Monday, October 13, 2008

What's Happening?

First of all, a brief apology for not having posted in quite a while. It's a beautiful fall here in southern Indiana and I've been outside in the glory of it all, foraging and harvesting. Gathering plants, berries, roots, etc. takes time, but one is definitely rewarded richly for the effort. And it is harvest time in the fall.

This is the best time of year to gather roots--dandelion, burdock, yellow dock root, and any of the other roots available. This time of year, the plants are getting ready for winter and they send their energies to their roots. So I've been getting roots. Went to the words with a friend to gather some yellow root (goldenseal). It is still lush here, though I understand the plant is becoming endangered due to over-gathering. Mostly for money--this herb is hard to cultivate and domesticate, so a lot of goldenseal is wild-harvested. Both my friend and I gathered enough for our personal use--his wife was ill and needed some goldenseal to boost her immune system, and I wanted enough to make an extract for our use this winter. That's a picture of the plant to the left. I cleaned the roots, then cut them up and put them in a jar and poured vodka over them. I'll leave the extract alone for 6 weeks, shaking it now and then. That will be our immune-booster this winter.

I've also been digging dandelion root, burdock root and yellow (curly, sour) dock roots. The yellow dock root will become an extract. The dandelion and burdock roots will either become extracts or dried and saved for teas this winter. I've discovered I really like dandelion root tea, and it is wonderful for a sluggish liver and a host of other winter blah sorts of minor malaises.

These will become our medicines this winter, along with the elderberry extract and syrup, the garlic syrup, and whatever else I can forage, find, cook up. A friend of ours had been feeling sickly, so I told him he'd better get well or I'll be sending him homebrew concoctions whose taste alone will scare him well. :)

There's lots more to write about, but this will have to do for today. I'll be back with more, though. Promise.



The Scavenger said...

Great post. I love the idea of getting your meds from mother nature. Beats the crap the Dr.s try to get me to take. Love your blog. I have be gathering Walnuts like crazy.


Patricia said...

Hi Chris

Oh lord, walnuts--all the walnut trees here in the valley are producing tons of nuts. How do you handle yours? I'm planning on using rocks to break off the hulls, then proceed from there...

Glad you like the blog!

Ozark Momma said...

Handmaiden...throw those puppies (the walnuts that is) in the drive and roll the vehicle over them. That's how we hull them. The male parental figure goes so far as to line them up in nice little rows for us to run over, lol. He then lays them out to dry before finishing them off.