St. John's Wort Salve

THIS IS NOT EDIBLE. Its phenomenal success in the treatment of depression has unfortunately often overshadowed St. John's wort's traditional use as a topical antiseptic and anti-inflammatory wound healer. This salve aims to set the record straight. Great to use on children's cuts and scrapes, and they'll love making the infused oil too, which magically turns from the palest yellow to brilliant scarlet after a couple of weeks on a sunny windowsill.

Courtesy James Wong
Show: Grow Your Own Drugs Episode: Shrubs & Trees
TOTAL TIME: 720 hr 10 min
Prep: 5 min
Inactive Prep: 720 hr
Cook: 5 min
YIELD:
LEVEL: Easy

ingredients

  • 1 to 1 3/4 ounces/30 to 50 g St John's wort flowering tops
  • 2 1/8 cups sunflower oil, to cover
  • 1 teaspoon beeswax
recipe tools
  • COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

        

    Sign in

    All fields are required.

    E-mail Address:

    Password:

    Remember me on this computer

    Signing in

    Please enter your email address and we will send your password

    E-mail Address

    Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

    Not a member?

    Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

    It's free and easy.

  • Print Recipe

Directions

Lightly bruise the flowering tops, then place in a glass jar. Cover with the sunflower oil, then let steep on a sunny windowsill, turning occasionally, for up to 1 month. Sunlight is crucial for the reaction to work, and when it has you will be rewarded with an oil that, as if by magic, has turned a bright rusty red color.

If after a month the oil is still clear, leave it a little longer until the sun has done its work - don't worry, it will eventually get there. Once bright red, strain out the spent flowers and discard. The resultant oil can be applied to wounds as it is, or turned into a rich, thick salve perfect to pop into your hand/man-bag.

Gently dissolve the beeswax in 50 milliliters of the infused St. John's wort oil on the lowest flame possible - this should take no longer than 1 to 2 minutes. While still warm, pour into a wide-mouthed jar. The salve will set as it cools.

Apply as needed to cover the affected area, up to 3 times a day.

Do not expose treated skin to direct sunlight. If any irritation occurs, wash off immediately.

The salve will keep in a cool dark place for up to 1 year. The infused oil will keep for 6 months to 1 year.

Notes

The content of this program is for entertainment purposes only, and is not intended as medical advice. Always consult a professional healthcare provider before trying any form of therapy or if you have any questions or concerns about a medical condition. The use of natural products can be toxic if misused, and even when suitably used, certain individuals could have adverse reactions.

COMMENT ON THIS PROJECT

    

Sign in

All fields are required.

E-mail Address:

Password:

Remember me on this computer

Signing in

Please enter your email address and we will send your password

E-mail Address

Your password has been sent and should arrive in your mailbox very soon.

Not a member?

Sign up for My Cooking Channel to share photos, show off your style, and connect to an enthusiastic and helpful community.

It's free and easy.

Review This Recipe

You must be logged in to review this recipe.

Advertisement

On TV

*ALL TIMES EASTERN
ON AIR
NOW
TONIGHT
10:00
PM

Get Cooking Channel on your TV.