5 Herbs You Should Avoid

At Botanicals Nursery, we obviously love our herbs. That is a given, but we also realize that not all herbs are created equal. Some are, in fact, quite dangerous, even deadly.

Take a look at some herbs below that you should probably avoid. This is by no means a comprehensive list and actually just scratches the surface on dangerous herbs. Take a look.

  • Chaparral
    This is a herb that is also called Creosote Bush. It is used to treat skin rashes, to improve weight loss and is even touted as a treatment for cancer. What is can also do is cause severe kidney and liver damage.
  • Germander
    Also known as Viscidum, this herb is used to treat arthritis, gout and is used to promote weight loss. On the downside, it can also cause liver issues and even Hepatitis.
  • Kava
    This one also goes by the name Ava Pepper and it is touted for its benefit of reducing anxiety and helping insomnia. That is great but it can also cause depression and can harm the liver.
  • Hedeoma
    With a few aliases such as Pennyroyal Oil and Mentha Pulegium, this herb is used by some to improve breathing and digestive problems. On the flip side, it can cause nerve damage, cause convulsions and damage the liver and kidneys.
  • Yohimbe
    This is a fairly common herb that can be used to treat low libido and erectile dysfunction. Though used successfully by some, it can cause high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat and of course, can damage the liver and kidneys.

As you can see, herbs giveth and herbs taketh away. You have to be smart when you supplement and you should also seek help from your regular doctor.

Never take an herb to treat a medical condition before consulting a doctor. The results can be disastrous.

Most Common Helpful Herbs

There are many herbs that are beneficial to our health, temperament and well being. For a newcomer, this can be overwhelming. I mean there are literally dozens if not hundreds of herbs that you should become associated with. Here is a list of some of the most common herbs on the market and what they are good for.


One of the most common herbs that you will see recommended. Chamomile is  known for its relaxing and sedating properties. This makes it a good herb to treat anxiety and stress. The most common method for using this herb is in a tea but compresses have also been used.  It has been known to increase the sedating power of other medicines so be sure to tell your doctor if you plan to use it while taking prescription medications.


Garlic has a number of uses. It has been shown to lower cholesterol and can contribute to lowering blood pressure. It is considered safe by the FDA and is even being researched for anti cancer properties. One caution with garlic is that is has some anti clotting characteristics which means you should be careful consuming it with drugs like warfarin.


This is an herb that is used to treat colds, flu and infections. While no official studies have shown the ability for this herb to reduce the length of a cold, anecdotal evidence suggest that it helps the immune system. It is not recommended to take Echinacea with drugs that can cause liver damage.


This herb has been around for a long time and has helped people treat problems such as asthma, bronchitis,  fatigue, and tinnitus, among other things. It should not be used with anticoagulants because it may increase the risk of bleeding.

Milk Thistle

The herb is much better than its name would suggest. It is commonly used to help conditions such as liver problems and high cholesterol levels.

Saint Johns Wort

This is an herb very commonly used as an antidepressant. There is no hard and sure research to suggest that it has a great impact on the condition but there is enough anecdotal evidence to suggest that there is something there. Interactions with commonly used medicines has been shown, so be sure to tell your doctor if you plan to use this herb while taking other drugs.


This is an herb that can help treat anxiety and can help with achieving sleep. Studies have proven that Valerian root has some help with sleep. Consult your doctor if you want to take Valerian on a consistent basis while taking other drugs.

Saw Palmetto

This herb is used to treat urinary symptoms in men caused by an enlarged prostate. It is also supposedly helpful with pelvic pain, reduced sex drive and migraine headaches. As with most herbs, inform your doctor about your usage while taking other prescription drugs.

Three Easy Herbs To Grow At Home

Not a green thumb? That could easily change with a little practice. Here are three easy herbs that you can start growing at home.

One: Chives

A very easy herb to grow at home as it is tolerant of many different conditions. You can start it from seed but this is very challenging and it is far easier to get an established plant and repot it. You can simply pull out a few bunches with roots from an existing plant or buy a small seedling from a home improvement store. Cutting a bit of the top of the plant will stimulate growth and it only needs a bit of light to prosper.

Two: Parsley

You can use parsley in just about everything. It is an incredibly versatile and useful herb. You can try seeds but that will take 2 to 3 weeks to get started. The easiest way is to buy an established plant locally and then take care of it.  Just like with chives, little light is required for it to grow.

Three: Basil

A cooking favorite. Fresh basil can make a typical dish extraordinary. It is a bit more difficult to grow but is very much in the wheelhouse of a beginner home gardener.

Make Money With Botanicals

Are you big time into botanicals and natural medicine? Would you like to make money from your hobby and actually turn it into a career? There are a number of ways that you can make money both in person and line with your hobby. Here are a few great ideas to get you going on the right track.

Online Blogging For Money

If you want to make lots of money and make money fast, online blogging might be the trick. This is especially true if you have a knack for writing and  a good friend base on places like facebook. Start a blog and just write about botanical subjects. You have all the knowledge in your head now. Knowledge that can help people and that can make you money. But how do you monetize a blog?

The internet is already monetized in every way. People are buying and selling advertisement space. The easiest way to make money is by simply inserting Adsense into your blog. Every time someone clicks on the links, you get a cut of the money that Google gets. The golden days of Adsense are over though and although it is the easiest way to make money, it is no longer really the best way.  So what is the better way?

Affiliate advertising will probably make you far more money. Affiliates make money by mentioning or reviewing a product and then posting a link to the product. When a visitor buys the product through your link, you get a percentage of the purchase price. Nice right? There are many companies that want to pay you to mention their products but the easiest one to work with is probably Amazon.

When you sell ads on your blog whether they be through direct advertisements or product links, you need to be upfront with your users. Be sure to mention somewhere on your blog that you are selling links or advertising an affiliates content. This will keep you looking legit and it can save you some legal trouble.

Open A Botanicals Shop

Want to work closely with people and share your knowledge? Open a small botanical natural medicine store. This could be anything from a large store to a small kiosk. The easiest way to go might be to open a small kiosk. Consider specializing in one or two areas with a small range of products. Anti Aging medicines are always a big hit as are performance enhancing herbs for Sports and Fitness.

Make sure that you know your stuff if you decide to open your own store. If you do not consider yourself an expert on a subject, it might be best not to go this route. Also be sure to consult an attorney for legal advice before offering people botanicals for health needs. Best to prevent any possible legal trouble.

Go To Work For A Botanical Company

There are lots of companies that can use educated employees. These could be local retailers such as Whole Foods, specialty shops or online retailers. Either way you can make a living using the skills you have acquired. When you go to work for someone else you may not make as much money but you will also certainly avoid a ton of risk and long hours.

As you can see, there are several ways to make money from your love of botanicals. These are just a few of the more common ones. Be creative and think outside the box and come up with a great idea for yourself or use one of the methods above Good luck and be sure to email us if you come up with a new venture. We love to highlight new companies and natural medicine startups.

Mugwort – What Can It Do For Your Skin

Mugwort is a Korean beauty aid that also is known by the name Artemisia Vulgaris. It is a perennial that has been used for centuries but one that you may not be familiar with.

As far as health benefits go, this botanical has a number of great ones. First, it is loaded with antioxidants making it a great anti aging product.

In addition to antioxidants, Mugwort also has antibacterial characteristics. It can therefore treat minor skin irritations and has been shown to be effective against reoccurring acne problems.

Dry skin sufferers can also benefit from this great plant because it is loaded with vitamin E which can help you lock in moisture.

The combination of the antibacterial properties and the moisturizing action makes Mugwort a good product for those who suffer from eczema or psoriasis.

So, are you ready to give this miracle botanical a try? It is easy to do, there are literally dozens of products on the market that incorporate it. A quick search on Amazon should help you find them.

Need Money Desperately For Medical Care?

The pharmaceutical industry is a monster money maker.  Billions of dollars a year are earned by mega companies whose main interest is not the consumers health but their bottom line. They can come up with a patented drug and jack up its price and make millions off of the back of needy consumers. If, you are one of the unfortunate Americans without insurance or good insurance, this can  be a problem. It can leave you in a situation where you desperately need money to pay for your expensive pharmaceuticals.  This can put you in debt or put your health at considerable risk.

So, what is the answer?

Need Money NowFirst off , we need to cut off our dependence on pharmaceutical drugs when their may be a natural alternative. I am not saying that the pharmaceutical companies do not make good products but that they are over prescribed. All too often you see these modern miracle cures prescribed for no good reason and often for off label usages. The drug representatives give doctors financial incentives to prescribe drugs to patients that are not even designed to treat their conditions Off label prescriptions give the drug manufacturers another market in which to make money from their product.

But how is the average patient able to combat this abuse of the prescription drug industry? For starters, you should not treat your doctor as a god. They are human just like you and me and are capable of mistakes.  They are also capable of the human sin of greed. Do not be afraid to question your doctors decision or drug recommendation. Ask if there are alternatives and get second opinions when they are available.

For many conditions, treatments are available that will involve natural drugs or herbal remedies. Even a simple search online could produce you with several alternative treatment alternatives. The great thing is that these alternatives are often much cheaper than those pushed by doctors and the pharmaceutical industry.  Herbs are cheap, plentiful and the research has already been done by people int he past, often people hundreds of years in the past.

This is not to say that pharmaceutical drugs do not have value. Many drugs have been created that can do incredible things. They can ease pain, treat cancer and cure a number of different ailments. The problem comes when representatives of drug companies and rug companies themselves seek to increase profits by  forcing off label usage of their products.  This can lead man patients to waste a lot of money on cures which might not be the right ones for them.

In conclusion, always be cautious with what your doctor tells you. Make sure that they are looking out for you and your best interest and not just their own pocketbook. You do not want to end up taking a useless drug so that your doctor gets a free trip to Hawaii from the drug manufactures . There are many incredible and honest drug manufacturers that are making the world a better place but there are just as many dishonest ones that are only interested in their own bottom line.

Look for natural, botanical alternatives whenever possible.

Natural Headache Remedies

Got a headache? Before you reach for the pharmaceutical remedy, why not look for a natural approach. Here are our top suggestions.

  • Water
    Okay, it is not a botanical solution but water is often the culprit with headaches. Dehydration is a major cause of headaches and a lot of other ailments.  Properly hydrating can eliminate headaches, body aches, and a variety of other ailments, even Gout. Drink a few glasses of water and your headache may be gone in as little as 30 minutes.
  • Peppermint
    Peppermint is a cross between spearmint and water mint and it grows all over North America. You can use Peppermint leaves and essential oils to treat headaches and a number of other ailments.  A simple application to the forehead or remple may be all that is needed to ease your symptoms.
  • Ginger
    A tropical Asian plant that has been used in herbal medicine for thousands of years. It is a powerful anti inflammatory and has been proven to be nearly as effective as prescription  drugs without side effects.
  • Coriander Seed
    Another herb that has been used for thousands of years. It has traditionally been used by pouring hot water over fresh seeds and inhaling the steam.
  • Lavender Oil
    Sweet smelling Lavender might be the cure you are looking for.  t is used by breathing in the oil or applying it to the temples during a headache or migraine.  Use caution with Lavender oil as it can be toxic if improperly used. orally at high doses.
  • Rosemary
    The oil from Rosemary can be inhaled or applied topically or the leaves can be ground and capsulized. Headaches are just one of its suggested uses. It also has antimicrobial and antioxidant effects.


Why Natural Medicine?

Natural medicine is, in many cases, a better alternative to synthetic drugs. Now, there are times when you need modern medicine but the use of pharmaceutical drugs is too high in this country. Why? Because it is profitable. It is hard to make money selling a common weed or herb to treat a medical condition. That fancy new drug though can bring in a fortune for companies.

So, there are many reasons why you should choose natural medicine over the pharmaceutical industr.y. The first is that it is just better for you in most cases. You do not have to worry about dangerous side effects or interactions if you know what you are doing.  With those fancy new drugs, you never really know just what you are going to get. How often do you hear about drugs being pulled from the market do to side effects or drug companies being sued by former patients for bad side effects or even deaths.

Another reason is to stick it to the pharmaceutical industry. Why should they make record profits off of our backs when the drugs we need are actually growing all around us. Why pay $1000 for a bottle of pills when a ten cent herb will do the trick?

Finally, choosing herbal medicine can help lower the cost of health insurance in general. We pay so much for health insurance and much of that is due to the high cost of prescription medicine. This means that when we actually do need a pharmaceutical cure or treatment by a doctor, it costs us a fortune. This is all due to the misuse of pharmaceuticals and the greed of the companies making them.  Rant over. Thanks for listening.

Top Herbs To Grow In Your Garden

Ready to jump right in to medicinal gardening. Here are 7 of the best herbs to get started with.

  1. Motherwort
    This is a very simple herb to grow and it is wonderful for dealing with anxiety problems. It can be added to tea to ease stress and muscle pains. A bitter herb, you will not find it delightful to take in by itself.
  2. Stinging Nettles
    A very easy to grow plant that returns year after year without replanting. It is a very nutritious green high in Vitamin A & C. It can be cooked in soups or stir fries.
  3. Holy Basil
    This herb makes a great tea and is used to treat colds, coughs, stress and even arthritis.  Leaves can also be added to salads.
  4. Passionflower
    This is a vining plant common in the southeast US. It provides attractive flowers making it both decorative as well ad medicinal.  The leaves and the flowers can be used to ease pain and promote sleep.
  5. Purple Cone Flower
    Also known as Echinacea, this is an easy to grow herb that can be made into a nice tea. It has immune boosting capabilities. You will find that it is resisting to both drought and insects.
  6. Spilanthes
    This is a plant known for its ability to help with toothaches. It can be chewed fresh but in careful moderation to create a slight numbing effect.
  7. Wild Bergamot
    This is a very attractive plant that will attract butterflies and hummingbirds.  It can be used to treat gas and bloating. It is very pungent and makes a nice tea.
All of the above plants are easy to grow and will make your garden bot