Monday, April 13, 2009

Friends, News, and the Woods

My friend Susan Hess at Farm at Coventry ordered the upcoming issue for her Homestead Herbalism class, and I scurried to get them there. They are seeing the first issues to get out. The others are in sacks waiting to go to the post office as soon as I get up from the desk.
Another friend, Sarah Campbell was featured in an article about labyrinths. Her business - Herbs from the Labyrinth originally used mostly herbs which were grown in the labyrinth to make salves, balms, and such, but has outgrown that possibility now. This picture was taken by Blaine Shahan for the Lancaster Sunday News. There is a link for the full article under the photo.

I'd also like to share this video from a friend's band - Hippie Cream: They have a very unique sound. Based in the LA area, they are starting to be pretty well known on the club scene. I love Hippie Cream! Have a listen, and visit for more MP3's.

Molly and I once again headed out for our Sunday jaunt. I am seriously overjoyed watching her as she looks closely at plants, asks questions, and even bent down to taste a ramp leaf. When she was small, she was always with me in the garden - usually chewing on onion grass or covered with mulberry juice. Her very favorite way to spend the day was picking violets for syrup. She loved the idea that nobody asked her to keep the stems longer - she could just pop the flowers off. That's MUCH more fun. As time went on, she wasn't terribly interested anymore. Boys. Nuff said. But now it is returning as an interest, and I am happy about that. It is something that gives me so much pleasure that I want her to find that too - it's free, it's always there, it is easy to find. We all need to have something we enjoy so readily available.
So even though I am in the woods nearly every day right now, she goes along at least once a week.

I do not know what the arrow shaped leaf is. It has popped into my consciousness before, but just as quickly passed out, while the Spring Beauty leaves and spotted Trout Lily leaves carpet the ground around them. Soon the flowers for the latter two will bloom and I will forget all about those leaves. Anyone know what they are?This little guy cracked me up. It has been YEARS since I've seen a salamander. Normally there is not a lot of picking up rocks or pieces of wood. We leave things alone as much as possible. This guy happens to live exactly where I *thought* I put in some trillium, so moving the piece of log was meant to enable the plant to come up. The wood went right back over him. When we were kids, our grandfather used to take us "sally" hunting in the woods around the house. Looking back, there wasn't any real purpose. It was probably even a pretty bad thing to encourage kids to do - but it instilled a real curiousity about the woods for me, and I am thankful. Maybe this spring I'll look under some rocks in the creekbed and find a newt just for old time's sake.
These bloodroot bloom their heads off while the mayapples at the very top of the picture push up through the ground. The succession of spring blooms has begun and for the next month or so, it will be a constant source of amazement and there will be much medicine making to be done.

This little cottage in the woods is really my nephew's old camp cabin from when he was a kid. It was built across the creek - and by that I mean that the building is over the water. There is a drawbridge to enter. A hammock still hangs across the far corner. What a great (if somewhat mosquito infested) place for a kid to spend his days!


Laura said...

Love love love it all!!!

Laura said...

And that's what I love to see - aside from the woods and its wonderful creatures - a whole bunch of Essential Herbal readers! Right on!!!

nettlejuice said...

We found a salamander yesterday too. The boys are excellent for that, always lifting up rocks and old logs to see what's under there, then placing them gently back of course.

marnie said...

Thank you Tina! You just helped me to identify chickweed growing by my lemon balm. I then read a blog of yours from 2007 on chickweed. I'm now off to the living room to show my hubby; he'll be "thrilled". (Ha!) Gonna gather this and infuse it with my jewelweed sunflower oil for my hand salve. Cool, cool, cool.

Patricia said...

Love going on the strolls through the woods with you. Thanks for inviting us. I am doing the happy dance, my TEH finally arrived today. Think I may have someone 'borowing' it at the post office.
Patricia Rose-A Potpourri of Fabric, Fragrance and Findings