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  Far Left: plantain (Plantago major)

Left: jewelweed (Impatiens capensis)

. . . Helpful tips for Poison Ivy &
Poison Oak

Herbal Remedies

A jewelweed or plantain poultice is a quick remedy if fresh plants are handy. Pick fresh jewelweed or plantain leaves and blend with a little water in a blender. Apply immediately to rash for soothing relief. Both plants may be close at hand if you are in the middle of the woods and you can chew the plantain and put it on the rash to stop the itch and heal the skin. You can pinch off jewelweed leaves and apply the milky juice to the rash. Do not chew the jewelweed.

The following herbal recipes can be made ahead of time to keep on hand during the Summer months:

Mugwort Remedy

Fill a jar with fresh wilted mugwort. Cover with apple cider vinegar and let sit in shaded warm area for two weeks. Strain, and add one tablespoon salt for every pint. Apply frequently diluted with water. It will sting but not burn.

Herbal Liniment
Add 1oz goldenseal root powder, 1oz myrrh powder, 1/4 oz cayenne powder to 1 pint of rubbing alcohol. Let sit in shady warm area for two weeks. Strain. Apply frequently diluted with water. It will sting but not burn.

Homeopathic Remedies

Many people have successfully taken homeopathic poison ivy/oak remedies for relief. A healing crisis may occur in some where the rash gets worse before getting better. However, in my experience, this has been rare. Many have had instant relief.

Contact me at if you have any questions or comments.

Colleen has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geography and has been a practicing herbalist since 1996. She is currently studying The Science and Art of Herbology with revered herbalist Rosemary Gladstar.

Published: Summer, 2002

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Herbal Recipes

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Above jewelweed photo from Missouri State University, Department of Biology.

Above plantain photo from Wikipedia, free encyclopedia.

The content on this site should not take the place of advice from your doctor. Visitors to this site agree to the terms and conditions in the disclaimer.

Copyright © 1999-2012 Robin L. Russell