So happy I was able to return to Bellefield!
I spotted 2 new flowers and when I went to explore them, oopsy! almost fell into the stream as they were growing on a little hill. One of them had but one orange flower left and the other I think mighta been Joe-pye weed, but I have to check again.
Got some more Turtlehead. So funny that you go back to the same place and everything seems to have changed. I never noticed that there was more than 1 Turtlehead plant, but there were a few!
The Blue Vervain has really come out now, and I collected many flowering tops. Meanwhile Red Clover is on her way out. I saw a few plants that were completely spent with others having rusty flowers. I collected a bit of flowers and leaves, but not much, a little more than a tray in the Excalibur.
Got some more Yarrow, including the pink ones. So many of them! And lots still with buds, so there will definitely be more Yarrow in my future.
Wild Carrot flowers. Tons of those, too, and I'm hoping to make that jello recipe I was tellin' y'all in last week's post. Had to check every flower's underside before picking, because there were spiders, ants and red bugs a-plenty.
Got some Muggie, Mugwort. She's in flower now and she grows prolifically! The ones I collected were taller than me, probably 7 feet :0 . Yep, she's a tall one, all right.
Got some Motherwort and made me a tincture with vodka. Not fond of doing tinctures, in fact it was my first. But I decided to give it the go-ahead after reading Susan's Weeds notes on tonifying the uterus to get rid of PMS and dysmenorrhea. Very simple to do:
Cut off the top 1/3 part of motherwort when in flower (the flowering tops). You'll need a few plants to fill if you want to fill a 1-liter ja
Wear gloves, as motherwort has prickly bits. Still wearing gloves, chop motherwort into small bits. Add to mason jar, slightly packed. Pour 80-100 proof vodka to top. Put on lid and screw cap and let sit in the cupboard for 6 weeks. Strain and store liquid in dark amber bottles, preferably with a dropper attached to the lid.
Take 10-30 drops daily for 4 months. This will tonify the uterus so that you won't have that big bloated belly, heavy feeling in your body, or get PMS.
I collected a few too may plants, so ended up making one with 1/2 water and 1/2 alcohol (we'll see how that goes) and another with apple cider vinegar.
Yes, you can easily make herbal, nourishing vinegars with all kinds of leaves. The minerals in the leaves go into the vinegar and the next time you have salad, it's all that mineral goodness happenin' your way!
Easy Herbal Vinegar
Cut leaves with scissors. Leaves you can use (most of these are probably growing on your lawn) include
You can use any combination you wish. Add slightly packed to a mason jar to the top (mason jars come in various sizes, so use the one that fits how much leaves you've collected). Pour apple cider vinegar with "mother" to the top, put on lid and screw cap and let sit 6 weeks. Strain using a nut milk bag or a fieve sieve. Use as you would for dressing over salads. Pair with oil, if desired.
I also collected...wait for it...Bull Thistles. I've read that they are edible and since I have heavy duty gloves, I said, what the hey, and went for it. Still gotta be careful because even with the gloves, I got picked :( I chewed up a plantain leaf and then spit the leaf over my little boo-boo. Yes, plantain is called the boo-boo plant and yes that gross thing that I did is called making a spit poultice. You'll be wanting to do one too if you ever get injured or want some relief from insect and mosquito bites.
I started to take the spines off the thistle, but then I said, why bother when I'm going to juice her? Oh yes, indeedy, folks and once I chopped her into bits that fit into a plastic bag I had brought with me, I then popped those bits (wearing gloves, of course) and into the juicer she went. And presto! green juice. I added some carrots and apple to sweeten. Woulda been good with a touch of dill, maybe even some celery, as it was a hot, humid day today! I was sweating while foraging for sure, because I've gotten into the habit to wear pants and running shoes and even a long sleeve hoodie if need be, to protect my sensitive skin from walking in fields with prickly plants :)
Probably will add this recipe to an ebook I've started writing. I have several on the go, just to make 'em pretty, add some pics and get them on the site already! I was thinkin' about making one of them "How to Eat Bitter Greens Successfully" or some such title; an ebook on recipes of how to eat bitter greens like dandelion, thistles and burdock. Bitter is good for the liver and for the heart in TCM. Greens make everything nice and shiny on the inside---cleanse, purify and be well, oh (green) liver of mine!
Well, that's all the silliness for now. Catcha next time, sunshine!
Curiosity Got The Cat: