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About Herbs

Relaxing essential oils

Just for meditation a good combination is jasmine, neroli and rose, to relax your mind.

The negative strains on the body like depression, anxiety, tension, stress, scents will help your relax your mind and enjoy life.  Having a more positive outlook with your life restores harmony and the balance in your mental state.   Essential oils date back for decades and centuries.

Enjoying the daily outdoor scents like spruce, roses, fresh air, blooming flowers and even fresh cut grass.   Finding the time to relax in the outdoors helps with your hectic lifestyle.

Balancing out your life and enjoying who and where you are today in life…..

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Herbal scents from your garden

Botanical Herbs

ROSEMARY – Rosmarinus officinalis

   (Mediterranean, also a evergreen with slim narrow leaves and blooms a light blue flower.  This plant is both medicinal and culinary and to obtain the essential oil both the leaves and flowers are used.   Also antifungal, antibaterial, digestive, stimulant and anti-inflammatory.    Many uses for this herb – digestion, improves memory, muscle pain, depression and constipation).

MELISSA –  Melissa officinalis

   (Fragrance – Lemon scent– Another name is – “lemon balm”, the flowers are white and tiny, grown in Europe.   Lemon Balm tea is known for long life.   When it is distilled the oil is very pale.    Some of the uses are: hysteria, anxiety, headaches, menustration and indigestion).

FENNEL – Foeniculum vulgare

   (Fragrance – like aniseed (licorice) – grown in the Mediterranean, produces tiny yellow flowers and the leaves are like thin ferns.   Some of the uses are:  self-espression, courage, uplifter, ovary problems, menopause).

BASIL – Ocimum basilcum

   (Fragrance – Refreshing and sweet. – When distilled the whole plant is used.   This plant is culinary and can also be drank as a tea.  Some of the properties are: purifier, expectorant, antiseptic,  analgesic and digestive tonic.  Can be used for fear, indecision, sinus congestion, arthritis and can be spirtual).

MARJORAM – Origanum marjorana

   (Smells sweet – Long life and also a culinary herb, grown in the Mediterranean.   A range of pink and white tiny flowers and once distilled both the flowers and leaves are used.   The properties of this plant are: calming, intestinal spasms, antibacterial, anti-infectious.  Many of the uses are for sprains, colic, coughs, heartburn, moodiness, anger and inner strength).

PEPPERMINT – Mentha piperita

   (This plant is part of the mint family, tiny purple flowers and serrated dark leaves.  All is used for distillation and the essential oil is also used for first aid purposes.  Many properties – insect repellant, antibacterial, analgesic, antimigraine and reproductive stimulant.  Some of the wonderful uses are for travel sickness, bronchitis, diarrhoea, sinusitis, apathy, depression and mental fatigue).

Reference:  “Nature’s Scents” by Raje Airey

Refreshing Scents

USING SCENTS TO SCENT YOUR BODY

Scenting your body for a footbath, skincare, bathtime, massage, compresses and muscle rubs.

The use of inhalation for a sauna, steam inhalation or tissue inhalation. 

To nourish your body with infusions (tisanes, leaves, flowers, refreshing drink with mint and camomile), food and drink (spices, fruit drinks, herbs for salads, spiced oils and vinegars), decoctions (spicy brew of tea or lapacho bark tea).

Fragrant for your home can be a variety of  items to include: firesticks, scented linen, potpourri, spritzer, vaporizers.  Any sweet smelling flowers like freesia, lilac, phlox, roses and lavender.

Reference: “Nature’s Scents” by Raje Airey

Herbs used for Dyeing Wool

The wool or fabric that you are going to be using herbs to dye the material, if the item has been chemically treated or bleached on the material, the dyeing process will not work.

Suggestions for wool preparation – wash in hot water with soap, rinse out the soap and lay to cool.   You must use the “mordant”,  this helps set the dye into the wool.  

The next step to do is to use the mordant, this product will help the wool take to the dye plus increases the enhancement of the color.   It takes time to simmer the wool, approxiamately about 2 hours and this should allow enough time to set the dye.

Adding the herbs, chop up then place into a muslin pouch and place into 4 US gallons of water for 10 hours.  

Bring the water, herbs to a boil and distinctively choosing the shade of color but keeping in mind that once the wool dries it will be much lighter than it is showing immersed in the boiling water.  

When the water is boiling, add the wool, apply heat, then turn the burner down low until you have reached your color choice.    Then, you must once again wash the wool to remove any of the extra dye and lay out the wool to dry.  Keep in mind that you do not want to create anymore heat to the wool once it is drying, so no heat or sun.    Keep away from the bright window’s.

Note:  **It is advised not to use your cooking utensils while dyeing with the herbs, many of the herbs residues can be quite poisonous.   Cross contamination into your regular cooking would not be advisable.

Noting: Use rubber gloves

HERBS AND COLOR TRANSFORMATIONS

Tansy (Tanacetum Vulgare)– colors – yellow/orange

Madder (Rubia tinctorum)– color – Crimson, can also be used to create orange, purple and yellow.

Marigold (Calendula Officinalis) — color – Yellow

Woad (Isatis Tinctoria) — color – Blue

Dandelion (Tarraxacum officinale) — color – magenta

Resource: “Traditional Home Book of Herbs” by Michael Janulewicz

Herbal History

The wonderful women in London, sold Lavender in baskets for a penny and you would receive 6 bunches of lavender.   These were sold in markets held in the streets until World War II.   During the war, lavender was used as a antiseptic.    

Women in the Victorian times would use the dried lavender in the linen cupboard (keep a nice scent, repel moths),  in the top of there corset (to attract a mate), for culinary uses in the kitchen.

“The Chelsea Garden” grew garden for the purposes for medicinal, dyeing (for fabrics) and for culinary use.   This special garden was founded in 1673.   The most crucial herbs and the most valued herbs were grown closer to the house and not out in the designated herb gardens.   

Many herbs were used as medicine’s and were used in China, Assyria & Egypt.    Dated back in 300 BC to almost the 1st century, one of the Elders in the ancient times of Rome had listed more than 900 plants used for medicine.   Many of the plants were to the ornamental design to the garden itself and were in the gardens of the wealthy or in societies like the one founded by the Society of Apothecaries (London).   

According to our research, several monasteries all over Europe would grow herbal gardens throughout their land.

Resource: “Traditional Home Book of Herbs” – Michael Janulewicz

Herbal – Lavender

Lavender (Lavendula Augustofolia) dates back into 77 A.D., used for headaches and for the bath during the Roman times.   Richly grown in the fields of Provence.   Can be added to scones, fish and dishes (sweet) .  It can be complemented with several of these herbs:   thyme, fennel, rosemary, basil, oregano, sage, and hyssop.   Lavender can relieve stress, help your sleep, repels moths and good for a mosquito repellent.   Lavender that is dried can be added to your bath.   Warning:  Lavender can be harmful to pregnant women.  The plant has essential oils, alkaloids, tannins and saponins.  

(References from Rosemary Gladstar’s “Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health”)

Herbal – Calendula petals

Calendula – (Calendula officinalis)

   A beautiful yellow flower can be used as externally for sores, skin ulcers, burns and bruises.   This flower is also being used in the cosmetic industry and is know to have a soothing feeling.

   Although this flower is used in other industries, it is also used in the Tea Industry as a color addition to many herbal blends, fruit and black tea blends.    No additional taste.  

   This flower is part of the potted marigold and general the petals are dried to brew your tea.    But this flower can also be added to your healthy salad and to “the: manufactured version of marigold cheese”.

Taste:    Neutral       Classification:  Herbal Tea (Caffeine Free)   Origin:Italy    Region:Tuscany

Reference: Supplier

Research:  “Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health” by Rosemary Gladstar’s

Herbal Spearmint

Spearmint – (Mentha Spicata)

   Both the flowers and leaves are generally used either on their own or blended with other herbs or teas.  Part of the Mint family. Research:  “Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health” by Rosemary Gladstar’s

 

 

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