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How-Tuesday: Urban Herbalist

Jul 26, 2011

by phoenixbotanicals

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Sometimes the daily grind (and grime) of living in the city gets me dreaming of a little cabin, a sprawling garden and some chickens clucking about. Luckily, there are many ways to get a down-to-earth fix even while setting up camp in an urban setting.

This week, Irina from Phoenix Botanicals instructs us in the fine art of foraging for herbs. Whether used for craft, tea, or herbal remedies, you can find these helpful greens right in your own backyard, city park, or other sunny patch of green!

Closer to the great outdoors than an urban center? Check out last week’s post on identifying salad fixings in the wilderness.


Hi, I’m Irina from Phoenix Botanicals. I’m delighted to introduce (or reacquaint) you with a handful of my favorite weeds. These abundant, common plants grow in disturbed sunny habitats: rural gardens, lawns, city parks, field and forest edges. Useful for their healing traits, these plants have been settled into many areas around the world. They’re fascinating, abundant and free of charge.

Come meet my green friends. Along the way, we’ll make an herbal band-aid, herbal tea, and a fragrant dream pillow!

For those of you based in NY, I am teaching a class at 3rd Ward on this very topic. Sign up here!

 

Making an Herbal Bandage

Left, plantain found underfoot, around the corner from the Etsy HQ. Right, Julie with a giant plantain leaf.

Plantain grows just about everywhere and makes for great herbal first aid. If you can’t find it,  you may want to look underfoot. It’s important to note that this plantain is not to be confused with the banana relative (Musa sp.) of the same name.

Easily recognized by its prominent parallel leaf ribs, plantain’s leaves spread from the center and are usually 2-6 inches long, but with plenty of space and sunshine they can grow to over a foot. It may often avert your lawnmower’s blade by staying small and flat to the ground.

Apply the leaves (or a salve made from the leaves) to soothe itching from bug bites, posion ivy, and other skin irritations. Plantain also helps with wounds by staunching bleeding and drawing out dirt and infection. Great for kids’ scrapes and cuts in the yard.

Psst! The drawing-out properties can also help with acne. My friend used a plantain band-aid overnight and was quite proud of the results.

Making an Herbal Bandage
1. Pick a leaf of plantain.
2. Crush the leaf thoroughly to get the juice out. Even better, chew it up.
3. Stick the juicy crushed leaf to the bug bite, wound or itchy skin.
4. Leave on until it dries or you get the desired effects. Repeat with new leaves if needed.

Note: The photo on the left shows a sister variety to the common plantain, the long-leaved plantain (Plantago lanceolata), which works just the same.

How to Dry Plants and Make Tea

Yarrow (Achilea milleifoilium)

Yarrow is a household remedy around the world. You can spot it by its feathery leaves and hardy bunches of 5-petaled white flowers. Once you smell this plant, you’ll remember the nice, hardy fragrance from the volatile oils, which also serves as a natural insect repellent. The tea (made from stem, leaves and flowers) is good for fever, colds, and sinus infections. Harvest the upper third of the plant and dry it for the fall and winter ahead!

Rose (Rosa sp.)

Both wild and cultivated roses make delicious tea that is good for the heart and circulation. Talk about aromatherapy! Just smell a rose and you can feel your heart open. The tea, made of fresh or dried rose petals, also makes a lovely tonifying face wash.

Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)

Even when not in flower, dandelion is recognizable by its familiar toothed, hairless leaves. The pleasantly tasting, slightly bitter leaves add lots of flavor, vitamins and minerals to your salad. The younger leaves are tender and less bitter. Did you know that among its many health benefits, dandelion is a digestive helper? Try chewing a few leaves 20 minutes before a big dinner.

 

Drying Herbs
1. Harvest herbs when they’re dry and do not wash (moisture can cause mold).
2. Group the stems in bundles of 5 or so; remove the lower leaves and tie them, together with string. Space the flowers and leaves and dry on screens or paper in a shady area with plenty of circulation.
3. When the plants are dry — crisp and easily crushed — store them in airtight jars or paper bags.

Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)

Red clover has oval leaves in threes, each with a lighter colored, v-shaped chevron. The flowers are a tasty sweet snack. Red clover flowers make a delicious nutrient-rich herbal tea. (However, make sure to only pick the fresh red ones.)

Making an Herbal Infusion
1. Boil water in a pot. Enamel and stainless steel pots lessen the metal interaction with your herbs.
2. Place the herb in a glass jar (or other pot). Use approximately 1 cup or 1 oz of herb for a quart or liter jar.
3. Fill the jar to the top with boiling water, place the lid on tightly and allow the herbs to steep from 30 minutes up to 8 hours, depending on the herb. Longer steeping time makes stronger, more nutritious or medicinal teas. Roots are usually steeped longer than flowers and leaves. Clover tea is ready after 1-2 hours. A strong yarrow tea takes 30 minutes.
4. Strain and enjoy! Stores fresh in the fridge for a day or two.

Rose tea

How to Make an Herbal Dream Pillow

Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris)

Mugwort has deeply cut leaves, hairy undersides and is easily identified by its unique fragrance: a mysterious bitter spice. One of the most common herbs in the city, mugwort likes to form tight groups that prevent other plants from growing in the same spot. If unattended in a rainy spring, your backyard may turn into an army of mugwort over 6 feet tall (like mine).

Besides traditional medicinal uses, Mugwort has quite a reputation as a magical plant. This cousin of wormwood (Artemisia absinthium of absinthe fame) has long been used as a tea, incense, and dream pillow to intensify and remember one’s dreams.

 

Making a Dream Pillow
1. Harvest a few sprigs of mugwort. Pick the top third of the stem.
2. Dry herbs thoroughly. (See above.)
3. Crush dried mugwort leaves and any other herbs you wish to place in your dream pillow.
4. Mix the herbs in a pouch and close it. Your fragrant dream pillow is ready to enjoy. Place under your pillow and note down your dreams the next morning!

A Few Harvesting Tips

  • Identify the plants correctly. Learn with a guide or join a local plant walk. Learning a few plants at a time is easiest.
  • Indigenous cultures around the world have traditions of asking plants for permission before harvesting, then offering a gesture of thanks.
  • Harvest only what you need. Carefully pick the parts of the plant that you will use. Pick up to a third of a plant stand in a particular area — no more — to ensure the plants keep thriving.
  • As much fun as it is to meet and greet your local plants on the street, it is not the best place to harvest for consumption. Avoid busy roads, areas sprayed with pesticides, and otherwise polluted stands.

Enjoy your local weeds!

 

If you make this project, share photos with us in the How-Tuesday Flickr group.

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131 comments

  • NangijalaJewelry

    NangijalaJewelry said 5 years ago

    Oh how wonderful! I grew up learning about all these herbs. So nice to see you are using this ancient knowledge. Beautiful shop... congrats on the feature!

  • SparklePaw

    SparklePaw said 5 years ago

    LOVE the info on making an herbal infusion! I want to do this stat!

  • myvintagecrush

    myvintagecrush said 5 years ago

    Very cool! I have friends whose entire backyard is basically edible, its like Willy Wonka's for fruit and veggie lovers :D Thanks for sharing your knowledge with all of us!

  • lynnm28

    lynnm28 said 5 years ago

    Really interesting! Thanks for sharing. I have some mugwort in my yard and I'm going to pick some right now.

  • atcompanyb

    atcompanyb said 5 years ago

    I love this! Thanks for sharing.

  • TheBloomingThread

    TheBloomingThread said 5 years ago

    thanks for sharring all this goodness! im going to give the herbal bandage a try. im actually alergic to an ingredient thats in neosporin so this might be a great alternative! i know you can wrap banana leaves around a wond use use as a salve as well..drawing out your skin irritations. works for splinters too~

  • katiejo326

    katiejo326 said 5 years ago

    so cool! I definitely will try some of these ideas!

  • TheIDconnection

    TheIDconnection said 5 years ago

    Oh I just love this, I grew up in Zanesville Ohio and we use to boil dandy lion leaves and clover and make hot teas for upset tummies, Nettles was another we used. There are so many good things in this world that people don't know of. Great article. Monica TheIDConnection

  • amysfunkyfibers

    amysfunkyfibers said 5 years ago

    We've got chocolate mint growing in our garden, it is such a treat!

  • graphixoutpost

    graphixoutpost said 5 years ago

    Very informative, I will try to make use of these tips, Thank you!

  • zenceramics

    zenceramics said 5 years ago

    What a wonderful idea to promote use of herbs. We do not need to take so many pills. There are better ways of keeping yourself healthy. I am originally from Russia. It is very common there to use various wild growing herbs either just for teas or herbal remedies. While here in US most people know very little about medicinal qualities of some very common plants. For example, I use fresh Aloe Vera to relief or heal burns and cuts and I use dry eucalyptus to gargle (or breath eucalyptus steam) when I have a sore throat. Thank you so much for promoting healthy living!

  • TwinkleStarCrafts

    TwinkleStarCrafts said 5 years ago

    We should be embracing natural remedies as much as possible. Thanks for the article.

  • MandyBesek

    MandyBesek said 5 years ago

    These tips are fascinating - so many uses for plants I overlooked in my garden.

  • glasfaden

    glasfaden said 5 years ago

    I've read a lot of books about the use of wild herbs, but couldn't recall having read about the use of mugwort for sleep - it's always have been lavenders. So, thank you for sharing this!

  • HoneysuckleLane

    HoneysuckleLane said 5 years ago

    Thank you for all of these home remedies and recipes!

  • AmandasPennant

    AmandasPennant said 5 years ago

    I absolutely love this article. I have just recently started wildcrafting so this whole article was very informative. It's funny how overlooked the dandelion is, when it really shouldn't be.

  • rozzie

    rozzie said 5 years ago

    So maybe I shouldn't have thrown out ALL those weeds...

  • VintageEye

    VintageEye said 5 years ago

    Fabulous! Takes me back to nature walks in the Adirondacks when I was a Girl Scout!

  • hypericumfragile

    hypericumfragile said 5 years ago

    My grandmother is a herbalist. Thanks to her I know of many herbs and medicinal plants. Herbalism is a wonderful thing! And the secrets of plants are sometimes surprising. Thank you for this text!

  • Tiffabulous

    Tiffabulous said 5 years ago

    I have yarrow growing in my yard! Never new it was so useful. I will definitely be making tea out of it now!

  • DaisyandFlorrie

    DaisyandFlorrie said 5 years ago

    Thank you! Such a good article - I love to wildcraft. So much is right under our noses, but so much is being lost to changing times. The old ways do work and have a lot to teach us. Thanks for sharing.

  • paramountvintage

    paramountvintage said 5 years ago

    i love this article. i am going to post the drying herbs picture on my tumblr right now. paramountvintage.tumblr.com i love that you are showing the many wonderful uses of plants. thanks!!!

  • artbyaimeejoy

    artbyaimeejoy said 5 years ago

    Love this! I adore tea so I'd love to try making tea from wild leaves!

  • urastarhouse

    urastarhouse said 5 years ago

    Oh goodness this is fabulous! Thank-you ever so much!!!!

  • ChrissiesRibbons

    ChrissiesRibbons said 5 years ago

    This is amazing. I LOVE it! I just get such an enormous sense of satisfaction using home grown or foraged herbal remedies. Thank you!!

  • GardenApothecary

    GardenApothecary said 5 years ago

    I love this post! Really great info along with really inspiring pics! This is right up my alley: www.gardenapothecary.etsy.com

  • dolfar

    dolfar said 5 years ago

    I have been using herbs a lot for some time now. Apart from cooking, I have found many benefits from ordinary herbal preparations. I like dandelion leaves, just as well, since they spring up overnight here in Ireland, where we have lots of rain. When I was a child, we always used plantain leaves for nearly any cut, and always healed up very quickly. Thanks for the info, and good luck

  • mysteryandmanners

    mysteryandmanners said 5 years ago

    Such an inspring post! Thank you for the great ideas!

  • RaisedBedz

    RaisedBedz said 5 years ago

    What a great post! A must know for all interested in herbs!

  • riptieknits

    riptieknits said 5 years ago

    Love this post! I ripped out my blah cookie cutter subdivision front yard this season, and replaced boring, waterhogging lawn with all sorts of herbs and edible plants... have piles of lavender drying, along with oreganos, spearmints, chocolate mints, thymes, sages... lavender is my fav :) Planted pomegranate, apple and citrus dwarf trees, along with my son's little garden with carrots, tomatoes and strawberries... a lot more fun maintaining a yard that gives back! Thanks for the great tips :)

  • scarletbegonia11

    scarletbegonia11 said 5 years ago

    yay!

  • Verdurebydesign

    Verdurebydesign said 5 years ago

    I very much enjoyed reading this post. Nature is an amazing thing. If we look after it, it will look after us.

  • SuePsales

    SuePsales said 5 years ago

    Wow, amazing post! Thanks.

  • viperxmns

    viperxmns said 5 years ago

    Nice article, never used yarrow or plantain before.

  • cristinapires

    cristinapires said 5 years ago

    wow brilliant! thanks for this article

  • greenphilosophie

    greenphilosophie said 5 years ago

    ♥...:)

  • LittleWrenPottery

    LittleWrenPottery said 5 years ago

    Great post, I've always wanted to know how to dry herbs thanks for the how to!

  • FunDeco

    FunDeco said 5 years ago

    Thanks for the info! I knew about the dandelion, but none of the others. Did you know dandelion blossoms make great jelly too!

  • CountrySquirrelsRUS

    CountrySquirrelsRUS said 5 years ago

    I love this article, very informative. Etsy, you are the best!

  • TheScarfTree

    TheScarfTree said 5 years ago

    This article was so interesting, you made it sound so easy! I could just envision the lovely smells as I was reading it! Your products look beautiful! Thank you for sharing!

  • BlueMoonBotanical

    BlueMoonBotanical said 5 years ago

    I love your etsy shop! Great article, its amazing how many healing weeds surround us :-)

  • shannon75

    shannon75 said 5 years ago

    I love foraging. Thanks for the article.

  • ChocolateStarShop

    ChocolateStarShop said 5 years ago

    Mother Earth is so giving, Thank you for educating us, LOVE your shop!

  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections said 5 years ago

    Great how-to feature, funny how we don't appreciate readily available weeds/herbs just because no effort went into planting them. Thank you for showing us how to make fresh rose tea, will have to try that one!

  • angelmadeecospa

    angelmadeecospa said 5 years ago

    I love the photos and how simple you made everything look! Thank you for your ideas and inspirations

  • lovelygifts

    lovelygifts said 5 years ago

    Good article!

  • dellicarpini

    dellicarpini said 5 years ago

    This was awesome, and I believe I have a small army of mugwort of my own, which I will inspect in just a few minutes. When I was growing up, my grandmother and I would use the plaintain leaves over our eyes while we laid (lay? lie? lied?), uh, sunbathed. We didn't know what they were called or that they had any other use, only that they were the only thing in the yard that was big enough to cover our eyes!

  • dabbledesigns

    dabbledesigns said 5 years ago

    This is so very cool! You can be an herbalist no matter where you live!!

  • fantasygarden

    fantasygarden said 5 years ago

    I believe in herbs it is good memories from my childhood !!! Thanks!

  • treasurebooth

    treasurebooth said 5 years ago

    I've been learning about herbs for the past year and my latest goal is to obtain fresh (not dried) organic rose petals to make homemade rose water. I've looked everywhere and unfortunately don't know anyone with a rose garden, so I'm just not sure where to find them.

  • accentonvintage

    accentonvintage said 5 years ago

    Wonderful article!

  • phoenixbotanicals

    phoenixbotanicals said 5 years ago

    So glad to see folks enjoying this article. Thank you for your comments and sharing. Would love to hear more of what you are making and the plants growing nearby :) xo, Irina

  • girltuesdayjewelry

    girltuesdayjewelry said 5 years ago

    Awesome information! The plaintain was a big surprise--I've seen that plant in yards and parks my whole life and classified it as 'lowly weed' status. I had no idea what wonderful properties it has! Thanks for this article. The photos of the rose tea are spectacular!

  • sprklybobbles

    sprklybobbles said 5 years ago

    Great information! I was just pulling out those weeds in my yard this weekend too. Next time, I will have to try out some home made teas! Thanks!

  • RedRobinArt

    RedRobinArt said 5 years ago

    Awesome artical! Incredible photos! Very informative and interesting! Many Thanks. I have many of these growing, but not Yarrow...yet...:)

  • Karenstwistedthreads

    Karenstwistedthreads said 5 years ago

    The subject of foraging for your food was brought up at work today. When I admitted that I have done so, one woman called me a freak. Glad to know I have company! I knew about a couple of the herbs, but not the plantain, nice to know it has a use. We have lots in our yard (lots of bugs too).

  • Barnaclebags

    Barnaclebags said 5 years ago

    wonderful information! thanks. p.s your products look amazing!

  • BunnysBakedGoods

    BunnysBakedGoods said 5 years ago

    Great article! Thank you Irina! Yarrow was the first flower I brought into my veggie garden! SO many benefits! I have decided I will only bring in new plants that have multiple uses (not just pretty) and there are so many of them. I am very much a beginner at growing, but I'm amazed that with a little information I can now identify plants around town. My friend and I want to build a map of the city so that we can easily find these herbal helpers.

  • PinesVintageClothing

    PinesVintageClothing said 5 years ago

    I love foraging. I have used plantain on bee stings in the garden for years. Great article!

  • OnlyOriginalsByAJ

    OnlyOriginalsByAJ said 5 years ago

    This is so cool! I love teas, so I'm going to try to dry my own! You make it sound pretty simple - thanks for sharing!!

  • BellaVintageANDmore

    BellaVintageANDmore said 5 years ago

    Great information! Purslane is considered a weed in the US and is supposed to be very good for you. Be careful though, what I thought was purselane in my garden at first was another poisonous weed. This link has a paragragh from the SuperHealth book. http://books.google.com/books?id=aM5LYRs8vdIC&pg=PA152&lpg=PA152&dq=purslane+steven+pratt&source=bl&ots=KHuPqKVwY_&sig=Px5cFA8RyzPYX88YgGTP2SPbZok&hl=en&ei=ynIvTuruEO6lsAKUscx3&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=1&ved=0CBUQ6AEwAA#v=onepage&q&f=false

  • AlpineGypsy

    AlpineGypsy said 5 years ago

    I'm very much a herbalista, and love to wildcraft. It's amazing to know of the abundance of edible & medicinal plants all around us...thank you for a lovely peek into this delicious world! It's great info to spread. Heidi

  • erin11599

    erin11599 said 5 years ago

    Hi,I live in Australia and most people grow an aloe vera plant near their houses for insect bites-we have so many bitey things in Oz!-it's also good for soothing sunburn and minor burns and helps skin heal.Just break off a leaf at it's base and gently sqeeze from the tip down to get out the clear gel.Rub on the affected area;instant relief! I also make a soothing for anyone in my house with a sore throat.Take 30grams (for American readers 28grams is an ounce) of fresh thyme and sage,place in a glass,enamel or stainless steel saucepan (some metals taint the liquid)with 500mls (600mls is a pint)water and bring to the boil,reduce heat and simmer slowly 10 mins to release plant chemicals and oils and strain.Mix liquid with honey and lemon juice to taste and gargle regularly.Store in the fridge in a jar-will last a few days.If the sore throat hasn't gone after about 5 days you've got a bacterial infection and no amount of herbal gargling is going to help that-sometimes we need antibiotics! Cheers,Sally.

  • AprilMarieMai

    AprilMarieMai said 5 years ago

    i think it's important to note that dandelion should not be consumed by people with latex allergies, in any form. it has a sap that is similar to latex and can cause a reaction. please state that when you are telling people to eat dandelion greens! the percentage of people with latex allergies is decent, and they are very dangerous!

  • AprilMarieMai

    AprilMarieMai said 5 years ago

    i think foraging is great, i just think it's important to be responsible when giving out advice like this.

  • AmberGypsySky

    AmberGypsySky said 5 years ago

    I had no idea how useful some of these plants I call weeds can be! Thanks for this :)

  • Herbaloo

    Herbaloo said 5 years ago

    really lovely post Pheonix - what good friends you've shared. bless

  • MerCurios

    MerCurios said 5 years ago

    I absolutely adore red clover. As a child we would walk trough the woods chewing the leaves of the flowery part. I thought it was honeysuckle though - hey I was 8 or 9, what can I say.

  • HairitageHydration

    HairitageHydration said 5 years ago

    I am going to try`this

  • katrinaalana

    katrinaalana said 5 years ago

    Great article! Unfortunately I'm not so good at foraging.

  • Iammie

    Iammie said 5 years ago

    Love this article. Thanks for sharing.

  • erin11599

    erin11599 said 5 years ago

    AprilMarieMai is right,herbs can be very dangerous if you are not 100% knowledgable about what you are doing.These plants have active chemicals,many of which have been scientifically synthesised and are constituents of many prescription medications and some that we are still using as straight plant extracts such as digitalis from foxgloves and quinine from chinchona bark.Used in the correct doses these are life savers,misused they are deadly poisons.The 2 ideas I gave you above are safe as I have spent many years learning about,growing and using medicinal and culinary herbs and I know what I am doing.I have at least 20 everyday garden plants in my garden that if mistakenly ingested are deadly poisons eg hellebores,foxgloves,oleander,belladonna,and quite a few bulbs.Please,people,do lots of research before you try these things and as far as greens to add to salads etc there are some very good 'wild' salad mixes available in seed packets.Cheers,Sally

  • SoapForYourSoul

    SoapForYourSoul said 5 years ago

    Awesome article...Herbs are easily grown in most regions, and make wonderful company!

  • Chumdandy

    Chumdandy said 5 years ago

    I want to try some of these ideas! :) Thanks for sharing!

  • sweetanthem

    sweetanthem said 5 years ago

    Love this article! Great work :)

  • Joliejye

    Joliejye said 5 years ago

    Very instructive, thanks for this interesting article ! Even far from the city i enjoy being close to nature. :)

  • whimsicalpaperdot

    whimsicalpaperdot said 5 years ago

    WOW !!!

  • gemagenta

    gemagenta said 5 years ago

    love these tips!! can't wait to dry some plants and make tea! :D

  • granatina

    granatina said 5 years ago

    Great article! I love very much everything with herbs and spices. Just few weeks ago I finished an exhibition about herbs: lavender, peppermint, lemon balm, sage ... :-) http://granatina.com/levendula-es-tarsai

  • MaJentaDesigns

    MaJentaDesigns said 5 years ago

    very useful article! I definitely want to keep my eye out for those herbal plaintains to help sooth mosquito bites this summer, thanks!

  • cedarcandlelights

    cedarcandlelights said 5 years ago

    I am going to go looking for mugwort right now - i think it's right under my nose too. and where do we find this wormwood?

  • BanglewoodSupplies

    BanglewoodSupplies said 5 years ago

    love button.

  • RemnantsOfHope

    RemnantsOfHope said 5 years ago

    I love learning how to make my own things, especially from nature. haha This is a great article! It is important to learn about it though if you have never tried it before. One could be allergic to some plants.

  • starlingbathbodyhome

    starlingbathbodyhome said 5 years ago

    This is brilliant. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge. Definitely gonna give the dream pillow a go.....

  • jewelsbymoon

    jewelsbymoon said 5 years ago

    I used to work for an herbalist, a kindred wiccan, and she taught me so much about plants right in my backyard. I love it! Now I just have to search my property for mugwort. I could use that pillow. thanx...

  • kiaohmichiru

    kiaohmichiru said 5 years ago

    This is so great! Thank your for the article. I've made peppermint tea before by simply putting leaves picked straight from the garden into my tea pot. Now I know there's a few more steps involved...

  • teospe08s

    teospe08s said 5 years ago

    I used to made roselle tea...good idea..i want try making herbal drink pillow..to get some good sleep good dream.. :)

  • Pailanita

    Pailanita said 5 years ago

    Wow I just know that we have alot of herb in my garden .. thank you for sharing ..

  • bhangtiez

    bhangtiez said 5 years ago

    Great tips! Thank you for sharing!

  • JuliaWilliamson

    JuliaWilliamson said 5 years ago

    I never know about plantain's effect on insect bites and infections. You made my day!!!

  • thevelvetheart

    thevelvetheart said 5 years ago

    This is wonderful! Thanks so much for these tips!

  • RareDaisyJewelry

    RareDaisyJewelry said 5 years ago

    This is super!!!

  • PetiteLemon

    PetiteLemon said 5 years ago

    Very informative and interesting information. Thanks!

  • SGSJewelry

    SGSJewelry said 5 years ago

    I am an avid gardener and have been for several years but I must say that you can always learn something new! Wonderful tips and new info :)

  • phoenixbotanicals

    phoenixbotanicals said 5 years ago

    Thank you for your fun and interesting feedback! :) I would like to announce my upcoming DYI herbal class, there are still spots left and registration closes Friday: FORAGING AND HERBAL MEDICINE-MAKING at 3rd Ward, Brooklyn 4 Saturdays in August: http://www.3rdward.com/3rdwardclasses/edible-medicinal-herbs-with-local-plants.html

  • ezezez

    ezezez said 5 years ago

    Great artcle, Thanks! I think in the UK we call the plantain leaves 'Doc leaves' (though I may have got the wrong leaf!) great for using on nettle stings, and always grow nearby nettles. Nettles can also be made into soup and make a nice tea. The red clover and rose teas look great!

  • Threesistersunique

    Threesistersunique said 5 years ago

    Hello, I really enjoyed reading about the plants and stuff and how to use them, i am going to go out and pick some plantain to hand on hand for bug bites and poison oak which my sons get really bad. I will keep coming back to your site to learn more thank you.

  • erin11599

    erin11599 said 5 years ago

    I saw someone asking where they can get wormwood (Artemisia absinthum)-this is great dried and tied in bunches with tansy and lavender or put in sachets to keep moths,silverfish,flies etc off your clothes in your wardrobe but-DO NOT INGEST IT-it is extremely poisonous.There is a reason absinthe (which was flavoured with wormwood) is banned,it is a strong hallucinogen and basically rots the brain. You all need to be careful and anyone posting blogs like this needs to consider that some people will rush out and try anything. Even foraging is not for the complete beginner,there are foraging classes just about everywhere-take one before attempting to forage. After all,we all know how poisonous some toadstools are,would you go mushroom picking in the woods without being totally confident you could tell a mushroom from a toadstool. Cheers,Sally

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mclovebuddy said 5 years ago

    i started wild crafting with my mom in 1st grade. fond memories.

  • MetroGypsy

    MetroGypsy said 5 years ago

    Wonderful!

  • biophiliadesigns

    biophiliadesigns said 5 years ago

    how fantastic! as a future community herbalist, im thrilled to see fellow herbalists featured and promoted in the etsy community. beautiful work and photos! mmm rose tea!

  • Iggyjingles

    Iggyjingles said 5 years ago

    I don't care for dandelion tea by itself, but I love it mixed half-and-half with peppermint with a drop of honey and lemon. However, along with the allergy info, it should be noted that dandelion can be a potent diuretic! Some of my friends used to call them "wet the bed flowers" as kids, and were taught to avoid them. I don't know if the dandelion flowers were really the problem. But in my experience, if you want a relatively gentle diuretic a nice dandelion/mint tea can be very helpful. Who remembers pulling the small blooms off honey suckle vines and sucking the nectar directly from the base of the flower?

  • girliepains

    girliepains said 5 years ago

    Such a great idea!

  • LaMaindeLaValle161

    LaMaindeLaValle161 said 5 years ago

    Have been growing herbs (ones i bought) and ones that are just there and love your products I am very interested in herbs for bee life and for medicinal purposes, dyes, and aromas. So good to see this appear on Etsy I have am amassing lavender plants in my yard in Queens and hope to develop a craft/herb product for Etsy but not sure how to go about it want to take the 3rd Ward course any ideas about Sweet Cicely i saw this in my garden and didnt know what it was, it appeared out of nowhwere now i love it identified it finally with some research

  • Elewmompittseh

    Elewmompittseh said 5 years ago

    This is very nicely presented, and very clear...it is nice to see it here, thank you. :D

  • NewtoyoubyNancy

    NewtoyoubyNancy said 5 years ago

    I love ETSY articles of information. Have also used plaintain on mosquito bites here in the Midwest part of the world called Chicago.

  • phoenixbotanicals

    phoenixbotanicals said 5 years ago

    Great to see plantain use in so many comments- a very popular weed indeed! Interesting to hear about possible dandelion latex allergy, looked it up and asked my friend who is allergic to latex- she personally is not allergic to dandelion greens but perhaps others are.. too bad. LaMaindeLaValle161- i'm not so familiar with sweet cicely. Iggyjingles - yes, i still suck on honeysuckles! :)

  • cabinorganic

    cabinorganic said 5 years ago

    Thank you for this fantastic article! As a budding herbalist I love learning from others. Julie, I am living your dream. Eight months ago I bought a cabin in the woods near a lake. I am living close to nature and even building a chicken coop (just built the floor/foundation yesterday) and will have chickens running around this fall. Drop by my blog: www.cabinorganic.com

  • jewelkingthai

    jewelkingthai said 5 years ago

    great idea

  • nellyvansee

    nellyvansee said 5 years ago

    Awesome! I do that all the time, I always look at all the plants. On one note, while harvesting Yarrow, you must be careful not to confuse it with poison hemlock!

  • cubits

    cubits said 5 years ago

    What a lovely post!

  • PoetryofObjects

    PoetryofObjects said 5 years ago

    Lovely to see more herbalist posts here. I've been a long time herbalist and flower essence practitioner for years now. The plants are speaking to us....really nice article. Thanks!

  • glendalee

    glendalee said 5 years ago

    Really enjoyed reading this… With our delayed Spring and manic summer, I'm seeing weeds I've never had in my yard…so you article arrived at a good time. Thanks!

  • cherdak

    cherdak said 5 years ago

    Love this article. Thank you for sharing! All such great ideas. I didn't know about mugwort, will definitely look around for it to make a dream pillow.

  • recycledideas

    recycledideas said 5 years ago

    Thanks for this nice post about using 'weedy' herbs. Although not really a weed to me, the wild rose is amazing. So much more fragrant than their cultivated counterparts. There has got to be a law of conservation of mass and flavor/scent. It seems the smaller the fruit and flower, the bigger the reward!

  • artstudio

    artstudio said 5 years ago

    Great blog, I've been drying and using vild herbs for tea for awhile now :)

  • sonjapm1

    sonjapm1 said 5 years ago

    Thanks for the great blog ;) very helpful and very kind of you to do

  • ForsythiaHill

    ForsythiaHill said 5 years ago

    Great info, I enjoyed the plant identification! Cool!

  • Kaerlyn

    Kaerlyn said 5 years ago

    That was very interesting, I want to try making a dream pillow. I think i'd put lavender in mine too. Have you ever tried making lavender sugar? It makes interesting tasting cakes! :]

  • CircleofLoveVintage

    CircleofLoveVintage said 5 years ago

    I LOVE foraging! So glad to read this. I'm currently in the process of drying some mugwort myself from some dreamy pillows. Can't wait to see the effect. <3

  • dazyblue35

    dazyblue35 said 5 years ago

    I have been getting into herbalism and homeopathy for over a year now. Thank you for this easy to understand and very helpful information.

  • SmithsHallow

    SmithsHallow said 5 years ago

    awesome

  • Fianaturals

    Fianaturals said 5 years ago

    beautiful work and beautiful article very interesting! thank you

  • DevannIrene

    DevannIrene said 5 years ago

    I absolutely LOVED this blog article. I've been interested in learning about the values of herbs and plants for ages now and this was very informative. Thanks so much for sharing! <3

  • dancingmoonandstars

    dancingmoonandstars said 5 years ago

    I love this blog! Thanks for all the interesting information.

  • TandJsoaps

    TandJsoaps said 4 years ago

    This is a FANTASTIC blog post. Going outside to play right now. Thank you!

  • TandJsoaps

    TandJsoaps said 4 years ago

    This is a fantastic blog post. Going outside to play now! Thank you!

  • debbiesharpe1

    Debbie from UpcycledSwag said 4 years ago

    thks

  • bridaldesignsbyjo

    Jo Anderson from IDoIDoBridalDesigns said 2 years ago

    This is so interesting! Thank you for sharing. I am fascinated by the beauty of nature and the natural healing that God has provided throughout plants. Love your Etsy shop! Please stop by to visit my shops at: idoidobridaldesign.etsy.com myshininglights.etsy.com tranquilityknits.etsy.com

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