Mindy and Marc are back at the bunker! It’s a crisp New England night (finally) with crickets chirping in the background. Mindy was in New York for a few days wildcrafting, while Marc stayed in Boston making winter herbal tonics and dehydrating more basil.
Marc’s “Herb Nugget” reminds us (more like reprimands us) to get our herbal preparations ready.
The “Herb of the Podcast” is Ocimum Basilicum! Commonly known as Basil. Marc highlights some features of this amazing herb, talks about the 60+ pounds he grew in his tiny city backyard, and of course, some basil mythology.
“Wildcrafting with Marc and Mindy” discusses acorn foraging, seed saving, and finding (possibly eating) newly discovered chicken of the woods mushroom!
The Worldwide Herbal and Foraging News articles for this episode are this one, this one, and this one. Women farmers, women farmers making millions, and a dad challenging his family to a 100 day “eat what you grow or raise” challenge!
Updates: Mindy and Marc are now in beekeeping school!
It’s a solo (mini) episode with only Marc (Mindy is sewing in the background).
The herb of the podcast is Peppergrass (Lepidium species). Also known as poor-man’s pepper, this spicy delight is in the mustard family.
Marc highlights the successful lecture/demonstration titled ‘preserving your harvest’ conducted by Mindy and Marc at a community garden in East Boston last week.
In addition, Saturday and Sunday September 24th and 25th from 10am-5pm, herbalist Margi Flint will be teaching her first ever Reading the Body class. And, Saturday October 22nd,herbalists and witches Sean Donahue (green man ramblings blog) and Kirsten Hale (the crazy herbalist) are teaching their Death Liberation and Ecstasy class. Both of these will be held at 10 Central St Marblehead MA for only $100 each. For more information visit www.earthsongherbals.com or email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lastly, we received an email inquiring about scientific research on shinrin-yoku. The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has several links. http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/90720.html.
What do you get when you combine a typical garden spice like thyme (a beautiful, aromatic, antiseptic herb), with organic honey (natures sweet antibacterial gift), and some raw apple cider vinegar (the Mother of all things sour tasting)?
You have a thyme oxymel- a notorious immune booster!
In my opinion, this pungent, yet sweet elixir is a great alternative to commercial sore throat relievers.
It is simple and inexpensive to make. Here is what you will need:
A mason jar with plastic lid*
Raw apple cider vinegar (ACV)
First, fill your mason jar with about ¼ thyme.
Next, fill the rest of the jar with ACV and honey. Note: the amounts of ACV and honey are discretionary. You might choose more honey and less ACV, or more ACV and less honey. I prefer more honey!
Then, place the lid on the jar and shake it daily for 6-8 weeks.
After 6-8 weeks, strain out the contents with a tea press or cheese cloth into its final storage container.
Finally, your oxymel is done!
Personally, when I have a sore throat, I reach for my thyme oxymel. A one ounce glass three times a day usually does the trick.
*Plastic lids are preferred when using vinegar. Vinegar will corrode metal and ruin your oxymel. You can use metal lids, however put wax paper over the jar before you tighten the metal lid.
Poison ivy, prepping for a lecture, and discovering the beauty of the blue-bruising, pancake replica fungi, the Boletes mushrooms, Marc & Mindy return to Southie to record this episode.
Marc’s “Herb Nugget” discussing herbal creations, and using your imagination when preserving your fall harvests.
The “Herb of the Podcast” is Oenothora biennis, or Evening Primrose. This tall, lovely biennial is prized for its seed oil which contains omega-6 essential fatty acids (and in particular gamma linolenic acid (GLA). Mindy, on the other hand, loves to eat its leaves particularly minced and on pasta. Evening primrose attracts moth pollinators.
We talk about our “Wildcrafting and Homesteading Updates”! Mindy misidentified white snakeroot (probably for another aster) during a plant walk last week and owns up to it! Marc talks about his lemon balm and sweetfern hydrosol bug spray. The duo made smudge sticks from sweet fern to use eventually as a smoldering bug repellant.
The Worldwide Herbal and Foraging News articles for this episode are this one, this one, and this one. Succession gardening for fall, a government subsidized mobile farmer’s market in Austin Tx, and plants that repel pesky bugs are the topics.
We talk about our “Wildcrafting and Homesteading Updates”! Marc is making a bug spray from hydrosols of lemon balm and sweet fern, mixed with witch hazel. The hydrosols were produced in our Oilextech Essenex 100 microwave essential oil distillation unit. We will let you know how the bug spray works! We talk about making rubber from natural latex and cordage from cattail leaves, amongst other topics.
Live from the Bunker! Marc & Mindy hole up in Western Massachusetts listening to the pitter patter of the rain on the roof and the low menacing rumble of thunder, all while being surrounded by nature’s light show. We need the rain, and Nature delivers!
Marc’s “Herb Nugget” reminds us that humor is the best medicine. So Mindy makes a funny…
The “Herb of the Podcast” are Eutrochium spp (that’s right, previously Eupatorium spp!), E. maculatum and E. purpureum. These are known as spotted Joe Pye weed and sweet Joe Pye Weed, respectively. Gravel root is another common name.
We talk about our “Wildcrafting and Homesteading Updates”! Check out Mindy’s new hand-carved whistle, made from a sweet birch branch! Marc’s thyme oxymel (made from our garden harvest and locally sourced raw honey and apple cider vinegar is macerating away! Mindy got poison ivy and had a chance to apply jewelweed directly to her itchy foot rash (see gross pic for proof!) The picture of the green stuff is the inside of the Jewelweed stalk. Of course you can learn all about it on Episode 33!)
The Worldwide Herbal and Foraging News articles for this episode are this one, this one, and this one! An 89-year old that grows 600+ pounds of food for charity in his small home garden, a couple who traded corporate life for a homestead, and a man who contracted botulism from improper canning are highlighted.
Marc & Mindy have been on the road, spending the past week in Upstate New York. Fortunately, we had a chance to sit down and talk with Joanne Hull (better known to Mindy as “Mom”!). We learned all about the Outdoor Natural Plant Dyeing Studio that she had built at her suburban home in Upstate New York.
Take a look at these great shirts!
We hope you enjoy this mini-episode, and will see you back for a full-length episode next week!