Saturday, July 23, 2011

God's Gift of Jewelweed....Part 2

*EDITOR'S NOTE* This is a repost from the archives - unfortunately the pictures have disappeared.  I'm reposting this due to the calls and emails I've had recently about poison ivy - it must be rampant this year!  You can order both Jewelweed Soap and Jewelweed Salve from my website.  Read on and learn how to make a very effective TOPICAL oil or salve for poison ivy relief!  Remember...Jewelweed is TOXIC if you ingest it!

In our last post we made a tincture of Jewelweed to be used on the skin only in treating poison ivy. Now we are going to make an oil which you can turn into a salve, use in a soap etc. The process is very similar.

You will need to let your Jewelweed dry a bit more than you did for your tincture. If you have moisture in your plants, your end product can mold. So, let it sit for several more days. Then you will cut or tear the Jewelweed up and fill a canning jar with the plant material - about 3/4 full.

These jars are ready for oil. I like to use olive oil because it has a longer shelf life but you can use any oil you like. Put the oil in a want to use enough oil to cover the plant material. You will be heating this oil in a stainless steel, ceramic or glass pot - never aluminum or copper!

The oil needs to be very hot to the touch but not hot enough to burn you. Pour the oil over the plant material, cover and let sit. I let mine sit until I need to use it - usually well over a month but you don't need to wait that long.

I have even put my jars onto a sunny windowsill for extra warmth in the hopes of extracting a bit more goody! When you are done your jars should look like this....

When you are ready to use your oil, you will place a stainless steel strainer (not plastic or aluminum!) into a glass, stainless or ceramic bowl and pour the contents of your jars through sterilized cheese cloth. Be sure to wring all of the wonderful oil out of the plant material. It may appear a little cloudy...this is just don't want plant material in your oil.

Now that you have the oil...what are you going to do with it? You can leave it as an oil to apply to poison ivy, you can add beeswax to the oil to turn it into a salve, and/or you can add essential oils to it for additional healing properties!

Be sure to research any essential oils you are thinking of using to make sure that they can be used on rashes or on broken skin....and check to make sure there are no adverse warnings listed for your purposes!

Herbal medicine is a lost art in our society today but we can reclaim this wonderful tool! If you are interested in learning more about making your own medicine, you might be interested in taking my Medicinal Herb Course. The course covers all the basic forms of herbal remedies from tinctures to poultices and it also covers 10 basic and easy to find herbs. You will find lots of recipes and also receive a private email address so that you may ask me as many questions as you like for 30 days! I have tried to make the course very simple and straight forward...the feedback from my students has been very positive as you can see below:
M.S. writes: My favorite herb resource is your course, of course! (I know you mentioned it in your list, but I thought I'd add my appreciation for it here.)

My mother has 8 or 10 books on medicinal herbs, at least one of which you mentioned in your post, I think (same author, anyway). She's hardly looked at them, even though she wants to learn from them. I think she probably has the same problems with them that I have. I've looked through some of them numerous times, only to put them away, feeling at a loss for where to begin. I didn't even know what herbs to buy or collect, where to buy or collect, etc. And I am immediately turned off by the mysticism influence so prevalent in some of them.

Starting from the vantage point of zero knowledge, I needed more direction. Your course offered that, focusing on herbs that address normal family needs in the course of any given season or year and that can even be grown or collected here. The 10 herbs you cover hit many of our needs: colds, coughs, headaches, exczema (Is that spelled correctly? Too lazy to check!), bug bites, etc.

And as I've said in recent posts, I'm making good use of some of those herbs now!

Personally, I'm hoping you continue to put out more courses along the same line, or add supplements to this one, with more herbs, so I can continue to learn in such a practical, easy-to-use, and very applicable way.

Thanks for all your work on the course, Cheri!

I am happy to say that I hope to follow this wonderful suggestion and create a supplement to my course ....Lord willing!


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