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Herbal Ally Challenge #12: Make A Herbal Salve
posted on Wednesday, May 4th 2011 8:57 pm
The next challenge is to use some of your oil to make a salve. Salves are great for applying your ally where you need him without a huge mess. They are compact and can be traveled with easily and ready to use when the fresh herb isn’t around. 
Assignment 1:

Read a few different perspectives on salve making:

Healing Wise by Susun Weed pages 273. Similar excerpt can be found at this online article: Be Your Own Herbal Expert part 6 by Susun Weed 
Making Plant Medicine by Richo Cech pages 87 – 88 (Second part of Chapter 10)
The Herbal Medicine-Maker’s Handbook by James Green Chapter 18: Ointments, Salves & Balms pages 201 – 208 (click to see online…5 pages are missing from this version)

Assignment 2:

Make a salve using any oil(s) you have previously infused with your ally. If you have an oil for each part of the plant, make a salve out of each.

To make a salve, you will need your infused oils, beeswax and vitamin E. You can purchase vitamin E capsules at your local drugstore. You’ll only need a few drops. 
Measure your oil and place it in the top of a double burner. For every 4 parts oil, add 1 part beeswax. For instance if you have 4 oz. of oil, you’ll add 1 oz. of beeswax. 
Gently heat until the beeswax is melted. Dip a teaspoon into the salve and bring out, shake off. Let it set up either at room temperature or in the freezer for quicker results. When it has hardened, you can tell how thick the salve is. If you think it’s going to be too hard, add a bit more oil. If you’d like it harder, add a bit more beeswax. It will become a bit harder than it is on the spoon so keep that in mind when you make any adjustments. 
When it is the consistency you want it, use the tip of a sharp knife to poke a hole in the vitamin E capsule and squeeze it into the salve. Stir and pour your salve into a wide mouthed jar or metal container. 
Assignment 3:

Journal any thoughts you have on salve making. Write about why you think salves will be a good mix with your herbal ally (or why not).Take a moment to write down any uses you might have for a salve with your herb. Does he have an affinity for muscles? If so, he may be useful for rubbing on sore muscles after a long day in the garden. Does he stop bleeding? Then his salve is a great addition to the first aid kit to staunch bleeding. Salves can be used for healing sore or damaged muscles, nerves, bones, cuts, stings, insect bites, animal bites, diaper rash, mild burns and much more.

After making a list of the obvious uses for your salve, make a second list of possible uses for the salve, whether or not you have ever read about the oil being used for these ailments. Part of exploring your ally is to learn new things, so trial and error will help you discover new uses.
Assignment 4:

Continue meditating with your plant and journal your experiences. Note any changes to your plant in size, color, bloom cycle, etc. Pay attention to your ally’s journey of life. You’ll want to continue doing this throughout the lifecycle of your ally.

Assignment 5:

Catch up on any other Challenges you’ve fallen behind in. It’s always good to go back and review what you’ve been doing just to refresh your memory. 


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