it appears that we are halfway through the delicious summer season and halfway through our herbal csa. i am swimming in peaches and plums over here and i’m putting them up like mad. i made peach butter and sour cherry butter, then my favorite winter treat-peaches cut up and tucked into a jar, covered in brandy. bust that out in january and you will make friends! then i tinctured the bark,leaves, and pits for medicine. now i must tackle the plums-maybe more butter, some plum kuchen and of course crisps. the blackberries are coming ripe, and boy are they plump this year! very juicy, kind of sour. i can’t wait to make more jam.
in the veggie gardens i have cauliflowers about to harvest, they are so cute. my giant parsnip has reached 6 feet, and i am saving the seed from that as well as carrots and mizspoona-don’t tell monsanto! (those bastards) a groundhog has eaten the turnip tops and soybeans, tunneling beneath the fence to chow down on the feast. it is a luxury that i am not TOO mad-thanks to our bartered csa share from germantown community farm. i also found a few ripe cayennes yesterday and i am nibbling sungold tomatoes. recently i discovered the biggest zucchini in the entire world…it probably weighs a ton.
in the wonderful world of herbs i have been spending a lot of time harvesting which feels good-the payoff of midsummer. goldenrod is flowering, vervains, scullcap, monardas, and so much wonderful tulsi. the calendula is especially resinous this year. this is the first time i’ve grown milk thistles and they are the prickliest spikiest most outrageous thing i’ve seen in some time. the sages could be better-they aren’t too fond of excess rain but they’re pretty tough. i have harvested a lot of red clover blossoms, a lot of lemon balm and yarrow and rose petals. the st. john’s wort oil is looking lovely this year, i am infusing all manner of medicinals in oil for fall salve-making.
in other news, i am putting together a little zine of photos of the stash of herbalists around the country. it is called stash and it’s just for fun, a way for us to connect and see what others are doing and how they are doing it. so if you have a stash, send me a few photos with captions of your herbs, tinctures, oils or whatever you feel like sharing. include a short bio and if you want, a photo of yourself. please do so soon, as i’d like to have it out before september first. i will send you a free copy if you participate. and no, you don’t have to be a “professional” herbalist or anything-all who make medicines are home herbalists! i will post when they are ready how to get your hands on one too. send your questions or contributions to traci at firstname.lastname@example.org