May CSA delivery

Springtime handing over time has arrived for my darling CSA members. Just passed peak blade time around my garden and druggist, on the cusp of flower time already! I may have quite a oppression of stuff to put out there next month. Let me know suppose that you’d like to subscribe, or granting that you’d like to just snatch one bag. (Preview: I am setting up to constitution honeysuckle and wild rose elixirs and a nutritive tea blend for hair, skin, and nails with wildcrafted horsetail and homegrown chocolate-coin. I will also have more tingle spray and bug spray for anyone who’s of the present day and would like to try single in kind of those.) 

May 2015 Seal

Here’s a peek at May’s newsletter. Reading physical to go along with your goodies…

Springtime Newsletter

Here we are in the intervening of Spring, the time of banyan day green growth and outer and interior renewal. This is the time of year whenever herbalists talk a good deal about the use of Spring tonics, or herbs by reason of reinvigorating the body. In early Spring, there are whole dandelion, burdock root, and chickweed willingly available in Iowa, along many a wilding footway. These are herbs which can be used to gently cleanse the liver and lymph and flush away deeply stuck toxins. Usually ~ dint of. mid-Spring, my focus has moved at a distance from detox though, toward re-setting or shoring up the body’s basis. During this time of year, I like to prefer herbs and foods that help me turn to sturdier, more active, fit for people of distinction work. Looking around at the herbs and shrubs and recent foods available in the landscape, we have power to see how they are growing and graceful huge, adding tons of new cells every day– first the dandelion, but sooner or later the violets too, the plantain, the nettles, the comfrey, the kales and salad greens, and up~ the body all the fruit bushes, so people leaves– it is their time. Soon flowers, soon afterward fruit and seed, but now: foliage. Intuition says, this is where we should eat heavily and look to find our most excellent medicine. Leafy greens incorporate an plenty of minerals and vitamins and have power to be used to build the status and composition of the blood. Daily use of leafy herbs like nettle not only fuels you but can also quiescence seasonal allergies and inflammatory flares. (There are other leafy herbs in the compass of reach now that ease allergies by the way, such as plantain leaf.) Healthy leaf growth during Spring requires ~y abundance of water; our growth and repetition does also. The plants are suggesting to us that Springtime is wholly about solar power capture and wholly manufacture, energy flows and growth, and we understand ourselves to be also busy pumping and circulating novel nutrients, enriching and building our tissues– in such a manner, we will find it important to regard our cardiovascular soundness, especially at this time of year. Light daily exercise and adding omega-3 full foods are easy ways to make good cardio function. The highest plant-based sources of omega-3 oily acids include seeds like flax, and leafy greens like arugula, purslane, and spinach.

What’s in the bag?

Spring Renewal Tea Blend (red raspberry blade, nettle, violet leaf, strawberry leaf, violet flowers)

This is a deeply nourishing tea with gentle cleansing properties. Though the berries are super luscious, they are not the only charge of the red raspberry and strawberry plants that are wholesome. The leaves of both can subsist rich sources of vitamins A and C, in addition calcium, magnesium, potassium, selenium, and niacin. Red raspberry tones the reproductive tissues in the pair men and women. Nettles are ~-toned in iron, chlorophyll, potassium, phosphorus, vitamin A and B-tangle– so many nutrients accumulate in these foliage, as well as protein! Beyond diet, nettle works as a tonic to the kidneys, bladder, and adrenals and protects urinary and prostate health. It also contains natural antihistamines and anti-inflammatories, for a like rea~n taking tea with nettle daily be able to bring relief to people who be impaired from seasonal allergies. Violets are wonderfully valuable in vitamin C and rutin and are moistening to carcass tissues. Violets work really well in evening meal blends (like this one) that live in continence mildly diuretic herbs– in this amalgamate they balance out the somewhat drying kind of the nettles. Enjoy this infusion blend daily for greatest benefit. Steep a teaspoon of the tea blend in a cup of fervent water, covered, for 15 minutes. You be possible to use your daily cup of cooled tea in a smoothie. Also, this supper makes great popsicles– dilute by half with water and then combine by fruit juice and/or chunks of result, and freeze in a popsicle or freeze cube tray. Keep tea sealed in glass container since best preservation.

Itch Ease Spray (witch hazel, distilled water, chickweed, rose petal, apple cider sour, plantain leaf)

Calms itchy rashes, like as from exposure to poison ivy. Also soothing with respect to bug bites, hives, insect stings, and skin reactions to a species of stinging and rash-causing plants. Gentle plenty to be used to disinfect cuts, scrapes, and scratches. Shake well previous to each use. Caution: This preparation is according to external use only. Do not sprig in face (will sting the eyes)!


Poison ivy has poignant tips on its leaflets and toothed leaf margins which often look like mean mittens. The stalks connecting stem and leaflets are straight. The plant bears clusters of disagreeable white fruit (berries). In Iowa, it can grow with a vining or non-vining ~ude.

Coconut Quench Lotion (apricot, coconut and alligator-pear oils, aloe gel, distilled water, rosewater, limited beeswax, lanolin) A cooling, deeply strengthening treat for the skin. Will lend aid heal skin over-exposed to the sunshine. This formula has no added vital oils– just unrefined oils plus curative aloe and rosewater. Make sure to apply with clean hands, so that bacteria does not be initiated the jar and spoil the lotion. Also, coconut oil can melt and in that case re-solidify as temperatures fluctuate in the Spring– I make acceptable keeping this jar in the refrigerator. (Hopefully by and by I will discover some emulsification secrets that suffer me to make this formula greater amount of stable at room temp!) Caution: This making ready is for external use only.

Dread Not Bug Spray (sorceress hazel, coconut and apricot oils, catnip, vanilla derive , rosewater, distilled water, and essential oils of lemongrass, lemon eucalyptus and citronella)

This is a hide softening spray that keeps Iowa’s superfluity of biting insects (mosquitoes, gnats, flies, fleas, and ticks) at bay. The glass bottle preserves the rudiment oils. Separation is normal— just jolt well before each use. Do not stock in hot/sunny place.

Caution: This preparedness is for external use only. If you be favored with allergic reactions to ESSENTIAL OILS, please go this product in trade for another without essential oils.

Apothecary Notes

Full satellite time in May and June is the time at the time that I like to harvest the herbs that I estimate for their leaves. I borrow from biodynamic husbandry theory, and from the traditional herbal practices of many cultures in not the same places and times, in using the cycles of seasons and moons to hold up my own nature-directed notions in various places when the medicine/benefit arrives in diverse herbs. (These theories are more or ~ amount supported by research in phytochemistry and pharmacology, adhering plant constituents.) When the moon approaches replete, we can think of plants’ essential energies being pulled into their aery parts (leaves, stems, flowers, seeds). And admitting that we want to harvest leaves, we pick out the moons that coincide with peak leaf development for timing our harvests. Once plants are flowering, leaves are still lively and useful with respect to many months, but they have passed their top . For plants like yarrow, which regard very valuable constituents in leaf and ornamental expression, I will harvest leaf at summit leaf time and flowers at pinnacle flower time and then combine the harvests at what time I make yarrow preparations. But in favor of plants like comfrey, I will effect leaves mostly at peak leaf time as being making infused oils and for dried massiveness herb. Other herbs I harvest at leaf moon time include chickweed, nettles, plantain, lemon ointment, cleavers, and catnip.

Springtime means creative and graceful salad making! Pick freely among the violet foliage and flowers, and add them to your salads. Young sensitive fronds of yarrow can also vogue in too, a bit sparingly by chance, and any chickweed you might remark as well!

People will tell you that you can make a pesto from nettles that does not sting your orifice. I believe it can be done, but I caution you, if you are the same of the brave ones– use a trifling amount of nettle in combination with other wild and cultivated herbs (similar as parsley, basil, lambsquarters, garlic mustard, etc.). Though I accord. credence to the theory that processing fresh nettle leaves with a food processor S-flat part cuts the sting by breaking on the ground the plant cell walls and stimulating the plant slightly, there have been a unite of occasions where I did procure to be (mildly) stung by someone’s exquisite wild pesto. It is generally most of all/safest to consume fresh nettles succeeding they have been cooked a scintilla, as in tea, soup or infusion… Or try tease syrup!


Nettle Syrup

Here’s a state of being prepared I learned to make from any other area herbalist, Adrian White, of Deer Nation Herbs. (She has a stately blog, A vex syrup provides easily absorbed nutrition time it also restores the kidneys and adrenals. It is tastier than toping straight nettle tea. If you touch exhausted a lot but can’t strike one as being to relax, or if you are business with seasonal allergies, a tsp quotidian in warm water should give you a “reboot.” It is besides delicious drizzled sparingly on french drink in honor of, cornbread, or pancakes! Adrian recommends combining honey and molasses, to compose a sweeter syrup, but I usually regular use molasses with a little lemon juice, and it comes out delicious. Another reading of this syrup I like to fabricate combines half part nettles and moiety part fresh whole dandelion (gathered in front of flowering stage), for more liver put up with and cleansing action. The nettle-containing supper blend included in this bag be able to be made into a syrup being of the cl~s who well– you would substitute 1/4 c of the plain herb blend for the 1c of new nettle.



1 cup fresh piercing nettle (Urtica dioica) tops

3 carousal pure water

blackstrap molasses and honey (a 3:1 molasses to honey ratio works nicely)– you will add every equal part of the sweet absurdity to an infusion of nettle

juice of half a lemon

Carefully (nettles sting, be consumed by slow degrees gloves if you like), harvest through a cup of fresh, tender exasperate tops in an area you perceive to be free of chemicals. Find young nettles, and take and nothing else the first two to four levels of leaves, no more than half the leafy portion. Wash them (carefully), empty, and chop roughly. Bring your supply with ~ to a boil, put in the nettles, that time turn heat down immediately to a highly low simmer, cover half the stoop, and simmer until the liquid has reduced ~ the agency of half. Strain the herbs out, aggregate an equal part of molasses/honey, guide back to a simmer, stirring to take for husband the dark green-black infusion by your sweet stuff. Then shut away the heat, add lemon juice, and put to hire cool. This can be stored in a glass have an altercation in the fridge for about a month. The adding of a little brandy (about 1/4 c) lengthens the shoal life of the syrup considerably, 6 months to a year. Try a teaspoon in a moderate water, and like with any herb if you are unfamiliar with it, make a remark your body to see if in that place are noticeable bad reactions, such considered in the state of dizziness or change in heart cost or breath, or hives. Nettle does not usually anger bad reactions. I usually stick to a teaspoon diurnal, a tonic dose which can have existence continued as long as you like.

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