Thursday, July 17, 2014

Herbs In my Garden

 

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This is what I see outside my bedroom window when I get up in the morning.  When I pull back the curtains, I’m greeted with this glorious site.  And though you can’t see it just a few few beyond the creamy hollyhocks is my herb garden.  I’ve been busy cultivating and altering my main flower bed to incorporate a small herbal/kitchen garden.  I have been working on it for several years.  I still do not have it the way I want it, but that’s what a I love.  A challenge is right up my alley!

 

I have a bunch of dill that reseeds itself every year.  So much so, that I thin out a bunch of it every year.  I dry some of it, use some of it in salads, and some my kids just eat straight out of the garden as I’m thinning.

 

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This winter when I was looking through my seed catalogues I came across this beautiful pole bean.  I have never grown pole beans, but I knew this would be a great addition to my kitchen garden.  Once I got started I even purchased filet beans to climb up my corn in my main garden.  There’s just something fun about trying something new each year.  It’s a game, an adventure, a joy to watch something new growing and then what a pleasure to get to eat it, too!

 

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I also planted borage and chamomile in my herb garden this year.  The borage is good for improving the growth of the plants around it, so of course I plopped it in several different place in among my herbs.  Plus, it has beautiful, blue, star shaped flowers. The chamomile I am growing so that I can harvest the flowers for tea and tincture.

 

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I have been busy studying up on natural remedies lately.  Joel experienced a job change several months ago and that has spurred me on to find alternative means of keeping my family healthy.  I was surprised to find that several of the plants that are widely used I have growing all around me. 

One of them is yarrow.  I have yarrow in my flower gardens and it grows wild in my dad’s fields that surround my house.  A walk back the field, a week ago, brought me to one of my favorite spots.  A small grassy field with a broken down barbed wire fence and an old apple tree.  It sits behind what used to be my grandma’s house.  To my complete joy it was full of yarrow.  I clipped to my hearts content and I now have a pint jar full of dried leaves and blooms.

 

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I’ve also been collecting red clover.  About every other day I clip the abundant blooms.  At first I was harvesting from a small patch on the edge of our yard, but when I was black raspberry picking last week along the fence row, I saw patches and patches of it.  I have hit a boon!  I have a quart and a half dried already and I am continuing on.  I have found that a tea made from them blooms if alleviating my youngest sons allergies.  He was having to take allergy medication daily, but now he drinks a chamomile/red clover tea and is getting relief.  I’m thanking our wonderful Creator for giving us plants right out my front door that improve our health!

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With all that I have been reading on natural remedies, I figured I needed a good place to keep all the information and knowledge.  I began pinning them to pinterest, but there have been too many times when our internet has gone out.  I wanted something right at my fingertips that didn’t require technology.  So, I am in the process of making an herbal.  An herbal is a “book”, or 3-ring binder in my case, that holds canning and freezing recipes, herbal remedies, natural cleaning tips, herb profiles, gardening information, and any other tip or information about the home that you find handy.

 

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It’s been a busy, but very productive summer so far.  My garden is beginning to produce more and more.  The peas, lettuce and kale are almost done, but the beans, peppers, and cucumbers and starting to pick up.  I’m looking forward to filling up my shelves and freezer!

16 comments:

  1. we love herbal remedies...i made vinegar of the four thieves bug repellant this year...so far so good for the most part.
    do you have a favorite book about herbs? there are so many to choose from. i didn't plant many herbs this year.
    God bless~

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    1. I would love to have a book on herbs, but as of yet I do not own one! I have been doing all my research online.

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  2. Your bedroom window view is delightful. And I'm so proud of you for harvesting these edible wild plants and encouraged with you at the remarkable healing powers that God has given them.

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  3. Wonderful idea the book. Your photos are great. Learned something bout the red clover I didnt know. As kids we sucked on the ends of the flower pulling them out... taste like honey. We were not sickly children do believe it was all the natural things we had available to us.

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    1. We used to do the same thing! I love knowing that I can use it for a tea too!

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  4. I am so thankful to see this post, and hear about the tea you have made from the red clover. May I please ask what you do/how you make it? my son has terrible seasonal allergies and we have plenty of red clover to harvest. I would love to be able to make some of this for him. And you are right, I love the excitement of trying new things each year in the garden. :-) A humble thank you in advance

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    1. Carissa so glad to see you stopping by here! This what I have been doing. I harvest the flowers dry them then remove the leaves that are attached to the sepals of the flower. You don't have to do this, but I just like the look of them without the leaves! :) Once dry store in a glass jar with tight fitting lid. We have been making this tea for my son. 1 cup of boiling water, 2 Tablespoons of Red Clover Blossoms (we have figured this to be about 8 blossoms), and 1 bag of chamomile tea (you could use flowers if you have them.... I haven't gotten a big enough harvest yet). Let steep about 5 minutes. This really seems to be helping him. We also have been using lavender oil mixed with coconut oil for his itchy eyes. We apply it to the skin around his eyes and we have noticed great relief with this. However, there is some controversy with using lavender oil with boys... so you may want to research that on your own. We are not using it that often and so I am not concerned about any adverse hormonal effects from the lavender.

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  5. Oh how lovely to read all of this... from you!! Jen - everything is beautiful. Your photos, your ideas, suggestions - how wonderful about your son with his allergy relief - your gathering of all of these...

    I love the story of your little stroll and to your favorite spot...to find all the yarrow you could want!!

    Great idea with your herbal!!
    Thumbs up!

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    1. Thank you Bevy! This post took me over two weeks to write.... I have been so busy with other things. Thank you for your comment!

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  6. Amazing shots, Jenn! You are so creative. I love coming here to get inspired and encouraged!!

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    1. Thank you Ashley! You are an inspiration to me, too!

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  7. I absolutely loved flipping through your herbal last week, and I love the vibrant colors on the cover. They pull me in! Thank you so much for helping me to harvest some of my own red clover. You inspire me in so many ways!

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    1. Love you SO much, Sis! It was so wonderful to have you here last week!

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  8. Missing you my sweet friend...trust all is well? XOXO

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