Fumitory

Fumitory (Fumaria Officianalis) has long been used for treating skin problems like scabies, eczema and acne.  It has a bitter taste and is good for stimulating the liver and gallbladder.  Culpeper has a long list of uses for fumitory including leprosy, jaundice, plague and pestilence!  “The distilled water also…helps with all sores of the mouth and throat, being gargled often therewith.”    Fumitory can be toxic in large doses.  I’ve been eating small amounts, cut up finely, in my salads. The leaves and flowers can be used.

 

Mallow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mallow (Malva Sylvestris) leaves and flowers can be added to salads and soups or made into a tea.  Traditionally it has been used to make a soothing syrup for coughs, sore throats and inflammation of the respiratory passages.   It’s also soothing to the urinary tract and intestines.  Mallow helps to cleanse and strengthen the lymph system.  Externally it can be applied to wounds and sores as a wash, or used as a poultice on irritations.

Chickweed

Chickweed (Stellaria Media) is a great addition to salads and sandwiches.  While some books say you can cook it, I find that cooking makes it mushy and unappealing.  It has a mild taste, which makes it a great replacement for lettuce.  It can also be made into a tea using either fresh or dried leaves.

Other names for Chickweed include Adder’s mouth, starwort, stitchwort, tongue grass and winter weed,

It is rich in iron, contains calcium, cobalt, molybdenum, magnesium, manganese, silicon, zinc, vitamin c and has a protein content of 15-20%.

Chickweed has many healing applications including applying the fresh leaves, or an ointment,  to bruises, irritations and skin disorders such as eczema or psoriasis.  It has also been found to relieve painful joints, tendons and ligaments.  It is soothing to the digestive system, easing inflammation and ulceration.

Culpeper states that “the herb bruised or the juice applied with cloths or sponges dipped therein to the region of the liver, and as they dry to have it fresh applied, doth wonderfully temperate the heat of the liver, and is effectual for all imposthumes, and swellings whatsoever, for all redness in the face, wheals, pushes, itch, scabs: the juice either simply used or boiled with hog’s grease applied, helpeth cramps, convulsions, and palsy.”

I’m not quite sure what an “imposthume” is and I think I’ll give the hog’s grease a miss, but I’m currently enjoying  eating this almost daily in a salad.

 

Weeds for dinner

I didn’t manage to plant many things in the vegie patch in Autumn and while the onions, garlic and broad beans I put in are doing well, there is little else apart from some greens I planted recently.

While my vegie’s are looking sad, I’ve done a great job growing weeds.

So tonight I’m making a weed salad full of this nutrient rich, vibrant greenery.

I’ve got chick weed, dandelion, calendula, fumitory, mallow and some herb robert, which I’ve topped off with some onion greens.  I’ll add some fetta and olives and have a fabulous salad that grew itself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Time to slow down…

It’s almost mid winter and we should be taking some time out in front of the fire and slowing down.  My Winter post from last year can give you more information on the Water Element and the kidney and bladder meridians.  Nurture yourself with warming winter soups and stews.  Allow yourself to relax and regenerate, don’t keep pushing on when you are tired.  Resting now will enable you to be ready for action in Spring.

 

ESR – Emotional Stress Release

ESR – Self help with kinesiology

This very simple technique is also very powerful and it’s something that you can easily learn to do for yourself and others.  Quite simply, the points in the picture below are gently held, either with the whole hand (easier than exactly locating the points) or with two fingers on each point.

For your own personal use you can hold these points while focusing of any situation that you are finding stressful.  Call the situation to mind, think of how it makes you feel, any colours, smells or sounds associated with the issue.  Remember to breathe while you are holding the points. You could also put an essential oil on your fingertips for greater relaxation.

You could now imagine how you would like the situation to be.  Continue holding the points until you lose focus on the issue.

Now revisit the original stressful situation and see how it feels.  Has it changed?  Has the emotional charge reduced?

I once did ESR for my small niece when she fell off a swing.  I held the points (whole hand over the forehead) and said to her “what happened”, she gave me a blubbery, incoherent answer.  I continued to hold the points saying “what happened” a few times, then she took a deep breath, calmed down and went back to playing.  The stress of the incident had been released.  It is great to use with stressed children.

The points we are working with here are Gall Bladder 14.  This is a neuro vascular point for many muscles in the body, including muscles that relate to the Central, Stomach and Bladder meridians.