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- TV Show Ended -
There is no Next Episode of Grow Your Own Drugs planned.
Ethnobotanist James Wong investigates plant-based medicine.
Although his natural remedies for everyday minor ailments frequently use plants that we would consider to be exotic, many of these will grow really well in our own back gardens.
James shows us how to use lemongrass in an insect repellent spray, transform olive leaves into a pampering face mask, make a soothing burns treatment from aloe vera and chamomile and, perhaps most surprisingly of all, reveals that, not only can you grow tea bushes in this country, you can also turn them into a zingy mouthwash to help fight plaque and freshen breath.
Members of the public, in need of help, give his remedies and beauty treatments a go.
Ethnobotanist James Wong believes plants have more uses than just brightening up a flower border. They contain beneficial properties that could help ease the symptoms of minor everyday health complaints.
James focuses on petals, turning chamomile into a luxurious bath milk and honeysuckle and jasmine into soothing jellies for sore throats. Members of the public are impressed by his ear drops made from mullein flowers, while James puts his money where his mouth is and bravely tries out his own rose petal leg waxing treatment. He shows us how to make a chamomile seat and sniffs out the most fragrant rose varieties.
His recipes are simple to follow and cheap to make, and might just soothe your symptoms if you're in need of help.
In the penultimate episode of his ethnobotanical guide to the medicinal property of plants, James Wong uses trees and shrubs to tackle minor everyday complaints. He shows one shaving rash sufferer how to growwitch hazel and turn it into a cooling gel, and offers three sinusitis sufferers some relief with a fragrant eucalyptus rub that takes just moments to make. He meets expert growers and turns St John's Wort into a skin balm for cuts and wounds, and creates a delicious looking frozen granita from willow bark to help provide pain relief.
It's the end of James Wong's ethnobotanical journey, and he rounds his series off with a look at the plants that have provided a free living pharmacy for thousands of years: wild plants. Taking care to point out the perils of picking in the wild, James travels to Northern Ireland, where he harvests seaweed for a luxurious seaweed body scrub, forages for elderberries and turns them into an anti-viral jam to help ward off colds and flu, and tries to offer hayfever sufferers some relief with his nettle tea.
He also seeks out a tiny wild flower called eyebright, and uses it to make a compress to soothe tired and itchy eyes. For the green-fingered, James demonstrates how you can make your own mini wild flower meadow in a tiny back garden, and offers some historical and scientific background to the plants he uses.