Herbal First Aid for Outdoor Lovers

Dedicated to all the gardening, hiking, protesting, camping, swimming, foraging, biking, plant lovers out there!


  • Don’t act outside your scope
  • Think before you act
  • Be Prepared: Build a kit now! Before you go somewhere  
  • Learn the actions of the weeds of your bioregion
  • Seek out Basic First Aid Training as well as Herb Classes
  • Acute Issues may need higher doses more often. Reapply externally every 1-2 hours, internally take doses every 1-2 hours until relief. Dosage should be 1oz of plant material per quart of water drink 6-8 oz every 1-2 hours or 120 drops of tincture every hour or two. If using a drop dosage plant, 3-5 drops every hour or 2.
  • Using plants internally and externally if the condition is external may help the condition to heal more effectively

Bleeding/Bites/Bruises/Burns-Healing Tissue

Actions: Styptics--Astringents/Vulneraries

Yarrow Achillea millefolium

  • Yarrow(Achillea)-stops blood flow, blood mover internally—good for bruises and swellings, concussions, relieves itchy bites externally as a powder, wash, oil. Internally as a tea/tincture—don’t use if in first trimester internally
  • Plantain (Plantago)-stops bleeding, relieves itchy bites, as a powder/vinegar/or tincture
  • Cayenne(Capsicum- to stop bleeding (unless they have an allergy)
  • Comfrey(Symphytum) if the wound is clean topically as a poultice to stop bleeding
  • Cleavers(Galium) as a juice in ice cubes or as a vinegar for burns, and dermatitis
  • Chaparral (Larrea)-for burns and skin inflammation

Infections/Poisons -Killing Pathogens

Actions: Antimicrobials/Vulneraries/Drawing Plants /Astringents/Immunostimulants


  • Agarita/Goldenseal/Barberry(Mahonia or Berberis sp)—Strong Wash and or Tea internally for infections in GI tract or externally in skin--particularly bacterial and fungal infections. Not for first trimester internally--Alterative with affinity to GI tract. Dose High!!!
  • Chaparral (Larrea sp) Very strong!!also a potent antioxidant. Use for infected wounds. Internally and externally. as a wash, bath, tincture, Spray. Use cautiously internally due to controversial constituents.
  • Echinacea (Echinacea)—topical and internal for poisons, infections, and venomous bites—to stimulate and energize—may cause allergies if person is allergic to Asteraceae
  • Lavender Essential Oil Spritzers mixed 5 drops per cup of water(separates so must shake) or a strong tea of the aromatic plant sprayed topically. Do not Use Essential Oils internally unless under the advisement of a skilled practitioner.
  • Plantain (Plantago)see above, also treats fungal, urinary tract and other infections-use as a tea,wash
  • Charcoal/Clay draw out poisons and make a great base


Pain: Inflammation, Spasms, Swelling

Actions: Nervines/Antispasmodic/Calming agents/Anti-inflammatories):

  • Arnica(Arnica)-Homeopathic-internally. Full strength Arnica oil—external for swellings, pain and bruising—Allergies and Toxicities to consider here. Use Mullein Root/Goldenrod combination if you dont have access to Arnica.
  • Ginger (Zingiber)Powder Paste or Oil topically, Internally teas, cordials, glycerites, tincture for pain and spasming. Especially good for menstrual cramps, back pain, coughs.
  • External: Peppermint and Vetiver essential oil passed in front of nose when someone is feeling like they will pass out can bring someone back.
  • St Johns Wort Oil (Hypericum perforatum)—burns, inflammation, neural pain, may cause photosensitization,
  • Ephedra(Ephedra)—drug like effects—will stop asthma attacks, other inflammatory responses for experienced practitioners only 3-5 drops in tincture at a time
  • Fresh Lobelia(Lobelia)—drug like effects—can immediately stop spasming, coughing fits, and calm someone down—drop dose too much can make someone nauseous- 3-5 drops as a vinegar or tincture at a time or externally as a vinegar or oil
  • Black Cohosh for deep intense pain in back or head from trauma, also helpful for menstrual cramps.
  • Large Doses of Fish Oil for inflammation--2000-3000mg 3-4 times a day

Panic/Anxiety/ Depression/Sleep

Actions: Calming agents/Hypnotics/Sedatives

  • Wind Flower (Anemone)-for shock and trauma trained practitioner only--3-5 drops for panic, anxiety, shock
  • Skullcap (Scutellaria) calming and sedative as a tea or tincture
  • Mullein (Verbascum)-calming and sedative as a tea or tincture
  • Flower Essences!!! Rescue Remedy and others for emotional balance

  • Wild Oats (Avena)—helps to rebuild nervous system and calm folks down-great for longerterm restorative care after a stressful incident as a tea or tincture
  • CA Poppy (Eschscholtzia) sedative and sleep promoting, addresses pain as well good as a tea or tincture or glycerite

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.