Wild Plants June 27, 2021
Sunday morning, this group started off at the home base of the farm, sharing in the sunshine and some words of appreciation. After this, we had some time to pass around the binders/assignments and opened up some time for folks to journal and sit with plants on the land. Some highlights included Greater Celandine, Mugwort, Milkweed and Valerian. During this time we also drank Red Raspberry and Catnip tea – delicious! Make your own tisane at home with a handful of plant material, boil water then take the water over to the cup and pour over – let steep covered for 5 minutes and sweeten to taste if desired.
Next up we harvested Motherwort for a tincture using the “folk method”. We harvested the flowering tops, chopped these up fresh and put into a jar. Then, we covered with 40% vodka and labeled the date, location and ingredients. This tincture will sit for 4-6 weeks in a cool and dry place before straining out the plant material. While it’s infusing, try and put it somewhere high traffic where you can check that all plant material is submerged and shake/agitate it every day. Once strained, store out of direct sunlight.
We also made a quick fridge pickle of Day Lily (Hemerocallis) unopened flower buds – just submerging in vinegar and spice to taste – those will be ready in approximately 2 weeks.
We also watched Alexis make a St Johns Wort infused oil. Dry wilt (let dry for 8 + hours to remove some of the water in the plant) and then chop the flowering tops into a jar. Lightly compress and the cover with oil (we used olive oil). This can infuse in a window as a solar infusion – checking to make sure that the plant material stays covered by oil and any water condensation is wiped out with a clean cloth/paper towel. The oil can go rancid if things are not clean or there is too much water! 🙂
Then we each had a chance to plant a plant on the property – some highlights included Bergamot/Bee Balm, milkweed, and even a sunflower.
Then we went down the road to a forest for the afternoon of slow walking, meditative harvesting of Red Raspberry leaves (from first year plants) and spotted much more Valerian, some Houndstongue and Wild Grape as well as Red Elderberry.