A few years ago I wrote about my obsession with the miracle plant, Comfrey.
I wrote how the plant has been used for a variety of purposes over the years, from healing fractures, helping with skin irritations, insect bites and inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis. It’s a nitrogen fixer too, which means it’s a great fertilizer. I love it’s pretty purple flowers, too, and so do the bees. So I planted a whole bunch of it, and it turns out that it is a very vigorous perennial indeed.
Before I work in the yard, I usually pick some comfrey leaves, tear them apart and rub my arms with them. The leaves produce a semi-sticky substance, known as allantoin, which keeps the poison ivy at bay.
When my wonderful mother-in-law, Rosemary, recently paid a visit, I told her how I thought it would be a great idea to make a comfrey healing salve. Before I knew it, she had taken my idea and run with it. She started by drying a mixture of salve herbs, including the comfrey leaves.
Next, she infused the herbs with oils. I gave her a giant slab of beeswax that had been taking up space with my art supplies. I had used beeswax for an encaustic painting project a few years back. She took the beeswax, shredded it in the kitchen and used it to finish making the salve.
Then, after letting the batch cool, she put them in little tins. For my part, I’m trying to design a logo for her product!
Rosemary, who is a member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation, plans on calling her salve “Cherokee Rose’s Healing Salve.” I hope she gives Burt’s Bees a run for their money.
Currently she’s looking for one more ingredient to add to the mixture that will give it a more pleasant smell, as the tea tree oil in the mixture gives it a very slight odor, not unlike insect repellent.
At our house, Rose is known as Oma, and we always look forward to her visits. Here she is in 2015, right after Levi was born.
Nice work, Oma!