#loveplants #wildherbs #southdowns #wildtime #foraging #herbalmedicine
Mugwort and Nettle seed salve made using foraged wild plants and prepared round the fire by herbalist Lucinda Warner.
#healing #naturalmedicine #southdowns
An afternoon walking in the woods with @wildcuriousforaging beats working!
#stanmerpark #foraging #wildtime #wildherbs #natureisamazing #hotdays
Speedwell is great for soothing coughs and colds. I'll be trying it out later!
Learning about more wild plants on a sunny forage with Sarah Watson.
#stanmerpark #wildfood #wildherbs #wildlife #forage #foraging #brighton
Alice Bettany guides us in making this herbal tincture.
Plantain, cleavers, silver birch, dandelion, burdock root, red clover, cacao and vodka. Ready in six weeks.
spring #herbalmedicine #wildherbs #wildremedy #natureisamazing #natu
In Spring, when you’re still shaking off winter and haven't quite fully moved on from the roast potatoes to salads, you need food, tonics, and remedies that support your body's kick start.
It's no coincidence that Nature provides just the medicine you need, at just the right time,
These 10 bitter wild plants are part of Spring's natural medicine chest that are just what your body needs to throw off winter's sluggishness: they're pungent, spicy, warming and cleansing to get your system going again, says herbalist Alice Bettany at our Foraging and Health class last week.
[all pics and info from our Foraging and Health class in April 2017]
Stunning day with @sacred_seeds learning about wild herbal plants and their uses. Like this cow slip.
How to Make a Spring Tonic using Cleavers
Cleavers (Sticky Willy or Goose Grass) are one of the first wild herbal plants to appear, often found with nettles, in woods and hedgerows.
They have long been used as herbal medicine, and can be used internally and externally to treat a wide range of problems.
Cleavers are anti-inflammatory, good for skin complaints, are diuretic, and as a general detoxifier. Cleavers stimulate the lymphatic system. An infusion can benefit lots of complaints, and are good for getting things going after a sluggish winter.
Strain and drink in the morning.
Clears winter's stagnation and gets things moving.
Learn more about wild herbal medicine in our foraging and health classes here.
During the summer months, you can find an array of wild flowers on the South Downs that are useful for a range of health complaints, as well as being vital for wildlife.
Local herbalist Lucinda Warner took us up onto the South Downs to forage for wild plants that make useful herbal medicine.
Here are 12 of the wild plants that she showed us, and their uses.
1. St Johns Wort (Hypericum)
Yellow flowers with tiny black dots. Leaves have tiny holes in, which are actually glands.
St John's Wort is good for nerve pain and sciatica (make an oil and rub it in, or use in a hand or foot bath). Because it has an affinity with nerves, it's good for depression where there's an anxious element. It's antiviral, so useful against shingles, herpes, and cold sores.
It is not a deeply relaxing herb, but it feeds the nervous system.
Good for burns, sunburn, nappy rash and skin healing - make a tea, when cold use as compress.
Caution: if you're on pharmaceuticals, or if you're on the pill - don't take it, as St John's Wort clears your system really quickly.
Since I was a child, Silver Birch has always been one of my favourite trees.
The wispy branches, and ghostly white bark always draw my attention in the woods.
Something about silver birch makes me feel safe. Perhaps because I can always tell it apart from other trees.
It has uses too.
The white peeling bark is great for lighting fires, and the buds and twigs have tons of medicinal uses:
Last weekend I went on a Wild Medicine, Wild Food walk with ethnobotanist and leading UK forager, Robin Harford, and top medical herbalist Alex Laird. The theme from the day was clear: nature is designed to help us thrive and function.
Here's what I learned about the wild plants we came across: what they're good for and how to eat them:
1. Dandelion is good for warts
Dandelion leaf is loaded with beneficial antioxidants that produce a range of positive effects for human health, including protection for the cardiovascular system. "Twenty times the antioxidants than any green leaf you get in a supermarket," says Alex.
The latex in the leaves (the white juice that oozes out when you break one off) is antiviral, and good for getting rid of warts.
[Click the Read More link to see more]
Fresh green stinging nettle seeds growing on the plant
It's September and we're at our workshop on Wild Food and Medicine, led by bushcraft and woodcraft teacher Jonathon Huet.
We're a large group, and as we wander along the forest paths, Jonathon points out plants that are good to eat or can be used as medicine, like chickweed, elderberries and the like. I'm at the back, chatting to herbalist Lucinda Warner who tells me that nettle seeds are good for adrenal stress.
I'm keen to hear more, as I've been feeling pretty stressed out lately...
[Click the Read More link to see more]
Author & Curator
Nigel Berman is the founder of School of the Wild.