How to make comfrey ointment

Do it:

Jun, Jul, Aug, Mar, Apr, May, Dec, Jan, Feb, Sep, Oct, Nov

Takes just:

20 minutes

Many aches and pains associated with gardening may be relieved using home-made herb oils, which are great for massaging into tight muscles.

Comfrey ointment can be used for relieving pain from sprains, arthritis and inflammation, as well as rubbing into bruises. Comfrey is said to help scar tissue to form, so this ointment may promote the healing of cuts and bruises.

Before using any plant medicinally, do check it is correctly identified, especially if collected from the wild. Don't use if you are in any doubt, as wrongly identified plants can be poisonous.

You will need

  • 150g fresh or 60g dried comfrey leaves
  • 500g petroleum jelly or soft paraffin wax
  • Small saucepan
  • China bowl to fit on top of the saucepan
  • Wooden spoon
  • Muslin or jelly bag
  • Container with a lid
  • A pair of rubber gloves


Wash and dry the leaves, and then roughly chop them. Melt the petroleum jelly or wax in a china bowl over a pan of boiling water.

Once the wax is melted, add the comfrey leaves and simmer for one hour, stirring continuously. Check the saucepan occasionally to make sure the water does not boil dry.

Wearing rubber gloves, as it will be very hot, pour the comfrey mixture into a jelly or muslin bag. Squeeze as much of the mixture as possible through the bag into the bowl.

Pour the hot liquid into a clean jar before it starts to set. Place the lid over the jar, but allow the ointment to cool before finally sealing. Label and date the ointment and store in a cold larder or refrigerator for up to three months.