This year has been a little tricky with the harvesting of herbs… for one, they took their time in growing – my St.John’s Wort was definitely not ready on St John’s Day! – and the slugs have been relentless (though to be fair, my veggies have suffered a whole lot more than the herbs! I’ve only one surviving tripod of beans – and finally I got to harvest them!) but really it has been the rain – keeping them soggy and not really havestable….
So on the sunny days few and far between, I have been harvesting all sorts of common plants that have fantastic benefits. Today, for example, I stripped my 2nd batch of dried marshmallow leaves and harvested a new bunch to dry in the workshop cabin. Marshmallows have done really well this year, well mine have, popping up and growing in all sorts of places. My favourite one is the one that broke free of its pot in rooted itself firmly in the back area of the nursery. That root is going to be impressive! But patience. The leaves come first and they are glorious. Soft and full of lovely demulcent healing fantasticness.
As the chicken pox has spread this year, so have my mallow leaves – calming and soothing the itchy inflammation that is typical to the pox. Baths and teas given to children really help soothe and calm – both physically and emotionally in many cases.
Today I also got to havest meadowsweet and an abundance of yarrow which was a lovely task, sitting in the long grass stripping the leaves and flowers of yarrow to use them as a powerful anti-infective, febrifuge and circulatory stimulant. Even my 2 year old drinks this with elderflower (well, actually he does pretty much take anything I give him…) whenever he gets a cold or fever – though this year that has been infrequent.
Well, bring on the summer sun then!!