Plantain is a plant to keep your eyes open for. If you find this plant, you will want to pick it, dry it, and store it for future use. This plant can be used against bee stings, some snake bites, bronchitis and arthritis. All the parts of plantain are edible. Plantain is very high in beta carotene (A), B1, riboflavin, calcium, and fiber. The plant is also a good source of vitamin C and fiber.
Here is how you can use it:
– Crush the leaves to release their juices and apply the liquid directly to insect bites, bee stings , poison ivy and snake bites. It can be used on cuts, blisters, sunburns acne and rashes. Plantain draws toxins out of the body. The salve also acts as an insect repellent.
– Plantain leaves and seeds aid in digestion. They’ve been reported to have a soothing effect for people who’s gut linings have been damaged by prolonged used of antibiotic drugs and people with Celiac disease and food allergies. It is also said to aid in constipation.
– Plantain leaves can relieve muscle soreness. The leaves are loaded with calcium and magnesium, plantain is used in the treatment of arthritis. Apply it to swollen joints, sore muscles, sprains, and sore feet.
– Plantain can loosen mucus and relieve cough. Use this plant to treat colds and sore throats. It has been known to treat bronchitis and tuberculosis.
General medicinal properties of plantain:
- Kills bacteria or prevents bacterial growth
- Combats toxins
- Stops bleeding and contracts tissues
- Reduces inflammation
- Kills of prevents microbial growth
- Relieves coughing
- Strengthens the heart
- Soothes and protects mucus membranes
- Removes excess water
- Loosens mucus and aids its expulsion
- Stops bleeding externally
- Relieves constipation
- Relieves eye conditions
- Draws infection from a wound
- Cools the body and reduces fever by inducing sweating
- Kills parasitic worms
Instructions on making plantain tea, tinctures and salves can be found here.
Proverbs 31 Woman blog shows how you can save these plants at the end of the season:
“Dry plantain leaves in a dehydrator at 95 degrees F. until no trace of moisture exists. If you don’t have a dehydrator, place the leaves on a wire cooling rack placed over a baking tray and put them in your oven’s warming drawer at 95 degrees F. or the lowest available temperature setting. If your oven doesn’t have a warming drawer, place the leaves (on a wire rack atop a baking tray) in your oven at it’s lowest setting. Roots may be dehydrated at 135 degrees F. To make plantain leaf tea, crumble the leaves into one half of a tea ball, filling the half to about capacity. Close the tea ball and steep for 10 to 15 minutes.”
Not sure if you have the right plant?
Denise Allen mentions that “there is a fantastic app called Plant Checker. They will tell you if it’s a weed or a plant and what kind. It does cost .99 cents but it’s well worth the pennies ” she states.