Thanks to support from the Co-operative Local Community Fund, we are able to host herb workshops for clients from CHAP Women's gardening group with Kate Aster, a medical herbalist.
This week, on the full moon otherwise known as the Worm Moon, we harvested nettle and dandelion from the garden for a mineral tonic. We rinsed the dandelion roots and decocted with the nettles for an hour on a low heat.
Nettles are high in iron, protein, calcium and zinc. They are described as 'blood builders' and are especially good during breastfeeding and menstruating. They are also a uterine tonic, anti-hystamine, circulatory stimulant and can have a diuretic property.
Rich in iron and other trace minerals. They can act as a digestive stimulant. and support detoxification of the liver.
Whilst the decoction was simmering away, we prepared a bed ready to sow Calendula seeds.
Also known as Calendar plant - as it can flower everyday. Calendula is known as a vulenary because it can support the healing of tissues. It is mucilaginous, so has soothing and protecting properties and it is also anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial.
After the dandelion and nettles had simmered for about an hour, we added the tea to a prepared blend of equal parts molasses, apricots and raw apple cider vinegar. Kate had prepared soaked, simmered and blended unsulphured apricots the night before). We gave it a good stir it and jarred it in sterilised jars.
Kate recommended taking 1-3 tablespoons a day to support the liver and strengthen the heart.