Mint (Mentha)

September 17, 2017

THE MINT FAMILY:

Mentha, commonly known as mint, is a genus of plants in the Lamiaceae family. There are a number of different species of mint, along with many hybrids, due to the natural occurrence of cross-breeding between species. Mint plants are aromatic, mainly perennial herbs with highly fragrant, toothed, opposing leaves, and tiny white, pink, or purple flowers, arranged in clusters forming whorls or a spike. Many characteristics of the mint plant can vary with differing species, but will always be characterized by a square stem. The colour of the leaves can vary from a dark green to grey, purple, blue, and even pale yellow. These plants can often grow up to about 2 – 3 feet tall, and will commonly spread out along the ground. Mint plants produce a fruit called a nutlet which contains 1 to 4 seeds. Propagation is considered an easier form of reproduction for mint. The volatile oils which are extracted from the plant are found in resinous dots located in the leaves and stems. The name Mentha is derived from the Greek word minthe, personified in Greek mythology as Minthe, a naiad who was transformed into a mint plant by Persephone when she tried to seduce Hades. The mint plant originated in Europe, Asia, North America, Australia, and Africa, but has been widely distributed throughout the temperate areas of the world, a

April 3, 2017

SAGE

Common sage (Salvia officinalis) is a perennial, evergreen dwarf shrub, which can grow up to 2 feet, and is characterized by woody stems, purple/blue flowers, and grey/green leaves. It is part of the mint family, Lamiaceae and is native to the Mediterranean and the Balkan region (a peninsula and cultural area in South-eastern Europe). The botanical name, Salvia, is derived from the Latin word salvere which means ‘to be saved’. Sage was a sacred ceremonial herb of the Romans, being associated with immortality, and was used by the Greeks as a ‘coronary herb’ because it flushed disease from the body and relieved strain on the heart. In the Middle Ages sage was ingested as a tea to treat colds, fevers, memory and concentration loss, inflammations, ulcers, and many other ailments. There are approximately 8 different types of sage, each differing in appearance and use. These are:

  • Garden sage (Salvia officinalis): This is the most common type of sage, and is used for cooking, tea brewing, decoration, and medicinal use
  • Pineapple sage (Salvia elegans): This variety of sage has tubular red flowers and is used mainly for medicinal purposes
  • Russian sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia): This type has silver/grey leaves, and produces small, blue/purple tubular fl

December 27, 2016

Eucalyptus commonly known as ‘Gum Trees’, these essential parts of Australian culture belong to a diverse genus of flowering plants and shrubs called the Myrtaceae family. There are almost 900 species of eucalypts, with the majority found in Australia and the rest found worldwide in temperate, tropical climates.  

HEALTH BENEFITS OF EUCALYPTUS OIL:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antibacterial and therefore prevents infections
  • Antifungal
  • Antiseptic, therefore heals wounds, ulcers, burns, cuts, and abrasions
  • Used to treat herpes, acne, chicken pox, and other skin infections
  • Aids with stress and anxiety
  • Relieves itchiness from insect bites/stings
  • Aids with stomach problems as its vermifugal properties cause it to remove intestinal germs
  • Relieves pain
  • Treats fevers by lowering body temperature
  • Treats respiratory conditions such as colds, coughs, sore throat, bronchitis, asthma, and sinusitis
  • Aids with the removal of mucus from the lungs
  • Alleviates arthritis symptoms due to its anti-inflammatory and pain relieving qualities
  • Works as a stimulant by relieving mental exhaustion
  • Improves and stimulates the immune system
  • Improves oral health by preventing cavities, dental plaque, and other infections
  • Aids with diabe