Hedgerow bounty

Last weekend I started a new adventure.local herbs

It’s a journey of discovery that will take me the length and breadth of our local hedgerows, and will see my airing cupboard turned into a drying room, and my kitchen turned into a laboratory!

I started a new course…Applied Herbal Choices for Animals – Integrating the study of the innate behaviour of animals (particularly focusing on horses and dogs) to self-medicate from nature, with knowledge of oils and wild herbs.

Saturday saw twelve of us venture out of our farm-based classroom into the fields beyond to explore the huge variety of plants (which I previously thought of as weeds mostly!) that animals can use to self-medicate, and that we can gather in and prepare as remedies.

Within 100 yards of the classroom, guided by our expert, Chris Hope – BSc (hons) in Medicinal Horticulture, we found…

  • Plantain (broad leaf)
  • White Deadnettle
  • Hogweed
  • Marigold
  • Cleavers
  • Willowherb
  • Thistle
  • Dock
  • Common Comfrey
  • Bramble & blackberries (yum!)
  • Hawthorn & haw berries
  • Common Mallow
  • Dandelion
  • Horseradish
  • Yarrow
  • Wild Rocket
  • Mugwort
  • Burdock
  • Rosehips

Not a bad selection for us to start with!

We were introduced to the families of plants;  the characteristics of the carrot, mint, daisy, coffee, dock, rose etc that make them easier to identify, and then in the afternoon went back to the classroom to see what we could make with them.  More on that in a future blog.

For now, here are some images from the Autumn forage.

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