If you are into or would like to get into natural living, having a lush full herb garden is certainly a great place to start. Not only does this allow you to have fresh culinary herbs at your disposal, but it also opens up an array of natural medicinal benefits for you to select from.
Growing a herb garden might be easier than you think and whether you would like to extend or establish your herb garden, you should not be restricted by costly seeds that take forever to germinate or in some cases simply does not germinate at all.
I am currently in the process of re-establishing my herb garden that suffered dearly from the recent draught, and I thought this would be a great time to walk you through some simple ways of propagating herbs from a mother plant. And for this purpose I used one of my personal favourites - and that of course is basil.
In the short video below, I have a look deeper into the simple cloning methods I use in order to propagate my herbs in order to expand my herb garden.
Why I Love Basil:
Not only is basil a great attribute to any kitchen with its strong and great tasting aroma, it is also a green treasure trove of medicinal wealth, and here is just a few of the things that basil is good for:
Basil is great at aiding digestive health as well as soothing some ailments relating to digestion such as alleviating heavy digestion, it is also a great aid when you are feeling nauseous. It helps with gas and flatulence and even prevents bad breath as well as constipation.
In the Nervous System
This herb is simply wonderful when it comes to improving the functions of the nervous system by clearing out imbalances that might be causing issues and reinforcing the nervous system. Basil has great relaxing effects that will aid in the fight against insomnia while reducing stress and anxiety levels, while reducing mental and physical fatigue. It is also has anti depressant functions, and is a great help when dealing with mild depression.
When it comes to our bodies as well as the world that we live in, it is safe to say that our immune system can use all the help that it can get, and basil offers a natural way to strengthen our immune defences by helping the body purify blood and eliminating toxins. It also has antimicrobial properties and as suck it helps prevent colds and flu's taking root in our systems. Its anti-fungal properties helps prevent infections and inflammations.
Basil has also proven successful for treating common ailments such as fevers, headaches, toothaches, menstrual pains and coughs. It can also be used to prevent certain intestinal parasites.
Detox and Slimming
This is one of those herbs that we often read about when it comes to weight loss and detox and with very good reason. Here is why;
First of all its calming effects helps to reduce emotional eating, while it also helps you eat less while feeling fuller for longer due to this herbs satiating effects. At the same time Basil acts as a digestive stimulant at the same time, meaning that it will aid in digesting the food better and allow you to burn more calories while it combats the fatigue normally associated with diet changes.
Basil will also help fight water retention, eliminate kidney stones and reduce abdominal swelling.
Beauty and Skincare
If all of that was not enough, let me add a bit more about what basil can do for your skin and hair. Basil is not only a great way to prevent premature ageing and prevent hair-loss but it can also be used to whiten teeth and reduce acne.
Here is some more ways that basil can improve your life.
- Reduces bad cholesterol
- Helps circulation
- Memory and mental capacity booster
- Helps regulate blood-sugar
- In lactating mothers it helps with heathy milk production
- Aids with vertigo
- Soothes mouth sores and sore throats
- Can be used with other plants as a natural mosquito repellent.
Here are a few ways that I put my basil to use other than simply adding it to food dishes and salads.
Colds and Flu's
First of all when it comes to colds and flue - I love making a herbal tea that includes ginger, lemon, honey and basil.
For this I would simply bring about one liter water to the boil, then add a half a lemon - cut into slices, a few decent slices of ginger, two cups of whole basil leaves, and three to four table spoons of honey. In this mix the basil helps a lot with the recovery of the immune system while easing coughs and a sore throat.
Having a teenage daughter in the house means that you are always looking into new forms of practical but cost effective skincare. One one great way that we have found that works is by soothing the skin with basil extract every morning and night.
For this you will simply take a few basil leaves in a cup, then you need to pour boiling water over the leaves, just enough to cover them, then let it steep and cool down to room temperature. You can apply this to the skin every morning and night by gently massaging it into the skin with a piece of cotton-wool soaked in the mixture. This will help with blood circulation, give your skin a healthy glow, purify the skin to help with pimples and irritations, and in cases of acne it will help soothe and reduce the acne by stimulating the sebum glands while fighting inflation.
And that is just two of the more common household of my basil, other non medicinal uses also include but is not limited to making my own basil pesto, or basil infused avocado oil.
JUST REMEMBER THAT I AM NOT A MEDICAL PRACTITIONER, AND TRYING OUT NEW HOME REMEDIES IS GREAT, BUT IT IS ALWAYS WISE TO CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR FIRST, AND DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH SO THAT YOU CAN MAKE AN INFORMED DECISION THAT SUITS YOU
Back to my basil plants
I just really feel that I need to share this little add-on with you guys.
For the past week or so, this red backed frog has decided that one of my basil mother plants is now her home, as you can see she has made herself quite comfortable by scrubbing a hollow in the planting bag, she would hop out at night and help by doing her fair share of pest control, and come morning she will be right back in her spot.
She seems so comfortable with me being around that she hardly moves even when I am watering the plants, and when I moved the plant from its stand to the table yesterday to make the video above - she didn't even bother to get out.
Strangely it has reached the point where I have found myself having full blown conversations with the frog while working on the plants...