Herbal Help. A Poultice.

Herbs have so many uses, even the ‘weeds‘ that are now everywhere, that came from our European forebears, have important uses in medicine and culinary purposes.
Recently I had a small scratch that turned into a bad abcess on my leg. The next day I found it har d to walk, the whole leg muscle was hardening, this was serious, but I didn’t make it to the emergency ward at the local hospital till a few nights into it. They gave me antibiotic injections, and antibiotic pills to take home. When you do live so remotely it great to have some knowlegde of the plants you find around you. Especially if you can’t get to civilization quickly.

Gathering penny weed from the ‘weeds’ in the yard.


Some penny weed from the garden, some camomile, that I had dried, some comfrey from the herb garden, all these plants stave off infection or imflamation on the skin and under.

Gathering comphrey, and dried camomile.

And using some knowlegde from my grandma and this helpful Herb Guide Book, for my area,

Using mortor and pestle I grid herbs into poultice

I made a poltice with herbs, adding a liniment of camphor and menthol, which also acted as a anesthetic, ( you might find it at the vets, but its completely safe and organic, and it works like magic!) I add turmeric root, and pineapple, to bring it together , good for inflammation, and bandaged and wraped it up, I leave it for several hours and repeat.

Applying the poultice to abscess.

After thirty-six hours, the infection had gone down enough, so that we could tell it would not need cutting open, which I was relieved as I’ve had one lanced before and it was not something I wanted to relive. Two weeks later, it is still healing and I believe the poultice helped stop the infection getting to bad initially. Though it was bad enough that the antibiotics where really necessary in this case.

I cover with bandage from first aid kit, then wrap up in cloth to hold tight on skin.

You can find local herb guides books at your local bookstore, or second hand bookstore as I found this one, I’ve used it to recognize all the weeds in our gardens as being useful medicinally, as well edible plants. It’s a shame we aren’t all taught local plant identification either by our family , elders, or school, any more. I also identified several poisonous herbs that would be used in medicine only if you knew what you where doing, and some ‘just for fun’, as we say.

One thing that I must insist upon having is a really good quality first aid kit, when you live in the bush is good to have basic training as well. Check out my store page for first aid kits I recommend.

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