10 Medicinal plants you should have in your home garden
By Olivia Cook // Mar 12, 2024

Here are 10 plants with potent medicinal properties that you can use to make natural home remedies if you wish to avoid the unwanted side effects caused by over-the-counter medications.

These plants or herbs are easy to grow, harvest and use, and are versatile enough to use for other applications. (Related: Prepper medicine: 9 Medicinal herbs to plant in your home garden.)

Calendula or marigold (Calendula officinalis)

Medicinal uses: Anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antioxidant, antispasmodic (eases cramps), demulcent (soothes and protects irritated or inflamed internal tissue), emmenagogue (stimulates and regulates menstrual flow), emollient (moisturizer) and immuno-stimulant

Preparations: Cream, essential oil, infusion (tea), lotion, ointment, powder, salve, tincture

An easy way to enjoy the many benefits of calendula is to make calendula tea using the powdered form of the herb or dried calendula flowers, which you can steep in boiling water for 10 to 20 minutes.

You can also learn how to make calendula salve for moisturizing your skin, promoting skin repair and wound healing, reducing skin inflammation or treating fungal infections. You can also make calendula oil for rashes, burns, acne, cold sores, swelling, eczema and genital herpes sores.

Chamomile (Matricaria recutita)

Medicinal uses: Analgesic, antiemetic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antispasmodic, anti-ulcer, antioxidant, carminative (soothes and settles the gut walls) and mild sedative

Preparations: Capsule, liquid extract, essential oil, ointment, skin cream, tablet, tea

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Making chamomile tea is the most popular way to use this herb. You can drink chamomile tea after a meal to aid digestion and soothe digestive troubles. You can also use chamomile flowers to make salads or salad dressings.

Coneflower (Echinacea spp.)

Medicinal uses: Alterative (restores the proper function of the body and increases health and vitality), anti-catarrhal (helps remove excess mucous from the body), antimicrobial, antiviral, detoxifier, general tonic, immuno-modulator and peripheral vasodilator (dilates distal blood vessels and lowers blood pressure)

Preparations: Capsule, tablet, tincture (may be more potent and fast-acting)

Echinacea stimulates the immune system and improves resistance to bladder and upper respiratory tract infections. When taken three times a day (less than 10 days), echinacea can also help treat the common cold and other infections. Echinacea should not be taken on an empty stomach.

Elecampane (Inula helenium)

Medicinal uses: Alterative, antimicrobial, anti-parasitic, diaphoretic (promotes sweating), diuretic (increases urination) and expectorant (helps remove excess mucous from the lungs)

Preparations: Capsule, essential oil, tincture

The fresh or dried root of elecampane has a strong, bitter yet spicy, warming flavor. You can make elecampane tea by pouring boiling water over one-fourth teaspoon (1 gram) of the ground root and rhizome and letting it steep for 10 to 15 minutes before straining. Drink a cup of elecampane tea three or four times daily if you have asthma, croup, pulmonary tuberculosis or whooping cough. This tea is safe for children and the elderly.

English lavender (Lavendula officinalis)

Medicinal uses: Antidepressant, antirheumatic, antispasmodic, antiseptic, aromatic (relaxes the body), carminative, diuretic, emmenagogue, hypotensive, nervous system relaxant, rubefacient (causes a gentle and localized increase in surface blood flow or vasodilation), sedative and uterine stimulant

Preparations: Balm, cosmetics, essential oil, perfume, salve

Dried lavender can be used to make cookies, sorbet, marinades, sauces and rubs. It can also be added to a simple syrup mixture and used to flavor summer drinks, like cocktails, iced tea or lemonade.

To make lavender tea for relieving pain or digestive issues, such as vomiting, nausea, upset stomach or intestinal gas, or as a natural sleep aid, simply pour boiling water over lavender buds. Let steep for 10 minutes before straining the tea into a cup. Add honey as desired.

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)

Medicinal uses: Antimicrobial, antidepressant, cardiotonic, carminative, choleretic (increases the volume of bile produced), diaphoretic, febrifuge (reduces fever), hepatic (aids liver functioning) mild analgesic, nervous system relaxant and tonic and sedative

Preparations: Capsule, cream, essential oil, extract, tea, tincture

Lemon balm is great for treating insomnia and anxiety. According to studies, combining lemon balm with other calming herbs, such as valerian (Valeriana officinalis), can help with minor sleep problems and reduce anxious feelings.

Based on clinical studies, you can take 300 to 500 grams of dried lemon balm in capsule form three times daily to promote calmness and alertness. To prepare lemon balm tea, steep the herb in hot water and drink no more than four times a day. You can also use lemon balm to make a topical cream for cold sores, lip sores and herpes lesions.

Marshmallow (Althea officinalis)

Medicinal uses: Alterative, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, demulcent, diuretic, emollient, expectorant and immuno-modulator

Preparations: Capsule, cough syrup, cream, ointment, tea, tincture

Marshmallow root tea is great for treating digestive ulcers, cough and sore throat. To prepare a soothing herbal tea, simply mix six tablespoons of dried marshmallow root or root powder with one pint of cold water in a jar or container with a lid. Stir the mixture to make sure the roots are fully submerged, then cover the container and refrigerate overnight. Strain the mixture and add raw honey to sweeten your tea if you wish. This tea should be used within 48 hours.

Another way to use the herb as a remedy is to drink a glass of water containing 30 to 40 drops of marshmallow tincture daily. If you prefer to take marshmallow supplements in capsule form, take an equivalent of six grams of powdered marshmallow root in divided doses.

Peppermint (Mentha x piperita)

Medicinal uses: Antiemetic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, antipruritic, anti-spasmodic, antitussive, antiseptic, aromatic, carminative, diaphoretic, emmenagogue, nervine (relieves anxiety) and peripheral vasodilator

Preparations: Chest rub, cream, dry or fresh leaves, essential oil, tea, tincture

Peppermint oil can be used topically to relieve headaches, itching, joint pain and muscle ache. You can also use peppermint oil in aromatherapy to treat cough, improve mental function and reduce body aches, pain and stress, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH).

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris)

Medicinal uses: Antibacterial, anti-spasmodic, anthelmintic (kills and expels worms and other parasites), antiseptic, antiviral, astringent, expectorant and secretolytic (decreases over-secretions, especially phlegm)

Preparations: Dried or fresh herbs, essential oil

Fresh thyme is often used as a seasoning to add flavor to food. It goes well with beans, cabbages, carrots, chicken, corn, eggplant, fish, lamb and other meats. But you can also use thyme to make a medicinal tea for abdominal pain, diarrhea, cough, hypertension and menstrual pain. To prepare, simply steep eight to 10 fresh thyme sprigs in boiling water (enough to fill a mug) and allow to stand for five minutes. Enjoy this restorative tea and its soothing natural properties.

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

Medicinal uses: Anti-hemorrhagic, anti-inflammatory, antipyretic, antirheumatic, anti-spasmodic, antiseptic, astringent, bitter tonic, carminative, diaphoretic, diuretic, emmenagogue, hemostatic, hypotensive and peripheral vasodilator

Preparations: Capsule, dried or fresh herbs, liquid extract, poultice, tablet, tincture

One of the most widely used medicinal herbs today, yarrow can be used to treat a variety of conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome, high blood pressure, spasms, poor blood circulation and microbial infections. Yarrow can also help alleviate digestive issues, menstrual discomfort, gum inflammation and cold and flu symptoms.

When making natural remedies, harvest yarrow flower clusters when the plant is in bloom by cutting the top third of the plant just above the leaf node. You can steep fresh or dried yarrow leaves or flowers in boiling water to make yarrow tea or use them to make a poultice for wounds.

You can also prepare an infused oil for topical use by grinding some dried yarrow leaves and flowers and mixing one part with four parts neutral carrier oil in a glass jar. Seal the jar tightly and place it in a dark corner, making sure to shake the jar once daily. After four to six weeks, strain the oil and store in a cool, dark place when not in use. You can also mix in some essential oils or melted beeswax to make a healing salve.

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Watch this video to learn about the medicines growing near your home.

This video is from the Ravik4 channel on Brighteon.com.

More related stories:

Natural alternatives to OTC drugs for your survival medicine cabinet.

Plant-based antimicrobial compounds offer a variety of alternatives to an over-dependence on toxic synthetic antibiotics that are increasingly less effective.

Prepper first aid: 10 Must-haves for your natural medicine first aid kit.

Sources include:


HomesteadAndChill.com 1

HomesteadAndChill.com 2


MountSinai.org 1



MountSinai.org 2



MountSinai.org 3






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