By Lynn Kirkland Herb of the Week for 11th July
Hello to Aloe
By Lynn Kirkland
Aloe is a herb that comes in many shapes and forms and the
true aloe vera is not the one in the photo.
However it is still a useful aloe and can be used to soothe burns and insect bites.
This variety grows very easily in the garden and unlike its cousin aloe vera it is not frost tender.
The true aloe vera is more of a pot plant as it will succumb to the cold wet weather.
Many of you will probably have the one in the photo in your gardens and like mine at the herb farm it will be coming into flower at the moment.
Waxeyes love this flower and if you have a clump of this aloe growing in view of a window you can enjoy the sight of a flock of the wee waxeyes enjoying the nectar.
are on holiday just now and why not give them a little herbal lesson and split
a leaf from an aloe plant open to find the clear gel inside.
It is good to do a patch test for allergy as there are a few folks around who react to aloe. Smear a little on your wrist and wait to see if your skin reacts.
If there are any red spots or a feeling of itchiness then wash off with warm soapy water and avoid the use of aloe. Maybe one in a hundred has sensitivity to aloe.
there is no reaction to the aloe then the kids can have fun with trying the clear
gel on their hair as styling gel!
Aloe gel is wonderful for the hair and this little activity may spark an interest in all things herbal.
They could get really creative and mix a drop or two of an essential oil in with the gel and create their own styling product.
Lime, lemon, orange or maybe peppermint could be fun.
This "product" will need to be used up in a few days as it won't last and also tell the kids to avoid the yellow sap which exudes from the leaf skin and just scrape out the clear gel.