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CherryLichenBlog5

Autumn is a second spring

when every leaf is a flower

-Albert Camus
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Herb Circle Oct 9 2011 Wintergreen 082

For days I watched as the Ash tree fairy came during my sleep and painted, silently, a few more leaves at a time. She took about eight days. One morning when I came down to check, all the gold leaves had been swept away in the night's breeze, and the tree was bare.

She had moved on to her next masterpiece, the succession of scarlet, copper and frosted sage along the red maples, beech trees, and silver maples. Each morning when I journal and gaze out across the horse field, there is a little something different.

soda-infusions

The turning of the tree colors

...indicates the time of seeds and roots. Autumn gives us the lesson if intrinsically linked life and death. The fruits, sweet and juicy, falling to the ground in rotting decay, providing mulch and nutrients for the seed's next life. We are ripe and we are seeding, we are full enough to empty ourselves of waste. Trees let go of winged seeds, plants retract their sap back into their earthbound roots, storing vitality to last the winter.

Autumn medicine is the medicine of fruit, seed, and root.

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Fresh Ginger Oil and Ginger Rhizome ~ Zingiber officinale - Photo by Kristine Brown of Herbal Roots Zine

Crock Pot Ginger Oil

The other day I was compelled to dig up my recipe for Ginger root oil. Within hours, someone posted the same archived recipe of mine! It was serendipitous, and I knew then it was the right recipe to share with you this week.

(Thanks Shamanic Winds!)

To start, the basic thing to remember about making herbal infused oils is that oil and water don't mix. Therefore, the more water in your plant material, the more likely it is that your oil, if left to infuse on it's own, could grow mold and/or rot all the way through. This doesn't always happen - infused oils are mysterious indeed - and you'll find a range of different opinions and experiences throughout the herbal community.

I'm of the opinion/experience that each plant likes a certain method, and it's based mostly on how much water content it has, how much heat it can tolerate, and how well the healing properties will be absorbed into the oil.

Fresh Ginger root is a perfect example of an herb that is juicy, and I've found that the best oil is made through my simple crock pot method. You can also make infused oil from dried root, though it yields a different result. The fresh oil is gingery, golden, and deeply but gently warming.

GINGER OIL

2 cups roughly chopped or sliced fresh ginger root
3 cups oil: Olive, Coconut, Sesame, Jojoba, Palm, or animal tallow/lard work best
1 crock pot, very well cleaned of any food or liquid debris.
2 days of time when you'll be mostly home
1 mason jar with clean lid
strainer
cheesecloth or muslin

Place ginger into crock pot on lowest setting, or low alternate heat setting. Cover with the oil. Leave on for two days with monitoring as not to boil or burn the oil. You can manually turn the heat off for spells of time if needed, to keep the temperature controlled. It shouldn't get hot enough to bubble. Some folks have found success using a yogurt maker.
The cover should be left ajar to allow the evaporation of water from the ginger root.

Decant by straining your oil through cheesecloth or muslin.

Let your oil sit in a clear mason jar for a day; you may see some additional water - oil separation. Separate them further by carefully pouring off the oil from the water, or by syphoning it out with a clean turkey baster.

Be sure to complete your oil so that it has no remaining water content. It will take some patience but is well worth it. You will not have the same glorious results by using dry root or the essential oil.

What to do with your ginger oil?

~Treat your cold feet to the warm protection and circulatory support of ginger oil before you put your boots on for winter snow shoveling.

~Rub onto your womb and lower back for supreme moontime comfort.

~Massage into stiff aching joints from dryness, fatigue, or arthritis.

~Rub into sore muscles before or after athletics for sports recovery help

~Add to a bathful of hot water and epsom salts.

~Add it to a tamari salad dressing (if you used edible oil)

~Give it away to an aching elder

~Make a ginger-eucalyptus chest rub salve

~Massage congested breast tissue and lymph glands

~Mix it with half glycerin for a very warm and erotic love lubricant!

Fresh Ginger root oil is one of the hardest infused oils to make, as any herbalist will remind us of how quickly it becomes a disaterous rotton mess.

But with the magic of a crock pot and a little patience, this heartwarming, inexpensive oil can be treasured by anyone. The key is to leave the top open or half off and allow the moisture to escape, and to control the heat.

And for gifting? Make a matching set of Ginger root infused vinegar, honey, or oxymel!

Cheers to your cozy ginger toes!!

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AA Pine and Temple 030

TEMPLE ~ A Woman's Breast and Belly Care Collection

Apothecary News

Oh my! Goodies have been flying off the shelves this week. Thank you!
If you're hoping for something special, there are still a few left of my proprietary blends in TEMPLE, a woman's breast a belly care collection.

Exquisite pure essential oils create the Temple Aroma-Oil, wildcrafted lymph and womb supporting herbs create the delicious Ambrosia elixir, and herbal infused oils including breast loving red clover, plantain, and elder whipped with local beeswax and Jasmine oil make a creamy, dreamy, breast massage balm.

AA Pine and Temple 062

Enchanted Forest Set ~ Elixir and Wand

Healing from the Forest

The resinous, aromatic magic of the forest is richly rendered in this set, allowing you to feel grounded, connected, and clear no matter where you go. The forest wand is perfect for camping, hiking, or first aid kits, and its durable container makes it easy to carry in your bag.
Whether it's travel, family parties, trick-or-treating; Enchanted Forest is the perfect ally to have with you, and a perfect gift for the Naturalist!

PLUS I've slashed $10 OFF the Enchanted forest set! (That's nearly 25%)

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Herbal Roots Zine

Herbal Roots Zine

A special thank you to Kristine Brown, the artist and plant Genie behind Herbal Roots Zine, for the ginger photo this week!

I've been a fan since the first issue. I love HRZ for myself and have used it in numerous classes with kids. It's beautiful, thorough, comprehensive, inspiring, instructive, and FUN.

Subscribe to a year of wisdom, or order the Ginger back issue from January 2010 - or both!!

I Heart HRZ!!!!!

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Plant Healer Magazine

Plant Healer Magazine

Last but certainly not least - Consider the breathtaking compilation of today's most riveting herbal knowledge for your holiday gifting!

Plant Healer Magazine is taking the herbal community by storm with it's honest revealings from practicing herbalist, stunning artwork, and poignant perspectives on healing. Do not miss your chance to hold a piece of transformational healing and history in your hands!

I'm truly honored to be a regular contributor. The first Annual contains my pieces on Black Birch, Wildcrafting, Witch Hazel, and a comprehensive article on harvesting Tree Medicine.

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“And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet

and the winds long to play with your hair.”

-Kahlil Gibran

Enjoy this Pumpkin-Spiced weather, my friends!

~Ananda

www.PlantJourneys.com

(Prefer to view this online?)

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