Every summer I have the same problem, I somehow no matter how careful I am get into poison ivy. I watch for it everywhere I go, I make sure to stay far away from it but every year it seems to find me and every year I resort to taking an over the counter medicine or going to the doctor to get a prescription. Now that I am on my quest to get as natural as possible with my foods and with my medicines I was determined to find a natural remedy for this problem of mine and after I did all my research and talking to a friend I found what I needed and believe it or not it is something that grows like crazy around here. And that something is.........drumroll please......
I remember when I was younger we used to touch the little pods that grow on them to make them "pop", it was such fun but little did I know back then or even yesterday for that matter that they are also a very good medicinal plant. You can use them for more then just poison ivy. They are good for bug bites or pretty much anything that itches. You can crush up the stem and put the juice right on the rash or you can be like me and make an ointment out of them. I jump on any chance to practice making my salves, I loved learning to make them at the herbal medicine workshop I went to last year. First thing I did was gather up about 2 cups of chopped up stems and put them into a pan covering them with some olive oil (sorry I am one of those eye it up people and I didn't measure anything, as a blogger I should have took precise measurements, sorry)and simmered them for a few minutes, probably anywhere from 3-5 minutes. After it simmers for a few minutes I then strained the mixture because you do not want any of the plant in the salve. After you strain the oil pour it back into the pan and put some grated beeswax in to solidify the salve and after the beeswax is melted pour it into a clean sterilized jar. Once again I do not know the exact amount of beeswax but I would say it was a couple tablespoons. Here is a picture of the hot mixture when first put into the jar.
Oops this is the picture I took when my camera messed up. Pretty cool isn't it?
Here is the better pic. Isn't that pretty? In this picture it is hot and still in liquid form so don't touch.
After it sits for a few minutes it will start to solidify from the bottom up. I think that is the coolest part to watch.
After it cools make sure it is solid all the way through. If not then put back into pan, heat it up again and add more beeswax. That is what I had to do my first try.
Sidenote: My arm was itching like crazy and I did not have the patience to wait for the salve to solidify so I put some of the cooled down oil/jewelweed mixture on my arm and I have not itched since. I am very impressed!
I have read that you should store it in the fridge so I will be storing mine there.
Have a wonderful and blessed day!!
I am trying this again but using coconut oil instead of olive oil so I can simmer it longer. I am going to try simmering for an hour to make it stronger.
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