As we continue to grow and extend our farm, I am really digging into the uses and background of everything we grow. Lately in the “lab”, I have been experimenting with Lavender Oil in sprays and salves. The essential oil that is distilled from many of the different lavender varieties is most commonly know for its relaxing and calming effects on the body, both physically and emotionally. It is also highly known for its skin uses, and can be used to cleanse cuts and scrapes, reduce irritations and can be applied for overall skin health. Here are 10 ways to use essential lavender oil in your day to day life:
Relaxation – take a few drops of lavender oil and rub it on your palms, wrists, feet or anywhere else on the body. Deeply inhale several times to draw the calming scent.
Sleep Aid – Lavender’s scent is known to aid sleep, and soothe nerves. Use a Lavender spray that is part oil, part witch hazel and part water to spray linens and pillows to drift off.
Burns – putting a few drops of oil, or a Lavender Calendula salve on a burn will reduce pain and redness and help in the healing process.
Cuts and Scrapes – Lavender oil and salves can provide a soothing, healing effect.
Laundry – spray your freshly washed towels and clothes to make them fresh throughout the day.
Insect bites – Lavender salves can take away the sting and itch for mosquito bites and bee stings.
Chapped/Dry lips – using oil or salves on dry chapped lips will help them deal and add moisture.
Headaches and Migranes – Lavenders aromatic powers can help alleviate a headache.
Acne – oil and salves of lavender can help reduce acne, and the redness of blemishes.
Slow Aging – there is some dispute, but many experts agree that the antioxidants found in Lavender slow the aging process.
The Christmas Cactus, aka Schlumbergera, is grown widely and is loved for its beautiful winter blooms. The plant makes a great holiday gift for friends and family, and propagating this plant can produce beautiful offspring for giving.
Propagating Christmas Cactus is easy, and this succulent variety takes readily to new roots. See the simple instructions below on how to root your Christmas Cactus cuttings.
Rooting Your Christmas Cactus: Step by Step
First off, you will need to take some cuttings from your parent plant. Simply take some Y-shaped cuttings from any growing tip, and take at least 3 segments. You can just pinch off your segments.
Although not required, most horticulturists advise letting these cuttings sit for 1-2 days is a cool, shady place to let the ends callous over. This can protect the end, prevent rotting and also increase propagation success.
While your cuttings are sitting, prepare a home for them that includes a mixture of peat and sand.
After your cuttings have waited their proper time, dip the ends in rooting hormone, and stick your cactus into the medium. You should push them about 1/2 a segment into the potting soil.
Water them sparsely, and in 2-3 weeks you should see new growth at the tip.
That’s it! After about six weeks, transplant your cacti into its final home and watch it grow.