Plants

Bay

Just like the other aromatic herbs that we have covered in our herb explorations so far, Bay (Laurus nobilis) not only enhances the flavour of our dishes but helps us to digest them. Culinary herbs, such as Sage, Rosemary, Thyme and Bay all have properties that help stimulate our digestion and helps calm the stomach, easing gas and cramps. These herbs, including Bay also help to ease symptoms of coughs and colds.

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Plants

Sage

Onto another aromatic herb native to the Mediterranean, and now commonly grown in the garden; common Sage. The name of this plant’s genus ‘Salvia’ comes from the Latin ‘Salvare’ meaning ‘to save, or to heal.’ The plant has long been used medicinally with examples from Ancient Greece and Rome and throughout the Middle Ages where it was commonly grown around monasteries for its healing properties.

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Plants

Rosemary

As another warming evergreen, Rosemary is a wonderful Winter ally and complements Thyme extremely well. Both of these herbs bring great benefits to our health, as well as attracting wildlife to our garden during Spring and Summer months.

The name Rosemary is derived from the Latin – Ros marinus meaning ‘dew of the sea‘ as it tends to grow in close proximity to the sea in its native area of the Mediterranean.

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Plants

Thyme for tea

The Winter months can be a good time to really reconnect with some of our evergreen aromatic garden herbs. This month I have found myself particularly drawn to using Thyme, so thought it would be nice to begin a herbal journey focusing on it.

Thyme is thought to derive its name from the Greek words ‘thymos’ meaning strong and ‘thyein’ meaning to make a burnt offering, highlighting its ancient use as an incense.

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Plants

Nutritious Nasturtiums

We were gifted some lovely Nasturtium plants early in the season which we planted up in our herb garden. We are now greeted each morning with a wealth of the most vibrant orange flowers. Nasturtiums have been so easy to grow, requiring very little care. They are an excellent companion plant drawing aphids away from other more delicate plants.

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Plants

The benefits of Bay

We are lucky to have a huge supply of Bay in the garden thanks to a rather old and beloved Bay tree. I love adding the leaves to our herb bundles for burning.

Did you know that Bay leaves contain Linalool a compound known for its calming properties, also present in plants such as Lavender. Studies have shown that Linalool reduces elevated stress levels to almost normal conditions.

These lovely leaves also contain Eugenol which is known for its antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and pain relieving qualities. As mentioned in our previous post, burning is an effective way to release the therapeutic benefits of a plant into your environment.

You can find Bay in our best selling herbal garden smoulder sticks.

Plants

The magic of Goldenrod

It is lovely to watch the flowers that you have planted grow, but it is extra special when they find their own way into your garden themselves, which is exactly what happened with some Goldenrod this year.

Goldenrod is known to be richer in antioxidants than green tea. Its Latin name, Solidago translates as ‘to make whole or heal’ and reflects its long use in herbal medicine. It has superb anti inflammatory action and pain relieving qualities thought to help arthritis, cold and flu symptoms and bladder & kidney problems.

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Plants

Wild about Roses

I am never quite sure what draws me in first with Rose; the beauty captured by the eyes or the nose, (don’t worry the poetry stops here my friends). According to fossil evidence, the genus Rosa is thought to be 35 million years old and contains around 200 species and thousands of hybrids growing across the world. Roses have long held a rich symbolism of love and beauty and it is easy to understand why.

The rose plant offers us two key ingredients for our products. In the Spring and Summer we collect and dry the petals to infuse into facial oils, add to face masks, bath salts and teas. In the Autumn and Winter we collect the hips or fruits that we infuse into our skin oils, oxymels and dry for teas. For the rest of this post, I will be focusing on the benefits of the petals as we are currently collecting and processing them, plus rose hips deserve a post of their very own.

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Plants

In Celebration of the humble Nettle

As a forager and lover of wild food, I think Nettles are up there as one of the most nutritious and versatile additions to any diet. They are perhaps one of the easiest plants to identify and their abundance and long season means that they are often visible everywhere from gardens to woodlands.

Nettles are especially rich in Iron and vitamins A & C and offer cleansing and detoxing properties. Not only do they benefit our diets, they also provide nourishment to our hair and skin when added to natural products.

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