Spotlight: The Tree of Life—Moringa Oleifera

Moringa in Raised Bed #9
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  • This tree is known by many names, including Moringa Oleifera, Malunggay, the Miracle Tree, the Never-Die Tree, the Drumstick Tree.
  • Growing up to a foot per month, the leaves, bark, flowers, fruit, seeds, and root of this tree are used to make medicine.
  • Moringa contains proteins, vitamins, and minerals; as an antioxidant, it helps protect cells from damage.
If you only have one plant in the garden, this is the only one you need!
  • Moringa is used for anemia; arthritis and other joint pain (rheumatism); asthma; cancer; constipation; diabetes; diarrhea; epilepsy; stomach pain; stomach and intestinal ulcers; intestinal spasms; headache; heart problems; high blood pressure; kidney stones; fluid retention; thyroid disorders; and bacterial, fungal, viral, and parasitic infections; to reduce swelling, increase libido, prevent pregnancy, boost the immune system, and increase breast milk production. It is also used as a nutritional supplement or tonic.
  • Moringa can be applied directly to the skin as a germ-killer or drying agent (astringent). It is used topically for treating infection (abscesses), athlete’s foot, dandruff, gum disease (gingivitis), snakebites, warts, and wounds.
  • Moringa can be grown cheaply and easily, and the leaves retain vitamins and minerals when dried; it is used in India and Africa to fight malnutrition. The immature green pods (drumsticks) are prepared similarly to green beans, while the seeds are removed from more mature pods and cooked like peas or roasted like nuts. The leaves are cooked and used like spinach, and they are also dried and powdered for use as a condiment.
  • The seed cake remaining after oil extraction is used as a fertilizer and also to purify well water and to remove salt from seawater.
  • Oil from moringa seeds is used in foods, perfume, and hair care products, and as a machine lubricant.
  • For tea: Infuse fresh or dried leaves in boiling water for five to 10 minutes. Flavor with lemon or lemongrass.