Did you know that you can grow your own antibacterial bandages? It’s true. There is a plant that you can grow in your own garden that is a great alternative to store-bought bandages.
It’s no secret that our family adores growing various herbs for seasoning, but we also love them for their medicinal qualities as well. If you’ve ever been outside with your children while they’re playing, chances are you’ve had to stop what you were doing and run inside for a band-aid because someone skinned a knee or cut a finger, etc.
Here’s a fantastic plant that you can grow around your home (as well as in the windowsill inside!) that is edible and works wonderfully as an antibacterial bandage. . .
Wooly Lambs Ear
Wooly Lambs Ear, (Stachys Byzantina) is well known for having been used as a battlefield wound dressing due to its absorbent leaves and its blood clotting properties. It contains antibacterial, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties as well, making it a great alternative to that store bought antibiotic laden strips of plastic you can purchase at the store.
How to use it:
Wrap the affected area with a fresh leaf, if applying to a bruise, insect sting/bite, or broken skin, bruise the leaves so the juices of the plant are released, then apply.
Wooly Lamb’s ear is so absorbent that it can be used in a pinch as toilet paper, menstrual pads or in place of cotton balls. It’s an excellent remedy for stinging nettle. Medicinal uses aside, the young tender leaves can be eaten raw in a salad or lightly steamed as a delicious nutrient-rich side-dish.
Gardening & Landscaping:
As an added benefit, deer and rabbits are not particularly fond of lambs ear so this plant makes a lovely border plant for gardens, walkways, and gardens.
How to Grow them from Seed:
Lambs ear needs well-drained soil to start with. Homemade seed starter post work just fine.
Wet the soil and add 1-2 seeds 1/4″ deep, per pot.
While the seeds are germinating, keep them moist and out of direct sunlight. As soon as they sprout move them to an area that receives a minimum of 6 hours of sunlight per day. Transplant them when they have 3 sets of leaves. They prefer a partly-sunny (aka semi-shady) permanent home about a foot apart. They spread well on their own, but do not have a tendency to “take over”.
Where to Purchase:
Seeds & young plants can be purchased at farmers markets, traded through craigslist, Lawn & garden centers, as well as online in places such as Amazon.
© Can Stock Photo Inc. / KTallamy