With Spring around the corner and the nights a little lighter, gardeners all over the nation will be pulling on their wellie’s and gloves to make a start on the post-winter tidy up. Being outdoors is not only good for the body and mind, but the fresh air, exercise and being closer to nature is also good for the soul. And when you have a garden to be proud of and can reflect on a fabulous job well done; it’s extremely fulfilling. Whether you live the “good life” with an allotment of home grown veg, have award winning flower beds or an impressive tropical paradise; being green-fingered helps increase serotonin levels and allows for more Vitamin D exposure. But, as any avid gardener will confirm it takes its toll on the joints and muscles, not to mention the bites, stings, scratches and allergies that are endured along the way.
Before you get out in the garden this spring check out our advice on how natural remedies can help.
Our Songbird Naturals Bee Balm is a healing and soothing balm ideal for scratches, burns, sunburn, cracked skin, grazes, rashes and scar tissue. It’s also excellent for everyday use as a skin conditioner and barrier cream especially for working hands, and may also help with severe skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Applying this balm before you pop on your gardening gloves will help protect the hands from ingraining dirt and also lock in moisture. Remember to reapply after washing.
Little Critter Nip
Bites and stings – all part and parcel of a day in the garden. It’s handy to know, in times of crisis, that there are two Essential Oils which are safe to use directly on the skin undiluted. Lavender is an analgesic, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory oil which when applied neat to a bite or sting will get to work straight away, taking down redness and soothing the area. Where as Tea Tree is anti-septic, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal and can be applied to directly to abrasions to keep the area clean.
Our face is one area which remains exposed to the elements when we’re outdoors, and may become dry and sore without a deeply nourishing cream to repair and replenish. For a fantastic face cream try adding 30 drops of sebum-balancing Geranium and 30 drops of calming Chamomile Roman into 50ml of Base Moisture Cream. If you’d like to thicken the base then the addition of a little Avocado will not only stiffen the cream but will also help soothe the skin.
It’s important not to ignore your lips while out in the garden, especially during the early months of spring when the cold weather can result in chapped lips. For a natural solution why not make your own lip balm. Our Lip Balm Starter Kit has all the base ingredients you will need to create your very own luxurious balm, just add you choice of essential oils to tailor to your requirements.
Those Tired, Aching Joints
Muscular and joint pain is something we all experience from time to time, but for a regular gardener who battles through the cold weather it will be more frequent. A soothing hot bath with 3 drops of Marjoram Sweet and 2 of Black Pepper will help stimulate circulation and ease the stiffness. Alternatively for an invigorating Massage Oil for the joints you can add 20 drops of warming Plai and 30 drops of calming Lavender into 50ml of your chosen base oil. Why not try infusing with a little Arnica or St John’s Wort; which are particularly good for reducing inflammation and soothing aching limbs.
Rashes and Allergies
So you’ve been stung by nettles or developed an allergic reaction or prickly rash. The first measure is to soothe the area and take down the redness to calm the rash down. Lavender and Chamomile Roman Essential Oils, just 12 drops of each in 20ml of Calendula Oil applied directly to the rash will soothe immediately. If this persists over several days apply Aloe Vera Gel throughout the day to cool the itch.