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Marshmallow

Marshmallow

February 04, 2021

Marshmallow is a beautiful tall perennial that we grow a lot of  here  on the farm. It tends  to like moist areas  and so I plant it  in the parts of  the  garden that have a little heavier soil or drain  a  little  slower  than  other  areas.  We  harvest  the leaves,  flowers  and  roots  for  tinctures,  and  dry  for  tea.  It’s  a soothing  and  cooling  plant  to  inflamed  mucosal  tissue  in the  body.  So,  I  like  to  use  it  soothe  inflamed  digestive  and upper  respiratory  tracts.  I  use  it  in  digestive  tract formulas  and  blends  for  the  throat  and  lung,  especially for dry coughs.

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Peppermint

Peppermint

February 04, 2021

Peppermint  and  other  mints  are  easy  plants  to  grow  and have  in  your  garden.  They  also  make  a  lovely  plant  for container  gardens.  They  easily  spread,  so  keep  an  eye  on this  one,  as  it  can  get  out  of  hand.  Peppermint  is  such  a delicious  aromatic  plant.  I  love  its  cooling  energetics  and  use it  to  relieve  nausea,  cramping,  gas,  bloating,  intestinal spasms  and  menstrual  cramps.  It  makes  a  wonderful  tea and I find it to also be uplifting.

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Red Clover Blossom

Red Clover Blossom

February 04, 2021

Red  clover  is  a  plant  that  we  use  as  a  cover  crop  here  on the  farm  for  its  ability  to  fix  nitrogen  in  the  soil,  but  it’s also  an  incredible  medicinal.  We  harvest  the  blossoms when  they’re  beautiful  and  vibrant  and  dry  them  to  use  in tea  and  vinegar.  I  use  red  clover  for  lymphatic  congestion, swollen  lymph  nodes,  skin  issues  and  cleansing  the  blood. Red  clover  has  been  used  for  hot  flashes  during  menopause as  well  as  for  circulation  and  thinning  the  blood.  If  you live  near  an  organic  farm,  you  should  check  to  see  if  they grow  red  clover  as  a  cover  crop.  If  they  do,  it’s  worth  asking whether  they’d  let  you  harvest  some  of  the  red  clover blossoms.  Harvesting  and  drying  your  own  means  you’ll have  good-quality  flowers  throughout  the  winter  season.  You can  buy  it,  but  it  tends  to  be  expensive  because  it’s  so  labor intensive.  If  you  do  buy  it,  I  suggest  purchasing  from  a smaller  local  herb  farm  or  Healing  Spirit  Farm,  Zack  Woods or  Oshala Farm.

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Reishi

Reishi

February 04, 2021

Reishi  is  a  polypore  mushroom,  and  here  in  Maine, the  beautiful  fruiting  body,  Ganoderma  tsugae,  grows  on fallen  hemlock  trees.  It  is  distinctively  unique  from  other polypores  as  it  grows  on  a  stem.  I  love  using  reishi  for many  things,  including  allergies  and  tension,  as  well  as for  immune  and  heart  support.  Reishi  is  a  heart  tonic  that helps  lower  blood  pressure,  reduce  pain  caused  by  angina and  may  have  the  potential  to  help  prevent  arteriosclerosis and  lower  triglyceride  levels,  which  can  contribute  to strokes  and  heart  attacks.  Reishi  is  not  edible  but  is  a wonderful  medicine.  In  order  to  extract  the  medicinal properties  from  it,  reishi  should  be  cooked  at  a  simmer  for at  least  4  hours,  which  makes  it  great  for  soup  stocks.  To make  a  tincture,  you  would  want  to  first  cook  the mushroom  and  then  use  the  marc  and  combine  the  water, alcohol and marc to then macerate together for 4 weeks.

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Rose

Rose

February 04, 2021

Wild  beach  rose,  Rosa  rugosa,  grows  all  over  the  Maine coast,  and  we  grow  it  in  abundance  here  on  the  farm.  Rose has  a  long  history  of  being  associated  with  the  heart, through  poems,  stories,  tales,  songs  and  tattoos,  of  course. Rose  is  a  wonderful  heart  tonic  and  nervine,  which  has  a supportive  effect  on  the  physical  heart;  I  also  like  to  use  rose for  its  energetic  effects  on  the  heart.  It  can  be  beneficial  for broken  hearts,  grief  and  depression.  I  harvest  the  flowers fresh  and  tincture  them  immediately  in  alcohol  and  honey or  dry  them  for  later  use  in  tinctures  and  teas.  If  you  don't have  access  to  lovely  wild  roses,  then  I  suggest  getting organic,  as  these  plants  are  heavily  sprayed.

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Tulsi

Tulsi

February 04, 2021

Tulsi, also known as sacred basil or holy basil, is a wonderful annual here in Maine. This plant is so easy to grow and a favorite for pollinators. It’s a plant that I recommend everyone should grow and it grows well in containers. As with its cousin, culinary  basil, you pinch the flowers  to  keep  the  plant  bushing and branching out. I use the leaves and flowers  all  summer  long to make into refreshing teas and drinks using our vinegar shrubs. Tulsi is a wonderful medicinal plant. I use it for uplifting the spirit and clearing the mind. This is a wonderful brain tonic for helping clear mental fog, bringing on clarity and focus but not in  an  overstimulating  way.  It’s  calming  and  supporting  to  the nervous system, and I like to use it in formulas to help relieve anxiety. It’s also great for the digestive system, relieving gas and bloating, and for immune support.

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Yarrow

Yarrow

February 04, 2021

Yarrow  is  a  perennial  that  grows  wild  here  in  Maine and  many  other  places  as  well.  Before  buying  the  farm, when  we  looked  at  it,  I  remember  feeling  so  happy  and  safe seeing  all  the  wild  yarrow  on  the  land.  I  like  to  use  yarrow energetically  in  the  form  of  flower  essence,  infused  oil, hydrosol  and  as  a  balm  for  protection,  keeping  clear boundaries  and  not  taking  on  the  energies  of  others.  We harvest  the  flowers  and  leaves  throughout  the  summer when  they’re  most  vital  and  dry  for  teas,  oils  and  tinctures. This  is  a  great  herb  to  use  at  the  onset  of  a  cold  or  flu.  Yarrow can  be  beneficial  for  people  dealing  with  IBS,  Crohn’s,  colitis, leaky  gut  and  SIBO.  It’s  useful  for  heavy  menstrual bleeding  and  cramping,  and  I  use  it  topically  for  bruises and sprains.

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Ginger

Ginger

February 04, 2021

Ginger  is  all  kinds  of  wonderful  as  a  circulatory  herb  and  heart tonic.  It’s  good  for  helping  increase  peripheral  circulation and  studies  are  showing  that  ginger  can  lower  triglycerides and  blood  sugar  levels.  Ginger  is  great  for  nausea, bloating,  gas,  circulation,  sore  throats,  pain  relief  and  so much  more.  I  use  fresh  ginger  liberally  as  a  food  and  add  it to  veggies,  dressings,  sauces,  baked  goods,  soups  and  just about  everything  that  pairs  well  with  its  flavor.  It  makes  a delicious  tea  and  infuses  well  in  honey,  vinegar  and  alcohol. I  also  like  to  make  a  warming  circulatory  oil  for  topical  use.

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Lady's Mantle

Lady's Mantle

February 04, 2021

Lady’s  mantle  lines  the  edges  of  our  gardens. It’s a  magical plant and if  you’ve ever spent time with one early in the morning before the dew has had a chance to evaporate, you’d see what I mean. The beautiful leaves hold dew or water from rain in a way that feels like alchemy is at work. And it is.  We harvest the leaves and make fresh into a tincture or dry for tea. I like to use lady’s mantle for the female reproductive system as a uterine  tonic,  to  help  those  who  experience excessive  bleeding  and  heavy  periods  with  cramps.  It  can also be help treat diarrhea and urinary incontinence.

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Lemon Balm

Lemon Balm

February 04, 2021

Lemon  balm  is  an  herb  that  we  use  a  lot  of  at Herbal  Revolution.  This  is  a  wonderful  plant  that  is  so fabulous  for  the  nervous  system.  It  can  be  calming, uplifting,  focusing  and  supporting  to  our  digestive,  immune and  nervous  systems.  It’s  also  delicious.  What’s  not  to  love? The  aromatics  always  tend  to  be  my  favorite  rows  to  weed  on the  farm,  and  for  good  reason.  Lemon  balm  is  loaded  with volatile  essential  oils,  so  just  being  around  and  smelling  the plant  is  incredibly  medicinal.  I  use  lemon  balm  for  anxiety, stress,  immune  support  and  herpes  and  for  uplifting  the spirit and clearing the mind.

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Lemongrass

Lemongrass

February 04, 2021

Lemongrass  grows  in  lovely  rows  on  the  edges  of  our growing  plots  on  the  farm.  Here  in  Maine,  lemongrass  is an  annual,  but  in  warmer  climates  it  is  a  lovely  perennial. We  harvest  it  in  the  fall  every  year  to  dry  for  tea.  I  love  its mild  lemon  flavor  and  use  it  for  digestive  blends,  as  it  can help  with gas, bloating  and abdominal pain.

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Motherwort

Motherwort

February 04, 2021

Motherwort,  or  lion heart, is part of  the mint family, and is a  lovely  plant that is so easy to grow. I always feel the garden is well protected  with  the healthy stand  of  motherwort to overlook the garden from the edges. I harvest the young leaves  and  flowers  t hrough  t he  s ummer  for  f resh  t incture. This is a great medicine for anxiety, especially PMS-induced anxiety and anxiety with heart palpitations. Motherwort can be  helpful for other PMS and menopausal symptoms, such as irritability,  hot flashes and insomnia. When my partner, Gus, asks me if  I’ve taken my motherwort, that’s my hint that I need  an attitude adjustment. I often use motherwort in heart formulas  for  preventing heart palpitations,  reducing  stress and lowering high blood pressure. I really love this plant and its medicine.

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