Simple Herbal Solutions
Keep Fresh Cut Flowers Longer-Add 2 tbsp. of lemon juice and 1 tbsp.
of sugar to 1 quart of water. Add 1/2 tsp. of bleach and your flowers will stay fresh much longer.
Oven Cleaner-Sprinkle water on the bottom of the oven. Put baking soda in an even layer over the water. Sprinkle again with water
and let sit overnight. Wipe off with a clean, damp cloth.
Mildew Treatment-Wash down the areas that are prone to mildew with a strong thyme tea. Steep 1 quart of thyme in 1 gallon of water
for several days. Use to scrub down the area.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner-Drop 3 vitamin C capsules in the bowl and let sit overnight. Scrub with brush in the morning.
Stains are gone.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner-Drop several tablets of denture cleaner in the bowl and let sit overnight. Scrub with brush
and stains are gone.
Room Freshener-To freshen the air while you vacuum, simply soak a cotton ball with your favorite scented oil and add to your vacuum
Air Freshener-This will clean your aluminum pots while freshening the air in your house at the same time. Drop slices of grapefruits,
lemons or oranges in your pot. Cover with water and simmer for an hour.
Room Freshener-Add 3 lbs. of green spruce tree cones to 4 gallons of water. Let steep for at least 24 hours. Boil the mix for 2
hours. Add to humidifier. This can also be added to the bath water for treatment of rheumatic discomforts.
Romantic Room Freshener-Place several drops of your favorite scented oil on the light bulbs. The heat from the bulbs
will make the fragrance fill the air.
Closet Freshener-Saturate a cotton ball in your favorite scented oil and place on a shelf in the closet. Repeat as needed.
Kitchen Refresher-Use dishwashing liquid to mop the kitchen floor because it adds a shine to the floor and is easy to rinse. Add scented
oil to your mop water for a fragrant kitchen.
Drain Maintenance-Pour 1/2 cup of baking soda down the drain. Pour in 1/2 cup of lemon juice or vinegar. Wait 15 minutes before flushing
with hot water.
Wall Paper Cleaner-Use slices of white bread to clean wall paper. Just wipe away the stains and dirt with the
Floor Wax-Melt 4 tbsp. of paraffin and add to 2 quarts of mineral oil. Cool before storing in glass bottle. Apply to floor
and allow to dry 30 minutes before lightly buffing.
Wooden Floor Polish-Mix together 4 tbsp. gum arabic, 4 tbsp. turpentine, 1 quart denatured alcohol, and 1 cup of
orange shellac. Stir until the gum arabic dissolves. Apply with a cloth and allow to dry for 30 minutes before buffing. This
can be stored for later use, but be sure to label it. It gives a high shine and makes floors non-slip.
Furniture Polish-Add 1 tbsp. of lemon oil to 1 quart of mineral oil. Place in a spray bottle and use on wooden furniture. Rub it in
and then wipe off.
Furniture Polish #2-Mix together 1 tsp. of olive oil and 1/2 cup of lemon juice in a small pan. Dip a cloth in
the liquid and wring out. Use this to dust and polish furniture. The cloth can be used repeatedly.
Chrome Cleaner-Cut a lemon in half. Wipe the chrome with the lemon.
Metal and Brass Cleaner-Horsetail is an excellent herb for cleaning metal because it's high content of silica. Simply
rub the metal with the fresh herb. Or, make a strong tea and soak the metal in it. To make the tea, add 1 quart of horsetail
(packed) to 1 quart of water and boil it. Allow it to sit overnight. Immerse the metal in the tea.
Laundry Bleach-Add 1/4 cup of vinegar to your wash. Removes odor along with dirt.
Remove Grease from Clothing-Pour 1 can of cola soft drink in your washer when you need to clean really greasy clothes.
Dissolves the grease fast.
Make your own Lye-Place wood ashes in a pan of water and allow to soak overnight. Strain off the wood ashes and you have the lye water.
Use it to make soap.
Bug Free Grain and Flour-Add bay leaves to a small bag of pepper (black or cayenne) and tie tight. Add to flour bin
to keep out the weevils.
Silverfish-Place costmary sprigs around the house to get rid of silverfish.
Fly Repellent for Picnics-Leave freshly picked basil on the picnic table to keep your picnic free of flies. For
protection inside of the house, put basil sprays all around in the rooms. Chamomile, garlic, and mints are good to leave lying
around the house as they are all good bug chasers. Yarrow repels many insects if used as a spray.
Fly Repellent-Crunch equal amounts of bay leaves, crushed cloves, pennyroyal, and eucalyptus. Place in attractive mesh bags and
hang close to doors or on your screen door.
Ant Repellent-Place goldenseal tea bags around the area where there are ants. They soon leave.
Ant Repellent-Place crushed catnip on ant trails. They will leave the house.
Keeps Insects from the House-Hang dried bunches of tomato leaves in each room of the house. Keeps insects away.
Moth Repellent-Hang bunches of sage in your closet to keep moths away.
Worm Treatment for Children-Have the child eat 1/2 cup of blackberries with each meal for 3-4 days. This will dispel
Head Lice-Pour 1 quart of boiling water over 1 large handful of tobacco leaves. Let steep several hours. Strain, keeping the
liquid. You will need to reuse this tobacco rinse, so have a basin ready to catch the liquid as you pour it directly over
freshly shampooed hair. Rinse the hair in it at least 15 times. Comb hair directly after rinsing. Leave on for several hours
before shampooing out.
Insect Repellent-Rub oil of sassafras on the skin before venturing out. To make it, put 1 cup of sassafras into a jar and cover it
with vodka. Screw the lid on tightly. Put it out in the sun for the whole day, or in low heat oven overnight.
Insect Repellent-Put 2 tbsp. oil of pennyroyal in 2 cups of vodka. Shake well and apply to skin before going outdoors.
Stop Hiccups-Eat 1 tsp. of sugar.
Exposed to Nuclear Accident-Chew 4 dolomite tablets 4 times daily. The pectin found in apples is also good to use.
Pulverize 3 apples and eat 3 apples at least 4 times daily. Both these methods help to bind strontium and carry it from the
Appetite Suppressant-Rub a clove of garlic on your upper lip before eating.
Cattails-Cattails are good for making gifts or for home use. Break them up and they make wonderful stuffing for quilts. They
are insulating, so they really keep you warm. You can also use them to line coats or vests. They are good to use in hunting
coats as they are waterproof and insulate for warmth while out in the cold.
Fennel Tea for Nursing Mothers-Fennel tea is good for milk production. Pour 1 cup boiling water over 1 tsp. of
dried fennel. Steep 5 minutes. Strain and sweeten. You can add a dash of ginger if desired.
Borage Tea for Nursing Mothers-Use borage flowers and leaves to make this tea. Put 1/4 cup of chopped leaves and
flowers in 2 cups boiling water. Allow to steep for 10 minutes. Strain and sweeten. Drink several cups a day. This is also
good to soothe nerves, while helping to increase milk production.
Dry Up Mother's Milk-Put 2 tsp. of sage in 1 cup of milk and simmer gently for 10 minutes. Strain and sweeten with
honey. Drink several times daily.
Pregnancy-Red raspberry tea is said to make birthing easier if used throughout the pregnancy. Pick 4-5 fresh leaves and pour
1 cup boiling water over the leaves. Cover and steep for 10 minutes. Strain and sweeten.
Things to Keep the Kids Busy
Growing Coals-Place several chunks of coal in a deep dish. Mix together 2 tbsp. of water, 1 tbsp. of bluing, 1 tbsp. ammonia, and
2 tbsp. of salt. Pour over the coal. Put several drops of different colors of food coloring at different places on the coal.
It will take several days before the coal starts growing.
Elder Flute-Hollow out a small branch of the elder to create a musical instrument.
Finger Paints-Mix 2 cups cold water with 1/4 cup of cornstarch. Add food coloring. You can also store this in the refrigerator
for later use.
Basket Dye-Teach them to make small baskets and to use natural dyes to color them. Walnuts is one of the easiest natural dyes
to make. Put walnut hulls in water and simmer for several hours. Dip the baskets in the liquid and the basket becomes very
pleasing to look at. If you want your baskets to be scented, soak the reeds in an essential oil for 15 minutes. This will
also keep the reed supple while you're working with it.
Gift Idea-To make attractive book marks, dry an herb of your choice between absorbent paper. Press it flat with something heavy.
When dry, place between two pieces of plastic. You cant cut the plastic into a shape or design that you find pleasing. Anchor
with glue, punch holes around the edge, and lace with yarn or embroidery thread.
Modeling Clay-Mix together 1/2 cup of salt, 1 cup flour, 1 tsp. alum. Add food coloring and enough water to make a nice clay. Keep
in a covered jar, kneading in more water if it becomes to dry.
Job's Tears-Job's Tears make interesting plants for your children to grow. In the fall, the plants are covered with hard beads
that make beautiful jewelry.
Make Your Own Coffee Substitute-Use either dandelion or chicory root. Wash the roots carefully and spread in a large
flat pan. Place in an oven at 180 to 200 degrees for up to 4 hours. Turn to ensure even drying. When the roots are completely
dry and cool, you may store them as roots to grind fresh, or you could grind them before placing in a tightly closed container.
Use as you would coffee, or mix half and half with commercial coffee.
Corn Coffee-Put dried corn in a pan. Add boiling water and continue boiling for 5 minutes. Sweeten with maple syrup.
Swiss Mocha-Mix together 1/2 cup of instant coffee, 2 tbsp. cocoa, 1/3 tsp. baking soda, 1 cup sugar, and 1 cup dried milk. Blend
in the blender until very fine. Place 2 tsp. of mixture in 1 cup boiling water.
International Coffee-Mix together 1 cup instant coffee, 2 cups powdered coffee creamer, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 cup of
sugar, and 2 cups of powdered milk. Place in blender and mix until very fine. Use 2 or more tsp. to each cup of boiling water.
Cafe Vienna-Mix together in blender: 1/2 cup instant coffee, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, pinch of baking soda, 2/3 cup of powdered milk,
and 2/3 cup of sugar. Blend until fine. Use 2 rounded tsp. for each cup of boiling water.
Cafe Cappuccino-Mix in the blender until fine: 1 cup powdered milk, 3/4 cup sugar, 1/2 cup instant coffee, 1/4 tsp. dried or powdered
orange peel and 1/8 tsp. of baking soda. Add 2 rounded tsp. to each cup of boiling water.
Hot Chocolate-Mix together in blender until fine: 2 cups of powdered milk, 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/4 cup of cocoa, 1 cup of powdered
coffee creamer, and a dash of salt. If you like, you can add 2 tbsp. of malted milk powder. To use, add 4 tbsp. to each cup
of boiling water.
Minted Hot Chocolate-Prepare your hot chocolate. Stir with a peppermint stick.
Make Your Own Condensed Milk-Mix together 2/3 cup of sugar, 1 cup powdered coffee creamer, 1/2 cup boiling water
and 3 tbsp. of margarine. Blend in blender until smooth. Use in any recipe that calls for sweetened condensed milk.
Survival Food-The young flower heads of sunflowers can be boiled in water and eaten like brussel sprouts. Grind the seeds to add
to breads, soups, and cakes for extra vitamins.
Celery Substitute-The seeds from the head of wild celery (Apium graveolens) can be added to soups and stews to add a celery flavor.
Chickweed Thickener-The seeds from chickweed can be used to thicken gravies and stews.
Wild Asparagus-Pick when the spears first emerge. Steam the spears until tender. Put about 3 spears in a flour tortilla. Cover the
spears with cheddar cheese and Miracle Whip. Place under broiler or in microwave until cheese is melted. Add fresh bean sprouts,
roll up and enjoy.
Easy Sauerkraut-Put a one-inch thick layer of shredded cabbage in a crock. Sprinkle with 1 tsp. of salt. Continue to layer the cabbage
and the salt until the crock is full. Place a plate over the sauerkraut and weigh down with something heavy. Let it sit overnight
and remove the scum that will be on the top the next day. Stir the cabbage thoroughly. Do this daily until the fermentation
has stopped. Place in sterile jars and cover tightly.
Make Your Own Yogurt-Dissolve 4 cups of dried milk in 3 cups of lukewarm water and add 1 can evaporated milk. In
a separate bowl, dissolve 1 envelope gelatin in 1 cup of boiling water. Wait until the mix is lukewarm, then mix the two together
and add 4 tbsp. of plain yogurt. Make sure that the mix is not over 100 degrees as it will kill the yogurt cultures. Have
the oven preheated to 250 degrees. Pour yogurt mix into a glass container and place it in the preheated oven. Turn the oven
off. Leave it in the oven for 24 hours. Remove from oven, place it in containers, and refrigerate. You can add fruit that
you like to the yogurt.
French Dressing-Combine in a quart jar and shake well: 1/4 cup of water, 1/2 cup of vinegar, 1-1/2 cups salad oil, 1 cup catsup,
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. pepper, a tsp of table mustard, and 1/2 tsp. powdered garlic.
Thousand Island Dressing-Mix together 1/2 cup mayonnaise to 2 tbsp. catsup, 1 chopped hard-boiled egg, 1 tbsp. chopped
sweet pepper, and 1 tbsp. relish. Mix well and chill thoroughly.
Russian Dressing-Mix together 3 rounded tbsp. of mayonnaise, 2 tbsp. catsup, 1 tsp. horseradish, 1/4 tsp. Worchestershire sauce, 1
tbsp. relish. Mix well and chill before serving.
Tartar Sauce-Mix together 3 heaping tbsp. mayonnaise, 1 finely chopped hard-boiled egg, and 1 tbsp. relish. Chill before serving.
Celery Seed Dressing-Mix in the blender together, 1 tbsp. of salt, 1 tbsp. of celery salt, 1 to 1-1/2 tbsp. dry
mustard, 3/4 tsp. paprika, 3/4 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of sugar, and 1/2 of a small onion. When blended well, add 2-1/4 cup
vegetable oil in a steady stream to the mix. Refrigerate.
Curry Powder-Mix together 2 tsp. coriander seeds, 4 tsp. powdered cinnamon, 2 tsp. ginger, 2 tsp. ground turmeric. Mix together
Fresh Mustard-To make your own flavors of mustard, start with mustard flour. To get English flavor, add vinegar. For chinese flavor,
use beer. You can also use white wine, horseradish, sage, oregano, paprika, basil, garlic, onion, chervil, cloves, lovage,
turmeric, rosemary, marjoram, chili powder, cumin, allspice, cinnamon, thyme, tarragon, parsley, dill, Tabasco, curry, savory,
nutmeg, or chives to flavor the mustard flour. Mix spices and the mustard flour in any combination before adding liquid. Thin
with milk or mayonnaise. Add enough to make a smooth paste. Allow to stand until flavor is well blended. Mix in small batches
for greater pungency. Keeps forever.
Maple Syrup-Stir together 4 cups of white sugar, 1/2 cup brown sugar and 2 cups of water. Add 2 tbsp. of corn syrup if you have
it. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add 1 tsp. of vanilla and 1 tsp. maple flavoring.