Pickled Spruce Tips

Pickled Spruce Tips  Right now all the evergreens are speckled bright green as they reach further out and extend their branches. During the middle to end of May all the evergreens begin to grow and display an inch or so of soft new needles. Typically munching on spruce needles isn’t all that pleasant but this…

Pine (Pinus strobus)

Pine (Pinus strobus) Family: Pinaceae Genus: Pinus Largest conifer family in species diversity 250 recognized species in the world including pines, larches, spruces, firs, and hemlock Parts Used: bark, needles (leaves), pine resin, pollen, seeds Energetics: warming, drying Taste: pungent, bitter, sour Plant Properties: stimulating diuretic, stimulating expectorant, stimulating diaphoretic, modulates inflammation, nutrient-dense food, vulnerary,…

Garlic (Allium sativum)

Garlic (Allium sativum) Family: Amaryllidaceae Genus: Allium Energetics: warming, drying Taste: pungent Plant Properties: circulatory stimulant, diaphoretic, expectorant, antimicrobial, carminative, immune modulating, vermifuge (parasites) Plant Uses: Hypertension, fungal & bacterial infections, colds, influenza, bronchial congestion, small intestinal bacteria growth, digestion, asthma, type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance Garlic has been approved by the Commission E as…

Bonfire Cider

Bonfire Cider (Fire Cider) Bonfire Cider stimulates the immune system and digestive system during the colder months. For generations, herbal medicinal recipes have been prepared and passed down for many years to fight against the common cold and other illnesses. Recipes varied from year to year depending on what was available and in season. Even…

Sage (Salvia officinalis)

Sage (Salvia officinalis) Family: Lamiaceae (mint) Genus: Salvia Common names include garden sage, common sage, culinary sage Comes from the Latin word salvere meaning “to feel well and healthy, health, heal” Energetics: warming, drying Taste: pungent, bitter Plant Properties: aromatic, astringent, carminative, diaphoretic, antiseptic, blood moving Plant Uses: Sore throat, excessive sweating, infections, stagnant digestion,…

Herbal Pastilles (Pills)

Herbal Pastille Making What is a pastille? A pastille (or pill) is made by simply combining powdered herbs with a liquid or honey and rolling them into small pea-size balls. Some common uses are for sore throats, coughs, and, digestive complaints. Basic Pastille Recipe Place medicinal powdered herbs in a bowl and mix with honey…

Burdock (Arctium lappa, A. minor)

Burdock, also known as Gobo, is one of those plants that’s been calling to me for a while now. Sometimes when you need a plant, they find a way into your life and make their presence known. A year or two ago I began gathering Stinging Nettle from a local farm. They considered this plant…

Homemade Minty Ice Cream

Homemade Minty Ice Cream Aside from watermelon, ice cream has most definitely become a kid staple in our home this summer. So when I rediscovered my old Donvier Manual Ice Cream Maker in the basement, I knew what had to be done. I scoured the internet looking for easy recipes because I have kids and…

Elderberry Tincture

Elderberry Tincture Tis’ the season for Elderberries here in New England. The lacy flowers have fallen, meaning the small green berries that form are starting to plump up and turn dark blue to black. The flowers are the reproductive organs and therefore will turn to fruit when pollinated. Elder, to me, marks the change of…

Alpine Berries

Alpine Berries Recently a group of strong, wonderful people set off for the White Mountains to do a little hiking. The hope was to complete the entire Presidential Traverse – 23 miles of mountains – in 2 days. Four of the eight mountains are the largest in New England. Needless to say, it’s an extremely…