Medicinal Garden Starter Plant: Wooly Lamb's Ear
When I first saw this plant in our backyard, I thought it was a weed and pulled it. It grew back. I pulled it again.
It grew back. I pulled it AGAIN!
It grew back!!
The universe was trying to tell me something, "Don't pull the plant!"
When I finally looked up Wooly Lamb's Ear, I realized why it kept popping up near our garden, near our medicinal herbs, and close the rest of the little urban homestead we had been building.
Now I am experimenting with using it. Bottom line, not everything needs to be manufactured. Have you ever used yarrow for a bee sting? Tincture instead of Nyquil? Baked apples for stomach and digestive upset? Your options are abundant in the natural world.
More On This Natural Antibacterial Bandage
Wooly Lamb’s Ear, botanical name Stachys byzantina, has been used for centuries as a wound dressing on battlefields. Not only do the soft, fuzzy leaves absorb blood and help it to clot more quickly, they also contain antibacterial, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties. All of these factors make this plant a really great alternative to store-bought bandages .
Other Medicinal Uses
Wooly Lamb’s Ear actually has many medicinal uses. You can heat a few bruised leaves in a pot of simmering water, and use the cooled infusion as an eyewash to treat pinkeye and sties.
Drink a tea made from young, dried Wooly Lamb’s Ear leaves to help with fevers, diarrhea, sore mouth and throat, internal bleeding, and weaknesses of the liver and heart.
You can bruise the leaves so that the juices are released, and put them on bee stings or other insect bites to help reduce the swelling. The same effect can be seen when used for treating hemorrhoids, or for postpartum recovery.
Still More Uses
As if that wasn't enough, the list of uses continues.
Being soft and super absorbent, Lamb’s Ear leaves can be used in place of cotton or toilet paper. If nothing else, think of this as the best camping tip ever.
You can eat it as well. Enjoy young, tender leaves fresh in a salad, or gently steamed as greens.
Are you growing Lamb’s Ear yet?
If you don’t have any of this important medicinal plant growing around your home yet, get some.
If you can’t find any plants locally, buy some seeds and grow them yourself. It’s super easy, and much cheaper that way anyways. Lamb’s Ear make a gorgeous landscaping border, and grows well in containers. Create a border, it grows abundantly and takes over other growth.
How To Grow Your Own Antibacterial Bandages (Wooly Lamb’s Ear) From Seed
Starting your own plants from seed really is easy. Here’s how…
1. Fill a well-draining container with Seed Starting Mix. A yogurt cup with holes poked in the bottom works nicely.
2. Wet the soil thoroughly. If you’re on city water, use filtered water for your plants.The chemicals in treated water can inhibit plant growth.
3. Plant 1-2 seeds per small container (thinning out the weakest seedling), or plant seeds about 6″ apart in a larger pot, burying them 1/4″ deep.
4. Keep the soil moist and the containers out of direct light until the seedlings germinate. As soon as you see the tops of the plants emerging, put them somewhere where they can get at least 6 hours of sunlight daily, or under a grow light. It helps to set the cups/pots in a shallow tray of water to keep the soil from drying out.
5. When the plants have at least three sets of leaves, they’re ready to be transplanted to a semi-shady place in your yard. Space them 12″ apart. They will multiply readily in good soil.