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My 4 Favorite Medicinal Weeds

4. Plantain (Plantago major)
Whenever I walk out into nature I always keep an eye out for plantain leaf. It has rescued me so many times in the past that I even stash a handful of leaves in my pocket when hiking in unfamiliar territory. You never know what might happen. If I receive a loving sting from a bee or wasp the pain is quickly assuaged by the juice of the plantain leaf.

One autumn I was harvesting some rhubarb at a local CSA, planted quite some distance from the farmhouse, when the knife slipped and cut a deep gash in my finger. It was speed bleeding and I needed to slow it down immediately. I grabbed a few plantain leaves off the ground and chewed them quickly to a green, wet pulp, then applied it to the wound. I then wrapped a few whole leaves around the finger, gathered up the rhubarb and headed back across the wide field to my car. I noticed there was no blood seeping out under the leaves and when I removed the poultice the bleeding had stopped and all pain was gone.

Folk medicine attributes plantain with a wide assortment of uses, from respiratory ailments to skin inflammation, sores and ulcers. It can even be used to relieve itching from poison ivy and poison oak. A good thing to note is that it does have laxative properties and is best administered internally as a tea, dried herbal capsules or tincture.

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Read more: Blogs, Eating for Health, Food, Health, Lawns & Gardens, Natural Remedies, Nature, Rejuvenate your Body with Delia Quigley,

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Delia Quigley

Delia Quigley is the Director of StillPoint Schoolhouse, where she teaches a holistic lifestyle based on her 30 years of study, experience and practice. She is the creator of the Body Rejuvenation Cleanse, Cooking the Basics, and Broken Bodies Yoga. Delia's credentials include author, artist, natural foods chef, yoga instructor, energy therapist and public speaker. Follow Delia's blogs: and. To view her website go to


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9:54PM PST on Feb 22, 2014

Thank you for the good information. Nature holds many answers.

8:36PM PST on Feb 21, 2014

This is excellent information. Thank you for the tips. (p, t)

3:21AM PST on Feb 13, 2014

You have a higher tolerance for "bitter," than I do, clearly. I'm afraid the taste of the plants you describe as "edible" always sets up an uncontrollable gag reflex.

2:27AM PST on Feb 11, 2014

Treasure our nature

2:55AM PST on Dec 6, 2013

Cannabis? Claudette, you must me joking!

2:55AM PST on Dec 6, 2013

thank you

12:10PM PST on Dec 4, 2013

Great article. Thanks.

4:44AM PDT on May 28, 2012

Thank you! Great!!!

8:09PM PST on Nov 27, 2011

love this article

12:50AM PST on Nov 25, 2011

There is a good reason why weeds are so plentiful. Just shows that Mother Nature provides for us, for free, and we don't appreciate the kindness of what is helpful to us.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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