Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Jewelweed & Poison Ivy

Almost everyone gets it. It's practically unavoidable. Poison ivy is spouting up everywhere! Thankfully in New England along with the bountiful poison ivy plants there are plenty of remedies around too.

The best known remedy usually grows near poison ivy in fact: Jewelweed (impatiens capensis AKA Touch-me-not or silverweed) grows in wet areas, near swamps and streams, and can be used topically to treat poison ivy.

How to use Jewelweed...

Pick a bunch, crush it, and rub it on exposed parts of your body that might come in contact or have already come in contact with poison ivy. It is a juicy plant and breaking it up and rubbing it on your skin is very easy to do. It is more effective before the oils set into your skin that cause the rash.

Jewelweed tea
Collect a bunch of jewelweed and make a tea: Bring about 4 cups of water to a boil , chop a large handful of jewelweed and add it to the boiling water. Let it sit for 20 minutes, then strain it out.
You can bath in this tea, just treat the affected area OR freeze it into ice cubes. You can apply the ice to exposed areas or areas that are already suffering from the rash. Ahhh, relief!