“Off-Grid” Cures from the Vegetable Garden for New Mothers and Everyone *Audio*
During our Place-Dreamer Pod Tour, we visited the Organic Centre in Co. Leitrim. The students of the permaculture course that was taking place there at the time came out to visit the Pod during their tea break. Between drizzles, they listened to Radio Dreaming in the Pod and gathered ’round the hatch at the back to chat with us about “Off-Grid” ideas, tools and cures. (It was also during our time at the Organic Centre that we met Hans Weiland who told us about his very interesting Off-Grid entertainment/weather prediction method involving clouds. We blogged about it here, and featured him and the topic of cures in our Off-Grid Radio Dreaming Episodes Part 1 & 2. You can listen to them here.)
Conversation wandered from solar panels, to the kelly kettle, to the bramble vine we were using as a clothes line (clothes pins naturally included!) and finally landed on the topic of “cures.” We talked about traditional cures and hedgerow cures and cures that one might find in the kitchen or vegetable garden. There were a range of voices in this group, male and female, Irish as well as folks from other countries. Once the conversation got rolling, many people chimed in with a cure from their granny or something they’d learned recently.
One of our favorite cures that was discussed was cabbage. Simple cabbage right from the garden or fridge either boiled or raw. The instructions were to apply the leaves to the skin for infection as well as aches and pains. We half forgot about this cure until Claire had an experience that led to a couple of discussions that both reminded us of this vegetable garden cure and introduced us to others….
The back-story from Claire:
So the back-story is that in September my husband, Chris, and I had a little girl named Amber (who is of course fabulous). I’ve chosen to nurse Amber and all was going well until I was struck with a case of engorgement followed by a clogged milk duct. This led almost immediately to an infection, which generated flu-like symptoms. I was shocked at how quickly it all happened. In trying to avoid a course of antibiotics, I began researching natural treatments for such an infection. I came across a reference to applying raw grated potato to draw out the infection, which I used along with heat, vitamin C and other herbal and homeopathic remedies. In just two days the infection had cleared and I didn’t have to take antibiotics. (Breast infections have to be taken seriously as they can escalate quickly and can lead to permanent damage if not treated!)
Then a week later I was discussing my recent situation with Molley McCracken, our First Steps home visitor, when she mentioned using cabbage for nursing mothers with breast problems. “Aha!” I thought, “There must really be something to this cabbage business!” I thought about our chat with the students at the Organic Centre, wishing I had remembered it sooner so that I could have used the “cabbage cure” as well as the “potato cure.”
But that’s not all…..about a week later I was talking with our neighbor, Cathy Hope, who is the owner and apothecary at Iris Herbal. (We use and love her salves and liniments and follow her informative blog too.) I mentioned the potato and cabbage cures to her and she agreed with their usefulness and then added the allium family to the list of vegetable garden cures.
Here are Molly and Cathy describing these cures in their own words (and Claire too reading the potato cure instructions)….
Molley McCracken, home visitor for Taos First Steps:
Cathy Hope, apothecary at Iris Herbal:
Here is Claire describing the potato cure from The Nourishing Traditions Book of Baby and Childcare:
What vegetable garden cures do you know of or use?
We would love to add to our list! Please comment below or contact us!