These 3 Plants to Help Remedy Anxiety.

This year I decided to grow 3 things that help with stress.  Patchouli, Piss Off Plant, and a homeopathic anxiety remedy called RescueHerb.

If you’re looking for an even MORE unique plant you have to learn about Buzz Buttons, right now! They make your mouth feel fizzy.

Woman holds a wood tray filled with a variety of similar looking plants, which all reduce stress.

There’s a certain irony to ordering plants that promise to reduce stress and having them arrive almost 2 months late.  I wrote, I called I begged …. PLEASE send me my plants.  But everyone’s gardens were late getting going this year, even commercial growers.  Especially commercial growers actually.  

Therefore I had to wait patiently for this year’s experimental plants to show up on my doorstep.  Ordering live plants online might seem a bit scary or risky but they arrive in perfectly good shape ready to go in the garden.


Elaborate cardboard packaging used for shipping live plants keeps them upright, moist and healthy.

What are these stress reducing plants?


Patchouli, Piss Off Plant, and Rescueherb plants sitting on an old gray wood bench waiting to be planted.


Plants that Reduce Stress

  1. Piss Off Plant.

Ready to transplant seedling of Piss Off plant, which promises to keep cats, dogs and rabbits out of the garden.

Piss-Off plant  apparently keeps cats, rabbits and dogs away from your garden. I have NO idea if there’s any truth to this but if it can keep rabbits out of my garden (voles?  even BETTER) it’ll reduce my vegetable gardening stress by a ton. I’ll plant some this weekend around the perimeter of my garden and see how it goes. It might go like the experiment where I actually held a Citronella plant while mosquitos happily landed on it and me.

2. Patchouli

Patchouli seedling sitting on a wood bench, ready to plant out in the garden.

Hippies never seem stressed and they always smell like Patchouli (Pogostemon patchouli) ergo – Patchouli must be a stress reducer.  I’ll grow it, dry it and then sprinkle it around.  I’d also like to figure out if there’s a way I can dry and braid it to make an incense stick out of it.  Patchouli also has medicinal benefits including using it for headaches, nausea and fungal and bacterial infection relief.

3. Rescueherb

African plant Rescueherb (Solenostemon monostachyus) known for calming panic attacks sits in a small black plastic pot ready to be planted out.

This is probably the most interesting of the stress reducing plants.  Rescueherb (Solenostemon monostachyus) is a plant that’s popular in Africa (although I don’t know which countries exactly) as a homeopathic anxiety remedy.  Nigerian research has confirmed that the plant is able to calm the central nervous system. To take it for medicinal purposes you crush the leaves in water, strain it then drink it.

I also ordered some Wintergreen mint which tastes like … Wint o’ green Lifesavers but they weren’t delivered because of crop failure.  

Will any of these plants do what they say they will?  I have no idea.  The toothache plant didn’t really seem to relieve toothaches but it sure made people generate saliva when they ate it.  It made you taste enormous amounts of salt in your mouth for some reason.  Plus it was so hilarious watching people eat it while drooling copious amounts of spit, that if you did in fact have a toothache, you’d have forgotten about it for a while.  

I’ll keep you updated on this year’s experimental plants and let you know if it helps with the anxiety I experience. If all else fails I’ll just take photographs of the baby bunnies that are born in my plot every year.  That seems to reduce stress as well.

Have a good weekend and let me know if you’re growing anything interesting this year.




These 3 Plants to Help Remedy Anxiety.


  1. M'liss says:

    Don’t forget the Mind-Your-Own-Business plant! Always a winner to subtly tell the nosy neighbors off, and release some stress. I always loved baby tears, but once I heard their British name, I knew I had to have some.
    Seriously, any plant with a good fragrance is a stress reliever to me; lemon verbena, rose, mint, lavender, all the scented geraniums, Jasmine, gardenia, even basil takes me away for the moment.
    Just being in the garden or in nature is a stress reducer for most.

  2. Sherry Faught says:

    Karen….As you may or may not know Bay leaves are said to have a calming (stress reducing effect). Dry bay leaves. Place a few in a heat proof dish and light them up. The smoke is said to be very aromatic and wonderfully mellowing. (Seems to me the smoke may leave residue on the ceiling though. You know, like scented candles……..)

  3. Vikki says:

    I would love to grow a crop of baby bunnies!! A couple of bunnies come in my yard occasionally to eat my roses….and that’s okay by me.

  4. Cherie O says:

    Oh how I like the idea of a piss off plant! I wonder whether it works to get rid of some humans, too. It’s worth getting that plant for the name alone, and better yet, I will be delighted if it keeps my neighbours’ bizzilion cats out of my garden. Bunnies? Well, mine come in, dig little cavities in my daylily beds to have a nap but have never touched a single plant. Go figure!

  5. Grammy says:

    I’m disappointed to find out what the Piss-Off Plant is for. When I saw the name I immediately assumed it was something I could use fresh or dried to make people who irritate me piss off and go bother someone else.

    Years ago I had problems with neighborhood cats fouling my veggie garden. I planted all kinds of things to make them stay away and nothing worked, but then I realized after a couple of years the problem only began when my dog died. Now my home is never without a dog, and I can garden cat-free. That won’t work for you because your garden isn’t right in your yard, but some others might be happy to know about it.

  6. Mary W says:

    I would love to grow chamomile but what are the sun, water, heat requirements. Don’t see it much down here in Florida. Love the tea for nighttime sipping. Also, do you think the Piss-off would deter Pint Sized Grandsons? He had so much fun doing this, he quit diapers with out blinking an eye but now we need to get him to stop. Diapers were easier!

    • PMMK says:

      I’m pretty sure chamomile can be grown in Florida as long as it is not sited in the blistering heat of a location in full sun. It can be started easily from seed and benefits from cooler soil and part shade. The seeds need light to germinate so just press the seed onto moist soil. No need to fertilize it. It can be grown in USDA Zones 3-9. Seeds are cheap. It’s worth a try.

      Roman chamomile is a perennial sub-shrub that will come back year after year, much like lavender, as long as you do not cut into the woody stems when harvesting or pruning. It is short, growing 6″ – 12″ tall and produces fewer flowers than the German chamomile.

      German chamomile is a leggy, self seeding annual that can grow up to 2′ tall. This is the more fragrant type that is usually used for tea because it produces more flowers than its Roman cousin, especially if you harvest the blossoms frequently.

      The flowers and leaves of both types are used for tea and for the same purposes: relaxation, calming digestive distress and boosting immunity.

  7. Eileen says:

    oh damn. I had several pots of plectranthus (we call Puerto Rican oregano) as house plants. Was running out of room so I gave them all away in favor of my cactii. If I’d known that about keeping cats away – had to stop growing greens in my veg. garden because the neighbors’ wandering cats loved defecating in them and then apparently wiping their butts on the leaves. I love cats. I did not love this.

  8. Alena says:

    I think the only plant that would ward off one of my dogs from my garden would have to be the size of a mature dragon tree, with several meter-long tentacles that would wrap around my dog and prevented from running amok among my plan. But please do report on its efficacy.

  9. Ann Roberts says:

    I agree that Richter’s is an awesome company. I have bought many of my dyeing herbs thru them.

    I love chamomile as a relaxing herb. In fact, I have trouble falling asleep with out my cup of chamomile. It has to be home grown or there is one company that actually makes a good 100% chamomile that I can buy to get me thru when my yearly harvest runs out. For some reason the only way I can even grow chamomile is to let it come up as a volunteer. If I do anything to help it along, it will die guaranteed.

    • Karen says:

      Oh! Are you in the U.S.? I feel like you are. Good to know that Richters sends plants to the U.S. for other readers. Although I never would have thought they could do that! ~ karen

    • M'liss says:

      I love camomile. A couple of years ago I planted many plants in various different locations but only one survived. It’s in a small, shallow birdbath with no drainage that I converted to a planter, the last place I thought it would work.

  10. Lez says:

    Was I the only one to think you had bought 3 stress relieving Cannabis/Marijuana plants for your garden!?
    Here in South Africa it is now legal to plant them for private consumption, not sure about Canada yet? :)

    • Karen says:

      Canada was the first industrialized country in the world to *legalize* recreational use cannabis (not just decriminalize it). :) ~ karen!

  11. whitequeen96 says:

    Lavender, which is used to calm and soothe in many different forms, is my favorite herb. I like to take small bundles and tie them up with ribbon to hang in my kitchen. They look beautiful and smell wonderful! It’s easy to grow here in S. California even if you don’t have a green thumb.

  12. Paula says:

    Richters is awesome, I live very close to their greenhouses.

  13. Kimberly says:

    Karen, 💕I love your blog and instagram feed. Your deadpan humour cracks me up in every situation but mostly I appreciate you sharing your knowledge daily. Would you give me the name of a/some reputable online nurseries, please? I’m heading to the market to get some garlic scape to make the pesto!😋

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kimberly. It depends on where you live. I order seeds from around North America but plants only from Canadian companies like Veseys and Richters. Seeds I get from William Dam Seed, Westcoast Seeds, Baker Creek Seeds and a few others. ~ karen!

      • Kimberly says:

        Thanks! I live in quite near to Van Dam so it’s nice to see them on your list!

  14. Lynn says:

    I use to put chocolate mint in just cause I loved the smell. Plus ants don’t like mint big bonus, some years it would come back others it would not…. but I would take the dried leaves and spread them around the yard on walk ways when you walk on them they would still release the aroma it makes a nice walk around the yard even better I found. I even found a orange mint one year that as rather different in a good way. Not sure if they would keep the rabbits away but spread on your walkways in your garden you should get the aroma also. It might keep the rabbits 🐇 out if their noses don’t like the mint as they hop along and bring up the aroma.

  15. Tina says:

    Last year I was so proud of my garden! My DIL and I plant at our homes, at the same time, with the same seeds, etc. We only live about 8 miles apart so last year when my garden was growing SO fast and producing triple what hers was, I was thrilled to show it off. This year the weather was cold, I was transplanting in the early spring because of an unexpected illness in the fall and everything was crazy. Her garden is happily feeding all of us while mine is hanging it’s head in shame. Oh well, it’ll do what it does!

  16. Jani Wolfe says:

    One good thing about mint plants is that they come back every year. My wint-o-green smells wonderful. I didn’t think anything would even kill mint.
    I decided today to not ever plant tomatoes again. These creepy bugs with red backs are destroying the vines. What is so weird about them is that the link together like they are going to do the rumba. Someone said make a soap and water mixture but if they have noses or fingers they flipped me off because they just kept going.

  17. Kat Boynton says:

    I am pretty excited to hear the progress report on this one. Usually I just kinda skim over your garden posts as I am such a lazy terrible gardener. This year I planted a daisy garden and we had a terrible hail storm which wiped out all my daisies plus my rhubarb patch.

    • Karen says:

      Well apparently gardening isn’t meant for you. You’re meant for other things. Like … well I’m not sure – but the eviscerating hailstorm sure seems like a sign, lol. ~ karen!

  18. Mama Toto says:

    I bought a stevia plant thinking I would make all kinds of no-cal stuff from its leaves. I did dry some then forgot about them because you need a LOT of dried leaves to make a syrup. However, one day I was looking at the plant and wondered what the leaf actually tasted like. It tastes just like stevia surprising though that may sound BUT I have sugar cravings, and if I chew on one of those little leaves a sweet taste in my mouth remains for a long time and wards off the Chunky Kit Kat binge for at least half an hour.

  19. Mama Toto says:

    I bought a stevia plant thinking I would make all kinds of no-cal stuff from its leaves. I did dry some then forgot about them because you need a LOT of dried leaves to make a syrup. However, one day I was looking at the plant and wondered what the leaf actually tasted like. It tastes just like stevia surprising though that may sound BUT I have sugar cravings, and if I chew on one of those little leaves a sweet taste in my mouth remains for a long time and wards off the Chunky Kit Kat binge for at least half an hour. I hope I can find a piss-off plant to see if it will keep cats off our veggie garden. It will be a conversation piece if nothing else!

    • Carmela Martini says:

      I love my stevia plant. You can use the leaves green or dry them, and add a few in your herbal teas. Adds a subtle wonderful flavor. Other favorites are lemon verbena, anise hissop, bea balm, and a few other varieties of mints. I dry them all and make all kinds of teas in the cold winter months. The scent alone is soothing. Love my herbs!

    • Abigail says:

      If you really want to ward off a sugar craving take a stevia leaf and a chocolate mint leaf and eat them together…peppermint patty magic and none of the calories!!!

  20. Jamieson says:

    Wow, I’ve always thought Wintergreen/Wint-o-green was a made up flavour akin to Blue Raspberry or Arctic Blast! Now I want to try some but apparently I have want failure thanks to crop failure?

    • True wintergreen is a low growing plant found in forests throughout eastern North America. The edible berries are delicious and taste like, you guessed it, Wint-O-Green candies or bubble gum. If you are looking for some fun take a Wint-O-Green candy and crunch it in your mouth while looking in a mirror and you will see sparks. Why you ask?
      Methyl salicylate, or oil of wintergreen, is fluorescent, and when a Wint-O-Green Life Saver is crushed between your teeth, the methyl salicylate molecules absorb the ultraviolet, shorter wavelength light produced by the excited nitrogen, and re-emit it as light of the visible spectrum, specifically as blue light — thus the blue sparks that jump out of your mouth when you crunch on a Wint-O-Green Life Saver.

      • Kevin Zust says:

        ^^^ Genius!

        I was going to share about half of that, but you said everything I was going to and more.

        Sparky lifesavers are FUN!

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