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Homegrown Medicine: Comfrey

August 5th, 2009

I grow a few herbs in my garden can be used medicinally. I’m not really into using herbs as medicine all that much, but it is an area that interests me and one that I will be researching more in the coming years. I grow rosemary and oregano to use when I’m congested and sick, I usually brew up some tea or breathe some in steam. On Sunday I gave myself a nasty cut while harvesting peppers. You see, I always use my Super Shears to harvest things, and they’re quite sharp. I accidentally cut about 1/3 of the way through my pinky finger on Sunday. I didn’t take any photos, although Mr Chiots said a photo of the bloody pepper plants would be great for the blog. All I have a photo of the scissors for you, so no need to avert your eyes (noticed the bandaged finger).
I’ve always heard that comfrey speeds healing of not just cuts and bruises, but also broken bones. I happen to have a large comfrey patch, so on Monday afternoon I grabbed a few leaves and made a poultice for my cut. I put a butterfly bandage of my finger followed by a nice smear of comfrey poultice, then a big bandage on top. I must say, the cut quit hurting almost immediately.
I haven’t had any pain since I applied the comfrey (it was throbbing before I did) and when I re bandaged yesterday it was looking quite well. I’ll probably leave it bandaged for a few more days, but from what I hear it should be fairly well healed by tomorrow with the power of comfrey.

Do you grow or use any herbs for medicinal purposes?

17 Comments to “Homegrown Medicine: Comfrey”
  1. Mangochild on August 5, 2009 at 5:43 am

    I do use both herbs and food for medicinal purposes – some I’ve been doing for a long time and others I’ve just learned about…. some of the things I reach for are honey with turmeric (both as a poultice for bug bites/anti-inflamatory, as well as for colds/flu relief); ginger root; comfrey; lavender for headaches; cloves for digestive pain/spasms; fenugreek (leaves as a poultice for bites/skin irritations, and seeds for digestive ease).
    .-= Mangochild´s last blog ..The Effects Of Late Blight =-.

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    • Mangochild on August 5, 2009 at 5:44 am

      I should say, turmeric mixed with honey as a poultice for bug bites/anti-inflamatory, and eaten for colds/flu relief.
      .-= Mangochild´s last blog ..The Effects Of Late Blight =-.

      Reply to Mangochild's comment

  2. Tatyana on August 5, 2009 at 6:31 am

    My favorite plant for medicinal purposes is calendula.
    .-= Tatyana´s last blog ..Pink, Purple, Pinkish-Purple, etc. =-.

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  3. kristin on August 5, 2009 at 8:14 am

    We don’t really grow comfrey so much as try to keep it from totally taking over in the hollow. I’ve never used it for anything, though. Except as sheep grazing. They seem to love it.
    .-= kristin´s last blog ..I Probably Shouldn’t Admit This =-.

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  4. Daphne on August 5, 2009 at 9:16 am

    I have an aloe plant in my kitchen (my only house plant. Anytime I burn myself I cut off a leaf, slice it open, and smear the goo all over. I once wanted to see if it really helped it to heal. I had spilled hot water over my hand (ouch) and used the aloe on the two worse fingers and not on the fingers that weren’t as bad. The fingers with the aloe had no blisters the next day; one of the fingers without had some nice blisters. The stuff really works.

    I’ve never heard of using comfrey for wounds. I have it in my garden, but I use it for my compost pile, not my health.
    .-= Daphne´s last blog ..Putting Up More Food =-.

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  5. Dave on August 5, 2009 at 9:39 am

    I have heard of comfrey being good for cuts and things but never tried it. I don’t have any growing so that could be why! It might be something worth looking into. Many medicines come from plants so it makes sense that herbs could have some healing properties.
    .-= Dave´s last blog ..9 Things That Weeds Do =-.

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  6. Pampered Mom on August 5, 2009 at 10:57 am

    We rely very much on herbs for our health. In the past I’ve mostly purchased them from places like Frontier and Mountain Rose Herbs (I love the discount I get with them with my Herbalism correspondence course), but this year I’m growing several of our most used plants (Marshmallow, Elecampane, Echinacea, Feverfew, Lavender, Boneset, Calendula, and Chicory). The garden’s sort of along the lines of a medicinal wheel herb garden. Definitely a work in progress I hope to refine in the coming years. There are several other plants that I *really* wanted to grow, but when I went to order the seeds from Richter’s in Canada (I love that the list the zones for the plants) I discovered they were out of our zone.
    .-= Pampered Mom´s last blog ..Updated Garden Pictures =-.

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  7. Rachel on August 5, 2009 at 2:30 pm

    I’ve been a lurker for some time and this brought me out ;-) I don’t use any herbs as medicine and have wanted to look into that some time. I’m interested in the tumeric and honey for bug bites. My son is almost 2 and mosquitoes seem to love him! We spend a lot of time outside and no matter what I use on him, he still seems to get one or two really bad bites. This atleast will help with the after effects. Thanks for the info!
    .-= Rachel´s last blog ..I’ve been… =-.

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    • Susy on August 5, 2009 at 6:49 pm

      Comfrey is also supposed to be good for bug bites. I haven’t tried it yet, but next time Mr Chiots or I get stung we’ll give it a go.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  8. deedee on August 5, 2009 at 7:32 pm

    i noticed the cutco on your shears… that brings back memories! one of ernso’s friends is selling it this summer and i immediately thought of you:)
    back to the subject…. one of my customers has a dog who has really bad allergies and gets awful hot spots. she came across a mixture of lavender, calendula, and aloe that has pretty much healed all of his hot spots. it’s been much more effective than any other treatment i’ve seen on dogs before. and he’s a lot nicer to me when he gets groomed b/c he feels better :)

    Reply to deedee's comment

    • Susy on August 5, 2009 at 8:18 pm

      We use Neem on Lucy’s hotspots (there’s a product called Ark Naturals Neem Protect Spray) it works wonders. Nothing ever worked until we found this product!

      Reply to Susy's comment

      • deedee on August 6, 2009 at 10:33 pm

        that’s what i use also as an alternative to flea/tick products at the shop. it kills them immediately & calms the skin for dogs who have flea allergies. it also works way better and smells better than the scary flea dips so many places use!

        to deedee's comment

  9. sarah on August 6, 2009 at 12:44 am

    I use Lavendar with witch hazel for bee stings and it really seems to help. It is a good feeling to pull something from the garden and use it in such a way.
    .-= sarah´s last blog ..Simply August:Wednesday Favorites =-.

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  10. Kristin on August 6, 2009 at 5:20 am

    I don’t, but I would LOVE to try it. I’ve bookmarked this post and will be back to do some more research. Thanks!
    .-= Kristin´s last blog ..A Trip to Amish-land =-.

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  11. Christine on August 6, 2009 at 9:52 am

    We just planted comfrey this year and look forward to using it. We grow and use calendula, sage, oregano, rosemary… Wild plantain growing freely in our lawn is used considerably to erase the itch of bug bites. We’ve used it for so long that our children and most of our family and friends have come to use it too. Most amazing was the results it had on hornet bites. I was ‘stung’ 5 times by a hornet before getting it out of the sheets. The pain was agonizing and my hand went numb and tingley. My husband ran outside, chewed up the plantain leaves and plastered it on the bites. The pain was gone immediately and I fell into a deep sleep. I’m sur there are more uses from this lovely and helpful weed!

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    • Susy on August 6, 2009 at 10:09 am

      We have tons of plantain as well, next time Mr Chiots or I get stung I’ll have to try the plantain. It’s amazing all the uses for herbs and “weeds”.

      Reply to Susy's comment

  12. Mary on August 6, 2009 at 12:06 pm

    Aloe Vera is probably the one I use most. After being bitten by a rattlesnake and going through horrid reactions to meds at hospital, several older Hispanic ladies told me to get some osha root for a poultice or to carry with me to keep the rattlesnakes at bay- they can’t stand the scent though it is pleasant enough.

    I feel very strongly that we need to go back to using the herbs and plants God created instead of all the chemicals the Drs throw our way. In today’s economy and the fast rise of cancer- I am learning more about the ways of herbs.

    My sister had severe problems with lumps in her breast and she makes a tea – Essaic made with 4 different herbs- she has had great results- much better way to go then having a mastectomy

    .-= Mary´s last blog ..Sweet things to Fluff My NEST! =-.

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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