Launder with Ivy instead of washing powder/liquid
Launder with ivy instead of washing powder/liquid? Yes, it works and it’s amazingly easy!
I am really worried about polluted nature and I believe that if we, each of us do a little step towards more environmental friendly household, we will manage to save us and the planet. Sounds too pompous? I believe reaching broad goals in in small steps.
I consider myself to be quite a ‘nature aware’ person, especially with what we eat, how I run my garden, using herbs instead of medicines.... but washing, cleaning, laundry? It is here that I want to introduce a lot of changes...
Let’s take one step at a time, and when that step is such an easy one, change is easy too.
I started with washing bed linen, sheets and towels with ivy leaves. Statistically, each of us use about 8kg of washing powder or liquid per year. Just imagine the benefit for nature if many of us introduce this change!!! My herbal friends have already mentioned before that they wash with ivy. Ivy???
It grows everywhere! It’s green all year round!
Well, one just picks a handful of old dark green ivy leaves, puts them into a sock, ties it up and throws it into a washing machine!!! It’s as easy as that! The washing smells fresh. The colours do not change! I first of all tried with a coloured wash, but, after three washes I was confident to try a mixed wash or whites. Perfect! Use only old, dark green leaves!
There are different recipes: Soak a handful of ivy leaves in 200 ml of boiling water for 30 - 60 minutes, strain the liquid, add, if you wish, a teaspoon of baking soda - some sources write that soda helps to dilute fats (I do not add anything) - and pour it into a washing machine. I put the strained leaves into a sock and throw them in as well.
If the water is very hard, you may like to add a teaspoon of vinegar. Your washing will be softer and also, if you want, you could add a drop of natural ethereal oil: lavender/rose/...
My way is to chop a handful of ivy leaves, put them into a jar, soak with boiling water, leave for a few hours, strain the liquid and pour it into the washing machine.
So how does ivy work as a washing agent??? With saponins. Ivy is a herb. It is antiseptic, antibacterial... historically it was used for skin diseases, in modern medicine it is in medication for respiratory track infections. I wouldn’t use ivy as a herb internally because it is slightly toxic, but sleeping in linen washed with antibacterial, anti inflammatory, anti fungal qualities? I find that clever!
When I think of an ivy plant in nature... it is always healthy, green in winter and summer. It manages to fight all the “enemies” in whatever form. May be my linen, washed in ivy, will also protect me against all kinds of respiratory or skin infections...
I hope you have this adventurous mind as well and will have a go at making those changes that count!
But... find out whether you are not allergic to ivy!