for relieving pain, stopping bleeding, relief of burns and sunburn, healing of cuts and is a natural sunscreen.

To Relieve Bodily Pain, Such as Back Pain, Neck Pain or Leg Pains:

  • 12 drops helichrysum essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Massage into the area of pain for quick relief.
  • You will find that this blend works a lot like aspirin does and is a great natural substitute for pain-relieving drugs.

To Stop Minor Bleeding:

  • Helichrysum is a natural anticoagulant.
  • Pat the cut or wound with a sterile cloth and then drop several drops of the oil onto the bleeding area. Cover with gauze. This process might need to be repeated until the bleeding stops.
  • If the wound is deep and might require stitches, seek professional medical help if it is possible. If help is not readily available, helichrysum oil can contribute to coagulation until help can be reached.

Burn Relief:

  • Helichrysum essential oil is mild enough to use directly on the skin when called for. In the case of burns, rub the oil onto the burned area.
  • Place several drops of helichrysum essential oil onto a sterile piece of gauze, cover the burned area of skin, and then use medical tape to keep in place.
  • For severe burns, seek professional medical treatment as soon as possible.

Natural Sunscreen:

  • 5 drops helichrysum essential oil
  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Rub into areas of the skin which will be exposed to sunlight.

Help Heal and Reduce Infection of Cuts and Scrapes:

  • Because helichrysum essential oil is a natural antibacterial agent when rubbed into a cut or scrape, it will not only prevent bacterial infection, but it will also help speed the healing process.

3. Lavender essential oil

Properties: Analgesic, Antihistamine, Anti-inflammatory, Antiseptic, Antispasmodic, Regenerative, Sedative.

5 Heal-Everything Essential Oils You Should Stockpile For First Aid

Image source: Pixabay

Lavender essential oil is known for its soothing and healing effects.

To Relieve the Itching and Redness, and to Help Heal Rashes and Insect Bites:

  • 5 drops lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops chamomile essential oil (not listed in this article, but chamomile essential oil has wonderful, soothing and anti-inflammatory qualities and is an oil worth including in your kit!)
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Rub the blend onto the rash several times a day for relief and healing.

To Soothe Sunburn:

  • 6 drops lavender essential oil
  • 2 drops chamomile essential oil
  • 2 drops peppermint essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Massage the blend into the sunburned skin.

To Reduce Painful Swelling From a Sprain or Injury:

  • Apply a cold compress with 6 drops lavender essential oil dropped onto the compress.
  • This method can also be used to relieve muscular aches.

4. Tea Tree essential oil

Properties: Antiseptic, Antibacterial, Antifungal, Antiviral.

Tea tree essential oil is a perfect antiseptic. It is used for cleaning and treating wounds, stings, blisters, acne, rashes and burns.

To Clean, Prevent Infection, and Speed the Healing of Cuts, Wounds and Insect Bites:

  • Place 2 drops tea tree essential oil onto a sterile cotton swab and apply to the affected area.

To Draw Out an Infection:

  • Apply a hot compress with 2 drops tea tree essential oil

5. Eucalyptus essential oil

Properties: Expectorant,  Insecticidal, Analgesic, Anti-infectious, Anti-Inflammatory.

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I have included eucalyptus essential oil as a must-have in a first-aid kit because of its expectorant benefits. It has many other beneficial medical uses, however.

To Soothe Dry or Chesty Coughs and to Breath Easier During Sinusitis, Hay Fever, Allergies, Colds or Bronchitis:

  • 5 drops eucalyptus essential oil
  • 5 drops tea tree essential oil
  • 4 tsp sweet almond carrier oil
  • Rub the blend onto the chest area several times a day.

To Clear Blocked Nasal Passages:

  • Place several drops of eucalyptus essential oil on a tissue and deeply inhale until your nasal passage clears.
  • You also can blend in several drops of lavender essential oil with the eucalyptus essential oil and inhale the blend in the same manner.

Do not forget to add other basic essentials to your first-aid kits like sterile gauze, cotton swabs, bandages, tweezers, scissors and medical tape. For your travel first-aid kit, I recommend adding survival items also such as a firestarter, mylar blanket, fishing line (or floss), a whistle, and a flare. Research what else you might want to include, depending on your travel destinations.

Remember also that there are too many essential oils to list here, and most have beneficial health and first-aid properties! You can find books about essential oils and do research online to learn more and to discover which essential oils are your favorites.

What essentials oils would you add to this list? Share your thoughts in the section below:

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Planting a Lavender Hedge

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How to plant a lavender hedge for a beautiful garden windbreak | PreparednessMama

Make a beautiful windbreak for your garden There are few herbs that bring as much delight as lavender. Its sweet smell and beautiful color brighten any home garden. Scent and color aside, lavender is a hard worker too, providing flowers for cooking, crafting, and herbal preparations.  Lavender also mounds nicely into hedges to enhance your […]

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