Herbalism is one of the oldest forms of medicine, and it is still practiced today. There are many different types of herbs that can be grown in your garden for medicinal use.
In this blog post, we will discuss 11 of the most popular herbs to grow for medicinal purposes. We will also provide information on how to grow these herbs and what their medicinal uses are!
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How many types of herbs are there?
There are an endless amount of types of herbs that can be grown in your garden for medicinal use. Herbs have been used for centuries to treat a variety of illnesses and health conditions. Some of the most common herbs used for medicinal purposes include ginger, garlic, chamomile, lavender, and peppermint. Each herb has its own unique therapeutic properties and health benefits.
What are the most used herbs in cooking?
The most used herbs in cooking include basil, oregano, rosemary and thyme.
What are the benefits of growing your own medicinal herbs?
There are many benefits to growing your own medicinal herbs at home including saving money on expensive pharmaceuticals, controlling the amount of chemicals that go into your body by using natural remedies instead of prescription medications, and learning how to use herbs in different ways.
What are the best medicinal herbs for beginners?
The best medicinal herbs for beginners are lavender, chamomile and peppermint. These three types of plants can be grown easily at home without any special training or equipment required. They also have many health benefits that are beneficial to your everyday life.
What is the best time of year to grow medicinal herbs?
The best time of the year to grow medicinal herbs is in spring, summer and fall when temperatures are between 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit (18-24 Celsius). The plants will not survive if they freeze during winter months so make sure that you don’t let them get too cold.
What is the oldest herb?
The oldest herb is garlic, which has been used for medicinal purposes for over 5000 years.
Scientific Name: Ocimum basilicum
Alternate names: Sweet Basil, Tulsi
Description: Basil is an herb that is native to tropical regions from central Africa to Southeast Asia. It is a tender low-growing annual plant, best known as a culinary herb used in Italian cuisine and occasionally in teas. Depending on the species and cultivar, the leaves may taste somewhat like anise, with a strong, pungent, often sweet smell.
Characteristics: The basil plant is an annual that grows to a height of about 24 inches. It has fragrant leaves and blooms in the summer months.
Growing tips: Basil can be grown indoors or outside, as long as it receives plenty of sunlight every day. The soil should also be well-drained so that water does not pool up around the roots and cause them to rot.
What does Basil look like?
Basil has green leaves that are about two inches long. The leaves are oval-shaped and have a pointed tip. The plant blooms in the summer months, and the flowers are small and white.
Medicinal Use: Fresh basil leaves are an excellent remedy for insect bites and stings as well as minor burns. The eugenol it contains acts as an anti-inflammatory agent that targets the inflammation and swelling caused by these injuries. Basil can also be used to treat fever, asthma, and sinus infections.
Culinary Uses: The leaves are used to flavor many dishes, including pastas and salads.
2. Bay Leaves
Scientific Name: Laurus nobilis
Description: Bay Leaves are a spice used in cooking. They can be whole or ground, and they’re typically added to slow-cooked dishes like soups, stews, sauces and braises.
Characteristics: The bay leaf is an aromatic leaf from the laurel tree that is used as a spice in cooking. The leaf is green and has a bitter taste.
Growing tips: Bay leaves can be grown indoors or outside in USDA zones eight through 11. They require full sun and well-drained soil.
What does Bay Leaves look like?
The bay leaf is an evergreen tree that grows to a height of about 20 feet. It has dark green, shiny leaves that are two to three inches long and one inch wide.
Medicinal Use: Bay Leaves can be used as an antiseptic for minor wounds and burns or taken internally to treat sore throats, coughs and colds. They can also help with indigestion by stimulating the production of digestive juices.
Culinary Uses: The leaves are added whole to soups, stews and sauces for flavor. They can also be ground and used as a seasoning on meats or vegetables before cooking them in oil or butter over medium heat until tender; this makes them better able to release their flavors into whatever dish they are added to.
3. Bee Balm
Scientific Name: Monarda didyma
Description: Bee Balm is a perennial herb that is native to North America. The plant has fragrant leaves and blooms in the summer months with clusters of red, purple or pink flowers.
Characteristics: The bee balm plant is a perennial that grows to a height of about three feet. It has fragrant leaves and blooms in the summer months with clusters of red, purple or pink flowers.
Growing tips: Bee balm can be grown indoors or outside in USDA zones four through nine. The plant prefers full sun but can tolerate some shade. It requires well-drained soil.
What does bee balm look like?
The bee balm plant is a perennial that grows to a height of about three feet. It has fragrant leaves and blooms in the summer months with clusters of red, purple or pink flowers.
Medicinal Use: Bee Balm can be used as an antiseptic for minor wounds and burns or taken internally to treat sore throats, coughs and colds. The plant can also be used to reduce inflammation.
Culinary Uses: The leaves can be added fresh to salads or tea, or they can be dried and stored for later use. The flowers can also be used to make tea.
Scientific Name: Borago officinalis
Description: Borage is an annual herb that is native to the Mediterranean region. The plant has hairy leaves and blue flowers that bloom in the summer months.
Characteristics: The borage plant is an annual that grows to a height of about two feet. It has hairy leaves and blue flowers that bloom in the summer months.
Growing tips: Borage can be grown indoors or outside in USDA zones four through nine. The plant prefers full sun but can tolerate some shade. It requires well-drained soil and does not like wet conditions.
What does borage look like?
The borage plant is an annual that grows to a height of about two feet. It has hairy leaves and blue flowers that bloom in the summer months.
Medicinal Use: Borage is used to treat anxiety, stress and depression. The plant can also be used to improve memory function and cognitive performance.
Culinary Uses: The leaves can be added fresh to salads, soups or tea. They can also be dried and stored for later use. The flowers are edible and can be used in salads or as a garnish on desserts such as ice cream sundaes.
Scientific Name: Calendula officinalis
Also known as pot marigold and common marigold, calendula is a beautiful plant that grows to about 12 inches tall. It has bright flowers in shades of yellow and orange, making it an attractive addition to any garden. Calendula is an annual herb most commonly used for its medicinal properties and also as a dye or natural food coloring.
Calendula is a very easy plant to grow. It does well in full sun, but can also tolerate partial shade and tends to bloom until fall frost. Calendula prefers soil that drains well and is slightly alkaline with plenty of nitrogen-rich compost added. You can start calendula indoors four weeks before the last frost or sow directly in the garden after all danger of frost has passed.
To harvest, clip individual flowers as they open or cut the entire plant at once just above the soil line.
What does calendula look like?
Calendula flowers have a bright, cheery appearance and can range in color from yellow to orange to deep red. They are typically about two inches across and have five petals. The flowers grow on tall stalks above the plant’s foliage.
Calendula flowers are most commonly used topically for skin conditions, including minor cuts and scrapes, bruises, burns and sunburns. They can be made into a salve or ointment to treat skin irritations such as eczema or dryness. Because calendula has anti-inflammatory properties it may also help to reduce swelling and pain.
Calendula can also be taken internally as a tea or tincture for digestive issues such as constipation, indigestion and diarrhea. It is thought to help calm the gut and support digestion. Additionally, calendula may have anti-microbial properties which could make it useful for fighting infection.
Calendula flowers can be added to soups, salads and stews for color enhancement as well as flavor, or you can make your own calendula tea by steeping the petals in hot water. The plant’s petals are also dried and used to create a dye.
Scientific Name: Calamintha nepeta
Calamint is a perennial herb that grows to about two feet tall and has hairy, mint-scented leaves. The tubular flowers are purple, blue or white and bloom from June to September. It is native to Europe and Asia but can be grown in most parts of the United States.
Calamint prefers full sun but can tolerate partial shade. It grows best in well-drained soil with plenty of organic matter added. You can start calamint from seed or propagate by division in early spring.
To harvest, clip the stems just above the soil line and dry them in a dark, well-ventilated place before storing.
What does calamint look like?
Calamint’s leaves are similar to other mints and the plant has an overall square shape with tubular flowers that grow on tall stalks above the foliage. The flowers range in color from purple to white or blue and have a minty aroma.
Calamint has been used for centuries to treat a variety of ailments including respiratory problems, indigestion, headaches and fever. It is thought to be helpful in calming the mind and body and can be taken internally as a tea or tincture, or applied topically as an oil or salve.
Calamint is a delicious herb that can be added to salads, soups, stews and other dishes for flavor enhancement. You can also make your own tea by steeping the leaves in hot water.
Scientific Name: Nepeta cataria
Catnip is a perennial herb that grows to about three feet tall and has leaves that are opposite each other on the stem. The flowers are white or lavender and bloom from June to September. It is native to Europe and Asia but can be grown in most parts of the United States.
Catnip prefers full sun but can tolerate partial shade. It grows best in well-drained soil with plenty of organic matter added. You can start catnip from seed or propagate by division in early spring.
To harvest, clip the stems just above the soil line and dry them in a dark, well-ventilated area. Once dry, store the leaves in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for up to six months.
What does catnip look like?
Catnip is a perennial herb that has opposite leaves and white or lavender flowers.
Catnip is most commonly used as a sedative and antispasmodic. It has mild analgesic properties and can help with headaches, migraines or muscle aches when taken internally in tea form. Externally, catnip can be used as a topical treatment for bruises, cuts and wounds.
Catnip has a pleasant mint-like flavor and can be used as a seasoning for meats, vegetables and even desserts. It is also commonly used to make tea.
Scientific Name: Carum carvi
Caraway is a biennial herb that grows up to two feet tall. The leaves are feathery and the flowers are small and white. Caraway is used medicinally to relieve digestive problems such as gas, bloating, and cramps. It can also be used to treat respiratory problems such as bronchitis and asthma.
Caraway seeds should be sown in autumn or spring. Start them indoors, then transplant the seedlings outdoors after they have reached a height of about six inches. They like full sun and well drained soil but will tolerate some shade as long as there is plenty of moisture available to them at all times during their growing season (which lasts from spring through fall).
Caraway is used medicinally to treat indigestion, diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal problems. Its anti-inflammatory properties make it useful in treating respiratory conditions such as asthma or bronchitis. It can also be applied topically to relieve muscle aches and pains caused by overexertion.
Caraway seeds are used in a wide variety of dishes, including soups and stews. They can also be used to flavor breads, cakes, cookies and other baked goods. The leaves can be chopped up or ground into a powder for use as an herb seasoning (similar to oregano).
Scientific Name: Matricaria recutita
Chamomile is an annual herb that grows to about two feet tall. The flowers are small and daisy-like, with a yellow center and white petals. Chamomile has a sweet apple scent and is used to make tea, which is said to be good for relaxation and digestion.
Chamomile does best in full sun and well-drained soil. Sow the seeds directly in the garden after all danger of frost has passed, and thin to about 12 inches apart.
Chamomile tea is said to be a natural relaxant and can be used to help relieve tension headaches, menstrual cramps, and anxiety. Chamomile can also be used as a topical treatment for skin irritations such as eczema and sunburn.
Chamomile flowers are used to flavor tea, jam, syrup and wine.
Scientific Name: Anthriscus cerefolium
Description: Chervil is a delicate herb that has a mild anise flavor. It is popular in France and is used to season eggs, fish, and poultry. Chervil also makes a tasty addition to salads. The leaves are high in vitamins A and C.
Chervil prefers moist, well-drained soil and full sun to partial shade. It can be grown from seed or transplanted once it is established.
Chervil is used to treat respiratory problems, such as bronchitis and asthma. It is also a detoxifier and can be used to relieve digestive problems.
Chervil is used to season eggs, fish, poultry, and salads.
Scientific Name: Allium schoenoprasum
Description: Chives are a cold-hardy perennial that grow in clumps. They produce pink flowers and have long, thin leaves with a mild onion flavor.
Growing tips: Chives are easy to grow, and can be grown in full sun or partial shade.
How to Harvest: Cut the leaves with scissors above the soil level for culinary use. Otherwise, it is best to harvest chive flowers by cutting them off at ground level before they open up into a flower.
Medicinal Use: Chives, a member of the onion family, all contain sulfur compounds that protect against cancer and heart disease. They’re also high in vitamin C and potassium. The best way to use chive is to add them raw or lightly cooked into your meal for an added flavor boost.
Culinary Uses: Chives are a great addition to salads, eggs, potato dishes and more.
Scientific Name: Myrrhis odorata
Common Name: Cicely, Sweet cicely
Native Region: Europe; Siberia and China; Siberia, Japan
Plant Type: Perennial herbaceous plant. The stems are erect with feathery foliage on top of them. They grow from the roots in clusters and can reach a height of 70 cm. The leaves are divided into three leaflets, they are pinnate and have a strong aniseed scent. Its flowers are small white umbels that appear in the summer.
Cicely likes a moist soil in partial shade. It can be grown from seed or root division.
Uses: The leaves and flowers of cicely are edible and have a sweet aniseed flavour. They are used to flavour food, as well as being made into teas and tinctures for medicinal use.
The roots can be used as a vegetable and its seeds are used in flavouring absinthe, vermouth and liqueurs. The plant is also supposed to help with weight loss!
Cicely contains high levels of selenium which has many health benefits: It acts as an antioxidant; it aids the immune system against viruses; it prevents cancer and aids the body in fighting viral infections.
Medicinal uses: It is used as a diuretic, antiseptic and disinfectant. The leaves are crushed to make a poultice for wounds. Cicely tea is good for sore throats and coughs, chills, fevers and colds due to its expectorant properties.
The leaves, flower and seeds help assist digestion as well as increasing appetite. It can also be used for bloating and flatulence because of its anti-spasmodic action. Cicely is a good source of the mineral selenium which has many health benefits including prevention against cancer, heart disease and viral infections.
13. Cilantro / Coriander
Scientific Name: Coriandrum sativum
Parts Used: Leaves and seeds
Native Region: Southern Europe and Mediterranean
Description: Cilantro is an annual herb that is native to Southern Europe and the Mediterranean. The leaves and seeds are both used medicinally. Cilantro has a pungent, peppery flavor and is used in dishes such as salsa, guacamole, and chili. It is also used in teas and tinctures.
Medicinal uses: Cilantro is a culinary herb that has many medicinal properties. It is effective in treating diarrhea, indigestion, and heartburn. Cilantro can also be used as a natural insect repellent. Leaves treat digestive disorders, lower blood sugar, improve skin health. Seeds can help with sleep issues or insomnia.
Culinary Uses: The leaves of cilantro can be used fresh or dried. It is best to use the whole plant, including stems and roots. Cilantro imparts a very strong flavor when used in cooking so it should only be used sparingly. Seeds are typically ground into a powder or added whole to dishes like curries and sauces for extra flavor.
Scientific Name: Eryngium foetidum
Description: Culantro is a strong-smelling, leafy green herb that has been used in Mexican dishes for thousands of years. It’s often confused with coriander (also known as cilantro), but looks more like flat-leaf parsley and has sharper leaves.
As the name suggests, it has a strong flavor that can be overpowering in large quantities. But used sparingly, culantro can add a delicious peppery taste to salsas, soups and stews.
Growing tips: Culantro is a fast-growing herb that does well in full sun or partial shade. It prefers moist, well-drained soil but can tolerate some drought.
Culantro is also one of the most medicinal herbs out there. It’s high in antioxidants and vitamins A and C, making it a powerful immune-booster. It’s also used to treat indigestion, nausea and vomiting.
The leaves are chewed raw or steeped into tea to help with arthritis or fever. Culantro is also thought to be helpful in treating diabetes and other blood sugar issues.
Culinary Uses: Culantro can be used in place of coriander to liven up salsas, soups and stews. It also goes well with fish, egg dishes and vegetables.
Scientific Name: Anethum graveolens
Native Region: Southern Russia and Western Asia
Parts Used: Leaves, seeds
Description: Dill is a versatile herb that’s easy to grow at home. It has an unmistakable flavor that works well with salads
Growing tips: Dill doesn’t like wet feet, so make sure the soil is well drained.
Medicinal Uses: Digestive aid, antispasmodic, galactagogue (encourages lactation)
Culinary Uses: Pickles, potato salad, eggs
Traditional Uses: Dried dill seeds are used as a spice and its leaves (sometimes called dill weed) are used for flavoring soups, stews, salads and fish. Dill is also highly effective in helping to relieve gastrointestinal distress such as colic, indigestion and flatulence.
Scientific Name: Foeniculum vulgare
Description: Fennel is a hardy perennial that grows in clumps. It produces yellow flowers and has long, thin leaves with a licorice flavor.
Growing Tips: Fennel prefers full sun and well-drained soil.
Medicinal Uses: Carminative (relieves gas), anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, anticlotting agent
Culinary Uses: Used in many Italian dishes such as pasta and risotto. The seeds can also be used in baking.
Traditional Uses: Fennel is one of the oldest herbs known, and dates back to ancient Greece where it was used as a medicinal plant. It has also been cultivated by Native Americans for centuries and has been found to be beneficial in cases of indigestion.
Scientific Name: Tanacetum parthenium
Description: Feverfew is a small, daisy-like flower that grows in temperate climates. It has feathery leaves and a strong mint flavor.
Growing Tips: Feverfew prefers full sun and well-drained soil.
Medicinal Uses: Migraine headaches, arthritis, fever, digestive problems
Culinary Uses: Tea is made from the leaves for medicinal purposes. The leaves can also be used in salads or as an herb seasoning.
Traditional Uses: Native Americans have long used Feverfew to treat headaches and fever, due to its anti-inflammatory properties. It has also been found effective in reducing the severity of migraines.
Scientific Name: Allium sativum
Description: Garlic is a hardy, perennial herb that grows in clumps. It produces small purple flowers and has long, thin leaves with a strong garlic flavor.
Growing tips: Garlic can be grown in full sun or partial shade.
Medicinal Uses: Antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory
Culinary Uses: Garlic is used in many dishes for its flavor and medicinal properties. It’s a popular ingredient in Italian, French and Chinese cuisine.
Traditional Uses: Garlic has been used as a medicinal herb for centuries. It is effective in treating a wide variety of illnesses and infections due to its antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties.
Scientific Name: Teucrium chamaedrys
Description: Germander is a low-growing, bushy herb that has dark green leaves and small purple flowers. It grows well in temperate climates with full sun or partial shade.
Growing Tips: Germander prefers full sun and well-drained soil. If you live in a colder climate, it’s best to grow Germander in a pot and bring it inside during the winter.
Medicinal Uses: Diuretic, astringent, anti-inflammatory
Traditional Uses: Germander has been used as a medicinal herb for centuries. It is effective in treating a wide variety of illnesses and infections due to its antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties.
Scientific Name: Zingiber officinale
Description: Ginger is a hardy perennial that grows in tropical climates. It has long, thin leaves and produces small yellow flowers.
Growing Tips: Ginger can be grown in full sun or partial shade.
Medicinal Uses: Carminative (relieves gas), anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antipyretic, expectorant
Culinary Uses: Ginger is used in many dishes for its flavor and medicinal properties. It’s a popular ingredient in Asian cuisine.
Traditional Uses: Ginger has been used as a medicinal herb for centuries. It is effective in treating a wide variety of illnesses and infections due to its antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties.
Scientific Name: Panax quinquefolius or Panax ginseng
Description: Ginseng is a hardy perennial that grows in temperate climates with full sun or partial shade. It has long, thin leaves and produces small white flowers.
Growing Tips: Ginseng can be grown in full sun or partial shade.
Medicinal Uses: Antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, aphrodisiac
Culinary Uses: Ginseng is used in many dishes for its flavor and medicinal properties. It’s a popular ingredient in Asian cuisine.
Traditional Uses: Ginseng has been used as a medicinal herb for centuries. It is effective in treating a wide variety of illnesses and infections due to its antibiotic, antiviral and antifungal properties.
Horseradish is a spicy, pungent herb that has many medicinal benefits. It is excellent for clearing the sinuses and lungs, and it helps to digest food.
Horseradish can also be used as a topical treatment for skin irritations. To grow horseradish, you will need rich soil and plenty of sunlight.
Scientific Name: Lavandula angustifolia
Growing tips: To grow lavender, you will need well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight.
Medicinal uses: Lavender is a beautiful, fragrant herb that has many medicinal benefits. It is excellent for soothing the mind and body, and it helps to promote restful sleep. Lavender can also be used as a topical treatment for skin irritations.
Culinary Uses: Lavender has a very distinct taste. Use lavender sparingly when cooking, or it can easily overpower.
Herbal tea: Lavender is great for making herbal teas. Just add fresh or dried lavender flowers to hot water and steep until the aroma is released. You can also buy pre-made lavender tea bags at the grocery store.
Healthy Recipes: Lavender Lemonade, Lavender Honey Butter, Blueberry and lavender muffins
24. Lemon Balm
Scientific Name: Melissa officinalis
Growing tips: Lemon balm does best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers rich, well-drained soil that is slightly acidic with a pH of between six and seven. It also responds well to fertilizer at the beginning of each growing season, but it should be mulched heavily during the winter to protect it from the cold.
Medicinal uses: Lemon balm is a great herb for treating anxiety and stress. It also has analgesic (pain-relieving) properties, and can be used to treat digestive problems like upset stomach and vomiting.
Culinary Uses: Lemon balm has a lemony flavor that goes well with sweet and savory dishes. Add it to teas, smoothies, salad dressings, or pestos.
Herbal tea: Lemon balm is a great herb for making herbal teas. Just add fresh or dried lemon balm leaves to hot water and steep until the aroma is released.
Healthy Recipes: Lemon Balm Iced Tea, Lemon Balm Chicken Salad with Quinoa and Apple, Lemon Balm Pesto
25. Lemon Verbena
Scientific Name: Aloysia triphylla
Growing tips: Lemon verbena grows best in full sun, with plenty of water and good-drained soil. It can be grown indoors as long as it gets at least four hours of sunlight each day. You should fertilize lemon verbena once a year by spreading compost around the base of the plant.
Medicinal uses: Lemon verbena is a great herb for treating anxiety, stress, and tension headaches. It can also be used to treat upset stomachs and indigestion.
Culinary Uses: Lemon verbena has a lemony-citrus flavor that goes well with sweet and savory dishes. Add it to teas, smoothies, salad dressings or pestos.
Herbal tea: Lemon verbena is a great herb for making herbal teas. Just add fresh or dried lemon balm leaves to hot water and steep until the aroma is released.
Healthy Recipes: Lemon Verbena Pancakes, Lemon Verbena Ice Cream, Lemon Verbena Scones
Scientific Name: Cymbopogon citratus
Growing tips: Lemongrass grows best in full sun and fertile, well-drained soil. It can be grown indoors, but it needs at least four hours of sunlight each day. You should fertilize lemongrass once a year by spreading compost around the base of the plant.
Medicinal uses: Lemongrass is a great herb for treating anxiety and stress, as well as indigestion. It can also be used to treat headaches, nausea and vomiting.
Culinary Uses: Lemongrass has a lemony-citrus flavor that goes well with sweet and savory dishes. Add it to teas, smoothies, salad dressings or pestos.
Herbal tea: Lemongrass is a great herb for making herbal teas. Just add fresh or dried lemon balm leaves to hot water and steep until the aroma is released.
Healthy Recipes: Lemongrass Tea Latte, Lemongrass and Ginger Tea, Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken
Scientific Name: Pulmonaria officinalis
Part Used: Leaves and stem juice
Lungwort is an easy-to-grow herb that prefers partial shade and well-drained soil. It’s a ground cover plant, so it does not need pruning or staking. It also spreads quickly, which means you can divide the plants in early spring to get new ones for free!
Uses: It has been used to treat coughs, asthma, lung congestion, pneumonia, tuberculosis and pleurisy. Lungwort also acts as a general tonic for the entire body. Lungwort can be made into an infusion or tea from its leaves or flowers. It may be sweetened with sugar or honey to improve the taste.
Scientific Name: Origanum majorana
Description: Marjoram is a bushy, perennial herb with small, gray-green leaves. The flowers are pink to lilac in color.
Medicinal Uses: Marjoram is used as a digestive aid and to treat respiratory problems such as bronchitis and asthma. It is also used as a sleep aid.
Caution: Do not take marjoram if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Growing tips: Marjoram grows best in full sun and will tolerate light shade. It prefers well-drained soil with a pH of between five and eight.
Harvesting tips: Harvest the leaves as needed throughout the season for a fresh supply, or dry them to use during winter when the plant is dormant. To dry, cut stems just before the flowers bloom and hang them upside down in a dry, dark place.
Culinary Uses: Marjoram is used in many Italian dishes, such as pasta sauces and pizzas.
Scientific Name: Mentha spicata L.
Growing tips: Mint prefers rich soil that is well drained. It does best in partial shade but will grow in full sun if it has plenty of water.
Mint is such a popular herb that it’s known to take over if you’re not careful! It can be invasive and will grow out of control if the roots aren’t contained in some way, so it’s best to plant mint in containers or set up barriers around the root system when planting directly into soil.
Medicinal uses: Mint is a great herb to use for digestive issues. It can help soothe an upset stomach, ease cramps, and calm nausea. It’s also helpful for relieving respiratory problems such as asthma, bronchitis, and sinus congestion.
Scientific Name: Myrtus communis
Myrtle is an evergreen shrub with small, dark green leaves. The flowers are white or pink, and the fruit is a blackberry-like berry. Myrtle has been used for centuries as a medicinal herb. It is believed to be helpful in treating respiratory problems and is commonly used to treat breathing problems, coughs, and colds.
Myrtle is also sometimes used as a tea that has been known to help with stomach ailments and digestive problems.
Myrtle prefers full sun but can tolerate partial shade. It grows best in well-drained soil and does not require a lot of water.
Myrtle berries are edible and have a sweet, tart flavor. They can be eaten fresh or used in jams, jellies, and sauces.
Scientific Name: Origanum vulgare
Medicinal Uses: Oregano is a perennial herb, growing from 20-80 cm tall, with opposite leaves. The flowers are purple and it bears fruits which are black. This herb grows in the Mediterranean region. It can be used to treat stomach pain, diarrhea, vomiting etc.
Culinary Uses: Oregano is used in Italian, Greek and Turkish cuisines. It is a main ingredient in pizza and pasta sauces.
Scientific Name: Petroselinum crispum
Parts Used: Leaves, stems
Parsley is a biennial herb that is typically grown as an annual. The leaves and stems are used medicinally for a variety of purposes. Parsley can be taken internally or applied externally to the skin.
Growing tips: Parsley prefers full sun and well-drained soil. It can be grown from seed or transplanted.
Culinary Uses: Fresh parsley leaves can be used as a garnish, to flavor soups and stews, or as an ingredient in salads.
Medicinal Uses: Parsley has been used medicinally for its diuretic properties and to treat asthma, constipation, coughs, indigestion and kidney disorders. Parsley tea is often used to help increase milk flow in lactating women.
Scientific Name: Mentha piperita
Description: Peppermint is a perennial herb that grows in clumps up to two feet tall. The leaves have a serrated edge and the stems have purple spots on them. The flowers are small and purple, and the fruits are black. Peppermint has a strong, minty smell and a sweet, refreshing taste.
Medicinal Uses: Peppermint is used to treat stomach problems such as cramps, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. It is also used to treat headaches, muscle pain, and chest colds.
Cultivation: Peppermint grows best in moist, well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. It does not like extreme temperatures and humidity, so it should be planted in pots that can be moved indoors for the winter if necessary.
Use a planting medium such as compost or peat moss mixed with sand and perlite. Water regularly and fertilize every two weeks with a high-nitrogen fertilizer such as fish emulsion or seaweed extract.
Harvesting: Peppermint leaves are ready to harvest when they reach three inches in height. Take the top half of each plant, including flower buds if any have formed, just before flowering begins. Hang upside down in a dry, dark place to cure for two weeks. Strip the leaves from the stems and store in an airtight container.
Culinary Uses: Peppermint is used to flavor candy, ice cream, tea, and other drinks.
Scientific Name: Rosmarinus officinalis
Growing tips: Rosemary grows best in full sun and well-drained soil. It can be grown indoors, but it needs at least four hours of sunlight each day. You should fertilize rosemary once a year by spreading compost or worm castings around the base of the plant.
Medicinal uses: Rosemary may be a good choice for headaches, anxiety and depression as well as joint pain. It can also help with asthma and memory loss.
Culinary Uses: Rosemary is a popular herb for flavoring meats, vegetables and soups.
Scientific Name: Salvia officinalis
Medicinal Properties: Sage is typically used for digestive issues, sore throats and coughs. It also helps with menopausal symptoms and memory loss. This herb can be grown indoors or outdoors in a well-drained location where it will receive plenty of sun. If you’re growing sage indoors, you’ll need to keep your plant near a sunny window.
Growing tips: Sage is generally grown from cuttings or seeds. The plant can grow up to two feet high and prefers well-drained, sandy soil with plenty of compost added. When growing indoors, use a potting mix that’s designed for cacti or succulent plants.
Culinary Uses: Sage is a common ingredient in poultry stuffing and also goes well with pork, lamb, beef and fish.
Scientific Name: Mentha spicata
Family: Labiatae (Lamiaceae)
Parts Used: flowering tops, leaves
Medicinal Uses and Indications
Spearmint has been used medicinally for thousands of years. It is said to have originated in the Mediterranean region, but now grows all over the world. The ancient Greeks knew it as the Herb of Hospitality, and it has been used for centuries to treat stomachaches, nausea, flatulence, indigestion and diarrhea. The British have long made a tea from spearmint to help relieve morning sickness in pregnant women.
Spearmint is considered an antispasmodic and carminative herb that can help relieve stomach cramps, gas and bloating. For digestive complaints in children or adults who are not pregnant, spearmint may be a good alternative to peppermint. It can also be used externally as a compress for sore muscles.
Spearmint is frequently added to chewing gum and breath mints because it aids digestion and freshens the breath. It is also a popular herb for aromatherapy, and is said to be uplifting and refreshing.
Spearmint leaves can be enjoyed fresh in salads or added to cooked dishes. The essential oil of spearmint is used in many commercial products, such as toothpastes, mouthwashes and candy.
Scientific Name: Stevia rebaudiana
Variety/Cultivars: Sweet Leaf, Sugar leaf, Yukka plant, Honey Herb and Candy Leaf.
Seeds per gram: Approx. 20 seeds.
Hardiness zone: USDA zone (Temperate climate) – 12 to 11; UK hardiness rating – H0; EU hardiness rating – 11.
Germination temperature: Approx. 21-27 degrees Celsius (70-81 degrees Fahrenheit).
Growing Instructions: Plant the seeds about ¼ inch deep, spacing them about 12 inches apart and keep the soil moist until germination. When the seedlings are large enough to handle, plant them out into their permanent garden beds making sure they get full sun.
This herb likes to be watered frequently so make sure that the soil doesn’t dry out and keep an eye out for spider mites which is a common pest of this plant.
Days to germination: Approx. 14 days.
Harvest time: 50 days after planting the seedlings out in the garden bed.
Medicinal Uses: Stevia is a sweetener that is 300 times sweeter than sugar and it doesn’t contain any calories. It is used by people who have a sweet tooth but are trying to avoid the calories that come with consuming sweets.
It has also been shown to help in controlling blood pressure, balancing blood sugar levels, lowering triglycerides and reducing inflammation for those who suffer from arthritis.
Culinary Uses: Stevia is used to make tea or as a sweetener in place of sugar.
Scientific Name: Tanacetum vulgare
Tansy is a flowering plant that belongs to the Asteraceae family. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine, as well as cooking and textile dying. Its use has declined due to toxicity concerns.
It can be consumed by adding its leaves or flowers to salads and soups.
Some of its medicinal uses include:
– Treatment of fever and colds
– Relieving headache pain and digestive problems, such as diarrhea, bloating or gas. However, if used for long periods it can cause stomach upset. Pregnant women should avoid its use because it may be harmful to the fetus.
The plant is toxic and can be fatal if consumed in large amounts.
Tansy can be grown from seed or cuttings. It prefers full sun and well-drained soil.
The leaves and flowers can be added to salads, soups and meat dishes.
Scientific Name: Artemisia dracunculus
Tarragon is a perennial herb that is used for a variety of medicinal purposes. The leaves and flowers can be used to make teas, tinctures, and extracts.
Tarragon has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties and can be used to treat a number of conditions such as joint pain, muscle aches, and headaches.
It also has antispasmodic properties, so it can be used to help with stomach cramps and other digestive problems. Tarragon is a good herb for those who suffer from anxiety or insomnia because it is mildly sedating and helps reduce stress levels in the body.
Medicinal Use: This herb is commonly used to treat various digestive problems. It works as a diuretic, laxative and carminative. Tarragon has also been known to lower blood pressure, relieve toothache and induce sleep in people who have insomnia.
Tarragon can be grown from seed or from cuttings. If you are growing it from seed, start the seeds indoors in early spring and transplant them outside when they are big enough to handle.
If you are growing it from cuttings, take a cutting from an existing plant in late summer and root it in water before planting it outside in the fall.
Harvesting tips: Tarragon can be harvested anytime during its growing season, but it is best to do so after flowering when the leaves are at their most flavorful. Harvest tarragon by cutting off a few sprigs from the plant and drying them for later use or by chopping up fresh leaves as needed.
Storage tips: Tarragon is best stored in a cool, dark place. It can be kept fresh by wrapping it up and freezing it for future use or you can dry the leaves for later use as well.
Culinary Uses:Tarragon has a strong flavor which makes it ideal for flavoring many dishes like chicken, fish and eggs. It can also be used in salads or as a garnish for soups and stews.
Scientific Name: Thymus vulgaris
Medicinal Uses: Thyme is an evergreen herb which grows up to 60 cm tall. The leaves are small and opposite. The flowers are pink, tubular and grow in clusters. Thyme is a very versatile herb with many medicinal uses.
It can be used to treat respiratory problems such as bronchitis, asthma and congestion. It can also be used to treat digestive problems such as indigestion, diarrhea and vomiting. Additionally, thyme is a good antioxidant and has anti-inflammatory properties.
Culinary Uses: Thyme is a popular herb in both Mediterranean and French cuisine. It can be used to flavor many dishes such as soups, stews, sauces, rice dishes and meat dishes.
Scientific Name: Curcuma longa
Parts Used: The rhizome is the most commonly used part of the turmeric plant. It’s a root similar to ginger, and it is what gives curry powder its distinctive yellow color.
Health Benefits: Turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties (it’s been shown in studies to be as effective at reducing inflammation as ibuprofen) and can help boost the immune system. It’s also been shown to have anti-cancer properties.
How to Use: Add a teaspoon of turmeric powder to soups, stews, or smoothies; take it in capsule form; or apply it topically (in a paste) to treat skin conditions.
Growing tips: Turmeric is a tropical plant, so it needs warm weather to grow well. In most parts of the United States, you’ll need to grow it in a pot and bring it inside during the winter.
42. Winter Savory
Scientific Name: Satureja montana
Description: This herb is related to summer savory, but it has a stronger flavor. It can be used in place of sage and thyme when making stuffing or poultry dishes.
Winter savory contains the unique flavoring agent called carvacrol which makes this herb useful for treating digestive problems such as diarrhea and flatulence. Winter savory is also used to treat malaria, fevers and headaches.
Growing tips: Winter savory likes full sun and well-drained soil. It can be grown from seed or propagated by division in the spring.
Culinary Uses: Winter savory is a strong flavored herb that can be used in place of sage and thyme.
Scientific Name: Artemisia absinthium
Description: The leaves of this herb have a bitter taste and were traditionally used to make the alcoholic drink vermouth. Wormwood is also thought to help stimulate digestion.
It can be taken as an essential oil, or in tea form with one teaspoon per cup of boiling water drunk three times daily, says the University of Maryland Medical Center.
Growing tips: Wormwood prefers full sun and well-drained soil.
Medicinal uses: Wormwood is a popular alternative medicine for digestive problems, including anorexia and indigestion. It has been used to treat liver disease and malaria as well.
Culinary Uses: Wormwood is also sometimes used to flavor food, most notably absinthe, a liquor that was banned in many countries because of its high alcohol content and purported hallucinogenic effects.
Scientific Name: Achillea millefolium
Description: Yarrow is a perennial herb that has been used for centuries to treat a variety of health problems. The dried flowers and leaves can be used to make a tea that is high in antioxidants and helps to reduce inflammation.
Growing tips: Yarrow grows in most conditions and is drought tolerant. It prefers full sun but will tolerate partial shade.
Medicinal uses: Tea made from yarrow can be used to treat colds and the flu, as well as reduce inflammation throughout the body.
Culinary Uses: Yarrow leaves can be added to salads or used as a garnish.
Herbs are a great way to improve your health and well-being. There are many different types of herbs, each with their own unique properties. By learning about the different types of herbs, you can choose the right ones for you.
-Herbs have been used for centuries to treat a variety of illnesses and conditions. Today, they are still popular among people who want to improve their health naturally. Herbs can be taken in many forms, including capsules, teas, tinctures, and essential oils.
-There are many benefits to using herbs. They can help boost your immune system, fight inflammation, and improve your overall health. Herbs also have other benefits such as reducing stress levels and improving sleep quality.