Tick tock, tick tock.....Febuarys blog..... with about 3 hours to go!
Well then i have been wondering whats up..... it is that time of year after all so Ive out in the undergrowth having a look. By way of documenting the growth Ive made 3 short films, looking at my back garden, my front garden and also the community allotment, if you fancy a look at my comedic exploring of the garden you can see them here....
This month i have been looking for and harvesting 3 plants in particular as part of my Herbal apprenticeship with Sarah Head from the Springfield Sanctuary....you can link to Sarahs blog here, it is a massive resource of information and practical advice as well as containing many recipes it is called http://kitchenherbwife.blogspot.co.uk/
The first of the 3 plants is Cleavers - Galium aparine, which makes a good Spring tonic and is also diuretic, alterative, anti - inflammatory and astringent. It is of great benefit as a Lymphatic tonic. I have also been picking Chickweed - Stellaria media as well as being edible (i have been putting it in salads and stir-frys) it is anti-rheumatic, vulnerary and emollient. It is usually used externally for cuts, wounds, itching and irritation so is therefore used in cases of eczema and psoriasis. Here is a link to explanations of Herbal terminology - http://www.purplesage.org.uk/glossary.htm
Lastly i have been harvesting young Nettles and having them in tea with Lemon balm which is also up and also soup which i have never made this early in the year before and has a much sweeter taste than round April when i usually harvest them. Nettles of course are an all round beneficial plant in many ways and has been used for centuries it is anti-inflammatory, astringent and anti-bacterial. All in all it is a tremendously healing plant full of nutrients. It also contains histamines - scientists think that the Nettle reduces the levels of inflammatory in the body by interfering with with the way the body transmits pain (university of Maryland medical centre 2013)
More than a few of you reading this have been cornered by me extolling the wonders of Nettle so i wont go on but on that note im really pleased to announce that we will be holding NETTLEFEST again this year for the 3rd time at Salop drive Market garden http://www.idealforall.co.uk/g-opps and it will be in May. This year we really want to emphasize what the event stands for which is Community and Skill sharing so we would like to invite people to join us at a workshop where we will be harvesting, preparing, making and eating soup together as a group, we will also be making Nettle soap. We will have plenty of other stuff going on on the day such as local stalls, food and kids activities.....more news soon!
We would love to hear from anyone who would like to be involved in the event - so if thats you, please do get in touch!
The Sandwell and Birmingham Permaculture Network will also be attending the Botanical gardens event on Saturday 7th March where will will be bringing the usual Permaculture information, our free community Seedbank, Our range of Nettle products and Up-cycled clothes, so pop in and say hello if you are about!
Thanks for reading....now i need to get focused on Seed Planting..... i wonder how down to the wire i will go with my March blog!