Aromatic plants: prepare your “health garden”

Many aromatic herbs have therapeutic properties, which are also recognized by science. And if you grow them in the garden or on the terrace, you always have a natural “pharmacy” to draw from. “These plants love the sun and need a well-drained bottom,” he explains Stefano Savini, nurseryman of medicinal plants. “If you put them in pots, use a good quality universal soil that contains at least 30% blonde peat. In the garden, however, it is good to lighten the soil with peat and river sand. In spring you must always fertilize with manure or pellet manure ».

Fresh or dried

With the help of the herbalist Rossana Domenici we have selected 6 plants: you can also use them fresh, but the ideal is to dry them a little to always have them available for an herbal tea. “Just put the twigs or individual leaves on a wire rack and leave to dry for a week in an airy room,” explains the expert. “The best time for collection it is during or immediately after flowering, when the flavor, aroma and active ingredients are most concentrated. Only in the case of fennel is it necessary to wait for the fruits, which ripen in summer ». Here’s what they are.

  • Mint is tonic and energetic

    If you need a little sprint, mint has a tonic action; and after the meal it helps you digest.

    Where to put it
    On the ground or in a 24 cm diameter container. And know that if you place it at the foot of the roses, it protects them from parasites.

    How to use it 1 tablespoon of dried leaves or 5-6 fresh in an infusion to drink in the morning or after lunch. No during pregnancy and breastfeeding or if you suffer from reflux.

  • Lemon balm is calming267812

    It helps you to find peace of mind and to solve the problems associated with states of anxiety and stress.

    Where to put it On the ground or in a 24 cm container, which you can also keep on a windowsill. If it gets ugly, prune it to 10 cm.

    How to use it Morning and evening in difficult periods: 1 tablespoon of dried leaves or 5-6 of fresh leaves. Avoid it if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have hypothyroidism and glaucoma.

  • Fennel is digestive

    Helps the stomach, fights aerophagia and abdominal bloating.

    Where to put it On the ground or in a pot of at least 30 cm in diameter. Prune it drastically in late fall.

    How to use it Use the seeds: 1 teaspoon in 250 ml of water for an herbal tea after lunch and dinner. It has no contraindications.

  • Thyme is antimicrobial267813

    Useful in case of bronchitis, cough, sinusitis and general infections.

    Where to put it On the ground or in a 24 cm pot. Be careful: it resists everything, but not stagnant water. Prune it well in early winter.

    How to use it Two herbal teas a day, morning and evening, with 1 teaspoon of dried plant or 3-4 fresh sprigs. To be avoided in case of gastritis or stomach ulcer.

  • Myrtle is balsamic

    It gives relief to the nose and throat, with also an anti-inflammatory action.

    Where to put it On the ground or in a pot (at least 30 cm in diameter) it wants a position sheltered from the winds. In spring, prune only dry branches.

    How to use it 1 teaspoon of dried leaves or 2-3 fresh buds for an herbal tea to drink before bed. To be avoided if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and not to be given to children under two years of age.

  • Sage is pain reliever267814

    Helps relieve painful menstruation and reduce menopausal symptoms. In addition, it helps you in case of weakness and asthenia.

    Where to put it On the ground or in a 30 cm diameter container, to be changed every year with a larger one. It should be pruned in spring.

    How to use it
    1 teaspoon of dried leaves or 3-4 fresh leaves for herbal tea to drink after meals. No during pregnancy, breastfeeding and if you are on hormone therapy.

For a perfect infusion

“Put the leaves, twigs or seeds on the bottom of the teapot or cup,” suggests herbalist Rossana Domenici. “Cover them gently with boiling water, so that no air bubbles form, and close with a lid or saucer pto avoid the evaporation of essential oils. Filter the drink after 10 minutes ».

(Picture of Pietro Tasca)

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