Natural Cycles : Comfrey

Comfrey is a multi-functional plant that is popular with permaculture gardens, because it helps plants function in their own mini eco-system and improve the soil quality. When these little leaves mature, they will boast beautiful purple-blue bell shaped flowers.

We thank the Permaculture Research Institute for providing this report "Does Comfrey Really Improve Soil?" - it was after reading this that we opted to plant comfrey under each one of our fruit trees in our little Semi-Dwarf Orchard.

Results - so far - OUTSTANDING.

Other reasons we planted Comfrey:

  • Excellent pollinator and beneficial insect host

  • Use as sheet mulch in all our gardens and compost pile

  • Dried as a natural remedy

  • To hold the soil and stop erosion on the orchard hill

Comfrey has been cultivated in Europe and Asia for thousands of years. It's uses as a blood coagulant, lung health treatments and even as an aid to help heal broken bones and wounds has made it a popular medicinal plant in traditional folk medicine. The latin name for Comfrey is Symphytum, which comes from the Greek Symphis, which means "growing together of bones."

One of the benefits of having Comfrey in your garden is that it's deep tap roots help mine compacted soils for nutrients and minerals which would otherwise be difficult to obtain by other plants, which make it an excellent fertilizer or addition to compost mixes. This makes Comfrey a "Dynamic Accumulator" and a welcome addition to any Permaculture landscape. 

NatureDiane Mayer