Friday, August 28, 2015

In the garden, August 28

School (double school: work & graduate classes) begin very soon for both my husband & I...and so our time in the garden begins to dwindle. If one day we become a homesteading family with only one of us working it will be possible to tend and care for a garden into the fall, but alas, we are not there yet and will have very little time to devote to this space that needs much attention and care.

I will miss the carefree, warm afternoons with dirt between my toes and Alice playing with mud and buckets of water. Not having to check the time or worry about the next meal or getting ready for the next day. 
Ah, summer, I miss you already.

Monday, June 29, 2015

In the Garden, June 29

So many weeds! And a sun tent set up today.

Beautiful chicory 

Motherwort adorned with bees

See our first zucchini?!

Sunflower hat

Nasturtium flowers

Cilantro, kale, chard, then tomatoes in this row 
Broccoli ready for eating

Airing out our tent

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Summer Products

All Purpose Salve:

a natural healing salve that is a chemical free alternative to antibiotic ointments
Works wonders on boo-boos big and small

Jewelweed Salve: 
great for all skin irritations such as bug bites, stinging nettle, ringworm, and even soothes and heals scrapes, cuts, bruises, eczema, and burns

Buzz Off Spray:
natural, safe, chemical-free bug repellent

witch hazel, citronella essential oil , cedarwood essential oil, neem oil, lemon eucalyptus essential oil, rosemary essential oil, & lemongrass essential oil

Cooling Peppermint Poison Ivy Salve:
the perfect cooling, drying, anti-itch salve for poison ivy rashes

Cleavers (Galium aparine)

Galium aparine, with many common names including cleavers, clivers, goosegrass, catchweed, stickyweed, robin-run-the-hedge, sticky willy, sticky willow, velcro weed, and grip grass, is a herbaceous annual plant of the family Rubiaceae.

Cleaver Recipes:

Cleavers juice – This is said to be the most potent way to consume cleavers. To make it all you need to do is to clean your harvested cleavers, chop it roughly and then squeeze out the juice through a jelly bag or clean tea towel. The recommended dose is 1 teaspoon, 2 – 3 times daily as a tonic.

Cleavers tea – Again, clean your harvested cleavers then chop it. Add 1-2 tsp of this per cup of boiled water.

Cleavers tincture – Harvest the top two thirds of plant when in flower or setting seed. Tincture in 100 proof vodka. (see my posts on making tinctures) Dosage is 0.5ml – 1ml in water a few times daily when called for.

Cleavers Facial Wash - Bring one quart of water to a boil. Remove from heat and add 3-1/2 tbsp. of dried cleavers. Cover and steep for 40 min. Wash the face and neck often. Packs consisting of a wash cloth or small terrycloth hand towel soaked in the tea, lightly wrung out and then applied to the entire facial area for up to 10 minutes several times a day should help to tighten up loose skin folds. Gradual results should become evident within 2 weeks. One of the first things to look for is a new kind of life feeling in formerly tired, worn-out skin.


Cleavers has a folk reputation as a remover of lumps and bumps. So enthusiastic were many claims that there has been some clinical research, in the hope that it could help reduce certain cancerous lumps. However the results were not supportive of the traditional claims.

Cleavers is often used by herbalists for cystitis, swollen glands, swollen breasts, PMS, mild lymphedema, prostatitis and as a diuretic for a general spring clean. Susun weed reports that it can also be helpful in reducing allergic reactions. Due to it’s gentle diuretic cleansing action, Galium aparine often also helps to ease some skin disorders such as psoriasis and eczema and gout.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Green Juice

What could be better and tastier than green juice from your own garden? Already we have an abundance of Red Russian kale and after harvesting a huge bunch today I decided to make juice. I added peeled oranges to help the greens along in the juicer and of course add a bit of sweetness!

Ah, summer

Our summer solstice dinner (it was raining, we had a picnic inside)

Clay pinch pots, suns, leaf, & moon

St. John's wort adorning our window sill

First harvest from our garden, a few weeks back

Our summer Nature Table

Monday, May 18, 2015


After a long, cold, dark, snowy winter....we welcome Spring!