For hundreds of years, our ancestors have been cultivating medicinal herbs for getting quick access to their healing properties. Although it is possible to buy herbal extracts from the market, fresh herbs are far more effective and fragrant. Cultivating medicinal herbs allows you to have them faster when you feel the need. Moreover, you can grow them as much as you need, instead of purchasing in bulk and wasting them. A garden of healing herbs also impresses your guests as well.
Here is a list of six essential medicinal herbs and instructions for growing them.
Motherwort or Leonurus cardiaca is a highly effective medicinal herb that is easy to grow. The herb is a popular remedy for stress and anxiety. People use the plant as a tincture to alleviate menstrual cramps, muscle aches, and headaches. Motherwort has excellent benefits for women in menopause or about to deliver.
How to grow: Stratify the herb seeds for 12 days so that they can germinate quickly. Motherwort grows best in moderate sunlight. So plant in a place where it would get mild shade. Plant the seeds at least 20 inches apart to allow the plants a normal spread. In the ideal climate, Motherwort can grow quite aggressively. Therefore, cultivate it in a separate plot to prevent it from reaching the neighboring plants.
2. Purple Coneflower
Purple Coneflower or Echinacea brings glamor (and many bees and butterflies) to a herb garden with its purple flowers. Besides its beauty, the plant’s flowers, seeds, and roots can effectively boost immunity and energy.
How to grow: Cultivate Echinacea in full sun for proper flower growth. You can plant it in any type of garden soil with adequate drainage, but make sure you leave 2 feet of space between the plants. Early spring is the best time to cultivate the herb, and you can expect germination in 15-20 days.
Kratom or Mitragyna speciosa comes from the coffee family and is a native herb of South Asia. The herb’s leaf extract is used for treating digestive ailments, anxiety, and chronic pain. Kratom-tea is known to help with pain management and opioid withdrawal. If you are worried about Indo Kratom, you’ll be glad to know that you can buy it online easily.
How to grow: You can grow kratom plants from cuttings or seeds. Sadly, these plants have really low sprouting rates, and you have to plant fresh seeds in large numbers to grow some seedlings successfully.
If you are using cuttings, put them in moistened pots filled with peat moss and seal them with plastic covers to bar direct sunlight. Kratom plants need heavy feeding. So, be ready with fertile, rich soil full of nitrogen. Although kratom plants don’t require drainage, they are sensitive to heavy rains and droughts.
Calendula, popularly known as Pot Marigold, is one of the most important medicinal herbs that also attracts people with its golden flowers. The herb’s petals and whole flowers are traditionally eaten to address several skin conditions. Calendula is used in topical oils for healing burns, wounds, dry skin, and rashes due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
How to grow: Calendula has the name ‘Pot Marigold’ because it grows best in containers. Plant the seeds 12-15 inches apart in a place that gets full sun. You have to pick Calendula’s flowers every couple of days to ensure consistent flowering. Try to plant Calendula just before the summer, as it sprouts well in 10-15°C temperatures.
Passionflower or Passifloraceae is native to the United States and South America, where it grows with mesmerizing looking bluish flowers and foliage. The herb is used to cure anxiety, stress, pain, and attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Passionflower’s extract is used as a flavoring in many popular foods and beverages as well.
How to grow: Plant the seeds in a garden soil that is well-drained and warm. Keep around 3 feet of space between plants as the herbs climb and spread voraciously. Passionflower needs full sun, but save them from scorching heat if you live in a hot climate. Choose the bed strategically, as these herbs can spread throughout your garden’s expanse. If your seeds do not sprout in a month, don’t be disappointed, as it may take 3-5 months, depending on the climate.
6. Holy Basil
Holy Basil, locally known as Tulsi in South-East Asia, is one of the rarest herbs whose whole body- leaves, flowers, stem, and even root is used for healing purposes. It’s antimicrobial properties make it an effective remedy for a range of common health issues such as asthma, sinusitis, coughs, colds, bronchitis, arthritis, diabetes, headaches, and anxiety.
How to grow: Holy Basil requires full sun, fertile and moist soil, and moderate watering. The herb takes time to grow initially, especially if you cultivate in colder climates. But the herbs take off after they pass a warm season. Tulsi plants can regrow quickly without human intervention. They are also easy to grow in earthen pots in your apartments or rooftops. Note that Tulsi can’t tolerate extreme climates (Above 35°C or Sub-zero temperatures).
Growing medicinal herbs in your backyard not only provides you quick access to their beneficial elements but also makes your garden more attractive and aromatic. So gather your willpower and be ready to toil for days to grow your favorite medicinal herbs in your home garden.