PLANTAIN: Properties of a Common yet Precious Plant

  Common Name: Greater Plantain, Broadleaf Plantain, Common Plantain Species: Plantago Major Family: Plantaginaceae   Plantain  is a perennial broadleaf plant that grows the most abundant and widely distributed medicinal crops around the world. Plantain has oval shaped leaves revealing string-like veins, with thick stems that meet at the base and grow in a rosette. Flowers rise well above the foliage and contain a small pod housing dark seeds held by the narrow spikes. Each plant can produce up to 20,000 seeds. We can find this miraculous plant growing nearly everywhere, from meadows…

BEAR’S GARLIC: The Best Spring Natural Detox

  Family: Alliaceae Species: Allium Ursinum Common Name: Bear’s Garlic, Wild Garlic, Bear leek, Broad-leaved garlic Bear’s Garlic is a wild plant relative to chives. and well-known for being a true spring treat for bears that have just woken up from their winter slumber, also a favorite of wild boar. It is a bulbous perennial herbaceous plant that reproduces primarily by seed. The narrow bulbs are formed from a single leaf base and produce bright green elliptical leaves. The inflorescence is an umbrella of several white flowers. It’s native to…

COLEUS FORSKOLHII: Properties and Benefits

Family: Lamiaceae Species: Plectranthus barbatus Common Name: Forskolhii, Indian Coleus, Coleus Forskolhii, Coleus Barbatus   Coleus Forskolhii is a genus of perennial plants native to sub-tropical areas, they grow best in well-drained soil and warm climates exposed to sun. Their aroma’s similar to camphor and it’s extremely fragrant due to large amount of essential oils present. Leaves are ovate in shape and the spiked flowers are typical of the mint family. Unlike its ornamental relatives, Coleus forskohlii lacks the spectacular colored leaves. It has plain, bright green leaves and flowers…

SANSEVIERIA: The Bedroom Plant that Purify Air

  Species: Sansevieria Common Names:  Mother-in-law’s Tongue, Devil’s Tongue, Bowstring Hemp, Snake Plant, Snake Tongue   Sansevieria is an evergreen, succulent, perennial plant producing long, narrow  sword-shaped leaves, up to 75cm long from a rhizomatous root stock. The plant is cultivated for its fiber in several tropical countries, but is more commonly grown as an ornamental in tropical and subtropical regions, and as a pot plant in many other areas of the world. Cultivation Sansevieria can be propagated by leaf cutting and root division, as plants grow much faster from…

MULLEIN: The Herb that Fights Infections

Common Name: Mullein, Verbascum, Candlewick Plant, Lungwort Genus: Verbascum Family: Scrophulariaceae   Mullein is a biennial o perennial plant growing tall and up to 2 meters. In its first year produce a dense rosette of wooly leaves at ground level, while the second it sends up huge flower spikes with many bright densely clustered yellow flowers which only open for one day. Mullein plants produces plenty of seeds each second year and some of them can lie dormant for as many as one hundred years, reason why is easily find growing pretty…

DIY Vertical Garden Worm Composting Planter

Today, I will share this great concept with you, one of the most cost and space-efficient, practical ways of growing ever conceived! Whether you garden as a hobby that helps you unwind after a stressful day, or a necessity for living a homestead or off the grid lifestyle, we’re all looking for eco-friendly and cost-effective ways to grow our own food. What’s even more appealing is having an affordable system from scrap material that allows you to extend your growing capacity transforming your organic waste in fertilizer!   What you…

STINGING NETTLE: Properties and Uses of a Super Plant

Common Name: Stinging Nettle, Common Nettle, Nettle Family: Urticacea Species: Urtica Dioica   Stinging Nettle is a herbaceous, perennial flowering plant widely spread all over the world. Nettle grows up to 1 or 2 meter tall in summer, dying down to the ground in winter. The soft, green leaves are are borne oppositely on an erect,  green stem. Both leaves and stem  have many hollow stinging hairs called trichomes which act like needles, injecting histamine and other chemicals that produce a stinging sensation when contacted by humans and other animals. The…

HOP PLANT: Properties, Uses and Benefits

  Family: Cannabaceae (hemp family) Species: Humulus Lupulus Common Names: Hops, Wild Hop, Common Hop, Lupulin These perennial herbaceous climbing plant require support to thrive. Plants are dioecious, which means that they have a gender. Hop Plants send up new shoots in early spring which are edible and delicious. The cone-shaped fruits are known as strobili,  are collected in fall, can be used either fresh or dried. Hops dies back to a cold-hardy rhizome in autumn. Plants are very hardy tolerating temperatures down to about -20°c when dormant,  in the…

GREAT CELANDINE: The Warts Curing Plant

  Common Name: Celandine, Greater Celandine, Celandine Poppy Species: Chelidonium Majus Family: Papaveraceae   Greater Celandine is an herbaceous perennial plant with slightly hairy and tall stems (40 cm to 120 cm high). The whole plant abounds in a yellowish juice, which is emitted freely wherever the stems or leaves are broken. This juice stains and has a persistent and nauseous smell, also irritating. Leaves are pinnate with lobed margins, flowers appear from late spring to summer and consist of four yellow petals. This plant displays long, narrow seedpods plenty of…

ARTEMISIA ANNUA: The Most Efficient Malaria Cure is Natural

Common name:Artemisia Annua, Sweet Wormwood, Sweet Annie, Sweet Sagewort, Annual Mugwort Genus: Artemisia Family: Asteraceae   Artemisia Annua is an annual aromatic herb from Asia that has been used in China to treat fevers for centuries. The genus Artemisia includes well-known plants used in medicine, perfumery and the food/beverage industry, such as Tarragon, Artemisia Absinthium and Mugwort. CULTIVATION The plant  naturally grows up to 1 meter tall, although cultivated ones can arrive to double their size. The intensive aromatic scent of the leaves is very characteristic, they are divided by deep…

YARROW: Properties, Uses and Benefits

  Family: Asteraceae Species: Achillea Millefolium Common Name: Yarrow, Milfoil, Thousand-Leaf, Achillea, Woundwort, Achillea Millefolium is an erect, herbaceous, perennial plant that produces one to several stems. It’s leaves are almost feathery and  and arranged spirally on the stems. The inflorescence consist in a flat-topped cluster white to pink in color,  visited by many insects because of their strong scent. Yarrow is a common weed, an herbaceous perennial plant native to the Northern hemisphere that grows freely in grassland, roadsides and other sites with well draining ground. Easily recognizable for…

DIANTHUS: The Flower of The Gods

Family: Caryophyllaceae Genus: Dianthus Common Name: Dianthus, Sweet William, Carnations   Dianthus plants can be annual, biennial or perennial. The name refers to a genus of approximate 300 species distributed in Asia, Europe and Africa. The most common and cultivated varieties are Dianthus caryophyllus (carnation), D. plumarius (pink), D. barbatus (sweet william) and D.Chinensis. Flowers are most often in pink, salmon, red and white with a slender foliage spread on thick stems. CULTIVATION Dianthus are one of the oldest cultivated flowers, treasured for centuries for their scent and their ease of cultivation,…

MILK THISTLE: A Natural Detox

Common Names: Cardus Marianus, Milk Thistle, Marian Thistle Species: Sylibum Marianum Family: Asteraceae (Cynareae)   Milk thistle is an annual/biennial plant that grows in dry, rocky soil throughout southern and Western Europe, and in some parts of the United States. The stem grows tall and bears spiny leaves, which are dark green in color and streaked with white along the veins. Milk thistle flowers from June to August, bearing a single spiny, reddish-purple blossom. The fruit of the plant (commonly misidentified as the seed) is used for health purposes. Milk Thistles can…

GARLIC MUSTARD: A Very Nutritious Invasive Plant

  Family: Brassicaceae Species: Alliara Petiolata Common Name: Garlic Mustard, Garlic Wort, Hedge Garlic, Poor-man’s-mustard Garlic Mustard is a biennial plant; the first year, plants appear as a rosette of green leaves close to the ground; remain green through the winter and develop into mature flowering plants the following spring. It’s a highly invasive plant widely growing in early spring on the side of roads, and waste lands. The leaves are triangular with a distinctive outline, flowers that are produced in spring and summer have four white petals. The fruit…

CALAMINTHA GRANDIFLORA / MINT SAVORY: Properties, Uses and Benefits

  Family: Laminaceae Species: Calamintha Grandiflora Common Name: Mint Savory, Large-Flowered Calamint, Satureja Grandiflora Calamints are close cousins to garden mint, without the spreading invasive habit, and a more delicate fragrance. This plant is native to Europe and the Middle East. This selection forms an upright, bushy mound of soft green, oval-shaped leaves. Rose-pink flowers are studs on short spikes among the leaves in midsummer. This will slowly spread to form a small patch, attractive to butterflies  and bees for their pleasantly fragrance. CULTIVATION Plants are hardy to about -15°c,…

PLANTAGO LANCEOLATA – RIBWORT PLANTAIN: Properties, Uses and Benefits

  Family: Plantaginaceae Species: Plantago Lanceolata Common Name: Ribwort Plantain, Narrowleaf Plantain, Ribgrass Ribwort Plantain is a perennial herb with a thick rhizome and fibrous roots. Leaves are lanceolate with 3-5 strong parallel veins along. The inflorescence is a short spike, densely flowered with white flowers that bring plenty of small seeds. Very closely related to Plantago Major, it’s very tolerant and can adapt to extreme condition, This plant can actually live anywhere from very dry meadows to places similar to a rain forest, roadsides, open woodlands and grasslands. Along…

GOLDENBERRY: Benefits of a South American Super Fruit

  Family: Solanaceae Species: Physalis Peruviana Common Name: Ground Cherry, Goldenberry, Inca Berry, Cape Goosberry Physalis Peruviana is a perennial plant closely related to Tomatillo and the Chinese Lantern plant, also members of the same genus. This variety native from the Andes, is nowadays called in various names and commercially grown around the globe. Its flowers are yellowish five petals and will bear fruit quick enough about two months from transplant, usually around August, continuing till frost. Goldenberry plant are generous and can bear up to 300 small fruits each.…

CHINESE LANTERN PLANT: More than just Ornamental

  Common Name: Alkekengi,  Chinese Lantern Plant, Winter Cherry Species: Physalis Alkekengi Family: Solanaceae   Chinese Lantern Plant or Physalis Alkekengi is closely related to Physalis Peruviana (Ground Cherry) and Physalis Philadelphica (Tomatillo). This annual/perennial plant grow in warm temperate and subtropical regions. The real delight is their large, red-orange, inflated seed pod from which the plant gets its common name. These papery pods contain a fruit that is edible and nutritious, while the leaves and unripen fruit are mildly poisonous. Cultivation These plants can grow in partial shade, but especially in…

POTENTILLA: Uses and Benefits

  Common Name: Potentilla Reptans, Creeping Cinquefoil, Creeping Tormentil, European Cinquefoil Genus: Potentilla   Potentilla  is a very interesting perennial plant in the Rose family that is known by a number of names. Easy to grow, this small plant, has fuzzy dark green leaves with a strawberry-like look, and five petals yellow flowers. It is a rather quite common hardy plant that has been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years. It grows well in the open meadows and grassy slopes,  and it’s very common to find from late spring…

OREGANO: The Ultimate Natural Antibiotic

Common Names: Oregano, Wild Majoram, Origanum Vulgaris Family: Lamiaceae Species: Origanum Vulgaris   Oregano is a flowering plant in the Mint family. It is native to temperate Western and Southwestern Eurasia and the Mediterranean region. It is a perennial herb, growing from 20-80 cm tall, with opposite leaves 1-4 cm long, flowers are rose-purple or white 3-4 mm long. CULTIVATION Oregano is a must-have in a culinary garden, too easy to grow and very useful. Although does thrive in a warm climate, it’s a hardy perennial that returns year after year, without much…

HELICHRYSUM: a Very Beneficial Essential Oil

  Family: Asteraceae Gender: Helichrysum Common names: Helichrysum Italicum, Curry Plant, Immortelle Helichrysum is a perennial evergreen shrub native to the Mediterranean region, where it’s been used for its medicinal properties for thousands of years. Beside this beneficial properties, mostly found in its essential oil, we value this plant for its silvery foliage, warm fragrance and bright yellow blooms. This  evergreen hardy shrub grow larger then taller. It has leaves all year round, while in flower from July to August. Established plants are drought resistant, wind tolerant and able to tolerate…

THYMUS SERPYLLUM: Properties, Uses and Benefits

Common Names: Wild Thyme, Mountain Thyme, Creeping Thyme, Serpolet Species: Thymus Serpyllum Family: Lamiaceae    Thymus serpyllum or wild thyme,  is a specie of flowering plant in the mint family Lamiaceae, native to most of Europe and North Africa but found in North America too. It is a low, usually prostrate subshrub growing few centimeters tall with creeping stems up to 10 cm long. The oval evergreen leaves are small as the strongly scented flowers that are either pink-purple and produced in clusters. The hardy plant tolerates some pedestrian traffic and produces…

STEVIA: Your Own Calorie-Free Natural Sweetener

Family: Asteraceae Genus: Stevia Common Name: Stevia Rabaudiana, Sugar leaf, Candy leaf Stevia is a perennial herb that reaches up to 50-80 cm  in height. The oblong aromatic leaves are times sweeter than traditional white sugar, containing neither calories nor carbohydrates. CULTIVATION Germination from seed is difficult, comparing to other aromatic plants; reason why most plants are grown from cuttings rather then from seeds. The plant requires rich well-drained soil and thrives in warm humid climates. Once established, Stevia is a low water, low maintenance plant, but tender young plants are…

PEONY: Properties, Uses and Benefits

Family: Paeoniaceae Species: Peony Common Names: Peony, Paeony   Peony is a flowering plant  native to Asia, Europe and Western North America. They are among the most popular garden plants in temperate regions, with 40 distinguished species. Mostly are herbaceous perennial plants up to 1 meter tall, but some are woody shrubs can stretch up to 3.5 meters (11 ft) tall. They have  deeply lobed leaves and large, often fragrant flowers, in colors ranging from purple red to white or yellow, flowering from late spring.  Peonies are usually propagated by root…

BORAGE: A Very Resourceful Plant

  Family: Boraginaceae Species: Borago Officinalis Common Names: Starflower, Bee Bush, Bugloss, Borragine, Tailwort Borago Officinalis is an annual herb in the flowering plant family Boraginaceae. It is native to the Mediterranean region and has naturalized in many other localities. It grows satisfactorily in gardens in the UK climate, Northern Europe and America. Can survive light frost and it is considered to be an invasive plant in some country, remaining in the garden from year to year by self-seeding. The leaves are edible and the plant is grown in gardens…