Physic Garden

The Walled Garden at Logie is available to visit by appointment and by patients when attending the clinic.  To arrange a visit, contact me.

… is set amidst an 18th century walled garden and large Victorian greenhouse within Logie’s organic farm. While primarily a teaching and learning garden, some herbs featured here are of sufficient quantity to allow production of tinctures and teas to be used in the adjacent herbal clinic.summer12 pergola

Featuring more than 150 herbs, this physic garden has been designed using the classic knot garden style with box hedging. The garden is divided into eight rectangles with each of these including medicinal herbs that have an affinity for a particular system of the body. These include the heart and circulation, digestion, nervines (herbs to nourish the nervous system), women’s reproductive herbs, and immune, respiratory, and urinary herbs. All the herbs are labelled with a brief description of actions to help novices learn more about this ancient art. It will quickly be seen that these herbs have multiple properties and affinities. Nature is very clever indeed!

The garden also includes a Herbaceous Border with a honeysuckle and wisteria covered pergola and productive Fruit & Vegetable garden. The south-facing wall is lined with Plum and Apple trees. And the greenhouse holds a variety of plants and herbs not sufficiently hardy for the Scottish climate.

bed heart summer13THE HEART & CIRCULATORY SYSTEM: Herbs can be used in various ways to support heart health. Hawthorn is an excellent heart tonic said to help the heart pump more efficiently and effectively. Herbs such as Yarrow Ashwaganda and Catmint reduce blood pressure as does Motherwort which is also used for palpitations. Garlic also reduces blood pressure as well as cholesterol. Foxglove, Christmas rose, Lilly of the valley, Broom and Pheasant’s eye can have powerful effects on the heart’s rhythm and heart stimulants include Horseradish, Lesser periwinkle and Rosemary. Meliot is a natural blood thinner containing coumarin. Borage has traditionally been used for “courage” and Rose to cheer the heart in times of grief.

bed digestion summer13DIGESTION: The very aromatic herbs, such as Lovage, Fennel, Chamomile, Lavender, and Peppermint are excellent carminatives which calm tummy colic and aid digestion. Other digestive tonics include Angelica, Yarrow, Agrimony, Tormentil, Rosebay willow and Wood avens. Bitter herbs, such as Barberry, Centuary, Gentian, Dandelion and Wormwood stimulate the liver and are thus known as liver tonics, as is Artichoke. Milk thistle helps repair the liver. Greater celandine has an affinity for the Gall Bladder. Deadly nightshade and Henbane have a powerful relaxing effect on digestive smooth muscle.

bed women summer13WOMEN’S HERBS: Herbs can assist various stages of the female cycle from menstruation to childbirth and menopause. Vitex and Mugwort help regulate hormones; Crampbark, Peony and Pasque flower sooth menstrual cramps; and Yarrow, Rose, Rue, Lady’s Mantle help reduce excessive bleeding. Black cohosh, Dong quai and Sage are well-know remedies to reduce menopause discomfort. Raspberry and Goldenseal assist during pregnancy and Bethroot is a traditional Native American remedy for easy childbirth.

bed nervines summer13NERVINES: Herbs used to support the nervous system, or nervines, are generally relaxing and calming in quality. They can be used to sooth anxiety (eg: Scullcap, Vervain, Chamomile, Catmint), reduce headaches (eg: Wood Betony, Feverfew), and relieve insomnia (eg: Valerian, California Poppy, Hops). St John’s wort is a well-known anti-depressant and Borage strengthens the adrenals to support recovery from stressful periods. Calming and aromatic Lemon balm also improves memory and Aconite is a powerful pain reliever (externally only).

bed respiratory summer13RESPIRATORY: A number of herbs such as Ground Ivy, Bloodroot, Hyssop, Horehound, Sweet violet, and Lungwort are very demulcent and soothing to the lungs. Soothing and demulcent lung tonics include Elecampane, Verbascum and Marshmallow (which is also antiseptic). Other useful antiseptics include Wild indigo and Thyme and Eyebright is an excellent anti-catarrhal and antihistamine. Lobelia and Ma huang can provide powerful bronchial-dilator relief in asthma.

bed musc-skin summer13MUSCULOSKELETAL SYSTEM & the SKIN: Skin and musculoskeletal conditions are often treated with a similar approach and herbs especially where inner cleansing of Wild celery, Bittersweet, Burdock, Figwort, Heartsease, Houseleek and Oregon mountain grape. Rheumatic pain can be relieved with Feverfew, Boneset, Lavender, Nettle and White bryony. Externally, Arnica reduces bruising and Witch hazel is antiseptic & analgesic. External skin relief and healing is provided by Marigold, Creeping Jenny and Wallpepper and Red clover, Oats and Chamomile are useful externally and internally. Plantain is an excellent drawing agent, chewed and applied directly!

bed urinary summer13URINARY: BLADDER & KIDNEYS: The urinary herbs are set amidst a kidney-shaped pond. Demulcent herbs such as Corn silk, Marshmallow, Couchgrass and Agrimony help sooth the urinary tract allowing for repair. These are often used with diuretics, such as Dandelion, Parsley, Wild celery and Pellitory of the Wall to keep urine flowing. Antiseptics, such as Bearberry, Buchu, Golden rod, Heartsease, Juniper are added for diseases such as cystitis. Henbane and Seven barks provide pain relief and Gravel root is said to help dispel stones.

bed immune summer12IMMUNE SYSTEM: Echinacea is a well know immune stimulant. A number of herbs are useful for colds, flu and fever including Yarrow, Wood sage, Catmint, Hemp agrimony and Black elder. Garlic, Lemon balm, Marigold and St John’s wort have anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties and Sweet Annie is anti-malarial. Borage, Roseroot and Siberian ginseng improve vitality and well-being. Baikal skullcap and Nettles are anti-allergic and Poke root and Greater periwinkle are cleansing to lymph. Goat’s rue has anti-diabetic properties, as does Bilberry.