I know I said this last month but I can’t believe it’s June already! I’ve been in the barn all month with the goats, four rounds of babies complete with disbudding, wethering, selling, lessons on hoof care and milking for new owners and lots of milking for me to do too. If only it was still the home dairy challenge I would be all full of cheesy goodness.
But it’s botanical month. What does that mean?
It means that I want you to become one with herbs, spices and flowers. They do more than just flavor your foods – they create soothing bases for lotions and salves, nourish mind, body and soul, complete herbal tea bases, cough syrups and immune boosters. Rather than reaching for a bottle of extract to flavor that mint ice cream, I want you to reach for your scissors and trim up that chocolate mint plant in your garden (or lemon verbena, or cinnamon basil). I want you to stick rosemary sprigs in your apple jelly (and your martini) and dry rose leaves for potpourri.
I can’t promise that we’ll cover all these things but I want you to think about flowers and herbs in a whole new way. Always out of thyme? Why not dry part of that bushy thyme plant that has been overtaking your herb spiral?
It’s true you could buy these things but if you already have them growing in your yard or your neighborhood, there is no need for that. And this way you know exactly what goes on and into your body.
June prizes from our sponsors:
- A garden balm hand treatment from Nichols Garden Nursery (my absolute favorite seed and gardening house.)
- A copy of Basic Herb Cookery by Rose Marie Nichols McGee and N.P. McGee from Nichols Garden Nursery.
- A culinary herb poster from Nichols Garden Nursery.
- Four ounces of dried rosemary, four ounces of dried lavender, and four ounces of dried calendula for infusing or cooking, from Mountain Rose Herbs, my favorite place to find supplies for making infusions.
- More to come! If you are interested in donating more botanical plants or seeds, or supplies for soap or lotion making please contact me.
For now, skip on over to Woodwife’s Journal for the first challenge – hydrosols. If you’ve never used a hydrosol you are in for a treat. In the summer there is nothing more refreshing than a quick hit of peppermint hydrosol or as calming as a rose geranium or lavender one. They are dilute enough to go directly on the skin and rose hydrosol is a wonderful part of my evening facial routine. With different herbs and flowers they are a great anti-itch or post sun burn reliever as well.
Sharon gives you directions for creating your own distilled (that’s right, this information may come in handy during grain month, you never know) hydrosols. As always, keep checking back here throughout the month for more challenges and at month-end for the link up post to enter yourself into the monthly drawing. So branch out this month!