Garlic – Allium sativum
- Created: 31 July 2014
Family - Liliacaeae
Other Names: Devil’s posy, Stinkweed, Ramsons, Gyspy’s Onion
Planetary Ruler – Mars, Element – Fire, Gender – Male,
Garlic originates from India or Central Asia. It was introduced into Europe and Britian by the Romans. The name “allium’ is derived from the Celtic word meaning ‘caustic’. It was reputed to have been given to the pyramid builders in early Egypt to give them strength, as was the same reason that the Roman armies used the garlic.
Bulbs are harvested during summer and need to be handled carefully to prevent bruising. They dry and store well for future use.
Cloves are planted at 1.5inches in the soil during autumn. Seed is best sown in spring. Plants need to be thinned to intervals of 100 to 120mm with the clumps lifted every 3 to 4 years. Flowers are best removed to improve the flavour.
A bulbous perennial that can grows to 2 ft. It has an aromatic bulb that can be divided into 8 or 10 distinct cloves. It has a hollow, erect stem, surrounded by long, linear flat leaves. It bears numerous purplish to white flowers. The seeds are black though they tend not to ripen in cultivated plants.
Garlic cloves are widely used for many types of infections, especially for chest problems and fungal infections such as thrush. Its powerful antiseptic action is useful for coughs, in particular whooping cough, colds, influenza, bronchitis and asthma.
It is a great remedy for cardiovascular problems, reducing excessive blood cholesterol levels, atherosclerosis and the risk of thrombosis. Garlic will also dilate peripheral blood vessels and lower blood pressure.
Garlic will also help to regulate blood sugar levels and in doing so can be beneficial for late onset diabetes.
Garlic when not eaten in excess can help regulate intestinal flora. It can be used for diarrhoea, stomach cramps, flatulence, sluggish bowels and Candida.
There is evidence that garlic may be beneficial to help reduce the symptoms of rheumatism and arthritis. It is also an excellent source of iodine and is of benefit for those suffering from an under active thyroid.
To avoid the strong aromatic smell in the skin, breath and lungs, eat fresh parsley to help eliminate the odour. Garlic is always best used fresh.
The cloves are effective for skin infections and acne, especially when the fresh juice is applied. It can also be applied to insect bites, boils and unbroken chilblains.