(zero waste) life hack: the best waste free band aid

Even if you've never wondered how you'd bandage up a bleeding cut without using a wasteful band aid (because most band aids contain plastic), wonder now....

Want me to tell you? Okay.

You use lamb's ears.

These kind of lamb's ears:

They're the soft fuzzy silvery leaves you see growing on the kerb side.

Lamb's ears have been used for centuries as wound dressings, even by soldiers on battlefields. 

The adorable ears/leaves absorb blood whilst helping it to clot more rapidly and have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, making them the perfect dressing for open cuts.

If that's not enough to make you giddy, the leaves can be made into a tea for fevers, sore throats, diarrhoea and liver tonic and a cold infusion can be used as an eye wash for mild eye irritations. You can eat the little fuzzies in salads or gently steamed. AND they can help relieve insect stings - simply bruise a leaf and rub on the bite.

Golly, what a trouper.

What's wrong with regular band aids?

They're made of plastic. Even the ones that aren't made of plastic use a synthetic plastic adhesive. Plastic, as we all know, is disastrous for our environment. This is because it doesn't bio-degrade, instead breaking down into tiny pieces that stick around forever and over time contaminate soil, waterways and wildlife... often making their way into our food chain.

To use as a band aid

Pop a leaf on the wound and secure with paper tape or string. Compost when you're done.

To grow

I purchased a lamb's ear seedling from my local nursery or you can grow them quite easily from seed. The plant likes a sunny well-drained spot, preferably underneath another flowering shrub. It produces pretty purple flowers to boot.

You're welcome.


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  2. Wow, I didn't know this. I will have to try it next time I need a band aid!

    Lambs ears are very easy to grow. I planted three tiny plants thinking they were way too small. That was back in August. Now, they're massive and probably too big for the space they're in. I find they're perfect for a water wise garden.

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