Posted on

Summer Goodness Skin Balm

flower and root vegan skin balm

 

Announcing a new skin balm, made with all the goodness of Summer! I’m calling it “Flower & Root”.

Roses and Carrots, plus Calendula, Elderflower, and Marshmallow in a blend of Watermelon seed oil, Virgin Coconut oil, and Mango butter.

Scented with Geranium, Frankincense, Lime, Lavender, and Amyris essential oils. Been working on this blend for awhile, and it came out really nice. I’m excited!

 

Deeply moisturizes dry skin. Gentle, creamy, and soothing. Also useful for everyday nicks and scrapes.

On sale now in our online store }

Share
Posted on

It’s getting embarrassing…

fresh-cut Tulips from my garden
fresh-cut Tulips from my garden

Several people have asked me recently, “Are you still making your herbal products?”. It’s kindof getting embarrassing because I am making things all the time but no one seems to know…

My fault, of course! I’m not good with keeping up my newsletter and blog posts or consistently updating my Twitter and Instagram feeds.

It’s a busy time for us on the farm right now as well, getting all the seeds started and plants into the ground.

But I do have skin balms available here in the online shop. Made with Watermelon Seed oil, Mango Butter, and Virgin Coconut oil, they are a richly moisturizing, dry skin treat. Perfect for the rough skin of gardening hands 🙂

Salves and soaps will be coming back soon.

 

Share
Posted on

Who here loves Weeds?

chickweed patch in the garden

Weeds = the common plants that grow abundantly with no help at all from the gardener. I adore them!

Chickweed (Stellaria media) is one of my all-time favorite plants. It likes cooler temperatures, so it’s one of the first herbs I see pop up in the Spring (always a cause for celebration!).

Chickweed is succulent and low-growing, sprawls like a ground cover and spreads quickly where it’s happy, engulfing entire garden beds, landing it the “weed” label. My dad curses it every year as he rips it out of his garden. Telling him Chickweed is an “indicator plant”, indicating healthy soil because it only grows where the soil is rich, didn’t change his feelings at all.

A favorite too of Chickens, Mourning Doves, Sparrows, and other birds, they relish the young greens and seed which is said to be how Chickweed got its name. Caged birds like Budgies and Parrots also enjoy eating Chickweed and it’s more nutritious than lettuce!

It’s high in minerals (especially calcium, magnesium, manganese, zinc, iron, phosphorus and potassium), and vitamins (especially C, A—from carotenes—and B’s, such as folic acid, riboflavin, niacin and thiamine).

Chickweed can be chopped and tossed on a salad, or can be steamed, boiled, or fried. Raw, the flavor is kindof sweet/weedy/green, but cooked it’s more like spinach. It’s great in soups and can even be baked in bread. But what do I make with it every Spring?

(Skin soothing balms of course and… ) PESTO!

Chickweed Pesto:

  • 2 cups fresh Chickweed
  • ½ cup fresh Basil (or Parsley, Cilantro, Arugula, Garlic Mustard, whatever green you’ve got)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3 Tbsp sunflower seeds, pine nuts or almonds
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ cup olive oil

My method isn’t too fancy. I add the seeds/nuts to the blender first and chop them up, then add and chop the garlic, then add the greens, salt and oil and blend it until it’s smooth.

The leaves contain saponins and although toxic, these substances tend not to be well absorbed by the body and pass through without causing harm. Even so, some caution is advised. Don’t eat large quantities raw and avoid if pregnant or breastfeeding. Saponins are broken down by thorough cooking.

Share
Posted on

Got Skin? Get Yarrow.

yarrow flowers close-up

Yarrow flowers close-up (image courtesy of trakaislapsis/123RF)

 

Yarrow is a plant many people recognize as it’s commonly seen in gardens and growing wild. It has a pretty flower and is a beneficial companion plant both for vegetables and herbs.

It’s the go-to herb to treat wounds and cuts as it disinfects, stops bleeding by speeding blood clotting, promotes tissue repair, and reduces inflammation.

(To get the medicine though, it has to be the Yarrow with white flowers. Modern, colorful cultivars don’t have it.)

In addition to its anti-inflammatory properties, Yarrow is astringent so it’s used in skincare to reduce the size of pores and the appearance of fine lines.

Most often found in creams, balms, salves, and toners, Yarrow makes a wonderfully soothing bath herb for irritated, itchy skin.

(Remember, when the going gets tough, the tough take to the bath!)

* A small caution here: If you are allergic to Ragweed, you may be allergic to Yarrow. Do a patch test before using. Prolonged use of Yarrow may cause photo-sensitivity.

Share
Posted on

Yarrow, January’s Herb of the Month

yarrow flowers

Each month, I focus on one herb to write about. January’s herb is Yarrow (Achillea millefolium).

Though sometimes said to be native to Eurasia, Yarrow is also a North American native. It is believed that the Yarrow now found growing wild here is a hybrid of the two.

Yarrow has been used medicinally by many cultures and also has a long history of use in magic and divination. One example I’ve always found intriguing is the Chinese tradition of using 50 Yarrow stalks to consult the I Ching.

Irish folklore teaches that even just to dream that you are gathering Yarrow foretells of good fortune.

Yarrow was believed to be protective and often worn as a charm. Do you suppose people got this idea from observing that when Yarrow grows in the vegetable garden, the veggies are stronger and more disease resistant?

Share