All About Greenhouses ~ PDF e-Book

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All About Greenhouses
Green Houses
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From construction plans to tools and accessories for greenhouses, individuals are working on all fours to satisfy the increasing demands of consumers who have made building their own greenhouses top priority.

This trend, which started humbly in the 70’s, is now a full-fledged endeavor on the part of greenhouse entrepreneurs and “homesteaders.”

Most greenhouse owners are familiar with the advantages of growing their own plants and flowers, prolonging the growing season and the possibility of heating their home. And who knows? They could be selling fresh produce in the communities they live in.

There are many greenhouse models to choose from. You can go from affordable to very expensive. You can build a greenhouse by using junk or a plastic film stretched over a rudimentary structure, or purchase elaborate metal and glass pre-manufactured sunrooms.

Each of them serves the fundamental function of extending the growing season. Even the question of irrigation can be simple or complex, depending upon your preferences. Just want to make it a hobby? Why not? Homeowners attach theirs to their homes. Even schools have greenhouses built by elementary and high school students.

Finally, the wholesome taste of a homegrown tomato! Everyone knows there is a difference. But really, between you and I, it goes beyond just tomatoes. Perseverance, labor of love and the sweet anticipation of “harvest time” are what truly matter.

All About Greenhouses

Table of Contents
Introduction:
Chapter 1:
A Peek into a Greenhouse
What is a greenhouse?
How does a greenhouse capture heat?
Chapter 2:
Types of Greenhouses
Hot Greenhouse
Warm Greenhouse
Cool Greenhouse
Lean-To
Detached
Ridge/Furrow
Glass
Fiberglass
Plastic
Polythylene
PVC
Chapter 3:
Tools and Materials for Your Greenhouse
Greenhouse Tables, Shelving and Plant Holders
Greenhouse Garden Hose Indoor/Outdoor
Importance of Watering Wand
Chapter 4:
Tips for Your Greenhouse
Chapter 5:
Greenhouse Resources/References for Hobbyists
Conclusion

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Chinese Herbal Medicine
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Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond

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Backyard Hobby Greenhouse

  • Greenhouse with automatic roof vent, double doors and side shelves
  • 4 mm twin polycarbonate thermoplastic for optimal durability, insulation
  • Hinged double doors for easy access; side vents and automatic roof-vent for airflow
  • Shelves on 2 walls for starts and shorter plants; 100 percent UV protection protects skin
  • Heavy gauge aluminum frame for durability; measures 12 by 8 by 7-1/2 feet (l x w x h)

Additional Models Here ~


How to Build A Backyard Fish Pond ~ PDF e-Book

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How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
Fish Ponds
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Building a pond is a great experience that you will love for years and years, and since it is a creative endeavor, you really can put your own signature on it.

This e-book will give you the steps to take as you plan and many pointers along the way. Use your imagination and try different things to make it just the way you want it and you’ll end up with a project you’ll be proud of and a wonderful pond to boot!

How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond

Table of Contents

Introduction:

Chapter 1: Pre-Digging Considerations

Chapter 2: Pond Construction

Chapter 3: Maximum Pond / Minimum Problems

Chapter 4: Hooking Everything Up

Chapter 5: Life on the Edges

Chapter 6: Life on the Inside

Chapter 7: Something’s Fishy

Chapter 8: Pond Guard & Pond Liner

Chapter 9: Pond Pumps

Chapter 10: UV Filters

Chapter 11: Pond Water Filters

Closing:

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Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Tea Remedies
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
All About Greenhouses

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Building A Vegetable Garden ~ PDF e-Book

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Your Guide to Building A Vegetable Garden
Build Veg Garden
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A Complete & Practical Guide to Planting and Caring for Vegetables, Fruits & Berries.


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There are more reasons to-day than ever before why the owner of a small place should have his, or her, own vegetable garden. The days of home weaving, home cheese-making, home meat-packing, are gone. With a thousand and one other
things that used to be made or done at home, they have left the fireside and followed the factory chimney. These things could be turned over to machinery. The growing of vegetables cannot be so disposed of.

Building A Vegetable Garden

Table of Contents

PART ONE
Introduction
Why You Should Garden
Requisites of the Home Vegetable Garden
The Planting Plan
Implements and Their Uses
Manures, Fertilizers & Mulching
The Soil and its Preparation
PART TWO–VEGETABLES
Starting the Plants
Sowing and Planting
The Cultivation of Vegetables
The Vegetables & Their Special Needs
Best Varieties of the Garden Vegetables
Insects & Disease ~ Methods of Fighting Them
Harvesting & Storing
PART THREE–FRUITS
The Varieties of Pome & Stone Fruits
Planting; Culitvation; Filler Crops
Pruning, Spraying, Harvesting

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Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Tea Remedies
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

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Household Plant Hazards for Pets ~ PDF e-Book

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Household Plant Hazards for Pets
Plant Hazards Pets
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Any plant that is eaten by our pets can cause some irritation and occasional vomiting. Some plants are more toxic or poisonous than others. Learn what these household plants are and the symptions associated with each one!
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Our pets are a part of our family. They play with us, eat with us, sleep with us and share our home with us. We sometimes forget they are a different species from us and this can get our pets into trouble. It is up to us to keep our pets safe in our environment.

There are plants that when our curious pet decides to chew
on that can harm them. There are foods that are safe for us to eat, but toxic for our pets and there are medications that we don’t think twice about taking, but when accidentally eaten by our pet can harm or even kill them.

Pet proofing your home is an important part of being a pet caretaker. Knowing what is toxic or harmful to your pet is the first step.

Household Plant Hazards for Pets

Table of Contents

Introduction
Animal Poison Control Center
There are numerous plants and species listed but due to the nature of the content ~ I will not reveal the Table of Contents at this time.

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Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
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Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

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Herbal Tea Remedies ~ PDF e-Book

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Your Guide to Herbal Tea Remedies
Herbal Teas
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There are over 85 Natural Herbal Tea Recipes to choose from. Remedies such as Detox Tea, Aches and Pains Tea, Tea for Nervousness, Sleep Tea Recipe, Upset Stomach Tea, Urinary Infection Tea, and the list goes on and on!
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There are so many ways that our immune systems can be overwhelmed … it’s in our air, our water, our food, our workplace and even our stresses through out the day.

The following recipe blends within the e-Book consists of organic and wild herbs that is not only helpful but comforting, strengthening and tasty.~ Order Your Copy Today~

Herbal Tea Remedies

Table of Contents

21st Century Tea
ADD/ADHD Remedy tea
After Dinner Carminative Tea
Allergy Season Blend
Aphrodite Blend Tea
Bladder Infections Tea
Blood Builder Tea
Blossoms of Health Tea
Blues Tea
Breast Health Tea
Bronchial Congestion Tea
Calming Tea 1
Calming Tea 2
Colds and Flu Tea
Colds and Hoarseness Tea
Winter Tea
Coughing Fits Tea
Crone Root Tea
Detoxification Tea
Dream Tea
Dual Purpose Tea
Echinacea & Roots Tea
Evening Repose Tea
Fever Reducer Tea
Flashes Blend Tea
Flu-away
Fluid Retention Tea
Tea for menstrual problems, fertility and childbirth.
Forests Tea (formerly Lung Blend)
Happy Man Tea Blend
Happy Tummy Tea
Headache Tea
Healing Ginger tea
Insomnia Tea
Less Stress Tea
Mellow Mood Tea
Memory Zest Blend
Migraine Tea
Moon Ease Tea
My Nerves Are Shot Tea!
Natural Concentration Tea
Nausea Tea
Nervous Stomach Tea
Nervous Tension Tea
“No-Sweat” Tea
Nursing Mother’s Tea
Pinkeye tea recipe
Pleasant Dreams
Quiet Child Tea
Quiet Time Tea
Rejuvenation Tea
Relaxation Tea
Sleep Tea Recipe
Soothing Tea
Spiced Relief
Tea For Health
Tea for Nervousness
Tummy Tea
Upset Stomach Tea
Urinary Infection Tea
Winter Tea
Wise Woman Tea
Beauty From the Inside out!
Pain Killer Tea
Stress-Reducing Rest
Soar throat
The Common Cold
Stomach ache
Fever buster Tea
Dry, raspy cough
Aches and Pains Tea
Blood Builder Tea
Constipation Tea
Cramp Tea
Detox Tea
Dry Congestion Tea
During cold or sinus season Tea
End of Your Rope Tea
Epilepsy Combination
Tea For Digestive Problems
Heartburn Tea
Hops Sleep Blend
Memory Minder Tea
Stop that Cough Tea
Super Relaxer Tea
Tranquility Tea
Baby Sleep Tea
Depression Tamer Tea
Very Odd Cure For Bad Breath

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5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden
Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

Holistic Herbs ~ Your Guide to Herb Gardening

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Chinese Herbal Medicine ~ PDF e-Book

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Your Guide to Growing Chinese Herbal Medicine
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If you are familiar with Chinese medicine as an alternative, you may have also noticed that it doesn’t seem like there are a lot who are advertising the alternatives. Just because this is true, you don’t have to give up hope to finding your options with your health. Through some simple searching, you can find the best way to optimize your health and energy.

Finding a way to link the mind, body and spirit also means finding examples of those who have been initiating alternative health. There are a variety of possibilities that are available, all which can link you to understanding and practicing your flow of energy.

Your Guide to Chinese Herbal Medicine

Table of Contents
Introduction:
History of Traditional Chinese Medicine
The Five Elements of Oriental Medicine
Relating the Elements for Holistic Healing
Finding Alternative Solutions through Meridian Systems
Yoga as a Chinese Medicine
Using Science to Prove Chinese Medicine
Does Chinese Medicine Work?
Pathology and your Energy
Balanced Cures for Imbalances in Problems
Chinese Medicine and Mental Health
Finding a Diagnosis with Chinese Medicine
Understanding Internal Organs through Zang Fu Theory
Mind, Spirit and Body and Chinese Medicine
Connecting To Your Breath/center>
Tuina and Chinese Medicine
Using a Massage for Healing
The Use of Energy in Your Body
The Practice of QiGong in Chinese Medicine
Chinese Food Therapy
The 6 External Pathogens
Chinese Medicine and Herbal Remedies
Acupuncture in Chinese Medicine
Is Acupuncture For You?
The Points of Acupuncture:
Chinese Medicine Hierarchy of Medicine
The Principle of Yin and Yang for Medicine
Checking Your Pulse for a Diagnosis

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5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden
Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Tea Remedies
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

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Natural Herbal Cures ~ PDF e-Book

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Your Guide to Natural Herbal Cures
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There are several choices available for people who are looking for alternative remedies, including Acupuncture, Yoga, Qigong, Tai chi, Ayurveda, hydrotherapy, massage therapy, homeopathy, energy medicines, holistic approaches, and aromatherapy.

In fact, the number of herbal remedies available for different ailments equals (if not exceeds) the number of regular drug treatments provided by pharmaceutical companies.

This is where herbal remedies leave the mainstream drugs behind. This is also the reason why so many people are daily turning to herbal therapies. Herbal remedies treat the cause of the disease and not the symptoms (like conventional drugs). Herbal remedies also have almost no side effects.

Your Guide to Natural Herbal Cures

Table of Contents

Introduction:
Conventional Cures VS Natural Herbal Cures
The Alternative Cure Advantage
Natural Herbs
Herbology
Alternative Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Medicinal Cures
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Different Types of Herbal Medicine
Herbal Diet Supplements
Advantages of Herbal Diet Supplements
Are Their Any Side Effects To Natural Cures?
Ayurveda
Natural Skin Remedies/center>
Herbal Acne Remedies
Natural Herbal Recipes

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Discover Other Individual Bonus e-Books Available:
5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden
Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Herbal Tea Remedies
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

Holistic Herbs ~ Your Guide to Herb Gardening

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Growing Bonsai ~ PDF e-Book

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This e-book covers the History, Care, Feeding and Watering of Bonsai’s. Indoor vs. Outdoor care is addressed as well as the numerous types of Bonsia’s.


Your Guide to Growing Bonsai
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Many people consider bonsai a form of art. Bonsai can be an art, or for many, a hobby. Bonsai is also a form of horticulture and landscaping. Many interpretations of bonsai exist, something you will learn in this introductory guide to bonsai.

Bonsai is in fact, an ancient practice involving the shaping and pruning of trees and shrubs into a structured form. The practice of bonsai for many can be quite peaceful and relaxing. Many engage in bonsai as a form of meditation or stress relief. Others enjoy the challenge of creating the perfect bonsai.

Now a days bonsai takes on many contemporary styles and traditions. The art of bonsai has evolved tremendously for centuries. There is no one type of bonsai, and no one way to practice bonsai. There are some methods of refining bonsai techniques however, which often result in more eloquent bonsai plants.

Bonsai styles and types vary immensely. In fact, you would be hard-pressed to find two bonsai plants that looked identical, unless the bonsai master intended for this to happen. If this were the case the bonsai master would have to spend hours pruning, wiring and shaping his or her plants to achieve the desired effect.

Your Guide to Growing Bonsai

Table of Contents

Introduction:
Modern Bonsai
History of Bonsai
Explanation of Bonsai
Basic Bonsai Care
Bonsai Overview
Keeping Bonsai Small
Watering Your Bonsai
Feeding Your Bonsai
Care Review for Primary Bonsai
Selecting Your Tree
Outdoor and Indoor Bonsai Care
Bonsai and Pruning
Species of Bonsai
Cedar Elm – Ulmus Crassifolia
Chinese Elm – Ulmu Parvifolia
Ficus
Japanese Maple – Acer Palmatum
Juniper – Juniperus
Fuchsia
Camellia
Types of Bonsai
Bonsai Types and Styles
Basic Bonsai Care
Primary Categories
Formal Upright
Formal Upright Techniques/center>
Informal Bonsai
Informal Bonsai Techniques
Slanting Bonsai Category
Slanting Bonsai Techniques
Cascade and Semi-Cascade Style Bonsai
Procedures and Techniques
Bonsai FAQ
Resources

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Discover Other Individual Bonus e-Books Available:
5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden
Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Tea Remedies
Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

Holistic Herbs ~ Your Guide to Herb Gardening

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Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes ~ PDF e-Book

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Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes
big juicy tomatoes
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The tomato is the nation’s most popular vegetable for individuals to grow at home. You’ll find them everywhere. In large, rural gardens, in the middle of suburbia . . . plants standing obediently against houses in the city . . . and in containers on top of skyscrapers in metropolitan areas.

Yes, it seems everyone wants to grow tomatoes. If you know what you’re doing, it’s really not a difficult process at all. When I first started, I discovered the hardest part of growing a tomato was deciding on one or two varieties of the plant.

Your Guide to Growing Big Juicy Tomatoes

Table of Contents

Introduction:
Chapter 1: Varieties: Which Ones Are for You?
Chapter 2: Growing Healthy Tomatoes
Chapter 3: Fertilizing and Maintenance
Chapter 4: Harvesting Your Crop
Chapter 5: Diseases and Pests
Chapter 6: Growing Organically
Conclusion:
Appendix: Tomato Terms
Resources

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Kali S. Winters

Discover Other Individual Bonus e-Books Available:
5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden
Holistic Remedies
The Golden Book of Orchids
Growing Bonsai
Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
Herbal Tea Remedies
Building A Vegetable Garden
Household Plant Hazards for Pets
How To Build a Backyard Fish Pond
All About Greenhouses

Holistic Herbs ~ Your Guide to Herb Gardening

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The Golden Book of Orchids ~ PDF e-Book

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The Golden Book of Orchids
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Because of the sheer number of orchid species, even botanists have a hard time classifying the plants. There is often some confusion when it comes to naming the various specimens.

One of the things that separate particular species from other plant species and other orchid species is that they freely cross-pollinate and create hybrids with other orchids. This allows orchid keepers and enthusiasts to create beautiful hybrids if they wish.

While these plants can be grown outside of your home, the most common specimens can be grown quite well inside your home as well.

The Golden Book of Orchids

Table of Contents

Part 1: The Majestic World of Orchids
Oncidium Orchids
Light Requirement
Water Requirement
Other Requirements of the Oncidium Orchid
Phalaenopsis Orchids
Light Requirement
Water Requirement
On Using Fertilizers
Other Requirements of Phalaenopsis Orchids
The Golden List of Popular Orchids in the US
Cattleya Orchids
Cymbidium Orchids
Dendrobium Orchids
Epidendrum Orchids
Masdevilla Orchids
Miltonia Orchids
Odontoglossum Orchids
Paphiopedilum Orchids
Vanda Orchids

Part 2: Selection & Care of Orchids
Using Fertilizers for the First Time?
Orchids & Humidity
Orchids & Air Movement
Guidelines for Orchid Shopping
Bringing Home an Orchid
Guidelines for Growing Indoor Orchids
Repotting Orchids Properly
How to Water Orchids Properly
Common Mistakes in Watering Orchids
Best Practices in Watering Orchids
Factors to Consider Before Watering
Best Care for Orchids
Direct Sunlight or Not?
Common Orchid Pests & Plant Diseases
Keeping Your Orchids Free of Pests & Diseases
Frequently Asked Questions About Orchids (FAQ)
General Care & Concerns
Orchid Troubleshooting
References

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5 Easy Ways To Make Money With Your Herb Garden ~ PDF e-Book

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Your attempts at making money from your passion may indeed catapult you into a realm you never really actually considered before.

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On a smaller scale and at a beginning point, perhaps your desire is to use your herbs to earn just a bit more money to finance . . .er. . . your passion for herbs. Hey, that’s a great concept!

I’m just here to tell you that regardless of whether you want to create a full-fledge business or if you are satisfied with selling a few items here or there, you can do it through herbs.

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Chinese Herbal Medicine
Natural Herbal Cures
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Household Plant Hazards for Pets
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All About Greenhouses

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Equipment for Your Herbs


Below are some tools and links to help you with Harvesting and Storing your herbs.

Articles of Interest:
Preserving Herbs
Harvesting Your Herbs
Harvesting and Drying Herbs
Poultice Recipe

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Tea Balls

              

Tea Infuser

              

Herb Drying Trays

              

Dehydrators

              

              

Distill Essential Oils

              

Grow Your Own Culinary Herbs

              

Garden Kitchen Gadgets

              



Where to Purchase Essential Oils ~ Essential Oil Kits


Below Please find several sources where you are able purchase Essential Oils

Back To Essential Oils Guide:

Where To Purchase Essential Oils A-F
Where To Purchase Essential Oils G-M
Where To Purchase Essential Oils N-Z

Essential Oil Kits or Search Amazon

              

              

Essential Oil Equipment:
              

Tea Tree Oil Benefits: or Search for Tree Tea Oil for Acne

              

How Prevent Hair Fall or Search Amazon

              

Benefits of Cinnamon: or Search Amazon

              

Hair Growing Oils: or Search Amazon

              

Benefits from Ginger or Search Amazon

              


Where to Purchase Essential Oils N-Z

Learn more about Essential Oils and how to apply them. Below you will find several links where you are able to purchase Essential Oils.

Where to Purchase Essential Oils A – F
Where to Purchase Essential Oils G-M
Where to Purchase Essential Oils ~ Additional Kits


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More About Essential Oils

Neroli Essential Oil Recipes: or Search Amazon

              

Oregano Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Patchouli Oil or Search Amazon

              

Peppermint Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Pine Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Rose Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Rosemary Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Sandalwood Essential Oils Guide: or Search Amazon

              

Tea Tree Oil: or Search Amazon

              

Thyme Oils: or Search Amazon

              

Ylang Ylang Benefits: or Search Amazon

              



Where to Purchase Essential Oils G-M


Learn more about Essential Oils and how to apply them. Below you will find several links where you are able to purchase Essential Oils.

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More About Essential Oils

Where to Purchase Essential Oils A-F
Where To Purchase Essential Oils N-Z
Where To Purchase Essential Oils ~ Kits

Geranium Oils or Search Amazon

              

Grapefruit Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Helichrysum Essential Oil: or Search Amazon

              

Jasmine the Plant: or Search Amazon

              

Lavendar Oil or Search Amazon

              

Lemon Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Mandarin Benefits: or Search Amazon

              

Marjoram Uses: or Search Amazon

              

Myrrh Oils: or Search Amazon

              


Where to Purchase Essential Oils A-F


Learn more about Essential Oils and how to apply them. Below you will find several links where you are able to purchase Essential Oils.

Back to: Main Articles

More About Essential Oils

Additional Articles:
Where to Purchase Essential Oils G-M
Where to Purchase Essential Oils N-Z
Where To Purchase Essential Oils ~ Kits

Basil Oil or Search Amazon

              

Bay Essential Oil or Search Amazon

              

Bergamot Plants or Search Amazon

              

Camomile Benefits or Search Amazon

              

Cinnamon Benefits or Search Amazon

              

Clary Sage or Search Amazon

              

Clove Seeds or Search Amazon

              

Euculyptus Oil or Search Amazon

              

Frankincense Benefits or Search Amazon

              


List of Perennials ~ List of Fail-Safe Plants

Gardening is more fun if you have some success to show for your time and effort. The following is a list of favorite fail-safe perennial plants:

Amsonia hubrechtli (Thread-leaf Blue Star): This former Perennial Plant of the Year is an American native with foliage that looks beautiful into late October.

Aster ‘Purple Dome’:  It likes the sun and will bloom from September until frost. Reaches 24 inches in height.

 

Autumn Bride Coral Bells (Heuchera villosa macrorrhiza):  A vigorous plant that is different from other coral bells. It reaches 20 inches, with wands of white in fall.

 

Autumn Sun Rudbeckia (Rudbeckia laciniata ‘herbsonne’): A dramatic, vigorous coneflower that reaches 5-6 feet high with bright yellow daisy-like flowers.

Baptisia Australis (Blue false indigo): A native plant that is drought-tolerant and super-adaptable.

Bigroot Geranium: This hardy perennial will grow in sun, shade, moist or dry conditions. Geranium macrorrhizum (pink) and White Ness (white) are favorites.

Black-Eyed Susan Summer Blaze (Rudbeckia ‘Summer Blaze’): This bright yellow plant thrives in full sun and attracts bees, butterflies and birds.

 

Blue Star Japanese Aster (Kalimeris incise “Blue Star’):  2 feet tall, pale blue flowers that bloom from midsummer. The deer leave it alone.

Boltonia ‘Snow Bank’: A large plant reaching 5-6 feet, covered with hundreds of white daisy like flowers in early September through October.


Carex ‘Ice Dance’: Good for the semi-shade garden, it forms low mounds (up to 12 inches) of variegated foliage; moderate rate of spread.

Coral Bells (Heuchera): You can’t go wrong with any of the scores of varieties that come in all colors, from maroon to black to peach. Most like partial shade and they are deer-resistant.

 

Day Lilies: Known as being indestructible, day lilies come in more than 100,000 varieties. Each year a variety is name the Stout Silver Medal Award Winner; any of the winners should be great. Find the listing at www.daylilies.org

 

Lady’s Mantle (Alchemilla molis): A mounded plant with chartreuses leaves and unusual texture.

 

Montrose White Calamint (Calamintha nepeta ‘Montrose white’): 18 inches high, 30 inches wide and covered with tiny white flowers that bloom for months.

Northwind Switch Grass: Tall ornamental grass grows in a tight upright form and is very hardy.

 

Perennial Forget-Me-Not (Brunnera macrophylla): Its dainty sky-blue flowers bloom for up to six weeks in spring, and its heart shaped leaves look great all season.  Super hardy; prefers partial shade.

Rozanne Geranium: This perennial’s violet flowers bloom from June to September. 18 to 20 inches tall and 24 inches wide. A former Perennial Plant of the Year.

Ruby Star Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea ‘Ruby Star’): As tall as 48 inches, this coneflower attracts birds but is deer-resistant.

Salvia ‘May Night’: An older hardy Salvia cultivar (1955) but still reliable, it provides spikes of deep indigo blue from the end of May into June. Needs well drained soil.

Shasta Daisy Becky: One of the best Shasta daisies. It blooms prolifically from July through August and reaches 30 inches or taller.

Learn How to Build an Herb Garden Here ~More on List of Perennials

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S Winters

Articles of Interest:
Plants Listed by Common Names
List of Essential Oils Blends
Essential Oil Properties

 


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Kali’s Series on Beautiful Tips for Skin & Hair

Follow Kali’s entire series on Beautiful Tips for Skin and Hair below:

Learn to create over 1000 home hair remedies… 
Visit Kali’s sister site: Hair Remedies at Home

 

Beautiful Tips for Skin and Hair ~Part 1

Beautiful Tips for Skin and Hair Part 2 ~ List of Beauty Herbs



Bay Essential Oil

Bay rum essential oil, Pimenta racemosa, has a sweet, spicy, balsamic aroma. It is a warming oil that helps calm the mind and relieve aches and pains from rheumatism.

Bay essential oil can be used in hair care preparations to relieve scalp conditions and to act as a hair tonic. Combine with rose and juniper for a calming bath oil. Bay blends nicely with cedarwood, eucalyptus, geranium, ginger, juniper, lavender, citruses, rosemary and ylang ylang. Bay is often used to make after shaves. Should not be confused with bay laurel oil.


Bay EO Properties:

Botanical Name: Pimenta racemosa

Botanical Family: Myrtaceae—Not to be confused with Laurel leaf oil (Laurus nobilis)Bay Leaves

Origin: St. Thomas (Virgin Islands), Jamaica, South and Central America. Modern: the oil is obtained mostly from Morocco and Spain.

Method of Extraction: Steam (salt or sea water sometimes used in process) distilled from the leaves collected from five-year old (minimum) shrubs.

Perfume Note: Top note

Aroma: Spicy, fresh, sweet, balsamic undertone

Yield: 0.5-1.5%

Blends Well With: Cedar Wood, Coriander, Eucalyptus, Geranium, Ginger, Juniper, Lavender, Lemon, Orange, Rose, Rosemary, Thyme and Ylang-Ylang.

Most Valuable Uses: Rheumatism, muscular pain, neuralgia, circulation, colds, flu, calming, dental infections, diarrhea, skin infections, general fatigue.

Therapeutic Properties: Antiseptic, antibiotic, analgesic, anti-neuralgic, anti-infectious, general stimulant, hypertensive.

Health Benefits: Protects against septic, inhibits microbial growth, gives relief from pain of neuralgia, relaxes spasm, pain relief, increases appetite, tightens gums & muscles and helps stop hair fall & hemorrhage, promotes bile secretion, opens obstructed menstruations, reduces fever, kills & repels insects, sedates inflammations & nervous afflictions, good for stomach, increases perspiration & removal of toxins, tones up body

Main Chemical Components: Eugenol,Bay Pimenta Chavicol, Myrcene, Cineol, Menthyl eugenol.

Cautions: Don’t use bay oil if you have cancer. Are a hemophilia or prone to alcoholism. Use in moderation.

Consistency: Medium to watery viscosity – deep yellow in color

Shelf Life: 1 year

Substitutions: Sometimes known as “Bay Rum” Essential Oil

Suggested Uses: Bay oil can be used in the treatment of rheumatism, neuralgia, muscular pain, circulation problems, colds, flu, dental infection, and diarrhea and skin infections.

Description: A Small evergreen tree growing to 25 feet high with small branches bearing strongly aromatic leaves and small white flowers forming a floral head.

Treat Yourself Wisely and Safely

Note and Disclaimer
The information and opinions provided herein are for general educational purposes only and do not replace medical advice. It is your responsibility to consult a suitably qualified medical practitioner to ensure that you will not have any medical problems from any products.

Bay oil should not be used during pregnancy. Use sparingly and well diluted on the skin.


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Articles of Interest:

List of Dried Herbs & Their Uses:
Using Kitchen Herbs

Back to Additional Articles

Where To Purchase Bay Essential Oil:

              

More About Bay Tea :

              



Essential Oil Properties


List of Essential Oils and Their Properties:

Where To Purchase Essential Oils A-F
Where To Purchase Essential Oils G-M
Where To Purchase Essential Oils N-Z
Where To Purchase Essential Oil Kits

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Basil Oils ~ Essential Oil Properties

Basil essential oil, Ocimum basilicum, acts as a nerve tonic and helps with fatigue, depression, increases alertness, aids in concentration, relieves headaches, head congestion, migraines and muscular aches and pains.

The essential oil of Basil helps regulate the menstrual cycle, reduces menstrual cramps, and can help with engorged breasts. Basil is anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-spasmodic and is useful as an insect repellent. Basil oil blends nicely with rosemary and citrus oils.



Do not use if you are pregnant or have a seizure disorder. Use sparingly on the skin because it can cause irritation.

Botanical Name: Ocimum basilicumPicture of Basil

Botanical Family: Labiatae

Origin: India, Egypt, France, USA, Italy, Spain, Vietnam

Method of Extraction: Steam distilled from the leaves of the herb and the flowering tops

Perfume Note: Top note

Aroma: Sweet, spicy aroma with balsamic undertone

Yield: 0.1-0.2%

Viscosity: Watery

Blends Well With: Bergamot, Black Pepper, Cedarwood, Fennel, Ginger, Geranium, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemon Marjoram, Neroli and Verbena.

Most Valuable Uses: Weak nervous conditions, mental fatigue, headaches, tension, stress, muscular spasm, concentration, physical and mental sluggishness.Basil Leaves

Health Benefits: Skin care, indigestion, respiratory problems, infections, stress disorder, blood circulation, pain relief, vomiting.

Properties: Has been traditionally used as an antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive and expectorant

Cautions: Not to be used during pregnancy but otherwise, relatively non-toxic, non-irritant with some possible sensitization in some individuals. Can cause irritation to sensitive skin. Should not be used on children under 16 years of age. Not to be used in baths.

Consistency: Watery viscosity and is pale greenish-yellow in color

Shelf Life: Use within 2 years of harvest

Suggested Uses: Apply to the tip of the nose, to the temples, and to stings and bites. For mental fatigue, inhale first, then apply to the crown of the head, forehead, heart, and navel. May be added to food or water as a dietary supplement.

Description: Annual herb growing up to three feet high, the flowers are white-ish to pink-ish, depending upon species.

Interesting Facts: Derived from the Greek word for “king,” Basileus. In Ayurvedic medicine it is called tulsi. Considered a holy herb in India, sacred to Krishna and Vishnu. Became the protective plant of the house and spirit of the family. It is said that every good Hindu places basil leaf on his/her chest when resting. Also associated with scorpions—perhaps because the oil can prickle when in direct contact with the skin.

Note and Disclaimer: The information and opinions provided herein are for general educational purposes only and do not replace medical advice. It is your responsibility to consult a suitably qualified medical practitioner to ensure that you will not have any medical problems from any products.

Treat Yourself Wisely and Safely

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Articles of Interest:
Growing Basil Indoors
Back to Essential Oils Blends

Where To Purchase Basil Oils:

          
More Basil

          



Personal Fragrance Toilette

It is a simple task to make delicately scented eau de cologne, floral waters, and oils. The water can be used for scent only or added to other herbal preparations in place of an infusion or for added fragrance. Oils can be added to the bath or used to scent the skin.

The amounts in the following recipes are for fresh herbs. If you are using dried herbs, use only half as much.


Spicy Eau De Toilette:
6 Tbsp chopped angelica leaves
6 Tbsp chopped basil
2 Bay leaves
2 Tbsp coriander seeds
1 Nutmeg, broken into small pieces
1 Tbsp cloves
three 3-inch cinnamon sticks, crushed
2 cups unscented rubbing alcohol or vodka

Place all ingredients in a glass jar with a tight-fitting cover. Let the jar sit in a warm place for several weeks, then strain and pour the eau de cologne into a sterilized bottle.

Eau De Cologne:
½ cup Lavender
¼ cup Rosemary
Peel of 1 lemon
Peel of 1 orange
½ cup orange mint
½ cup lemon balm
2 cups rose water
2 cups vodka

Place all ingredients in a large glass jar with a cover and let them steep for 8 to 10 days. Strain and pour into a sterilized bottle.

Make a fresh smelling eau de cologne by soaking fragrant herbs, spices and fresh-scented citrus in alcohol or vodka. Steeping angelica, basil and spices in alcohol or vodka produces a spicy cologne suitable for either sex. Colognes can be sweetly floral, pungently herbal or headily spicy.

Learn to Grow Your Own Herbs Here

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters


Articles of Interest:
Herbal Soap
Bath Herbs
Beauty Herbs

More on Herbal Toilette Here!

          

          

          



Vinegar ~ Herb Combinations

Herb Vinaigrette

Make Your Own At Home


Herb vinegar’s are made perfectly with red or white wine vinegar. The preferred is actual wine vinegar, not wine flavored. Both can be obtained in quantity from a wholesale grocer or restaurant supply store. Due to its mellow flavor, wine vinegar allows the full herbal bouquet to be tasted, resulting in a gourmet quality. Any vinegar can be used as long as it has at least 5% acidity, although white and cider vinegar’s have stronger flavors themselves, masking the herbal flavor.

As a general rule, white vinegar is used when color is important, such as with chive blossoms or opal basil, and red vinegar is used for strong flavors such as basil, oregano, or garlic.

Usually the most popular are vinegar’s with just one flavor, although I have found the Bouquet Garni (below—using red or white wine vinegar) to be the favorite and most versatile. The more experienced herb growers and tasters will be willing to experiment with their own unique blends. The following guide can help determine which combinations would best satisfy your own tastes and needs.

White Wine Vinegars: Marjoram, opal basil (for a light rose result), burnet (a delicate cucumber flavor), chive blossom (a lovely pink), tarragon, thyme, nasturtium (a subtle peppery flavor), rosemary, lavender, rose petal (use pink rose petals from untreated rose bushes), pinks, violet (will turn a pale lavender color), or rose geranium (tint with 4 drops red food coloring). These last six were especially popular in the Victorian era and are useful to flavor beverages and fruit salads, as well as to use externally to soothe headaches, fevers, sunburn and insect bites!

Red Wine Vinegar: Dill, sweet basil, garlic (mash 6-10 cloves and taste for strength after 24 hours), sage, fennel (if using seeds, allow 2 heaping tablespoons per quart), lovage, spearmint or peppermint, bay, thyme chive (foliage only, not blossoms) caraway (2 heaping Tablespoons when using seed), or savory.

Herb Blends for Vinegar:
Dill-chive-peppercorn
Basil-garlic
Basil-chive
Garlic-chive
For Pork: sage-caraway
For Lamb: mint-rosemary
For Beef: basil-savory
For Poultry: sage-lovage
For Fish: fennel-bay

Here are two favorite blends to try, following the herb vinegar directions and using red or white wine vinegar for either, and fresh herbs (per quart):

Bouquet Garni Vinegar:
1 cup parsley, ½ cup each of thyme, bay and rosemary

Mixed Herb Vinegar:
¾ cup each chopped basil and marjoram; ½ cup each chopped rosemary thyme and savory.

Herb Vinegar Containers: A variety of containers can be recycled for home use by saving bottles from salad dressings, wine, or bottled beverages. Attractive containers for gift samples are small glass juice bottles. Fancy, decorative bottles can be found in dinnerware and gourmet shops. For larger bottle quantities contact a local bottle manufacturer or distributor. An 8 oz bottle size seems to be preferred for herb vinegars.

Decorative Wax and Ribbon Seal: This adornment gives the delicious herb vinegars the ribbon and seal they deserve! You will need: 1 cup of paraffin (available from the grocery canning section), ¼ cup powdered cinnamon (or cloves, nutmeg, allspice, or any combination) and 4-8” of grosgrain ribbon, preferably striped (length depends on size of bottle used). Procedure: In a metal can (15 ½ oz. size is best) placed in 1“ of water in a saucepan, melt paraffin and mix in powdered spices. Melt slowly on low heat and watch carefully to avoid fire. Paraffin will ignite on direct heat.

When paraffin is liquid, remove from heat and stir. Dip the capped end of the herb vinegar bottle in the wax a few times, allowing the wax to dry a few seconds between each dip. Put the mid-point of the ribbon over the cap and push down to secure both ribbon edges to the warm and pliable wax. Holding the ribbon ends out of the wax, dip the top end of the bottle repeatedly in the hot wax until the ribbon does not show through the seal. Dry about 30 seconds between dips or the coating will not build up. If the wax is too clear, add more spices and stir. When the wax in the can starts to congeal, reheat. More wax and cinnamon may be required to keep the level at 2-3”.

Allow wax to dry completely before touching or fingerprints will be noticeable. Then tie on attractive bow and if desired, attach a card listing herbs used. Cool remaining wax in can and save for future use.

To open wax sealed vinegar, score just below cap with a knife and turn lid. Wax and ribbon will remain on the cap, but will allow the bottle to be opened and closed.

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters

Articles of Interest:
More Herbal Recipes
Oil and Vinegar
Herbal Vinegars ~ How to Make Them
Fragrant Oils

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More Vinegar Herb Combinations


         


Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own


Making soap from scratch is an ambitious project that requires special ingredients such as lye and equipment that should be set aside for soap making only.  However, you can easily make your own herbal soap by starting with pure glycerine or castile soap and an herbal infusion. The addition of a little lanoline (available at your pharmacy) makes the soap very creamy and less drying to the skin.  If you want to give the soap even more of an herbal kick, you can also stir some of the chopped herb into the soap just before pouring it into the molds.

Rose Soap: You can increase the amounts of rose oil and coloring for a more intense rose impact if desired. In place of rose water you may want to try a combination of peppermint and rosemary; lemon balm or lemon verbena; orange mint; rose geranium; or lavender.

Ingredients:

Two 10-ounce bars of glycerine soap
½ – 1 cup rose water
1 Tbsp anhydrous lanolin
10 drops rose oil
10 drops red food coloring

Grate the soap with the grating disc of a food processor or by hand.  Combine the grated soap and ½ cup of the rose water in a glass or enamel container and melt over low heat, stirring occasionally. This may take some time; adding more rose water will speed the process, but the more liquid you add, the softer the finished soap will be.  When the soap is melted, stir in the lanolin, mixing well. Add the rose oil and the food coloring, stirring until blended. The herbal infusion may turn the soap the color of old oatmeal, but he addition of food coloring will remedy this.  Add the coloring drop by drop so that you can control the color. Remove from the heat.

Lightly oil several clean small round metal cans or a cut-off –milk carton with almond or vegetable oil.  The cans make individual soaps, the milk carton a bar that can then be cut into the sizes you want. Pour the soap into the molds, making sure there are no air bubbles. Let the soap set for a day or two before removing from the molds. At this point you can carefully cut large bars into individual cakes. Allow the soap to sit out to dry until it is quite hard.

Herbal soaps such as these of rose or a blend of rosemary and mint are easily made by melting grated castile or glycerine soap with an herbal infusion. Melt down any scraps or leftover bits with lots of water to make a gentle liquid soap to keep by the sink.

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters



Articles of Interest:
More Herbal Recipes
More Craft Ideas
Herbal Skin Lotions
Personal Fragrance Toilette
Preserving Herbs

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More on Herbal Soap Here!

          

More on Making Herbal Soap~



Make Lavender Wands

Fragrant Lavender Wands

Makes The Perfect Gift
Fun & Easy To Make

Lavender WandsTo capture summer’s magic fragrance in your linens and wool sweaters, make a lavender sachet utilizing the stems as well as the flowers. We like to call these lavender wands (because of the magic lavender scent inside) instead of lavender sticks or as the British call them, lavender bottles.

You will need:
Fresh blossoming lavender stems
3 to 5 yards of ¼” satin ribbon in soft pastel colors and Thread to match
Straight pins
Toothpicks
You may use velvet ribbon, which looks nice but doesn’t slide easily, and it does cost more.

To start: You want to pick 13 to 19 stems, always using an uneven number (it is easier to start with 13 and graduate up). Pick the lavender in mid to late morning when the dew is off the flowers and the sun has not yet broiled the fragrance into the wind. The stems and flowers must be used immediately; otherwise they will break.


Bending the Lavender

Step 1: Tie the blossoms securely together with thread or a sturdy rubber band.

Step 2: Hold the blossoms with your left hand with the stems upward.

Step 3: Bend the stems down, one by one, very carefully, to form a parasol or umbrella.

Step 4: Place the ribbon (the length depends on how many stems are used), satin side up, under your left thumb and hold it securely on top of the blossoms.

Making Lavender Wands

Step 5: Weave the ribbon in and out of the stems in a basket weave for 2 or 3 rows.

Step 6: Bend the stems down over the flowers. Now the ribbon will look messy. Simply take a toothpick or crocket hook and tighten the ribbon until a neatly woven effect is achieved. Don’t pull so tight that the stems stain the ribbon.

Step 7: Continue weaving the ribbon in and out until the blossoms are covered.

Step 8: When you have 4 or 5 inches of woven stems, wrap the ribbon around the stems and secure with a pin. Let dry for two weeks.

Step 9: The stems will shrink while drying. Trim the stems even. Neaten appearance with toothpick as before. Wrap remaining ribbon around stems and secure with matching thread. A bow may be tied at either or both end of the stems.

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters


Articles of Interest:
More Herbal Recipes
More Craft Ideas
Lavendar Oils
Herbing Guide

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Selection of Lavender Crafts Ideas Here~

          

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Herbs to Drink ~ Tisanes


A tisane, or tea, is simply an infusion made by adding boiling water to the leaves or flowers of herbs. In many parts of Europe, herbal teas have been an accepted part of the standard eating habits for years. Indeed, a cup of tisane taken after a rich meal is as common as coffee is in other parts of the world. Unlike tea and coffee, however, tisanes contain neither tannin nor caffeine, both strong stimulants and are much more suitable for aiding the digestion or promoting sleep.

Prepared tisanes are available from herbal shops, homeopathic pharmacist (drugstores) and health food stores in either sachet form or loose. The ailments they are reputed to help are given here but the cures cannot be vouched for.

If you grow your own herbs, why not make your own tisanes? Tisanes may be made from fresh or dried herbs. The actual preparation is much the same as making ordinary tea, and like ordinary tea it may be drunk on its own or with the addition of milk, a slice of lemon, honey or sugar.

Method: If you are making the tisane in individual tea cups, allow one level tablespoon of fresh herbs per cup or one level teaspoon of dried herbs. Pour on the boiling water, cover the cup and leave to infuse for three to five minutes. If your are making it in a teapot, allow however many table or teaspoons required for each cup, plus one for the pot. Leave to infuse for about five minutes and pour through a strainer into the cups.

For teas made from seed, these should first be pounded in a mortar, then follow the same process as for dried herbs.

List of Medical Plants: The most common herbs, together with any generally recognized properties they may have are listed below:

Angelica:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Helps headaches and exhaustion

Balm: (Melissa)
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Taken hot or cold, this tea is soothing and relaxing.

Basil:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Taken hot or cold, this teas helps gastric upsets and colds

Bergamot:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Drink alone or mixed with China (non-fermented) tea. Relaxing and sleep inducing.

Borage:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Hot or cold, borage tea is an exhilarating tonic and help catarrh.

Catnip:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: A tonic that lessens fever and headaches.

Chamomile:
Parts Used: Flowers
Effect: Digestive and soothing, particularly useful for soar throats when it may be also used as a gargle.

Coltsfoot:
Parts Used: Flowers or Leaves
Effect: Used for catarrh and chest complaints. Contains vitamin C.

Comfrey:
Parts Used: Leaves and Dried Roots
Effect: Soothing and a digestive, helps chest complaints

Dandelion:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Beneficial to liver, helps rheumatism and acts as a general tonic and blood purifier.

Dandelion:
Parts Used: Roots Dried, roasted and ground.
Effect: Used as a substitute for coffee and as a diuretic.

Elder:
Parts Used: Flowers
Effect: Delicious, sleep-inducing and good for throat infections and colds.

Horehound:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Coughs and colds

Hyssop:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Taken hot or cold helps coughs and colds

Juniper:
Parts Used: Berries
Effect: Antiseptic and stimulant, good for chest complaints, indigestion and nerves.

Lady’s Mantle
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Premenstrual and menstrual tension.

Lime:
Parts Used: Flowers
Effect: Delicious, sleep-inducing, soothing drink, good for colds and indigestion.

Lovage:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: More like a broth, add salt for a cleansing and refreshing drink.

Melilot:
Parts Used: Whole Plant
Effect: Wind and general tonic.

Mint: (especially Peppermint and Spearmint)
Part Used: Leaves
Effect: Taken for colds, headaches, diarrhea, heartburn, nausea and stomachache.

Nettle:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: General tonic and blood purifier

Parsley:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: General tonic and diuretic

Rosemary:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Headaches and insomnia

Sage:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: General Tonic

Thyme:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Good for coughs and sinus ailments

Vervain: (verbena)
Parts Used: Leaves and Dried Roots
Effect: Slightly bitter tisane, acts as a sedative and digestive.

Yarrow:
Parts Used: Leaves
Effect: Taken for fevers, coughs, colds and as a general tonic.

Tisanes may also be made from the seeds of fennel and caraway and the leaves of tansy, costmary and St. John’s wort.

Do not expect instant results from drinking a tisane, their benefits are cumulative.

Over 85 Recipes for Herbal Tea Remedies Here ~



Articles of Interest:
More Herbal Recipes
More Recipes Here~
List of Fresh Herbs & Their Uses
Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own
Making Herbal Beer and Herb Wine ~Part 1
Making Homemade Herb Wine ~ Part 2
Making Herbal Teas

Learn How to Grow Your Own Herbs

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Large Selection of Herbal Teas For Many Uses~


Herbal Vinegars ~ How to Make Them


Herb vinegars delight both the palate and the eye and allow you to preserve the harvest in a mellow gourmet blend of flavor and herbs. These vinegars lend themselves to many uses in sauces, marinades, salad dressings, stews, and beverages, and they are as individual as their creator. The herbs enclosed in the bottle can be snipped and used through the winter months when garden herbs are dormant.

The best time to collect fresh herbs is in the morning, after the dew has dried from the foliage but before the hot sun has evaporated the essential oils from the leaves.

Basic Recipe
1 cup fresh, firmly packed herbs
3 ½ cups vinegar (5% acidity)
Yield: approximately 1 quart

Wash the herbs by swishing them gently in a basin of cool water, being careful not to bruise the leaves and prematurely releasing the oils. Remove any discolored or insect-damage leaves. (Herb stems can be used.) Pat the herbs dry or spin in a vegetable spinner to remove excess water. Allow to air-dry thoroughly because water will make the vinegar cloudy, although it will not affect the flavor.

Using a wooden spoon, pack the herbs in a dry, sterilized quart jar (due to a chemical reaction, vinegar should not come in contact with metal). Fill the jar with vinegar to within 1 inch from the top. With the wooden spoon, push down and bruise the herb leaves in the vinegar. Shake to remove any air bubbles. Cover first with plastic wrap when using a metal lid. Label and date each jar to indicate the herbs used.

Some people like to heat the vinegar to just below boiling point before pouring it over the herbs. The advantage to this is that the warmed vinegar releases the essential oils from the herbs more rapidly. The disadvantage is that some acidity will be destroyed if the vinegar becomes too warm, thereby changing its quality. Given the facts, you be the judge, but I have found that unheated vinegar saves time and yields an excellent product.

Store in a cool, dark place for 4-6 weeks, shaking the mixture every few days. If you’re impatient for the bouquet to develop, the jars may be put out in the sun. The warmed vinegar may become slightly cloudy. A taste test will determine the right strength for your individual needs. If the flavor is too strong, dilute with unflavored vinegar; if not “herbal” enough repeat the process with fresh herbs.

When you are satisfied with the flavor, strain through a plastic colander to remove and discard the herbs. Then strain through paper coffee filters until the paper is clean. Although it may take 4 to 5 times, this removes all herbal debris and the result is a crystal clear product.

Pour the vinegar into hot, dry bottles that have been sterilized or put through a hot wash and dry cycle of the dishwasher. Add a sprig or two of fresh, washed and dried herbs to the bottle. When using a variety of herbs in the blend include a sprig of each. (the most eye-appealing herb vinegar bottles contain many herb sprigs~) cap immediately.


Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters

Articles of Interest:
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Fragrant Oils
Basic Herb Dressing
Herbal Recipe for Kabobs on the Grill
Oil and Vinegar
Vinegar ~ Herb Combinations

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Herbal Vinegars

              

Grow Your Own Herbs

              



Making Homemade Herb Wine ~ Part 2

Herb WineHerbal wines are made from an infusion of the chosen herb often referred to as herb tea or tisane. The spent herbs must be strained out of the infusion. A remnant of net curtain or muslin can be made into a bag and the herbs placed inside. The bag is then pressed to extract the full flavor.

Learn to Make Homemade Nettle Beer in Part 1 of this series

The most welcome modern adjunct to home wine making is concentrated pure grape juice. Old recipes for herbal wines usually add dried grapes, often picturesquely described as ‘raisins of the sun’. Grape concentrate is a trouble free substitute and gives an excellent vinosity. There is an enormous variety available.



The mixture of liquids to be fermented is called the must.

Yeast: Fermentation is caused by the addition of yeast to the must. If you have been browsing through old books you will be familiar with the recommendation to float brewer’s yeast on toast in the liquid—this should be avoided at all costs. A vigorous fermentation can be obtained using dried baker’s yeast, but it is preferable to use a true wine yeast (available from home wine kit suppliers.) There are several quick-acting, general purpose yeasts which produce reliable results. To work effectively, the yeast needs to be sustained by the addition of certain salts. These are bought already mixed as a yeast nutrient (available from home wine kit suppliers). Use more or less nutrient in relation to the quantity of fruit juice you use. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, as these will vary.

Yeast works best in an acid medium. Herb infusions may be low in acid. By adding the juice of lemons or oranges or crystals of citric acid this can be remedied.

Sweetener: Honey was the traditional sweetener of the herbal wine maker. In wines made with bitter herbs the dual taste of the sharp leaf or flower and the soft sweetness of honey is a gastronomic delight. Whenever you can—use honey in place of sugar to sweeten your wine. The wine is then called a Melomel.

Herbal winesEquipment: The basic equipment needed for home wine making is extremely simple and costs very little. Some of the items may already be in the home.

9 liters/2 gallons (20 pints) boiling container
9 liters/2 gallons (20 pints) plastic pail with a lid
4.5 liter/1 gallon (10 pints) fermentation and storage jars
Airlock for each fermentation jar.
A siphon tube at least 1.2m/4 ft long
Wine bottles
Corks and Corking tool
Nylon strainer—at least 15cm/6 inch in diameter
Funnel—at least 15cm/ 6 in diameter.

Do not use any equipment made of iron, steel, copper and brass as these will spoil your wine. In all wine making it is essential to keep equipment clean and sterile. The method for all the recipes given here is basically the same.

Dandelion Wine:
Pick the dandelion flowers on a warm sunny morning. Shake out any small insects. Then holding he yellow petals with one hand, twist off the calyx and stem. These are too bitter for wine and should be discarded.

Dandelion WineIngredients:
5 cups Dandelion petals
½ can *commercial grape concentrate
1 Lemon
1 Orange
1 teaspoon Citric acid
¾ cup infused tea or grape tannin
3 cups Sugar or clear Honey
Wine yeast and nutrient
Campden tablets
*/can grape concentrate refers to the size sold to make 4 ½ liters/1 gallon (10 pints) of wine.

Place everything except the dandelions and the yeast into a bucket. Make an infusion of the dandelion flowers and allow to stand for about half an hour. Strain the infusion into the bucket and stir thoroughly until all is dissolved. Allow to cool to 24 C (75F) and add yeast.

Fermentation: The bucket should be placed in a warm room for the first fermentation which should last from three to six days. This is the aerobic (in the presence of air) fermentation, nevertheless the bucket must have a lid or be fitted with a clean cloth held in place by a firm band.

As the yeast starts to work considerable bubbling and frothing occurs. The must will change to a milky color as the yeast grows. Once the fermentation gets under way the must should be transferred to a fermentation jar. This should be topped off with water and a fermentation or air lock fixed.

Keep your eye on the fermentation lock for the first few days to make sure there is always water present to maintain the trap. Evaporation may necessitate topping off daily. The temperature should be maintained at about 21 C (70F).

Fermentation will gradually decrease and after about four or five weeks the line of bubbles around the top of the container will have died completely away—if not wait another few days to make sure no gas is being given off.

Storage: Dead yeast and perhaps other solid matter (the lees) will by now have settled at the bottom of the fermentation jar. If left their unpleasant flavor may be imparted to the wine, so they should be removed.

To do this, the wine has to be siphoned into a second sterilized container with a siphon tub. Stand the wine container on a table and set the second container on the floor. This process is called racking the wine and must be done several times. The lower container should be topped with cooled boiled water if necessary, as it is preferable to have the minimum of air space remaining.

Crush one Campden tablet per 4.5 liters/1 gallon (10 pints) of wine and add before sealing the container with a solid bung or safety lock—these tablets act as a preservative and help to stop further fermentation. Store in a cool dry place.

Rack off the wine into a clean container every eight weeks or so, to remove sediment until the wine becomes clearer.

Bottling: When the wine is clear, only then is it ready to be bottled. For each 4.5 liters/1 gallon (10 pints) of wine you will need six sterilized bottles and corks. Always label your bottles. The wine should then be stored from three to six months although, like herb beer, it will improve for keeping a month or so longer if possible.

Many flowers can be used instead of dandelions. Broom, clover, coltsfoot, cowslip and roses all make delightful wine. Some flowers such as carnation, elderflower, chamomile and wallflower have a more pungent taste and should be used sparingly. No more than 0.5 liter/1 pint (2 ½ cups) flowers should be infused for each 4.5 liters/1 gallon (10 pints) wine. Any herb that makes an herb tea or tisane can be used as a basis for wine. Lemon balm, sage, rosemary, raspberry leaves, borage and comfrey are recommended. Young blackberry shoots also make a light wine. There is always lots of room for experimentation.


Articles of Interest:
Making Homemade Herbal Beer ~ Part 1
Making Herbal Teas
Garlic Uses & Dieters Green Tea
Herbs to Drink ~ Tisanes
Herbal Drinks
Herbal Tea Remedies

Back to Main Articles



Making Herbal Beer and Herb Wine ~Part 1


Wine and beer have been made in the home since time immemorial and as commercial wines become more and more expensive, interest in this ancient domestic art is reviving. Almost any fruit, vegetable or herb can be used for wine making and brewing beer—even the dregs of tea.

A number of shops sell very adequate wine making kits and equipment. Once the initial outlay has been made it is only necessary to purchase or grow the ingredients for subsequent batches as the equipment can be used over and over again.

Herb Beer
Herbal beer is a term usually applied to beers made with herbs other than hops. The hop is however a wild herb as well as being widely cultivated for beer making.

After the initial investment in equipment, the cost of making beer, especially from herbs like the common nettle, is relatively small.

Equipment:
Large pan (sufficient to contain all the weeds collected)
4.5 liter/1 gallon (10 pint) polythene or plastic fermenting vessel with a lid
(polythene or plastic bucket will suffice)
Strainer or remnant of terylene net curtain
Wooden spoons
Bucket or other larger container
Beer Bottles (cleaned and sterilized) and stoppers

The equipment should always be used spotlessly clean and if possible sterilized. (Kits for sterilizing babies’ bottles are useful for this task)

Nettle Beer
Using rubber gloves and scissors gather fresh, young green stinging nettle shoots. Take only the top two or three pairs of leaves. The quantity is not vital, but the shoots, not pressed down, should just about fill the brewing bucket. This will make approximately 4.5 liters/ 1 gallon (10 pints).

Crystal malt, hops and ale yeast (for quantity follow the manufacturer’s instructions) are obtainable from home wine and beer kit suppliers. One teaspoon of citric acid may be substituted for juice of half a lemon.

Ingredients:
Nettles
4 oz. Crystal Malt (broken)
2 lbs Malt extract
1 cup sugar
1 handful of dried hops
Juice of ½ lemon
¼ teaspoon Salt
Yeast

Simmer the washed nettles and crystal malt in a large pan for about 40 minutes.

Put malt extract, sugar, lemon juice and salt into the fermenting vessel fitted with a good lid and strain contents on to the washed nettles and crystal malt. A remnant of terylene net curtain is preferable to an open strainer. The nettle shoots should be squeezed by gloved hands, to extract the full flavor. Stir the mixture thoroughly.

Make the quantity up t o 4.5 liters/1 gallon (10 pints) with tap water.
When cool (between 18-20 C or 65-70 F), stir in yeast according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Maintain his temperature, and keep the vessel covered.

Allow fermenting for four to seven days. Remove the yeast from the top at intervals if necessary. When fermenting has finished the liquid looks clear and bubbles cease to rise. Siphon beer into another clean container.

Dissolve ¼ cup sugar in a small quantity of hot water. Add to the beer. Siphon into clean beer bottles and stopper down well. Store in a warm room for two days.

Transfer to a cool place and store for at least a month before drinking.



Articles of Interest:
More Herbal Recipes
Make Herb Wine ~ Part 2
Making Herbal Teas
Garlic Uses & Dieters Green Tea
Herbs to Drink ~ Tisanes
Herbal Drinks
Herbal Tea Remedies

Learn to Grow Your Own Nettles Here!
Kali S Winters


          

Large Selection of Stinging Nettle Products Here ~


Plants Listed by Common Names


Herbing Guide ~ Just click on the plant name for pictures of herbs medicinal uses, essential oils properties and definition. *Please check back again ~ I am in the process of providing the entire list…..Thank You~

Agrimony

Agrimonia eupatoria

Alfalfa

Medicago sativa

Angelica

Angelica archangelica

Arnica

Arnica montana

Artichoke

Cynara scolymus

Ashwagandha

Withania somnifera

Astragalus

Astragalus membranaceus

Balm

Melissa officinalis

Basil

Ocimum basilicum

Bayberry

Myrica cerifera

Bearberry

Arctostaphylos uva-ursi

Bergamot

Citrus bergamia

Black Cohosh

Cimicifuga racemosa

Blackberry

Rubus villosus

Bladderwrack

Focus vesiculosus

Blessed Thistle

Cnicus benedictus

Blue Cohosh

Caulophylum thalictroides

Blue Flag

Iris versicolor

Bogbean

Menyanthes trifoliate

Boneset

Eupatorium perfoliatum

Buchu

Agathosma betulina

Burdock

Arctium lappa

Calendula

Calendula officinalis

 

California Poppy

Eschscholzia californica

California Spickenard

Aralia californica

Cascara Sagrada

Rhamnus purshiana

Catnip

Nepeta cataria

Cayenne

Capsicum spp.

Celery Seed

Apium graveolens

Centaury

Centaurium umbellatum

Chamomile

Matricaria chamomilla

Chaparral

Larrea mexicana

Chaste Tree

Vitex agnus-castus

Chicory

Cichorium intybus

Chickweed

Stellaria media

Cinnamon

Cinnamomum zeylanicum

Clary Sage

Salvia sclarea

Cleavers

Galium aparine

Clove

Eugenia caryophllata

Coffee

Coffea Arabica

Coltsfoot

Tussilago farfara

Comfrey

Symphytum officinale

Coriander

Coriandrum sativum

Corn Silk

Zea mays

Couch Grass

Agropyron repens

Cramp Bark

Viburnum opulus

Cranesbill

Geranium maculatum

Cubeb

Piper cubeba

Damiana

Turnera diffusa

Dandelion

Taraxacum officinale

Devil’s Club

Oplopanax horridus

Dill

Anethum graveolens

Dong Quai

Angelica sinensis

Echinacea

Echinacea purpurea

Echinacea angustifolia

Echinacea pallida

Elder

Sambucus nigra

Elecampane

Inula Helenium

Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus globulus

Eyebright

Euphrasia officinalis

False Unicorn

Chamaelirium luteum

Fennel

Foeniculum vulgare

Fenugreek

Trigonella foenum-graecum

Feverfew

Tanacetum parthenium

Frankincense

Boswellia carteri

Fringetree

Chionanthus virginica

Flaxseed

Linum usitatissimum

Garlic

Allium sativum

Gentian

Gentiana spp.

Geranium

Pelargonium graveolens

Ginger

Zingiber officinale

Ginkgo

Ginkgo Biloba

Ginseng

Panax spp.

Goat’s Rue

Galega officinalis

Golden Rod

Solidago virgauria

Golden Seal

Hydrastis canadensis

Gota Kola

Centella asiatica

Grapefruit

Citrus paradise

Gravel root

Eupatorium purpureum

Guarana

Paullina cupana

Gumweed

Grindelia spp.

Hawthorn

Crataegus spp.

Grataegus oxyacantha

Herlichrysum

Helichrysum italicum

Hops

Humulus lupulus

Horehound

Marrubium vulgare

Horsechestnut

Aesculus hippocastanum

Horseradish

Armoracia rusticana

Horsetail

Equisetum arvense

Ho shou wu

Polygonum Multiflorum

Hydrangea

Hydrangea arborescens

Hyssop

Hyssopus officinalis

Irish Moss

Chondrus crispus

Jasmine

Jasminum officinale
Jasminum grandiflorum

Kelp

Seaweed

Kola

Cola vera, C. acuminata

Lady’s Mantle

Alchemilla vulgaris

Lavender

Lavandula officinalis

Lemon

Citrus limonum

Licorice

Glycyrrhiza glabra

Linden

Tilia cordata

Lobelia

Lobelia inflata

Ma Huang

Ephedra sinica

Mandarin

Citrus reticulata

Marjoram

Origanum majorana

Marshmallow

Althaea officinalis

Meadowsweet

Filipendula urlmaria

Melilot

Melilotus officinalis

Milk Thistle

Carduus marianum
(Silybum marianum)

Motherwort

Leonurus cardiaca

Mugwort

Artemisia vulgaris

Mullein

Verbascum spp.

Mulberry

Morus spp.

Myrrh

Commiphora myrrha

Nasturtium

Tropaeolum majus

Neroli

Citrus aurantium var amara

Nettle

Urtica spp.

Oak Bark

Quercus spp.

Oat

Avena Sativa

Olive Leaf

Olea europaea

Orange

Citrus aurantium

Oregano

Origanum vulgare
Origanum Compactum

Oregon Grape

Berberis aquifolium Pursh.

Osha

Ligusticum porteri

Parsley

Petroselinum sativum

Partridge berry

Mitchella repens

Pasque Flower

Anemone pulsatilla

Pau d’ Arco

Tabebuia spp.

Passion Flower

Passiflora incarnate

Patchouli

Pogostemon patchouli

Pennyroyal

Mentha pulegium

Peppermint

Mentha piperata

Periwinkle

Vinca major
(or Vinca minor)

Pine

Chimaphila umbellate

Pipsissewa

Pinus sylvestris

Plantain

Plantago lanceolata
Plantago major

Prickly Ash

Xanthoxylum americanum

Pumpkin

Cucurbita pepo

Raspberry

Rubus spp.

Red Clover

Trifolium pratense

Rose

Rosa damascena

Rosemary

Rosmarinus officinalis

Sage

Salvia officinalis

Sandalwood

Santalum album

St. John’s Wort

Hypericum perforatum

Sarsaparilla

Smilax spp.

Sassafras

Sassafras albidum

Saw Palmetto

Serenoa serrulata

Skullcap

Scutellaria laterifolia

Sheperd’s Purse

Capsella bursa-pastoris

Siberian Ginseng

Eleutherococus senticosus

Slippery Elm

Ulmus fulva

Sorrel

Rumex spp.

Southernwood

Artemisia abrotanum

Star Anise

Illicium anisatum

Strawberry

Fragaria vesca

Suma

Pfaffia paniculata

Tea Tree

Melaleuca alternifolia

Thuja

Thuja occidentalis

Thyme

Thymus spp.

Tumeric

Curcuma longa

Usnea

Usnea spp.

Uva Ursi

(See Bearberry)

Valerian

Valeriana officinalis

Vervain

Verbena officinalis

Wild Cherry

Prunus serotina

Wild Indigo

Baptisia tinctoria

Wild Lettuce

Lactuca virosa

Wild Oat

Avena fatua

Wild Yam

Dioscorea villosa

Willow Bark

Salix spp.

Witch Hazel

Humamelis virginiana

Wormwood

Artemisia absinthium

Yarrow

Achillea millefolium

Yellow Dock

Rumex crispus

Yerba Manza

Anemopsis californica

Yerba Mate

Ilex paraguensis

Ylang Ylang

Canaga odorata

Yohimbe

Pausinystalia yohimba

Yucca

Yucca spp.

 


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Ylang Ylang Benefits ~ Essential Oils Guide

The Ylang Ylang tree originated in the Philippines but now grows throughout tropical Asia. The trees bear fragrant drooping yellow flowers, which are cultivated for the perfume trade. Ylang ylang may be purchased in several commercial grades, including extra, first, second, third and complete. Beware of the less expensive canaga oil, which has an inferior scent.


The word Ylang Ylang means “flowers of flowers” due to the heady floral fragrances of this oil which is well known in perfumes with ylang ylang.

Botanical Name: Canaga odorata
Note: Base
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Acne
AngerYlang Ylang
Aphrodisiac
Hypertension
Intestinal infections
Impotence, frigidity
Palpitations, tachycardia
Rapid breathing
Stress
Uterine tonic

Aroma: sweet, exotic, heavy, floral, rich, wet.

Blends well with: Sandalwood, Jasmine, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Rose, Patchouli

Parts Used: FlowersYlang Ylang Plant

Ylang Ylang Properties: antidepressant, antiseptic, euphoric, hypotensive, nervine, sedative, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Ylang Ylang is useful in treating anger, anxiety, panic, insomnia and low self-esteem.

Contraindications: Avoid use on damaged skin. Those with a history of low blood pressure or sleep apnea should also avoid using this oil use in moderation; high concentrations can induce headaches or nausea.

Bath Blend for Nervous Tension:
3 drops Ylang Ylang
2 drops Rosewood
3 drops Lavender
1 1/2 tsp of a dispersible bath oils such as red turkey oil.

Add all ingredients to a warm bath; or drip the oils directly into the bath water and disperse with your hand. Relax in the bath for 10 minutes to enjoy.


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Ylang Ylang Essential Oil

              



Thyme Oils ~ Essential Oil Properties

Thyme may have been used as long ago as 3500 B.C. by the Samarians. The Romans believed that thyme imbued bravery and soldiers would be sent bath waters with thyme before marching to battle. Hildegarde of Bingen suggested using thyme for body lice, plague, leprosy and paralysis.

The species Thymus vulgaris produces eight different chemotypes. When thyme is grown at sea level, it is high in the phenol thymol, and is designated as Thymus vulgaris ct. thymol, or simply “thyme thymol.”



When thyme is gown in the mountains, it is high in the gentle alcohol linalol. The plant is referred to as Thymus vulgaris ct. linalol or simply “ thyme linalol,” or sometimes, “sweet thyme.” Thyme linalol, due to the alcohol linalol, is also much more gentle to the skin than the other chemotypes. And unlike the other thyme chemotypes, it can be used on children and the elderly.

Botanical Name: Thymus vulgaris ct. linalol
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Asthma
Amenorrhea
Athlete’s foot
Bronchitis
Boils, cuts, sores
Colds and fluGarden Thyme
Fatigue, mental and physical
Fever
Hypotension
Infections—skin, intestines
Infectious diseases
Leukorrhea
Lymphatic cleanser
Parasites
Rheumatism
Sinusitis
Sore throat
Tonsillitis
Whooping cough, convulsive cough

Aroma: fresh, herbaceous, penetrating, green

Blends well with: Lavender, Bergamot, Marjoram, Pine, Geranium, Lemon, Peppermint,

Parts Used: Leaves and stem

Properties: antiseptic, antispasmodic, antitussive, antivenomous, antiputrefactive, cicatrizing, emmenagogue, expectorant, hypertensive, parasidicide, sudorific, vermifuge.

Contraindications: Do not use during pregnancy or on those with epileptic conditions, hyperthyroidism or high blood pressure.


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Thyme Essential Oil

              

Thyme Tea

              

Thyme Leaves

              



Tea Tree Oil Benefits

The tea tree is a small Australian tree related to the eucalyptus tree. The essential oil is distilled form the tree’s leaves, which are small and needle-like.

When the British explorer James Cook first arrived in Australia in 1777, he found the native aborigines treating skin infections with the crushed leaves of the tea tree. Almost two centuries later, scientists discovered that the oil released by crushing the leaves has powerful anti-fungal and antiseptic properties. it’s even effective against the most stubborn fungal infection, the kind that thickens and discolors toenails.



To heal any kind of fungal infection, apply 100% tea tree oil twice a day to the affected skin. Never ingest the oil: Swallowing as little as a few teaspoons can prove fatal.

Tea tree essential oil is a strong antifungal and antibacterial oil but is generally mild to the skin. In damp climates, tea tree oil has been used in air ventilation systems to reduce mold growth.

Botanical Name: Melaleuca alternifolia
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Very High

Key Uses:
Abscesses
AcneTea Tree Leaves
Air purifier
Asthma
Athlete’s foot
Burns and bruises
Candida
Colds and flu
Coughs and catarrh
Cold sores, mouth ulcers
Cuts, burns, bites
Cystitis, itching
Dandruff
Herpes, chicken pox
Lice
Nail infections
Parasites
Respiratory infections
Ringworm
Sinusitis
Tonsillitis
Vaginitis
Warts
Wound healing

Aroma: Pungent, aggressive, camphor-like, clean

Blends well with: Lavender, Geranium, Pine, Thyme, Clary Sage, Grapefruit, Bergamot,

Parts Used: Leaves

Essential Oils Properties: antibiotic, antibacterial, antifungal, antiseptic, antiviral, decongestant, deodorant, diaphoretic, expectorant, immune stimulant, antiparasitic, vermifuge, vulnerary.

Emotional Concerns: Tea Tree oil is good for cases of depression and low self-esteem.

Contraindications: Tea Tree may be a possible irritant to sensitive skin despite its reputation as safe for neat application.

Tree Tea Shampoo:
1 large jug of peppermint tea with two tea bags
Tea Tree oil.

Make up the peppermint tea and let it cool. Add ten drops of tea tree oil. Pour over head as a final rinse.

Discover Recipes for Tea Tree Oil for Lice



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Tea Tree Essential Oil

              



Sandalwood Essential Oils Guide

Sandalwood oil benefits is one of the oldest know sources of perfume and incense. It has been used in India since ancient times for religious rituals and temples have been built of sandalwood. As a powerful meditation and prayer aid, it helps the mind set aside mental chatter and crate the right mood for worship.

Medicinal uses of sandalwood are mentioned in old Sandkrit and Chinese manuscripts. In Chinese medicine, it is used to treat stomachache, vomiting and gonorrhea. In Ayurvedic medicine, sandalwood is used for urinary and respiratory tract infections, skin inflammations, abscesses and tumors.



Sandalwood essence is derived from the heartwood of the sandalwood tree. The trees grow very slowly, reaching maturity in 40 to 50 years. Cut sandalwood is left on the forest floor until the outer wood is eaten away by ants, leaving only the heartwood, which the ants will not attack. Sandalwood essential oil is steam distilled from this heartwood.

Botanical Name: Santalum album
Note: Base
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Aphrodisiac
Bladder infection, cystitisSandalwood Heartwood
Bronchitis, persistent
Calming and grounding
Cough, dry
Cracked skin
Diarrhea
Eczema
Kidney infections
Impotence
Urinary tract problems

Aroma: woody, deep, lasting, musky, sweet, balsamic

Blends well with: Chamomile, Patchouli, Geranium, Bergamot, Jasmine, Frankincense, Rose, Ylang Ylang.

Parts Used: HeartwoodRaw Heartwood
Spiritual aid

Essential Oils Properties: antifungal, antiphlogistic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, astringent, decongestant, diuretic, emollient, expectorant, insecticide, sedative, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Sandalwood can be helpful with obsession and materialism.

Contraindications: Use with moderation

Relaxing Bath ~ Sandalwood Skin:
5-6 drops Sandalwood
2-3 drops Roman Chamomile

Combine essential oils with 1 tsp of honey. Add honey and oil mixture to running bath water.



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Sandalwood Essential Oils

              



Rosemary Benefits

Rosemary is energizing, it stimulates the central nervous system, aids the lymphatic system by eliminating wastes from the body and is a good choice for edema and cellulite. In the bath or as a massage, rosemary helps to improve circulation. It also improves circulation in the scalp and can be used in cases of dandruff and hair loss.



Rosemary is also helpful for muscle pains and rheumatism. For rheumatism, use in a friction rub with alcohol and for muscle pins use in a friction rub with olive oil or other massage oil.

Botanical Name: Rosemarinus officinalisRosemary
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
Arthritis and rheumatism
Asthma
Bronchitis
Cellulite
Circulation, poor
Colds, cough and flue
Constipation
Dysmenorrheal
Edema, water retentionPotted Rosemary
Hair loss, dandruff
Headache
Hypotension
Intestinal infections
Lice, scabies
Lymphatic congestion
Memory loss, mental fatigue
Migraine
Muscle soreness
Stimulant
Whooping cough

Aroma: Camphoraceous, penetrating, fresh

Blends well with: Grapefruit, Bergamot, Lavender, Peppermint, Pine, Geranium, Tea Tree, Thyme

Parts Used: Leaves and twigs

Properties: antiseptic, analgesic, antirheumatic, astringent, antispasmodic, carminative, cephalic, diaphoretic, digestive, decongestant, diuretic, emmenagogue, hypertensive, parasiticide, stimulant, tonic.

Emotional concerns: Rosemary is useful in cases of mental fatigue, lethargy and forgetfulness. It promotes mental clarity and clears the mind of doubt and confusion.

Contraindications: Avoid use during pregnancy or on those with a history of high blood pressure or epilepsy. Do not use on sensitive or damaged skin. Rosemary may have antifertility effects, preventing egg implantation. Large quantities of ingested rosemary oil may cause intestinal irritation and renal damage.

Scalp Treatment for Hair Loss
1 Tbsp Jojoba oil
2 tsp massage oil
8 drops Lavender
5 drops Clary Sage
3 drops Rosemary
3 drops Grapefruit or 3 drops Ylang Ylang

Blend. Warm the mixture in your hands or in warm water before application. Massage a few drops into the scalp and leave overnight to be absorbed. Apply 3-4 times weekly.

Discover More Rosemary for Hair



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Rosemary Essential Oil

              

Rosemary Tea Bags

              

Rosemary Leaves

              



Pine Benefits ~ Essential Oil Properties

Native to northern Europe and Russia, Pinus sylvestris is believed to be the only European pine to have survived the ice age. In Switzerland, pine needles are sometimes used to stuff mattresses as a way of treating rheumatic complaint.



Pine is often recommended for lung and respiratory infection, for colds and for disinfecting and deodorizing. Pine often spritzed or diffused in a room and is a wonderful for eliminating odors.

Botanical Names: Pinus sylvestris
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Asthma
Bronchitis, laryngitisPine needles
Colds
Deodorizer
Dysmenorrheal
Fatigue
Flu
Hay fever
Respiratory infections (pneumonia)
Sinusitis

Aroma: clean, crisp, resinous, pungent.

Blends well with: Frankincense, Lavender, Lemon, Patchouli, Rosemary, Peppermint, Thyme, Marjoram, Bergamot.

Parts Used: Needles

Pine Essential Oils Properties: antiseptic, antiviral, antirheumatic, deodorant, disinfectant, cholagogue, decongestant, diuretic, expectorant, tonic, stimulant.

Emotional concerns: Pine clears negative thoughts and helps with mental fatigue, self-esteem and emotional weakness.

Contraindications: Those with a history of prostrate cancer should avoid using pine. Pine may be a possible irritant to skin and kidneys. Do not use in large amounts in the bath.

Lung Infection Healing Inhalation:
2 drops Lavender
3 drops Pine
3 drops Thyme Oil
2 Drops Eucalyptus Oil

Drop essential oils into a bowl of almost boiling water. Cover head with a towel and carefully inhale vapors deeply for five minutes. Repeat three times daily for 10 days.



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Pine Essential Oil

              



Rose Benefits ~ Essential Oil Properties

Perhaps no other flower has more romantic symbolism than the rose. Its fragrance has inspired poets and lovers since ancient times.

Rose essential oil has been used in Persia for hundreds of years. In fact, the Persians were the first to distill the essential oil of rose. The Gallica rose—often referred to as the Damask rose—is the variety most highly valued.



The essential oil produced from roses in Bulgaria’s Kanzanlik Valley are considered the best and most fragrant. One acre of land yields three tons of Damask roses, which in turn yield only two liters of essential oil after distillation.

Turkey also produces essential oil of rose. It is less expensive and considered to be less desirable, but it still has a beautiful smell.

Botanical Name: Rosa damascena
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Very High

Key Uses:
Aging, delicate skin
Rose FlowersAphrodisiac
Broken capillaries
Depression
Eczema
Grief
Liver problems
Menopause
PMS
Uterine tonic

Aroma: sweet and floral with complex undertones

Blends well with: Lemon, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Geranium, Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang, Jasmine

Parts Used: FlowersRose Flowers

Essential Oils Properties: antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, emmenagogue, hemostatic, sedative, tonic

Emotional concerns: Rose is useful in treating depression, emotional coldness, sadness, anger, stress, bereavement, nervous tension and insomnia.

Contraindications: use with caution during pregnancy. Beware of adulteration with Geranium essential oil.

Thread Veins and Tender Skin:
2 drops Rose
3 drops Lavender
4 drops Witch Hazel
2 oz. rose water

Combine and apply to cheeks twice a day. Also use as a cool compress as rosewater benefits.

Rose Hips Recipes


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Rose Essential Oil

              

Rose Tea Bags and Leaves

              

Rose Petals

              



Peppermint Benefits ~ Essential Oil Properties

Peppermint is one of the most commonly used herbs. The essential oil is used as an ingredient in toothpaste, confectionery, indigestion tablets and the liqueur creme de menthe. A peppermint tisane is said to aid the digestion. It is one of the few varieties of mint which can be grown from seed and will quickly establish itself.


Don’t confuse this plant with spearmint (they look a lot alike). Besides relieving spasms, gas and indigestion, peppermint can also temporarily reduce hunger pangs, but they will return later, stronger than ever. To prepare peppermint tea, pour boiling water over two thirds cup dried leaves and steep for five to 10 minutes. Peppermint teas should not be given to infants and small children because it can cause a choking sensation

Botanical Name: Mentha piperita
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
AsthmaPeppermint
Bad breath
Bronchitis, chronic
Colds and flu, dry cough
Concentration, clarity, memory
Decongestant
Fatigue, mental and physical
Flatulence
Headache
Gastrointestinal spasm
Gastrointestinal poisoning, diarrhea
Indigestion, heartburn, colic
Intestinal parasites
Irritable bowel syndrome
Migraine
Muscle aches and pains
Nausea and vomiting
Pain relief
Palpitations

Aroma: fresh, minty, earthy, sweet, penetrating, invigorating.

Blends well with: Lemon, Rosemary, Marjoram, Eucalyptus, Lavender

Parts Used: LeavesPeppermint Leaves

Properties: analgesic, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, expectorant, sudorific.

Emotional Concerns: Peppermint helps with the assimilation and digestion of ideas. It stimulates and awakens the mind and refreshes the spirit.

Contraindications: Peppermint may counteract homeopathic remedies, and it may cause wakefulness in the evenings. Die to its cooling effect, do not rub peppermint over the whole body, and use with caution and only in diluted form in the bath.

Recipe for Dry Cough:
5 drops Peppermint
4 drops Sandalwood
3 drops Pine oil

Combine with 1 ½ tsp aloe vera gel and rub onto chest. Or add to a bowl of almost boiling water and use as an inhalation.

Recipe For Gastrointestinal Distress:
2 drops Peppermint
2 drops Roman Chamomile
1 tsp carrier oil or lotion

Massage over affected area in a clockwise direction. The antispasmodic properties of peppermint oil will relieve the smooth muscles of the digestive tract, while its analgesic properties will ease pain. This combination of properties provides relief for colic, indigestion, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, and intestinal cramps. The addition of Roman Chamomile may augment the effect.



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Peppermint Essential Oil

              

Peppermint Tea Bags

              

Peppermint Leaves

              



Patchouli Oils

The fragrance of patchouli is deep, warm and distinct. Patchouli leaves are aged before the distillation process, which helps to impart richness into the smell of this essential oil.



As patchouli essential oil ages, its smell continues to improve and deepen. Patchouli helps to rejuvenate skin, so it is a good choice for aging skin and cracked, dry skin. It is also helpful for eczema, acne, and athlete’s foot. Think of it as a remedy for whenever the skin is split, cracked or purulent. Patchouli is antifungal and antiseptic and is an excellent insect repellant, especially for wool moths.

Botanical Name: Pogostemon patchouli
Note: Base
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
Athlete’s footGrapefruit Peel
Abscesses
Cold sores
Dry, cracked skin
Eczema
Enlarged pores
Fungal infections
Hemorrhoids
Impotence
Scars
Wounds, weeping sores

Aroma: deep, earthy, intense, musty.

Blends well with: Geranium, Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lavender, Frankincense, Rose, Sandalwood, Pine.

Aroma: Sweet, citrus, heady with bitterPatchouli Leaves undertone.

Parts Used: Leaves

Properties: anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, aphrodisiac, fungicide, insecticide, sedative, tonic.

Emotional concerns: Patchouli is grounding and calming and helps with apathy, anorexia, and anxiety.

Contraindications: Use with moderation.

Cracked and Calloused Heels:
2 drops Patchouli
2 drops Lavender
½ tsp healing lotion base

Combine lotion and Patchouli. Apply liberally to the heels. Cover with cotton socks overnight. Repeat for several nights.

Patchouli Perfumes


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Patchouli Essential Oil

              

Patchouli Tea Bags and Leaves

              



Oregano Benefits

Oregano is a strong antimicrobial oil and is generally a good choice for fighting colds. It also eases the pain of arthritis. However, oregano is a skin irritant and should be used with caution. Do not confuse Origanum vulgare ssp compactum with the more gentle essential oil of marjorum, Origanum majorana.


Botanical Name: Origanum vulgare and Origanum Compactum
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Amenorrhea
Arthritis
Asthma
Bronchitis (chronic)
CandidaOregano Leaves
Cellulite
Colds and flu
Constipation
Cough-tickling and whooping
Constipation
Digestion, sluggish
Expectorant
Lice
Parasites
Respiratory infection (tuberculosis)
Rheumatism
Warts

Aroma: pungent, hot, earthy and spicy

Blends well with: Lemon, Bergamot, Lavender, Rose, Pine, Geranium, Sandalwood.

Parts Used: Leaves

Properties: analgesic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, stomachic, expectorant, emmenagogue, antirheumatic.

Contraindications: Avoid prolonged internal use. May be irritating to the skin and cause contact dermatitis. Always dilute well before applying to the skin. Do not use during pregnancy or on children under 5. Blend oregano with mild essential oils such as Lavender before diffusing. Excessive amounts of diffused oregano will cause eye and throat irritation.

Undiluted oregano can be very irritating to the skin. Use only in dilution with vegetable oil or lotion. be especially careful on hypersensitive skin, damaged skin, aged skin and with children.

Oregano Oil for Candida



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Oregano Essential Oil

              

Oregano Tea Bags and Leaves

              



Neroli Essential Oils Recipes

The essential oil of Neroli is distilled from the fresh-picked flowers of the orange tree, making it a citrus family member. Neroli is one of the most expensive and precious of the essential oils. One ton of hand-picked blossoms produces only one quart of essential oil. The best quality neroli oil comes from the bitter orange tree, which is cultivated for its perfume.


Neroli has powerful psychological properties. It helps relieve the strain of long-term tension, and it is a wonderful natural aid for insomnia. Neroli also helps to regulate heart rhythm and lowers blood pressure.

Botanical Name: Citrus aurantium var amara
Note: Middle to Base
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:Neroli Flower
Anxiety
Childbirth
Circulation
Dry, irritated skin
Hemorrhoids
High blood pressure
Hysteria
Insomnia
Intestinal spasms
Irritability
Frigidity
Mature skin
Palpitations
Perfume
PMS
Post-partum depression
Rapid heart beat
Scarring
Shock
Skin—all types
Stress
Stretch marks
Tachycardia
Varicose veins

Aroma: sweet, citrus, heady with bitter Neroli Flowerundertone

Blends well with: All citrus, Lavender, Rose, Jasmine, Chamomile

Parts Used: Flowers

Properties: antiseptic, antidepressant, antispasmodic, anti-toxic, aphrodisiac, carminative, deodorant, euphoric, hypnotic, sedative, tonic, tranquilizing.

Emotional Concerns: Neroli is useful for states such as shock or hysteria. It may be helpful for post-partum depression, irritability and sadness.

Contraindications: do not confuse this oil with niaouli oil, a variety of Tea Tree Oil.

Soft Skin:
2 drops Neroli
1 drop Roman Chamomile
1 drop Rose
4 drops Bergamot
2 capsules vitamin E, opened
1 ounce massage oil with borage

Mix all ingredients and use on skin after showering

High Blood Pressure:
3 drops Neroli
2 drops Ylang Ylang
4 drops Lemon
1 drops Lavender

Place in nebulizing diffuser. Turn on for several minutes to inhale aroma. Or place the mixture on the cotton pad of an aroma ball to diffuse gently throughout the day.

Palpitations/Tachycardia Roll-On Blend:
2 drops Neroli
1 drop Rose
2 drops Ylang Ylang

Mix with 10 ml massage oil in roll-on bottle. Roll onto pulse points on wrists several times per day; inhale aroma directly throughout the day.



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Neroli Essential Oil

              



Myrrh Oils

Myrrh has a long history of use in religious ceremonies as incense. Ancient Egyptians also used it as an embalming agent. Myrrh was one of the three gifts of the Magi, along with frankincense and gold. Jesus was anointed with myrrh after his death. Ancient texts refer to the power of myrrh to hasten labor and to treat rotten teeth.


Botanical Name: Commiphora myrrha
Note: Base
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
Aging or wrinkled skin
Athlete’s feetMyrrh Uses
Bronchitis
Colds
Coughs with thick mucus
Cracked, chapped, or manure skin
Cuts, sores, skin ulcers, bedsores
Gingivitis
Tooth, gum and mouth infections
Sore throat/laryngitis
Thrush
Wound healing

Aroma: Smokey and resinous

Blends well with: Geranium, Frankincense, Rose

Part Used: ResinMyrrh Resin

Properties: Antifungal;, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, fungicidal, expectorant, sedative, vulnerary.

Emotional Concerns: Myrrh enhances spiritual connections and is calming and reassuring. It is also good for emotion confusion, fear, and hysteria.

Contraindications: Myrrh may be contraindicated in cases of low blood sugar. Avoid if during pregnancy, and use it in moderation.

Myrrh oils is helpful for eliminating excess thick mucous.

Inhalation for Thick Mucous
4 drops Myrrh
3 drops Eucalyptus
2 drops Thyme
1-2 drops Tea tree

Drop essential oils into a bowl of almost boiling water. Cover head with a towel and carefully inhale vapors deeply for five minutes. Repeat three times a day for five days, or until condition clears.



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Myrrh Essential Oils

              

Myrrh Resin

              



Marjoram Uses

In ancient times, marjoram was believed to increase lifespan. Ancient Greek physicians used marjoram to treat rheumatism and muscle spasms. During the renaissance, this marvelous herb was used for jaundice and chest infections. Marjoram herb is helpful with all diseases of the chest which hinder the breathing. It is “comforting in cold diseases of the head, stomach, sinews and other parts.

Marjoram is a wonderful sedative, a first choice for insomnia, nervous tension or anguish. It relieves muscle pain, being both analgesic and antispasmodic, a rub with marjoram after strenuous exercise is an excellent choice.


Marjoram is useful for colds and coughs, because it helps kill bacteria and aids the body in expelling mucus from the lungs. It also soothes the spasm often associated with cough.

Botanical Name: Origanum majorana
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Aches and pains
Amenorrhea
Asthma
BronchitisMarjoram Leaves
Colds
Colic
Constipation
Coughs
Dyspepsia
High blood pressure
Insomnia
Joints, stiff
Leucorrhea
Migraines
Mouth ulcers
Muscle cramps
Nervous tension
Painful menstruation
Palpitations
Rheumatism

Aroma: Warm, woody, camphoraceous, green, nutty

Blends well with: Lavender, Bergamot, Neroli, Rosemary, Tea tree, Clary Sage, Geranium.

Parts Used: Leaves

Properties: anaphrodisiac (decreases sex drive), analgesic, antiseptic, antispasmodic, digestive, expectorant, hypotensive, laxative, nervine, restorative, sedative, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: loneliness, debility, insomnia, agitation, anguish, obsession, nervous tension.

Contraindications: Large amounts may cause drowsiness or dull the senses to the point of stupefaction. Do not use during pregnancy. May decrease sex drive.

Daytime After Exercise Muscle Relief Rug:
5 drops Marjoram
4 drops Rosemary
3 drops Eucalyptus
2 drops Peppermint
1 drops Thyme
½ oz carrier oil or aloe vera gel

Nighttime Muscle Relief Cream:
5 drops Marjoram
4 drops Lavender
2 drops Roman Chamomile
2 drops Ylang Ylang

Combine ingredients in ½ ounce of a cream-base lotion, such as self heal cream or Healing AC Cream.

Off to Sleep:
3 drops Marjoram
3 drops Neroli
3 drops Lavender

Use in a nebulizing diffuser or plug-in wall diffuser…..a simple method is to dab a few drops on a light bulb…when the bulb heats up…the oils will be released.



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Mandarin Benefits

Like other quality citrus essential oils, mandarin is obtained by cold expression of the peel of the fruit. The result is an essential oil that has a sweet citrus aroma. Green mandarin tends to have a softer more floral aroma, while red mandarin’ aroma is more pungent.


French aromatherapists consider mandarin to be one of the safest essential oils. Hence, it is used in children’s remedies and by pregnant women as well as for the elderly.

It is often used for hiccups and to soothe indigestion. It may also support the liver. Like all citrus oils, mandarin is photosensitizing, which means that topical use may cause skin to burn more quickly and more deeply in sunlight or from tanning beds.

Botanical Name: Citrus reticulata
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Low (green) to Medium-High (red)

Key Uses:
Acne
Cellulite
Children’s concerns
DyspepsiaMandarin Peel
Fluid retention
Hiccups
Indigestion
Insomnia
Intestinal problems
Nervous tension
Oily skin
Restlessness
Stretch marks
Scars

Aroma: fresh, citrus, lively.

Blends well with: Bergamot, Cinnamon, Clove, Lavender, Sandalwood.

Part Used: Peel

Properties: Antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, digestive, diuretic (mild), sedative, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: stress, tension, moodiness, shock.

Contraindications: photosensitizing; do not use on skin prior to sun exposure.

Mandarin Oily Skin Toner:
6 oz. distilled water
3 drops Mandarin
2 drops Lemon
1 Tbsp Witch Hazel

Combine ingredients in a glass bottle. Shake mixture before use. Shelf life of about a month.

For an even more natural toner, make an infusion of 1 heaping Tbsp of dried Witch Hazel herb in 1 cup of boiling water. Allow the mixture to steep for 10 minutes, then strain. Substitute the infusion for the distilled water and the prepared witch hazel in the above recipe.

Stretch Mark Prevention:
6 drops Mandarin
4 drops Neroli
2 drops Geranium or 3 drops Lavender
1 tsp each fresh flaxseed oil, fresh hazelnut oil, fresh rose hip seed oil
1 Tbsp of quality base oil such as Wheat germ
1 Vitamin E capsule, cut open and added to mixture
1 ounce cocoa butter.

Melt Cocoa butter slowly over low heat in a small, stainless steel pan. Remove from heat and stir in the vegetable oil and vitamin E. Add the essential oils last, as the mixture is cooling.

High-quality carrier oils turn rancid very quickly and should be stored in the refrigerator. You can find flax seed oil in the refrigerated section of your health food store. If you cannot locate the rose hip seed oil or hazelnut oil, the recipes will still be effective. Instead, increase the base oil to 1 ½ Tbsp.



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Lemon Benefits

The lemon tree originated in Southeast Asia but is now grown extensively in hot climates around the world, particularly in California and the Mediterranean. The Greeks and Romans used lemon peel as an insect repellant. By the late 17th century, Europeans were using lemon as a blood purifier and digestive.


Lemon is effective in treating infections of all kind and is believed to increase white blood cell activity. Lemon is tonifying to the circulatory and digestive system and helps counteract acidity in the body.

Botanical Name:  Citrus limonum
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Low

Note: Lemon Zest is not the same as Lemon Peel
Lemon Peel
Key Uses:
Arteriosclerosis
Arthritis
Cellulite, cellular congestion
Colds and flu
Depression
Indigestion infections
Gallstones and urinary stones
Gastric hyperacidity
Hypertension
Jet lag
Liver congestion
Varicose veins
Warts

Aroma: clean, fresh, citrus, penetrating.

Blends well with: Lavender, Ylang Ylang, all other citrus, Geranium, Chamomile, Eucalyptus, Rose, Thyme.

Part Used: Peel

Properties: antiseptic, anti-toxic, antiviral, bactericidal, digestive, diuretic, fungicidal, stimulant, stomachic, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Lemon is uplifting and rejuvenating. It can clear thinking and dispel sluggishness.

Contraindications: Lemon has a short shelf life. Old oil used on the skin may cause an allergic reaction. Lemon is photosensitizing, so avoid sunlight and tanning beds after application. Use only in low concentrations for all dermal applications and baths.

Benefits, Lemon for Colds:
2 drops Rosemary
2 drops Peppermint
2 drops Eucalyptus
3 drops Lemon

Combine essential oils in an amber glass bottle. Use 3-4 drops in a steam inhalation.

Antiseptic Spray for the Home:Lemon Zest
10 drops Lemon
3 drops Thyme
8 oz. distilled Water
2 Tbsp alcohol

Add lemon to alcohol in a glass spray bottle.   Add water.  Shake before using.


Articles of Interest:
Herbal Weight Loss Remedies
Fresh Homemade Seasonings
Know Your Spices ~ Cooking with Spices
Plantain Herbs-A Medicinal Panacea

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Lavendar Oils

Lavender is one of the most useful of all essential oils. It is perhaps most famous for its ability to accelerate the healing of wounds and burns. Lavender is also useful for coughs, colds and sore throats. It is an effective relaxant and sedative and may be useful in cases of insomnia and nightmares.



Lavender essential oil is reputed to help with migraine headaches and it is often used in skin care products due to its healing, soothing and moisturizing properties. The name “lavender’ may have come from the Latin word lavare, which means “to wash,” because the Romans frequently used fragrant lavender in their bath waters.

Botanical Name: Lavendula angustifolia
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Acne
Anger
Anxiety
Bruises, burns, sunburn, cuts
ConvulsionsLavendor Oils
Eczema and psoriasis
Hair loss
Headache and migraine
Hiccups hypertension
Infection
Insect bites
Insect repellent
Insomnia
Inflammation
Leukorrhea
Muscle spasms
Pain—arthritic, strains, sprains
Palpitations
Rash, itchy skin
Scabies
Scars
Vaginitis
Wounds

Aroma: Floral and herbaceous, clean.

Blends well with: Most essential oils, especially Geranium, Clary Sage, Pine, Thyme, Peppermint, and all citrus.

Parts Used: Leaves and Flowers

Properties: antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, aphrodisiac, astringent, antivenom, emmenagogue, hemostatic, sedative, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Lavender is very balancing and calming to the nervous system and can soothe states of anxiety, irritability, anger, frustration and compulsion. Lavendar oils may be helpful in cases of manic depression.

Contraindications: use with caution during pregnancy. Be sure to use only true lavender, (Lavandula angustifolia). Other types of lavender have different properties and stronger contraindications.

Lavender for Sachets
Lavender Lotions



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Jasmine the Plant

Jasmine essential oil has a rich, exotic smell and it has been used as a perfume material for centuries. Louis XIV reportedly slept in jasmine-scented sheets. Jasmine is also a powerful aphrodisiac, and is reputed to help with both impotence and frigidity. It may be that jasmine has pheromone-like qualities, as it is in some ways chemically similar to pheromone-containing human perspiration.

Jasmine is helpful during childbirth; in small amounts it can reduce pain and stimulate uterine contractions. It may also help to stimulate milk production after delivery.


Jasmine oil, like rose, is costly to produce. Jasmine flowers are delicate and must be picked by hand to prevent damage. Due to changes in the plant’s chemistry, the aroma of jasmine become more intense at night. For this reason, jasmine must be gathered before daylight, which increases labor costs. Due to its remarkable nocturnal fragrance, the people of India call jasmine “Queen of the Night”.

Botanical Name: Jasminum officinale, Jasminum grandiflorum
Note: Base
Odor Intensity: High
Jasmine Tea
Key Uses:
Aphrodisiac
Bronchial spasms
Coughs, spasmodic
Cramps, menstrual
Childbirth
Dry skin, dermatitis
Impotence, frigidity (emotional)
Milk production
Post-partum depression
Perfume
Uterine spasms

Fragrance: deep, oriental, flora, sensuous.Jasmine

Blends well with: Sandalwood, Rose, Neroli, Geranium

Parts Used: Flowers

Properties: analgesic, aphrodisiac, antidepressant, antispasmodic, carminative, cicatrizant, emollient, euphoric, expectorant, galactagogue, sedative, uterine tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Hypersensitivity, lack of confidence, frigidity, impotence, post-partum depression, paranoia, fear.

Contraindications: Do not take internally. Beware of adulterated products. Do not use in the first four months of pregnancy. Use in low dilutions.

Luxurious Body Powder:
5 drops Sandalwood
2 drops Jasmine
2 drops Grapefruit
3 drops Bergamot
½ cup cornstarch

Self Confidence Roll-on
1 drop Jasmine
1 drop Rose
1 drop Ylang Ylang
3 drops Thyme
10ml of carrier oil

Combine and put in roll-on bottle. Use throughout the day as a perfume; apply to pulse points.



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Helichrysum Essential Oil

Helichrysum, also known as everlasting or immortelle, is native to the Mediterranean region. Like lavender, Helichrysum stimulates the growth of new cells and is recommended for bruises, burns and scars. Many claim that Helichrysum can help with hearing loss and nerve damage, but these claims are as of yet scientifically unsubstantiated.


Helichrysum essential oil acts as a stimulant for the liver, gallbladder and spleen. It aids in detoxification of the body, working especially through the lymph glands.

Botanical Name: Helichrysum italicum
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
AllergiesHelichrysum Essential Oil
Arthritis
Bruises, burns, rashes
Chronic cough, whooping cough
Dermatitis
Detoxification
Eczema and psoriasis
Headaches and migraine
Inflammation
Liver/spleen congestion
Mediation
Muscle pain
Nerve damage
Nervous exhaustion
Ringing in the ears
Scarring, wounds

Aroma: Earthy, slightly floral, heady, Helichrysumpowerful, hay-like.

Blends well with: Rose, Lavender, Roman Chamomile, Geranium, and Clary Sage.

Part Used: Flowers

Properties: anti-allergenic, anti-inflammatory, antitussive, antiseptic, cholagogue, cicatrizant, diuretic, expectorant, fungicidal, hepatic, nervine.

Emotional Concerns: Helichrysum is relaxing and emotionally warming and opening, easing such emotions as frustration and irritability. Helichrysum helps remove the most stubborn of wood emotions—jealousy, half-conscious anger and bitterness of spirit.

Contraindications: Do not take internally.

Blend for Bruises:
3 drops Helichrysum
3 drops Lavender
2 drops Geranium
2 drops Thyme
1 oz. carrier oil or lotion base

Mix the essential oils with the carrier oil or lotion. Apply to the bruise 3-4 times per day.



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Grapefruit Benefits

Grapefruit is valuable for conditions in which the body is not effectively eliminating toxins, including cellulite, fluid retention, and lymphatic congestion. Grapefruit stimulates the liver and gallbladder and helps regulate eating disorders. It is balancing for people who use overeating to calm nervous anxiety.


Botanical Name: Citrus paradise
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:
Anorexia
Cellulite
Circulation, poor
Depression
Grapefruit PeelDetoxification
Digestive problems
Drug/alcohol withdrawal
Edema and fluid retention
Headache
Jet lag
Lymphatic congestion
Obesity
Weight loss

Aroma: citrus, sweet, fresh, appealing.

Blends well with: All Citrus, Rosemary, Lavender, Thyme, Cinnamon, Geranium.

Part Used: Peel

Grapefruits Benefits ~ Properties: antidepressant, antiseptic, digestive, diuretic, stimulant, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Grapefruit is balancing to the emotions. It brightens dark, depressive moods and it eases frustrations. Grapefruit provides a sense of lightness when everyday responsibilities seem too heavy.

Contraindications: Grapefruit has the shortest shelf life of the citrus essential oils but is the least photosensitizing. Because grapefruit is a potential skin irritant, it should not be used in large quantities in the bath.

Health Benefit of Grapefruit: Grapefruit is helpful for general fatigue and tiredness. It is also good for many skin conditions, including bruises, fungal infections, wounds, dry skin, stretch marks and cellulite.

Citrus Body Polish:
3 Tbsp Jojoba oil
1 tsp NSP massage oil
3 Tbsp unscented castile soap
1 tsp Sunshine Concentrate
4 Tbsp fine sea salt
3 tsp coarse salt
25 drops Bergamot
20 drops Lemon
15 drops Pink Grapefruit

Gently stir together the soap and the oils. Add the salts and essential oils and blend with a wooden spoon. Transfer to a wide-mouthed container for easy scooping.

Apply this blend all over in the shower before turning on the water, paying special attention to rough areas such as elbows and the heal of feet. Rinse. Enough for tow applications.



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Geranium Oils

The essential oil of geranium has a flowery, rose-like fragrance. In fact, it is often used to adulterate rose oil. The essential oil of geranium comes from the pelargonium plant and should not be confused with the European genus of geranium, which includes crane’s bill. Beware of falsified oils or oils from the wrong plant species.

Geranium is calming, balancing and uplifting for depression. It is reputed to help with female hormone balance and is useful in easing PMS, engorgement of the breast, night sweat, and hot flashes.


Geranium is helpful for general fatigue and tiredness. It is also good for many skin conditions, including bruises. Fungal infections, wounds, dry skin, stretch marks, and cellulite.

Geranium
Botanical Name: Pelargonium graveolens
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: High

Key Uses:
Acne
Anxiety
Breast engorgement or congestion
Bruises, broken capillaries
Depression
Diabetes
Cellulite
Edema
Eczema
Hormone balance (PMS, menopause)
Insect repellant (mosquitoes, gnats)
Kidney stones
Lymphatic stimulant
Neuralgia (especially facial)
Skin care
Urinary disorder
Ulcers
Wounds

Aroma: Rose-like and sweet, with an earthy,Fancy Geranium mint-like undertone.

Blends well with: Clove, Patchouli, Sandalwood, Neroli, Jasmine, Rose and all citrus, especially Bergamot.

Part Used: Leaves

Properties: Astringent, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, calming, diuretic, homeostatic, uplifting, vulnerary, tonic.

Emotional Concerns: Geranium is useful in cases of nervous tension, stress and anxiety.

Contraindications: Geranium can be an irritant to sensitive skin. It may cause restlessness or insomnia if used in the evening or if overused.  Avoid long-term use if you have a history of estrogen-dependent cancers.

Wound Healer:
5 drops Geranium
5 drops Lavender
3 drops Frankincense
1 Tbsp Aloe Vera Gel

Mix and apply to the wound.

Insect Repellant:
4 drops Thyme
4 drops Geranium
4 drops Lavender
4 drops Peppermint

Add to 2 Tbsp Witch Hazel and dilute in 4 oz. water. Spray on skin to deter insect bites.



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Frankincense Benefits

Frankincense, also known as olibanum, is an aromatic gum resin obtained from African and Middle Eastern trees. When the bark of the frankincense tree is damaged or deliberately cut, the tree exudes its resin, or “tears”. The essential oil is steam distilled from the gum resin.

Frankincense, one of the three gifts of the Magi to the infant Jesus, has been used since ancient times in religious rituals. Frankincense slows and deepens the breath, produces feelings of calm and puts us in the right mental state for prayer or mediation.



Frankincense is a particularly good aid to the lungs, helping in cases of respiratory infection, nervous and allergic asthma, and chronic bronchitis.

Botanical Name: Boswellia carteri
Note: Base
Order Intensity: High

Key Uses:Frankincense Tree
Aging skin, wrinkles
Asthma
Bronchitis
Calming
Colds and coughs
Cystic breasts
Dermatitis
Diarrhea
Emphysema
Fear, nightmares
Painful periods
Respiratory congestion, infections
Skin—scars, infections, boils
Spiritual aid
Ulcers
Varicose veins
Wound healing

Aroma: Balsamic, woody, dry with notes ofFrankincense Resin turpentine, rich, incense-like.

Blends well with: All citrus, especially Bergamot and Lemon, Cinnamon, Geranium, Pine, Rose, Sandalwood, and Lavender

Parts Used: Resin

Properties: Antiseptic, sedative, tonic, expectorant, cicatrizant, astringent, anti-inflammatory, relaxant, hemostatic vulnerary.

Emotional Concerns: Frankincense is opening, relaxing and fear-relieving. It soothes the spirit as it deepens the breathing.

Contraindications: Avoid during Pregnancy.

Asthma Rub—Children 3-7
2 drops Frankincense
3 drops Lavender
2 drops Geranium
Add to 1 Tbsp massage oil.

Massaging the chest area helps to open constricted lungs. Regular chest massage may prevent asthma attacks from occurring frequently. Asthmatics should test-smell essential oils to avoid individual allergic reactions.

Asthma Rub—Spasmodic:
3 drops Frankincense
3 drops Clary Sage
2 drops Peppermint

Add to 10 ml carrier oil, and massage on chest. Caution: do not use on people with low blood pressure.



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Euculyptus Oil

Eucalyptus trees are native to Australia and are commonly known as gum trees. Since the late 1800’s, eucalyptus oil has been used in remedies to treat coughts and other concerns of the respiratory system.

Eucalyptus is a powerful decongestant and expectorant and is therefore useful in inhalations in cases of colds, catarrh, and respiratory infections. It is specific for colds accompanied by chills and thin mucus.  Eucalyptus is one of the best oils to use in a diffuser to prevent the airborne transmission of illness.


Botanical Name: Eucalyptus globulus
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Very High

Eucalyptus tree

Key Uses:
Air purifier
Antiseptic
Arthritis, rheumatoid and osteo
Bronchitis
Chicken pox
Mind clearer
Colds and flu
Coughs
Decongestant
Diabetes
Fevers insect repellent
Muscle aches, stiffness
Neuralgia
Parasites, intestinal
Respiratory infections
Sinus infection, sinus congestion
Wounds and burns

Aroma: Camphoraceous, pungent, penetrating, fresh, with a slight woody/sweet undertone.

Blends well with: Thyme, Pine, Lavender, Lemon, Marjoram, Rosemary, Tea Tree, and Grapefruit.

Part Used: Leaves

Properties: antiseptic, analgesic, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-infectious, antiviral, bactericide, deodorant, decongestant, diuretic, expectorant, febrifuge.

Emotional Concerns: Constricted, overwhelmed, feeling hemmed in and limited

Contraindications: Eucalyptus may interfere with homeopathic remedies. Beware of rectified oil. Do not use in large concentrations on the skin. Avoid in cases of epilepsy or hypertension and exercise caution in case of asthma.

Massages with eucalyptus can reduce fever and relive the pain of muscle strain and rheumatism. Using eucalyptus on the dressing of a wound will speed healing.

Anti-infectious Chest Rub:
10 drops Eucalyptus
4 drops Peppermint
6 drops Pine (wheeze cough, white mucus) or rosemary (catarrhal cough)

Combine in 1 oz. Aloe vera gel, plus 1/8 teaspoon massage oil. Massage into chest and lower neck.

Cleaner Air:
6 drops Eucalyptus
4 drops Lemon
3 drops Thyme

Add to 6 oz. Water in a glass spray bottle. Spray to freshen the air, or put oils directly into a nebulizing diffuser and diffuse…Additionally, place a few drops on a light bulb..when the bulb heats up the oils will be released.

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Clove Seeds

Clove is an evergreen tree native to the Moluccas in Indonesia. Their pink flower buds are picked just before opening and laid out to dry in the sun until they turn brown.  Many old texts list clove as a stomachic, carminative, and digestive.  It reduces flatulence, restores appetite, stimulates digestion and fights intestinal parasites and viral infections.  Hildegard of Bingen wrote that clove could be used for headaches, migraines and dropsy.



Because of its high eugenol content, essential oil clove is an extremely powerful antiseptic—in some cases more powerful than oregano and thyme. Clove can be used in small amounts for short periods of time in inhalations or diffusions to fight colds. Be sure to keep your eyes closed or covered to prevent irritation.

Botanical Name: Eugenia caryophllata
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:Clove Flower
Amnesia, mental debility
Colds, preventative
Digestive disorders-dyspepsia, flatulence, diarrhea
Exhaustion
Expectorant
Insect repellant
Mouth and tooth infections
Nausea
Neuralgia
Parasites
Pulmonary infections (tuberculosis)
Rheumatic pain
Sciatica
Shingles (internal use)
Sinusitis
Sore throat
Toothache

Aroma: sweet, spicy, warm, penetrating.Clove Bud

Blends well with: Mandarin, Geranium, Sandalwood, Cinnamon, Lemon, and Rosemary.

Parts Used: Immature Flower

Properties: analgesic, antiparasitic, antiseptic, antineuralgic, antispasmodic, carminative, cicatrizing, stimulant, stomachic, vermifuge.

Emotional Concerns: Clove is reputed to stop “mental chatter” and is good for emotional exhaustion, metal fatigue, and lack of concentration due to mental clutter.

Contraindications: The eugenol content is clove may inhibit blood clotting. Do not use on people with slow blood clotting, hemophilia or those who are taking warfarin or other blood thinners. Do not use concurrently with Tylenol (acetominophen). Do not use in cases of liver or kidney disease.

Clove spices may irritate skin and cause contact dermatitis. It may also irritate the liver. It should not be used for long periods of time. Clove can be adulterated with other oils, such as oil of pimento. Be sure to use only high quality clove seeds oil. Because irritation of the eyes may occur from airborne diffusion, do not use in the diffuser for more than a minute or two.

Bug Repellant Rub:
3 drops Lavender
4 drops Geranium
3 drops Eucalyptus
2 drops Lemon
1 drops Peppermint
1 drops Clove

Add to 1 oz. of carrier oil and apply liberally to skin.  Eliminate the lemon if you ill be out in the sun.


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Cinnamon Benefits

Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known to man. It was a valuable commodity in the spice trade. The Egyptians used cinnamon as perfume, incense and medicine.  The Arabs considered cinnamon a symbol of wealth, and it is said that Alexander the Great knew he was near the cost of Arabia when he could smell the spices from the shore wafting past his barge. Diffusing the essential oil of cinnamon leaf disperses unwanted smells and prevents the spread of infection.

The leaf and the bark of the cinnamon tree each yield essential oils that are chemically different. Cinnamon leaf oil contains a high percentage of the phenol eugenol, also found in clove. This may irritate the liver in repeated doses. It has a milder smell, and can be used in diluted form in topical and perfume applications. Cinnamon leaf oil makes pleasant aromatic diffuser blends and works well to combat sleepiness. Cinnamon bark oil contains cinnamic aldehydes, which is an excellent infection fighter. This makes cinnamon bark the oil of choice for severe infections. Cinnamon bark oil is also effective for stimulating menstruation and helping with uterine contractions during childbirth. However, the bark oil is quite irritating to the skin and should not be used topically.


Botanical Name: Cinnamomum zeylanicum
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: High
Honey & Cinnamon
Key Uses: (Leaf and Bark Oil)
Candida
Colds and flu
Digestion, sluggish
Indigestion, dyspepsia
Infection
Infectious diseases
Muscle pain
Nervous exhaustion
Parasites

Leaf:                                             Bark:
Lice, scabies                               Childbirth
Immunostimulant                         Diabetes
Severe infection

Aroma: Spicy, hot, sweet, sharp. Cinnamon leaf has a clove-like smell

Blends well with: Mandarin, Frankincense, Ylang Ylang

Parts used: Bark or leaves

Health Properties of Cinnamon: Anthelmintic, antidiarrheal, antimicrobial, antiputrescent, astringent, aphrodisiac, digestive, emmenagogue, homeostatic, parasiticide, spasmolytic, stimulant, stomachic, vermifuge.

Emotional Concerns: Frigidity, faintness, depression, nervous exhaustion.

Medicinal Benefits of Cinnamon~ Contraindications: Cinnamon is a skin irritant. Use sparingly and never use undiluted. Do not use during pregnancy or on small children.  The eugenol content in cinnamon may inhibit blood clotting. Do not use on people with slow blood clotting, hemophilia or those who are taking warfarin or other blood thinners. Do not use concurrently with Tylenol (acetominophen). Do not use in cases of liver or kidney disease.

Both essential oils are excellent antifungals, antivirals and antibacterials. They stimulate digestion and may be used to destroy intestinal parasites.

Aromatic Cinnamon Immunity Blend:
3 drops Cinnamon leaf
2 drops Frankincense
3 drops Mandarin
1 drop Myrrh

Place on cotton pad of wall diffuser. Or dilute in 1 ounce of massage oil for an aromatic, immune-stimulating massage.

Muscle Pain Reliever:
4 drops Cinnamon
5 drops Marjoram
3 drops Roman Chamomile

Mix with 2 ounces massage oil and rub into sore muscles.


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Camomile Benefits

The Roman Chamomile herb has been used in European medicine for over 2,000 years. In herbal medicine, chamomile is used for nervous tension, upset stomach, and children’s ailments.



Roman chamomile essential oil is one of the best calming, anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic essential oils. It is a good disinfectant for the urinary tract, and it soothes renal inflammation. Chamomile is also good for any skin irritation—rashes, acne, dermatitis, eczema, psoriasis and itching. It is excellent for soothing burns and reducing scarring and for soothing sore nipples.

Roman Chamomile

Botanical Name: Chamaemelum nobile
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Extremely High
Chamomile
Key Uses:
Anemia
Anger and agitation
Arthritis, bursitis
Cramps, intestinal and menstrual
Children’s ailments
Dyspepsia, indigestion, flatulence
Eczema and psoriasis
Gout
Insomnia
Irritability
Liver congestion
Migraine
Muscular aches, pains, tension
Nervous excitability
Neuralgia
Scanty periods
Sciatica
Sedative (especially for children)
Spastic colon
Teething
Renal inflammation

Aroma: warm, round, earthy, sweet, with a hint of green apple

Blends well with: Sandalwood, Rose, Lavender, Neroli, Geranium

Parts Used: Flowers

Essential Oils Properties: Analgesic, anti-anemic, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, calmative, emmenagogue, hepatic, sedative, stomachic, vulnerary, vermifuge.

Emotional Concerns: Chamomile is good for all states of agitation and anger, including nervous irritability, impatience and oversensitivity. Chamomile dispels tension and fear.  It is useful for people who tend to think, worry or work too much.

Teething Relief:
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 drop Roman Chamomile

Mix essential oil and olive oil in an amber glass bottle with a dropper. Rub a small amount into affected gums.

Neck and Shoulder Relief:
6 drops Roman Chamomile
18 drops Lavender
15ml carrier oil

Combine in glass bottle. Massage into tense muscles.


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Clary Sage

Clary sage was highly esteemed for its healing properties in the Middle Ages. Medieval authors referred to it as “clear eyes,” because the mucilage from its seeds was used to clear the eyes of foreign particles.

Clary sage may be helpful in reducing high blood pressure, and because of its antispasmodic properties, it is helpful in treating asthma and muscle strain. Clary sage is also useful in addressing conditions of female hormone imbalance, including excessive sweating associated with menstruation or menopause, infrequent or scanty periods and hot flashes.


Botanical Name: Salvia sclarea
Note: Middle
Odor Intensity: Medium

Key Uses:Clary Sage Flower
Anxiety
Asthma
Amenorrhea
Aphrodisiac
Dysmenorrheal
Dandruff
Nervous tension
Hemorrhoids
Hypertension
Intestinal cramps, colic
Menopause, hot flashes
Muscular tension, aches, strains
PMS
Sweating, excessive

Aroma: Clean, nutty, sweet, warm, green.Clary Sage

Blends well with: Geranium, Lavender, Bergamot, Sandalwood, Rose

Parts Used: Leaves and flowering tops

Essential Oils Properties: anticonvulsive, antiseptic, antispasmodic, aphrodisiac, cicatrizant, emmenagogue, euphoric, hypotensive, sedative.

Emotional Concerns: Clary sage is indicated by nervous anxiety, shallow breathing, depression and nervous tension. It is also helpful for emotional confusion and indecision. Clary sage, considered a euphoric, should be used only in moderate doses.

Contraindications: Do not use during pregnancy. Do not use while drinking alcoholic beverages, as this may increase the narcotic effect. Overuse can cause headache and stupor. Avoid using in cases of low blood pressure and estrogen-dependent tumors.

Clary sage is also indicated for dandruff and hair loss. It can encourage vivid dreaming and improve dream recall.

Hot Flash Relief:
6 oz. distilled water
4 drops Clary Sage
3 drops Roman Chamomile
3 drops Geranium
2 drops Lemon
1 drop Pine
2 drops Peppermint

Pour water into a spray bottle. Add essential oils. Shake to mix, and always shake before spraying. When you feel a hot flash coming, spritz yourself and inhale, or spritz a cloud of the mixture and walk through it.

PMS Abdomen Rub:
3 drops Lavender
2 drops Roman Chamomile
2 drops Geranium
3 drops Clary Sage
5 drops Sandalwood

Mix with 30 ml carrier oil and massage into abdomen.

<http://www.holisticherbsinfo.com/clary-sage/”>



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Bergamot Plants

Bergamot is perhaps one of the most useful oils for helping with emotional balance. Its gentle smell is uplifting and opening without being too aggressive.



Bergamot EO Properties

Botanical Name: Citrus bergamia
Note: Top
Odor Intensity: Low

Key Uses:
Addiction
Anxietybergamot2
Appetite loss
Bladder infection
Depression
Dyspepsia, painful digestion, colic
Eczema and psoriasis
Gastroenteritis
Insomnia
Intestinal infection/parasites
Mouth infection, herpes

Aroma: A blend of sweet floral with citrus top note and an undertone of vanilla.Bergamot

Blends well with: Most other oils, especially frankincense, geranium, lavender, clary sage and cypress.

Parts Used: Peel

Essential Oils Properties: Antibacterial, antidepressant, antiseptic, anti-infectious, antispasmodic, antitoxic, deodorant, febrifuge, stomachic, vermifuge.

Emotional Concerns: Bergamot is helpful in cases of addiction, anorexia, bulimia, depression, fear, anxiety, and stress.

Contraindications: Bergamot is extremely photosensitizing and possibly irritating to sensitive skin. Do not expose skin to sunlight or tanning beds for 12 hours after use.

Perfume Bergamot: The bergamot fruit, developed for its scent, has been used in perfumery and medicine in France since the 16th century. Bergamot essence is mentioned in many old manuscripts and herbals. Bergamot is the flavoring used to make Earl Grey tea. The citrus bergamot should not be confused with bergamot herb, a red perennial also know as Oswego tea. Bergamot is primarily used in aromatherapy for its antiseptic properties, which are in some cases as effective as lavender. Bergamot has a wonderful smell and can be used to improve the odor of antiseptic blends in a diffuser.

Anxiety Blend:
8 drops Bergamot
3 drops Clary sage
2 drops Geranium
5 drops Frankincense

Mix oils in an amber glass bottle. Diffuse after a stressful day.

Mouth Ulcers:
4 drops Bergamot
2 drops Peppermint or 1 drop Myrrh
2 drops Geranium
2 drops Thyme

Dilute in 2 teaspoons brandy. To use, add 1 teaspoon of mixture to warm water and swish well around mouth. Do not swallow.


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Bergamot for Hair

              

Bergamot for Skin



Making Herbal Teas


Black and Green Tea

Tea runs a close second to coffee in popularity when it comes to hot drinks and although the problem is less serious, it also contains some caffeine and a good deal of tannin.  Black tea and green tea characterize the leaves used to create all varieties of tea. Black tea is fermented to remove some of the tannin. Like coffee, the tannin and caffeine are kept to a minimum when tea is brewed quickly with freshly boiled water.  While this may overcome the problem of the tea leaves themselves, there is still some degree of concern about the tea bag. The metals used to secure the bag are viewed as harmful by many and that innocent-looking encasement is actually a carrier of harmful dyes.

Why not use loose teas leaves? A variety of loose teas are available in your supermarket. For less than a dollar you can purchase an individual tea strainer (or you can use a small mesh juice strainer, or cheese cloth) and brew fresh tea in individual glasses or by the pot.  Buy a few kinds and you can change your tea to suit your moods.

Tea has another advantage over coffee-it’s much easier to drink it black.  For those who insist on sweetening their beverage, honey makes a much tastier tea than sugar.

Herbal Teas

Aside from the traditional tea-leaf teas, delicious teas can be prepared from herbs.  Herb teas have no caffeine and many are believed to have healing qualities. While the taste for herb tea must sometimes be acquired, as an incurable tea drinker, I can testify that the acquisition is a simple one.  Herb tea is made just like other teas, by  pouring boiling water over fresh or dry leaves (or flowers) and allowing the brew to steep for three to five minutes.  Some of the herbs that come highly recommended include basil, sage, aniseed, fennel, marjoram and mint.

Tea can be made from many different things.  One unique suggestion for making tea is from walnuts.  Inside the shell of a walnut is a woody diving membrane.  Save these pieces and add a heaping teaspoon to each cup of water, allow them to boil together for five minutes and then let the shell fragments settle to the bottom.  When the tea has cooled somewhat it is ready to drink.  Subsequent boiling makes the tea even stronger. This method works with pieces of pecan shells and the skin of almonds as well;

Instant Tea

Instant tea (particularly the iced, flavored kind) is an adulterated waste of money.  In addition to the finely ground tea leaves, which are the basis of the beverage, all the flavored brands contain either malto dextin to protect the flavor, or they derive their appeal from citric acid, artificial color and flavor, caramel color, vegetable oil and BHA (a preservative.)  Don’t be sucked in by the proud claim of “Natural Flavor” that instant tea manufacturers brandish on the label.  The flavor may be natural, but not much else is.  When this tea comes already prepared in the bottle you not only purchase these same chemicals, but you pay a lot of money for someone else to add the water.

If you want iced tea, brew double strength tea (and here you can add any leftover tea that has been brewed previously), add honey and lemon to taste, and server over ice.  Add the sweetening while the tea is hot to make for easier dissolving.

Tea Recipes

Bust Tea
Want a bustier look? Drink Bust Tea! Here’s a tea recipe that will give you a hearty dose of breast-enhancing herbs.

In a saucepan, pour two cups of water over one cup of fenugreek sprouts. Add a dash or two of anise, basil, caraway, dill, fennel, licorice, marjoram and lemongrass. Bring to a boil, then let cool. Add lemon juice and honey to taste. Drink one to two cups a day.

Fennel contains phytoestrogens, plant chemicals similar to the female hormone estrogen. Folklore maintains that the other herbs in this tea can also help enlarge the breasts.

A Tea for Your Liver
This is a grab-bag tea recipe made with herbs that reportedly have liver-protective benefits. Mix to taste: licorice, dandelion, chicory, turmeric and ginger. If you like, you can also add anise, caraway, celery seed, dill, clove, fennel, peppermint, rosemary and vanilla bean. You can mix up a jar of dried herbs and keep the mixture handy for whenever you want an herbal tea.

To Slow Aging:
Drink two antioxidant herb teas a day. Antioxidants are substances that neutralize free radicals, naturally occurring oxygen molecules that damage the body and are thought to play a significant role in the aging process. Most fruits and vegetables contain significant amounts of antioxidants, as do many herbs. If you’re a heavy coffee drinker, you might consider replacing two cups of coffee a day with herb tea. Good research suggests that Oregano, Rosemary, Bee balm, Lemon Balm (also know as Melissa), Peppermint, Sage, Spearmint, Savory and Thyme contain significant levels of antioxidants.

Multi-mint Antioxidant Arthritis Tea:
Rosemary and Oregano are both antioxidant mints. Add several more antioxidant herbs to these two and you get a Multi-mint Antioxidant tea. The mints are basil, bee balm, horehound, hyssop, lemon balm, marjoram, oregano, peppermint, rosemary, sage, savory, spearmint and thyme. It makes sense to top it off with a dash of ginger and turmeric.
Basil has five anti-arthritic compounds with marjoram, oregano and rosemary weighted in with a few each.

How much of each herb should you use to make this tea? Use two parts of the ingredients you like and one part of the ingredients you find less appealing. Pour boiling water over the herbs and let them steep for 10 to 20 minutes before drinking.

Anti-Arthritis Tea:
Approximately three parts dried willow bark to two parts dried licorice root and one part minced garlic. Pour boiling water over the mixture and steep for about 15 minutes. If you don’t like the taste, add lemon and /or honey, plus ginger and turmeric to taste.

My Herbal Tea Remedies eBooks contains over 85 recipes for Detox Tea, Aches and Pains Tea, Tea for Nervousness, Sleep Tea Recipe, Upset Stomach Tea, Urinary Infection Tea, and the list goes on and on!


Articles of Interest:
Preserving Herbs
Harvesting Herbs
Pressing Herbs

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Basic Herb Dressing


A basic dressing recipe can be found in almost every cookbook.  You will notice the standard proportion of oil to vinegar is 3:1. In our experimentation we have discovered that more vinegar and less oil makes a much more flavorful and less fattening dressing, so our Basic Dressing recipe goes like this:

Basic Dressing:
1/3 cup vinegar (wine or cider)
2/3 cup oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Combine all ingredients and shake before pouring.

More often than not, replace all or part of the vinegar with freshly squeezed lemon juice. The oil used varied: safflower or peanut oil for general use; olive oil for Italian-style meals.

From this starting point you can add a variety of herbs and other flavoring ingredients to completely change the look and taste of your dressing.  Here is a list of ideas you can employ to change the Basic Dressing to:

Garlic Dressing: mince 1 clove of garlic and add to Basic Dressing

Herb Dressing: to Basic Dressing, with or without garlic, add 1/ 4 teaspoon of dried basil, thyme, or chervil or 1 to 2 tablespoons of fresh herbs (parsley, dill). Any herb can be added or deleted to suit your taste.

Blue Cheese Dressing: beat in 3 tablespoons of crumbled Blue cheese. To make the dressing Greek, use feta cheese instead.

Cheese Dressing: gate 2 to 4 tablespoons of Parmesan or Swiss cheese into the dressing.

Creamy Dressing: make the dressing thick and creamy by mashing a hard boiled egg or egg yolk with the lemon juice or vinegar before adding the rest of the ingredients.

Indian Dressing: add 1/ 2 teaspoon of curry powder and a pinch of ginger.  Raisins can be added to this dressing, along with 1 tablespoon of fresh parsley and 1 minced clove of garlic.

Chinese Dressing: for spinach salads, bean sprouts or Chinese cabbage make a soy sauce dressing. Make the Basic Dressing with peanut oil and replace the vinegar with soy sauce.  Add 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds.



Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters

Articles of Interest:
List of Dried Herbs
List of Fresh Herbs
Know Your Spices

Homemade Seasonings

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Herbs and Spices

Herb Dressing

              



Homemade Seasonings ~ Salt Substitute!


Most herbs, spices, and table wines do not contain sodium, nor cholesterol and fat; they can be used in place of salt as seasonings. You will find that flavoring substances such as black pepper, onion, green pepper, garlic, lemon juice, and vinegar complement and enhance the natural goodness of food. When using herbs and spices, use them sparingly because a little goes a long way.  However, if you use fresh rather than dried herbs, use twice the amount.

To keep a ready supply of seasonings on hand, try using a combination of herbs instead of salt in your saltshaker.  You can make your own herb shaker by combining:

½ Tsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp basil
1 tsp marjoram
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp mace
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp ground black pepper
1 tsp sage
1 tsp savory

This will enhance the flavors of meats and vegetables in the kitchen or on the table.

Table wines are fine to use in cooking, but avoid flavoring your meats with “cooking wines” as they contain added salt.  As with herbs, a little wine goes a long way.  You can devise your own flavorful marinades by using wine, vinegar, and oil or unsalted salad dressings.  Lemon juice, vinegar, Tabasco sauce or unsalted liquid smoke are also great for adding flavor to meats, soups and vegetables.

Use onion or garlic powder, celery seed or flakes as indicated in a recipe instead of flavored salts such as onion salt, celery salt and garlic salt.

As flavor enhancers to heighten the taste of the foods, I would recommend the following low sodium alternatives:

Beef: Bay leaf, dry mustard powder, green pepper, marjoram, fresh mushrooms, nutmeg, onion, pepper, sage, thyme.

Chicken: Green pepper, lemon juice, marjoram, fresh mushrooms, paprika, parsley, poultry seasoning, sage, thyme.

Fish: Bay leaf, curry powder, dry mustard powder, green pepper, lemon juice, marjoram, fresh mushrooms, paprika.

Lamb: Curry powder, garlic, mint, pineapple, rosemary.

Pork: Apple, applesauce, garlic, onion, sage.

Veal: Apricot, bay leaf, curry powder, ginger, marjoram, rosemary.

Asparagus: Garlic, lemon juice, onion, vinegar.

Corn: green pepper, pimiento, fresh tomato.

Cucumbers: chives, dill, garlic, vinegar.

Green beans: dill, limon juice, marjoram, nutmeg, pilmiento.

Greens: onion pepper, vinegar.

Peas: green pepper, mace, onion, paprika, parsley.

Rice: chives, green pepper, onion, mushrooms, saffron.

Squash: Cinnamon, ginger, mace, nutmeg, onion.

Tomatoes: Basil, marjoram, onion, oregano.

Soups: A pinch of dry mustard powder in bean soup; a small amount of vinegar or allspice in vegetable soup; peppercorns in skin milk chowders; bay leaf and parsley in pea soup.

Kali S. Winters



Articles of Interes:
List of Fresh Herbs
List of Dried Herbs
Know Your Spices

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List of Dried Herbs & Their Uses

Herbs that are not readily available fresh, can be dried and bottled for your later convenience. While not as fresh tasting in this form, if properly prepared, the flavor and aroma can be satisfactorily retained. The potency is much greater in the dried form.

As a general guide for interchanging fresh and dried herbs allow 1/3 to ½ teaspoon of dried herbs to replace 1 tablespoon of fresh.


Basil
This dried leaf is a natural companion for tomatoes. Use it in tomato sauces, vegetable casseroles, and fresh tomato salads.

Bay Leaves
While the leaf itself is not eaten it imparts flavor and aroma to soups and tomato dishes and pickling liquors. Also recommended in fish chowders. Add one leaf to the pot when you begin cooking, remove before serving.

Chervil
The French are particularly fond of chervil, and it is one of the traditional components of “fines herbs.” It is much less common in American kitchens but is found to be one of the best flavoring ingredients for salad dressing. Use it just as you would parsley.

Chives
When fresh chives are unavailable, freeze-dried chives are the best substitute. In this form the herb retains a maximum of flavor and when added to a liquid medium dehydrates readily. Use them in any way that you would the fresh.

Marjoram
The traditional way of using marjoram is in lamb dishes. It is also good on string beans and limas and for a unique taste you might try adding some to poultry stuffing.

Oregano
The essential ingredient in all Italian dishes, so any time you want to impart Italian flavor be sure to include this herb. Also used in Greek and Mexican food.

Rosemary
Rosemary is a sweetest herb that is sold dried and resembles small spikes. Add it along with basil, oregano and marjoram to Italian dishes. It can be used in soups and stews, lamb and chicken dishes and it is great in gin drinks too.

Sage
Again, a valuable stuffing enhancer particularly favored with pork products. Steeped in hot water it is supposedly an excellent medicinal beverage for alleviating colds.

Thyme
Of “parsley sage, rosemary and” fame, this herb is associated most often with poultry.

Caring for herbs
All dried herbs should be stored in airtight containers away from heat. Most cooks keep their herb (and spice) shelf within easy reach of the stove, a handy place except that heat dissipates the flavor and quality of your seasonings. Try to have a permanent storage place in a cooler part of your kitchen.

Always buy the form of dried herb closest to the whole-leaf state, avoiding finely crushed leaves whenever possible. The crumbling of the leaves releases the essential flavoring oils; therefore it is best to crush the leaves between your fingers just before introducing them to the pot.

Successful Gardening~
Kali S Winters



Articles of Interest:
Cooking with Spices
List of Fresh Herbs
List of Medicinal Plants

Herb Garden Kits:

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List of Fresh Herbs & Their Uses

Herbs are nothing more complicated than aromatic leaves and sometimes flowers that are both edible and flavorful. To preserve the flavor and aroma they are frequently dried, but many of them are just as popular in the fresh form and far richer this way.


Celery leaves
The fresh leafy tops of celery are excellent for perking up soups and an essential ingredient in homemade chicken broth. If you have more leaves than you can use, you’ll find home drying a great money saving trick.

Soak the leaves in cold water to clean and pat dry with absorbent paper. Spread on paper (wax, parchment) and let dry slowly, exposed t o the air at room temperature until crumbly. Do not dry in direct sunlight. Store these and all of your home dried herbs in a tightly covered jar for future use.

Chives
Chives are sold as a growing plant. The plant is usually jammed into a tiny container and dies because the roots are too plentiful for the pot. You can have a long-lasing source of this herb in your kitchen if you replant it in a larger pot and continually cut the tops so your chive shoots remain upright. Chives are a member of the onion family. Although much milder, and can be used uncooked to flavor cheese dips, sauces, and spreads. Try adding chives to cottage cheese, sour cream and mayonnaise to accentuate the taste.

Dill
Fresh dill makes everything taste like spring. You probably know dill in the taste of dill pickles. Its use extends to soup (particularly potato and white bean) and salads as well. Add fresh dill and lemon to fish salads or combine the chopped herb with sour cream for a fish sauce.

Mint
Mint may be sold fresh or dried in your market. Add the leaves to yogurt for a refreshing salad. Also good in fruit mixtures and steeped in boiling water for a Mid-Eastern tea. For an instant breath refresher, chew a few mint leaves.

Parsley
Fresh parsley, often used as a garnish only to be pushed to the side of the plate, is actually a fine source of vitamin A and C and vegetable protein. It is also rich in chlorophyll to make your breath rich and sweet-both cheaper and healthier than mouthwash. Use fresh parsley to season soups, salads, stuffing’s, breadcrumb coatings and thousands of other meat and vegetable dishes. To store this herb, wash, chop and keep in a plastic bag in the freezer. When you need a spoonful, dip into the freezer stock; it thaws almost instantaneously. The dried form doesn’t compare in flavor or nutrition.

Successful Gardening~
Kali S. Winters



Articles of Interest:
Know Your Spices
Growing Basil Indoors

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Know Your Spices ~ Cooking with Spices


Spices are the dried flavoring elements produced from the buds, flower, fruit, bark and the root of the plant. Many are sold already blended as curry powder, chili powder, pumpkin pie spice, etc. Although sometimes sold in the whole form, most of them are preground before they reach the market. Unless you use a particular spice in huge quantities, buy the smallest jars available; the flavor diminishes whit age and exposure to the air. Store tightly covered in a cool, dry place as you do herbs.

When the characteristic odor of your spices and herbs is no longer pungent it is time to replace them. Most spices are unadulterated (although they may be sprayed with fumigants to prevent bug habitation at he processing plant.) any tampering should be on the label.

Some of the more common spices are discussed below. Included are seeds as well. Seeds come from the dried fruit or seed of the plant and differ from spices in that the seeds usually refer to the aromatic product of plants of temperate zones, while spices come from plants of tropical origin.

Allspice
Allspice is the product of one plant only, although its name might imply that it is a mixture of more than one spice. The flavor resembles a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves. The whole form is used in pickling; when ground it adds flavor to baked goods and puddings. Try placing the powdered form in stored clothing as a moth preventive.

Caraway seed
This is the flavor so many of us associate with rye bread. These seed are delicious in sauerkraut, cooked cabbage dishes, and on potatoes. We add them to cottage cheese for flavoring dips and are also wonderful in scrambled eggs.

Cardamom
Cardamom is sold both whole and ground and is often quite costly. It is a common ingredient in Indian dishes and the Danish add the ground seeds to pastry. Chewing cardamom seeds is a good cover-up for liquor on the breath.

Cayenne
This fiery red powder from small red peppers can be used to spark anything. A pinch even helps sweet dishes. Use sparingly though, it’s very hot.

Celery Seed
Use just as you would celery leaves. When stuffing vegetables with cream cheese, mix in some celery seeds and you’ll have a more flavorful spread. A teaspoon can be added to salad dressing for a fresh flavor, particularly fruit dressings.

Chili Powder
This spice is made from chili peppers blended with other spices and can be either mild or hot. Use it in Mexican dishes and bean stew.

Cinnamon
The best way to buy cinnamon is in stick form. A 1-inch stick of cinnamon equals 1 teaspoon of ground. Use with whole sticks as stirrers or straws in hot-spiced punch, tea, coffee, and milk. Ground cinnamon, of course, goes into cakes, pies, and puddings. You needn’t save it for sweet dishes though. Add some to rice to give it an arousing aroma.

Cloves
Cloves are highly fragrant nail-shaped buds, which again are used in pickling (mostly fruits). Meat is often studded with cloves t o add flavor in roasting. Ground, it is frequently used in baking. We find cloves go especially well in dishes that include lentils.

Curry Powder
Curry powder is another spice blend and can be added to white sauce in flavor leftover meat, vegetables and eggs. Curry, however, is more than just curry powder and for most effective use of curry spices consult an Indian cookbook. Improper use of curry powder is one sure way to turn people off to Indian food, which is delicious.

Fennel
Although this spice is not among the most popular, it is mentioned because it an add variety to some of your favorite dishes by imparting a licorice-like flavor. It’s quite interesting in apple pie. Also in boiled fish dishes. Highly recommended for those who like licorice, to be brewed like tea and served as a hot drink.

Ginger
In addition to the fresh root, ginger is available dried and ground. This is a spice with a real bite, so taste your dish as you proceed. Use ground ginger in baking (for gingerbread), particularly in combination with fruit fillings.

Mustard
Dried mustard powder is the base for prepared mustards, gradually beat water into the powder to creamy consistency and you’ve made your own hot mustard. It is a favorite flavoring ingredient in salad dressing. Add ¼ teaspoon along with the other seasonings for a sharp (but favorably so) taste. Add to cheese dishes as well.

Nutmeg
When Columbus set sail for the East Indies, nutmeg was one of the spies he was searching for. Nutmeg should always be used in the ground form, alone on vegetables like cauliflower, spinach and broccoli, combined with cinnamon and berries, banana, eggnog and custard.

Paprika
Sweet red peppers are the source of this popular spice, famed more for its use in coloring rather than flavoring flood. It’s mild flavor recommends it for use in egg salad, cream cheese, and sweet corn for color contrast. Also makes tomatoes sauces redder. If fresh, paprika is an excellent source of vitamin C.

Pepper
Pepper goes with everything-in small amounts. Too much (and this is true of all “hot” spices) an damage the stomach lining, invest in a pepper mil and season meat, fish, poultry, egg and vegetable dishes with the freshly ground peppercorns before serving. Pepper that is purchased ready-ground is flat and lifeless. By the way, a lavish sprinkling of ground pepper is another moth repellent used throughout the world.

The best way to judge the right amount of seasoning is by taste. By all means, taste as you go along. A pot that has not been sampled during cooking reflects this neglect.

Discover more about Seasonings Here!

Successful Gardening!
Kali S. Winters





Fresh Homemade Seasonings


Fresh seasoning not only enhances the taste but they also add nutrients to your food. Because they are derived from plant sources, any of them are rich in vitamins and minerals. Use fresh seasonings and incorporate them into your recipes.

Garlic and Onion
The two most widely used flavoring agents are garlic and onion. Both are sold fresh and in the form of ground, dried, powder and salt. Stick with the fresh. Nothing approaches the taste of these vegetables in their original form. Chop, mince, grate or press as needed for enhancing your food: 1 clove of garlic and 1 Tablespoon of chopped or grated onion can substitute for ¼ teaspoon of the powder in a recipe.

Ginger
Fresh ginger root is being offered in many supermarkets these days and is wonderful for making pungent dishes, especially for Chinese and Indian specialties. For every ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger called for in a recipe use a 1-inch piece of the fresh ginger root chopped finely or grated. Ginger can get quite fiery, so start with a little and add more to taste. Fresh ginger grated into the dressing really perks up a fruit or vegetable salad.

Hot Peppers
In certain parts of the country hot (chili) peppers are a common supermarket commodity. Be careful when you use them. Not only are they hot to taste, but fresh chili pulp will burn the skin too. To prepare chilies for cooking:

Wash and dry the pods, skewer on a long-handled fork and toast on top of the stove, turning so they blister on all sides. When the skin is evenly blistered and puffed away from the pulp you can lay the pods on a cloth, sprinkle them lightly with water and cover them with another cloth so they steam. The skins can then be pulled away easily and the seeds and veins removed. Use all the pulp, but only a few of the seeds.

The seeds and veins are the hottest part, so take it easy. Don’t be a show-off when it comes to chili. If you put one of the seeds on your lips or tongue, be assured you will never be tempted to try it again.

Lemon
Lemon juice is added to many sauces, soups, salads dressings, meat, fruit and vegetable dishes to enliven their flavor. Half of fresh lemon will serve you far better than bottled lemon juice which is rather flat tasting and preserved with chemicals.

Learn how to grow these wonderful seasonings in your own garden!

Kali S Winters



Articles of Interest:
Using Kitchen Herbs
Apply Herbs to Salads and Vegetables
Natures Herbal Recipes



List of Medicinal Plants


You don’t need a green thumb to build an herb garden. Herbs are incredibly adaptable so they require less attention than vegetable gardens. Most herbs thrive in the sun, with six to eight hours of exposure being the ideal. Herbs generally need less water than flowers or vegetables do. In fact, many need to be watered only under drought conditions.

When building an herb garden, you should start out small. First, estimate how much time you’ll want to spend gardening. (The bigger the garden, the more time it will need.) Consider the realities of the space you have to use: how much sun the garden will get, what the soil is like, which herbs will do best in your climate (the seed packet often tells you the type of soil and climate the herb will need.)

For city dwellers that lack space to cultivate, a back porch or windowsill garden is recommended. A basic herb garden might include rosemary, chamomile, peppermint lavender and feverfew. Many herbs will thrive in pots, so you are able to bring the magic of the garden indoors during the winter months. Remember these two things when growing herbs in pots: water before the soil dries out or before the leaves yellow and fall off, and use a soil that is a bit alkaline and has good drainage.

The following are eight additional herbs that stand up to the highest standards as far as clinical and laboratory studies. These herbs can effectively treat many diseases and are quite easy to grow:

Chamomile: is generally used as a tea, but its antispasmodic, anti-infective and ant-inflammatory properties are known worldwide and used in chamomile extracts, ointments and tinctures as well to treat a wide range of health problems, from indigestion to skin rashes. Chamomile is also an important ingredient in natural hair dyes for blonds.

Echinacea: stimulates the immune system, which in turn defends the body against infections, both bacterial and viral. Echinacea has a long history. The Native Americans originally used echinacea as a remedy for snakebites and skin wounds. Echinacea has now been known to help in the fight against diabetes by adjusting blood sugar levels.

Feverfew: one of the active ingredients in feverfew, parthenolide, has the ability to reduce the severity and frequency of migraine headaches. Because feverfew reduces the blood vessel spasms in the brain, it has also been known to treat nausea and vomiting as well as fevers and arthritis.

Garlic: Oh…the mighty power of garlic. No herb garden (or person) should be without especially after the high rising costs in the market place. Research shows that garlic can lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels and may even help heart attack survivors live longer. Garlic additionally relieves gas and aids digestion. Garlic is now being studied in tumor fighting research as well.

Ginkgo: is particularly useful for treating ailments associated by decreased blood flow to the brain. People who suffer from memory loss or confusion, especially the elderly, find that mental clarity increases by taking ginkgo. This herb improves circulation throughout the body, especially to the brain. Additionally, ginkgo helps to prevent blood clots and mood swings accompanied by anxiety and can relieve the symptoms of tinnitus (ringing in the ears), asthma, phlebitis (inflammation of a vein) and vertigo.

Lemon Balm: this herb works well to calm the nerves and to protect the body from bacterial infections. It’s also effective on insomnia and menstruation symptoms. However, lemon balm is best known to treat cold sores associated by the herpes simplex virus. Extracts, used as a cream, helps lesions heal faster and extends the time between outbreaks.

St. John’s Wort: is reputed to be an astringent, nervine and is very aromatic. Useful in coughs, colds and all lung diseases, it also is highly esteemed in the disorder of the urinary passages. The ointment is serviceable for bruises, scratches and insect bites. St. John’s wort is especially known as a treatment for depression and insomnia and now shows promise as a treatment for nervousness and anxiety.

Valerian: has an antispasmodic effect for the treatment of epilepsy. Studies show that this herb is a safe, effective alternative to prescription sleeping pills and tranquilizers. It allays pain and promotes sleep and is strongly nervine without any narcotic effects.

Discover more information on medicinal plants

Learn How to Build an Herb Garden

Successful Gardening

Kali S. Winters


Herbing Guide ~ Just click on the plant name for pictures of herbs medicinal uses, essential oils properties and definition.

Additional Articles of Interest:

Home Herb Garden Basics
Herbs for Growing
Herb Garden Plants



Growing Basil Indoors


A true monarch of herbs, appropriately, since its name is derived from Basileus, the Greek word for King. Once you have cooked with it there is no escape, you become addicted and have to restrain yourself from adding it to every dish.

Sweet basil (Ocinum basilicum Labiatae)is a native of south-east Asia and has been cultivated in Europe for about two thousand years, cosseted as much for its medical and culinary qualities as for its supposed powers in witchcraft, superstitions and religious rites. Bush basil (Ocinum minimum) is a miniature variety, no higher than 6-12 inches, more shrubby with a thick mass of small leaves. Sweet basil is more productive and bush basil more adaptable for growing in pots in the house, on balconies or in window boxes.

A pot of basil in an open window or courtyard, growing or picked, will keep away flies and other disagreeable insects, counteract the effects of foods of suspicious “freshness’ and like so many other herbs, is an aid to digestion.

The whole plant has an exotic, spicy, almost disquieting aroma, released by the lightest touch, which you want to imprison in all manner of ways. The fresh, highly pungent leaves, chopped or shredded do for tomatoes, turtle soup and liver, what fresh truffles do for egg and meat dishes. Basil transforms simple dishes and adds subtle piquant undertones particularly to tomato and mushroom sauces and soups. It is an essential ingredient of many French, Italian and Greek dishes…a tantalizing element in stuffing’s, sausages, omelets, soufflés, sauces with fish and chicken and herb butters as well as in green salads. It is a hardship to leave basil out of anything.

Basil is distinctly a solo herb. Only a cooking spoil sport would use another fresh herb at the same time in a salad dish. The fresh leaves should not be cooked but sprinkled at the last moment onto either a cold or hot dish so that the rich, warm, slightly peppery clove fragrance flows straight to the taste buds at it fullest. Of the infinite ways in which it casts its spell, it is considered at its best on a tomato salad.

Cultivating Basil:
Though basil is a perennial in warm countries, it has to be pampered as a tender annual in temperate climates and rarely stretches to its possible 2-3 feet. The glossy pale green ovate leaves vary around 2 inches long. The flowers are white or purple tinged, insignificant and should not be allowed to develop, or the plants will be more interested in producing seed pods than succulent leaves. Nip out the centers of the young plants as they grow to encourage them into a bushy shape.

Sow basil seed in the open ground after all frosts or cold-snaps are over, in a sheltered sunny place with well-drained fertile soil. Keep them well watered in dry weather. As both types dislike being transplanted…root disturbance stunts them…it is best to sow a few seeds into individual pots and when they have germinated, pull out the weaklings and leave the rest to grow on in their pots on a windowsill. In this way you can have basil in the home all through the year.

The first breath of frost kills outdoor basil, but you can rescue as many as you have space for by potting them into richer soil than they enjoyed in the garden, cut them back to the first pair of leaves from the base, and bring them indoors to use as you need.

Preserving Basil
Dried Basil is better than no basil at all, though less pungent than fresh. Pick the leaves when they are young and fresh. Discard any brown or discolored ones. Hang the leaves in bunches in a warm, dry place, away from strong sunlight-an airing cupboard would be ideal. Leave until the leaves are quite dry—the length of time taken to dry them will depend on the temperature and atmosphere of the drying place. When quite dry, crumble into airtight jars and label.

Basil freezes well, wash, scissor or chop the leaves and pack tightly into an ice cube tray. Top with water and freeze. When frozen, turn out into plastic bags and store in the freezer. Take out cubes as required; defrost in a strainer and use as fresh.

More About Basil Here!

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters





Pressing Herbs


Any herbs with thin leaves or petals are suitable for pressing. The pressed specimens can then be used in herbal crafts. Avoid herbs with thick, fleshy leaves and flowers and always select perfect sprigs, delicate flowers or individual leaves and petals. Snip them neatly, removing petals gently from thick flowers or cutting leaves or leaflets into small groups.

You an use a book or sheets of stiff card to press your herbs. A special flower press made up of a number of sheets of still card fixed together at the corners with butterfly screws is useful but not essential, unless you plan to do a great deal of pressed flower work. Protect books from flower dyes with sheets of whit e tissue paper. You will also need some blotting paper or absorbent paper the same size as the press or books and some heavy books or other weights if you do not have a press.

Lay the leaves and flowers on a sheet of absorbent paper, using plastic tweezers or a soft paintbrush to lift or move them and making sure they do not touch each other. Cover carefully with another sheet and place them in the press, between the sheets of card or between the pages of the book. Tighten the screws, press the card down with weights or absorbent paper; you may need to do this two or three times if the material is very moist. Leave for about six months; the longer the specimens are left, the less likely they are to fade when exposed to light.

Preserving in Oil, Vinegar or Salt

By storing herbs in oil, you not only preserve the herbs but also create wonderful fragrant oils for use in cooking or cosmetics. You can also preserve herbs in vinegar, creating aromatic herbal vinegars for use in sauces, salad dressing, pickles and chutneys (pg 16).

Large leafed herbs, such as sage, can be stored layered in a jar with course salt. They will keep for several months and impart their own flavor to the salt.

Preserving with Glycerine

Preserving plant stems in glycerine solution is suitable for some herbs, such as bay and sorrel. The technique darkens the leaves and makes them soft and pliable with lovely sheen.

Pick perfect twigs in summer when the new shoots are growing. Whisk one part glycerine with two parts very hot water until thoroughly blended and then pour the solution into a vase. Stand the twigs in the solution, making sure they reach the base of the container and leave them undisturbed for about two weeks until the tips of the leaves are brown and glossy. When they are ready, you can paint them with a varnish or spray with hair lacquer to help to preserve them. Strain the solution and use it again.

Learn to Create Your Own Backyard Herb Garden Here!

Kali S. Winters


Articles of Interest:
Harvesting and Drying Herbs
More Harvesting Herbs
Preserving Herbs



Fragrant Oils


Natural oils which encapsulate the fragrance of the flower or herb form the essence of many cosmetics.

Concentrated herbal oils can be purchased from a herbalist or chemist as there is great skill in preparing such items. However, the following instructions will enable you to create light floral oils with scented flower petals. Use a measuring cup to weight the petals.

Ingredients:
1 ¼ cups Almond Oil
2 ½ quarts Flower Petals
1 tsp Liquid Storax
1 tsp Tincture of Benzoin

Directions:
Warm the oil in the top of a double saucepan over simmering water. Add 2 cups of petals, stir, cover and leave over a low heat for 2 hours, checking regularly to ensure that the pan does not boil dry. Strain and reserve the flowers. Add another 2 cups of flowers to the oil and repeat the process until all the flowers have been used.

Pour the oil and all the flowers into a large pan, bring to a boil slowly then simmer gently for 40 minutes. Strain the oil through muslin (cheesecloth), pressing to extract all the oil form the petals. Stir in the liquid storax and tincture of benzoin to fix the fragrance, pour into bottles, seal, label and store in a dry, dark place.

For a relaxing and fragrant bath oil, mix one part homemade floral or herbal oil with three parts almond oil for an oil which will float on the water, or with Turkey red dispersing oil. Pour the oil into bottles, seal, label and store. These bath oils make excellent gifts. Only a teaspoonful is need in the bath.

To counteract the dry nature of soap, add a cupful of herbal vinegar to your bath water.

Learn to make your own natural Shampoos and Conditioners Here!

Kali S. Winters



Articles of Interest:
Basic Herb Dressing
Fresh & Easy Herb Gardens
Starting An Herb Garden
Personal Fragrance Toilette
Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own

Back To: Main Articles

Herbal Cosmetics

Herbal Perfume

Herbal Bath

          

Large Selection of Fragrant Oils Here~



Herbal Sauces, Butters and Jellies


Herbs form the basis of many raw sauces as well as flavoring cooked sauces. Almost any chopped herb can be added to a basic white sauce, while a handful of blanched and chopped parsley, tarragon and watercress will completely transform an ordinary mayonnaise to serve with salads, fish, chicken or vegetables.

Pesto Sauce
This is a classic Genoise sauce used for pasta and flavoring. It freezes well. Makes about 1 ¼ cups

2/3 cups Basil leaves
6 Garlic cloves
½ cup Pine nuts
1 cup Grated Parmesan cheese
¾ cup Olive oil
Salt and Pepper

Purée the basil, garlic, pine nuts, parmesan cheese and a little of the oil in a food processor or use a pestle and mortar. Add the remaining oil gradually, processing or pounding until the sauce emulsifies. Season with salt and pepper.

Herb Butters
Make herb butters with chervil, lovage, parsley, mint, coriander (cilantro), basil, tarragon or blend together a selection of herbs. A little parsley and lemon juice makes garlic butter less pungent.

Chop 3 tablespoons of fresh herbs and blend them with 1 cup of unsalted butter. Roll into a cylinder on waxed paper, twist the ends and chill, or wrap in foil and freeze. Serve on frilled (broiled) meats or fish or use to top new potatoes or fresh vegetables, or to spread on crusty whole-wheat bread.

Herb Butter for Topping of Vegetables
Soften butter to room temperature. Combine with mixed dry herbs allowing ½ to 1 teaspoon of herbs per tablespoon of butter. Prepare as needed or in large amounts, whap in foil and store in refrigerator. At serving time remove 1 to 2 tablespoons of seasoned butter from the packet to place on top of each cup of hot vegetables. A pinch of nutmeg or dried mustard, a drop of hot pepper sauce or ¼ teaspoon of lemon juice can be added to each tablespoon of butter as well.

Tomato and Thyme Sauce
You can vary this basic tomato sauce by adding your favorite herbs.

Makes about 2 cups

2 tablespoons Butter
1 tablespoon Olive oil
2 Shallots, chopped
3 Garlic cloves
1 lb Tomatoes, skinned, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons Tomato paste
2 tablespoons Chopped thyme
Salt and Pepper

Heat the butter and oil and fry the shallots until soft. Add the garlic, tomatoes and tomato paste. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the thyme, season with salt and pepper and simmer for a further 5 minutes.

Mint Jelly
This traditional mint jelly makes a refreshing change form mint sauce to serve with roast lamb or other grilled or boiled meats. You can also make a similar jelly with parsley, thyme or tarragon.

Makes about 4 ½ lb

5 lb Cooking apples
4 ½ cups Water
4 Mint sprigs
4 ½ cups Distilled white vinegar
Granulated or preserving sugar (Stevia, a natural sugar herb)
1 ½ cups Chopped mint

Wash the apples and cut them into chunks, without paling or coring them. Place them in a saucepan with the water and mint, bring to a boil, cover and simmer for about 35 minutes until soft and pulpy, stirring occasionally. Add the vinegar and boil for 5 minutes. Pour the mixture into jelly bag and leave to drain overnight without pressing or the jelly will be cloudy.

Measure the juice and add 2 cups sugar for each 2 ½ cups juice. Stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved, then boil vigorously for about 8 minutes until setting point is reached. Test for setting by cooling a spoonful of the jelly on a chilled saucer; the jelly should wrinkle when pressed. Skim, if necessary, then stir in the chopped mint, pour into sterilized jars and label.



Other Articles of Interest:
Basic Herb Dressing
Fresh & Easy Herb Gardens
Starting An Herb Garden
Herbal Vinegars ~ How to Make Them
Herbal Shampoo Recipe

Back to Main Articles

Herb Sauces

Herb Butter

Herb Jelly

          

Additional Info On Herbal Sauces



Salads and Vegetables


Use different vegetables in salads, not just salad leaves. Potato salad can be dressed with chive flavored mayonnaise; sliced beetroot is delicious topped with sour cream mixed with chopped dill. Use herb oils or vinegars for salad dressings or mayonnaise as an instant way of adding flavor and interest. Courgettes (zucchini) taste wonderful sliced in julienne strips and marinated in herb mayonnaise for several hours.

Vegetables too cry out for herb dressings, sauces or a few herbs in the cooking water to enhance the flavors. Potatoes go well with mint, chives or leeks; thyme goes well with aubergines (eggplants) courgettes (zucchini) or carrots; parsley enhances the flavor of parsnips.

A few whole herb leaves such as chervil, basil, tarragon, parsley, mint, sorrel or comfrey, give a new flavor to a green salad or you can create an unusual and colorful salad with a few crisp lettuce leaves, tomato and cucumber slices with some apple mint, sorrel, sweet cicely and marigold leaves, nasturtium flowers and violets, tossed in a herb vinaigrette dressing. Be adventurous with your combinations.

Use herb butters to garnish steamed or boiled vegetables, mixing in a little lemon juice for a sharper taste. Below is a a favorite recipe:

Herb Butter for Topping of Vegetables

Soften butter to room temperature. Combine with mixed dry herbs allowing ½ to 1 teaspoon of herbs per tablespoon of butter. Prepare as needed or in large amounts, whap in foil and store in refrigerator. At serving time remove 1 to 2 tablespoons of seasoned butter from the packet to place on top of each cup of hot vegetables. A pinch of nutmeg or dried mustard, a drop of hot pepper sauce or ¼ teaspoon of lemon juice can be added to each tablespoon of butter as well.

For an appetizing courgettes (zucchini) dish, soften a sliced onion in olive oil, then fry some sliced zucchini with a generous sprinkling of snapped chives until tend and golden.

Potatoes baked in their jacket can be made into a delicious light meal. Scoop out the potato flesh and mash it with a dab of butter, a beaten egg, some snipped chives, chopped mint or parsley and grated strong cheese. Pile the mixture back into the potato shells and cook on a hot grill until golden….

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have fresh herbs readily available at your fingertips…whether they are planted in containers inside the home or out….Holistic Herbs ~ A Guide to Herb Gardening will teach you all the tricks to start your herb garden today!

Successful Gardening
Kali S. Winters



Other Articles of Interest:
Indoor Plant Growing
Indoor Garden Design
Indoor Hydroponic Gardening
Vinegar ~ Herb Combinations
Herbal Vinegars ~ How to Make Them

Back To: Main Articles

Grow Your Own Culinary Herbs

              

              



Preserving Herbs


The most common way to preserve herbs is to dry them. This method is perfect for many common herbs. There are other techniques, however, which are more appropriate to particular herbs to preserve their qualities more effectively.

Drying in Trays

Drying eliminates the water in the herb but retains its essential oils. Whichever drying method you use, herbs should be dried quickly at an even temperature, out of direct sunlight. The air must be able to circulate around the herbs and it is best to keep individual herbs separate as they are drying.

To dry herbs naturally, spread the herb sprigs, roots, petals or seed heads evenly over trays lined with sheets of absorbent paper, such as newspaper. For larger leafed plants, such as lovage and comfrey, remove the leaves form the sprigs before you dry them. Leave the herbs for a week or so until completely dry, turning them regularly and replacing the paper if it absorbs too much moisture. Roots will take a little longer.

If you dry herbs regularly, it is worth making a drying frame. Stretch muslin (cheesecloth) or fine netting over a rectangular wooden frame and lay the herbs on the frame to dry. The frames can be stacked on top of on another as long as there is about 2 inches between them. Place newer herbs on top of the drier ones as the moisture will rise.

You can speed up the drying process by placing the trays or frames in a warm airing cupboard for three or four days. Alternatively, you can dry them in the plate-warming section of a cooker or at the bottom of a conventional over with the door agar, leaving the oven on its lowest setting for a few hours. If you have a traditional fuel-burning stove, you can dry the herbs in the slow oven.

One modern method is to use the microwave, which I tend to not recommend due to the uneven drying process..However, if you would like to try this method, spread out the herbs on three layers of paper towels and cover with another sheet of paper towel. The herbs will take only 2-3 minutes on high, but will be ruined if you leave them too long. Therefore it is best to microwave for 30 seconds, check and turn them over, then continue in short bursts until they are dry.

The most modern method is the dehydrator, which I tend to use most often in the winter months. You will want to remember to check your herbs frequently and rotate the trays accordingly.

Drying in Bunches

Herb flowers, such as chamomile, feverfew, lavender, sorrel or tansy, sprigs such as rosemary, sage or bay, or seed heads such as fennel, can be air-dried in bunches. Tie four or five herb sprigs loosely into a bunch by the stems and hang them upside-down in a dry, well-ventilated room where the temperature remains constant, keeping them out of direct sunlight. A spare room, dry attic or a bedroom are all suitable.

When drying herbs with large flower heads, such as chives, the flowers must rest on a wire mesh screen with the stems hanging down, as the drying stems cannot stand the weight of the flower heads. Large seed heads, such as fennel, lovage, caraway or chervil, or large herbs such as angelica, can be dried upright in empty vases.

Preparing and Storing Dried Herbs

Once the herbs are dry, they will feel crisp and papery and will snap easily between finger and thumb. Then remove the leaves from small-leafed herbs, run your fingers down the stalks and the leaves will rub off. For herbs, the larger leaves, you may need to hand-pick the leaves from the stalks then crumble them between your fingers, or place the leaves in a paper bag and crush them with a rolling pin. Another method is to rub the herbs through a fine mesh before discarding the stems.

Dried herbs must be stored in airtight containers, preferable in a dark cupboard. The containers should be labeled wiht the name of the herb and the date of preserving. Even dried herbs will not keep indefinitely so do not dry in larger quantifies than you are likely to use.

Seeds can simply be shaken off the dried flower heads then sieved or hand-picked to remove unwanted chaff. If you are storing them for planting the following season, wrap them in foil and then seal in an envelope labeled with the name of the seed, the date of collection and any other details such as the variety or flower color. Seeds for culinary use can be stored in an airtight jar, labeled with the name of the seed and date of preserving and kept in a dark cupboard.

Using Desiccants

To preserve complete flower heads for dried arrangements or to garnish potpourri, desiccants are used; these are crystals that absorb moistures from a flower while preserving its shape. The easiest to use is silica gel, which you can buy from the most craft stores. Grind it down in a food processor or with a pestle and mortar until it is as fine as caster (superfine) sugar.

Spread a layer of desiccant in the bottom of a plastic box. Arrange the flower heads on the surface and cover with desiccant gently, sprinkling it between the petals. Dry bell-shaped flowers upside down so that the bells fill with desiccant. Seal the box and leave it undisturbed for five days, during which time the silica crystals will turn from blue to pink. Brush off a little of the desiccant and if the flowers are dry and make a rustling, papery sound when moved, remove them from the box and brush them clean.

Bend a small hook at the end of a piece of florist’s (floral) wire and push it through the flower head, pulling it back to secure it. Wind gutta-percha tape diagonally around the stem to cover the wire and store the delicate flowers upright in dry florist’s foam (Styrofoam).

Reactivate the desiccant by spreading it on a baking sheet and placing it at the bottom of a low oven until its color turns back to blue. Sieve it to remove any particles and store for future use.

Learn How to Build an Herb Garden Here

Successful Gardening!
Kali S. Winters





Potpourri Recipes

Keep potpourri in bowls topped with dried flower buds or in pretty glass jars with a lace covering, in little sachets of lace or special potpourri containers.

The simplest way to make potpourri is to dry fragrant leaves and petals until they are crisp, blend them with fixatives to absorb and preserve the scent and seal them in an airtight container for about four weeks to mature, shaking the mixture occasionally. A few drops of essential oil adds that final touch. Essential oils can also be used to liven up potpourri as the fragrance fades.


For color, use herbs such as roses, marigolds with garden flowers such as pansies, lily of the valley, orange blossom, hyacinth or cornflowers. Many herb leaves and flowers provide fragrance: bergamot, basil, bay, thyme, rosemary, lemon balm, camomile or lavender with garden flowers such as jasmine, mimosa, honeysuckle, carnation or pinks. A little spice, either cardamom, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, mace or citrus rind, adds sharpness and interest.

As a rough guide, mix about 3 ¾ cups of flower petals and herb leaves with 2 tablespoons of spices and 4 tablespoons of fixative. There are many fixatives you can use but ground orris root is simple and effective. This mixture will need two or three drops of essential oil. Here are some suggestions for potpourri recipes:

Recipe 1:
1 cup each Lemon verbena and lemon balm leaves
1 cup each Forsythia, marigold and camomile flowers
A few thin strips of lemon rind
¼ cup Ground orris root
A few drops of lemon verbena oil

Recipe 2:
1 cup each Thyme, rosemary and mint leaves
2 cups Lavender flowers
2 tablespoons Tansy leaves
2 tablespoons Ground cloves
¼ cup Ground Orris root
A few drops of lavender oil

Recipe 3:
1 cup Lavender flowers
2 tablespoons each Thyme and mint leaves
1 tablespoon each Ground cloves and ground caraway seeds

More Herbal Crafts

More on Natural Potpourri Here!



Successful Gardening ~
Kali S Winters
Bulk Potpourri Here!

              

              



Oil and Vinegar


By storing herbs in oil, you can preserve the herbs and create a fragrant oil at the the same time. Herbal vinegars are simple to make and an excellent way of using your garden herbs.

Herbal Oil

Herbal oils can be used for both culinary and cosmetic purposes. Most aromatic herbs are suitable; basil, tarragon, thyme and rosemary are particularly popular choices.

Half fill a sterilized bottle or jar with fresh herb leaves, then fill to the top with a good quality olive or sunflower oil. Stir the herbs to release the air bubbles, making sure that the herbs are completely covered in oil. Seal the bottle or jar and stand it on a sunny windowsill or over a radiator for two weeks, shaking daily. Strain the oil, using the herb sprigs for cooking if you wish. For a stronger flavor, add fresh herbs to the strained oil and store for a further two weeks, then stain again. Bottle the oil with a fresh herb sprig, cover and label and store in a cool, dark place.

You can make delicious mixed herb oil with a few sprigs each of tarragon and thyme, plus a clove of garlic, a dried red chili pepper and a few black peppercorns. Goats’ cheese can be marinated in this oil and used in salads of crisp lettuce and sorrel leaves.

Herbal Vinegar

White or red wine vinegar or cider vinegar can all be flavored with herbs and used in salad dressings, cooked recipes or to make cosmetics. Basil, chervil, marjoram, mint, tarragon, sage or thyme are all-suitable, as are dill sprigs or seeds. Purple sage will impart a lovely color to the vinegar and so do chive flowers. You can use combinations of herbs; equal quantities of mint, chives, basil and borage are effective.

Place about 1 cup of lightly bruised, fresh herbs in a sterilized jar. Bring 1 ¼ cups of wine or cider vinegar to a boil, pour over the herbs, seal and leave to stand on a sunny windowsill for two weeks, shaking occasionally. Strain the vinegar through muslin (cheesecloth) or paper coffee filters into another sterilized jar, add a fresh herb sprig, seal and store in a cool, dark place.

Use the following with an oil and vinegar base or with any mildly seasoned dressing. Add the herb blend sparingly at first (about 2 teaspoons per head of lettuce or greens)

Salad Herb Blend:
2 cups parsley
1 cup each tarragon, basil and thyme

For other salad taste treats, add a teaspoon of basil, savory, or marjoram to a tossed salad; or try a 1/2 tsp of all three together.

If you are a cottage cheese devotee, you can serve it often with different herbs, either as a salad by itself or whirled in your blender (with 1 or 2 Tbsp milk) to make a dip for raw vegetables or munchies.

Basic Herb Vinegar Salad Dressing:
1 cup oil, preferably olive oil
1/2 to 1 cup herb vinegar of choice
2 Tbsp dried herbs, or herbs preserved in vinegar
Salt and Pepper to taste, if desired*

Combine all ingredients in a glass cruet and shake to mix before using.
*Herb vinegars enhance the flavor of salads without added salt.
DO ENJOY!



Discover How to Build an Herb Garden

Learn to use your herbs in Home Hair Remedies

Other Articles of Interest:
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Herbal Vinegar’s ~ How to Make Them
Sauces, Butters and Jellies
Natures Herbal Recipes
Vinegar ~ Herb Combinations

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More Oil and Vinegar Recipes



Herbal Skin Lotions


Herbal lotions can be used for washing, added to bath water, hair rinses or to scent water for washing clothes and laundry.

Pour boiling water over 1 cup of fragrant herbs – bergamot, lavender, lemon balm, sage, camomile, marjoram, mint, rosemary, sweet cicely or thyme – so they are just covered, simmer over a low heat for 10 minutes, let stand until cool then strain. Equal quantities of water and wine vinegar with sage and rue leaves and 1 teaspoon of ground ginger, make an unusual toilet water.

For an instant herbal bath, place a few herbs in a muslin (cheesecloth) bag with a spoonful of oatmeal to soften the water and hang the bag beneath the hot tap of the bath.

Herbal vinegars can be added to bath water, washing water, hair rinsing water or water used to wash clothes.

Camomile flowers make a delightful foam bath. Crush 4 tablespoons of dried camomile flowers and mix with 1 ¼ cups of milk and chill overnight. The moisturizing milk is then ready for use but must be stored in the refrigerator.

A tablespoon of herbal vinegar added to 2/3 cup of water or rainwater makes an excellent toner for greasy skin. For normal or dry skin, use 2/3 cup of rose water, 3 tablespoons of orange flower water and 3 tablespoons of glycerine to make a soothing skin tonic.

Mint has many cosmetic uses, including a skin toner. Infuse 2 tablespoons of chopped apple mint in 3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar for a week, shaking daily, then strain the vinegar and pour on 1 ¼ cups of boiling water. Leave to cool, then bottle, seal and label. Mint also makes a refreshing facemask. Simmer 4 tablespoons of chopped mint with 4 tablespoons of water for 5 minutes then remove form the heat and stir in 1 tablespoon of clear honey, 3 tablespoons of milk and 2 tablespoons of fine oatmeal. Leave to cool then apply to the face and leave for at least 15 minutes before rinsing off with lukewarm water.

Carrier Oils for Hair and Skin


Articles of Interest:
Gardening Gift Basket
Starting An Herb Garden
Herbal Shampoo Recipe
Herbal Crafts

Back to: Gifts from the Garden
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More Herbal Skin Lotions Here!

              

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S Winters



Herbal Drinks


Herbal tisanes have long been drank both for pleasure and for their medicinal properties. Rather than buying expensive herbal teas from health food shops, make your own herb teas, refreshing iced herbal drinks or traditional wine cups.

Wine Cups

Borage or Chive flowers, or sprigs of fresh herbs such as mint – whether fresh or frozen into ice cubes – make attractive garnishes for wine cups. Experiment with ingredients when you make your own wine cups. Start with a bottle of dry white wine and add a few tablespoons of brandy and ¼ cup of herb sugar. Float a thinly sliced orange, apple and lemon in the wine and chill for 1 hour. When you are ready to serve the cup, add a bottle of sparkling rose’ wine 4 1/2 cups of lemonade (soda) and stir well. Float some fresh apple mint sprigs and borage flowers in the wine just before serving.

You can flavor your own liqueurs to make original drinks or unusual gifts. Crush or purée 3 tablespoons of peppermint or lemon thyme leaves and add them to 2 1/2 cups of wine or brandy with a few strips of orange rind. Make a honey syrup by boiling 5 tablespoons of water with an equal quantity of clear honey until well blended. Add this to the liqueur. Cover and leave to stand for three weeks. Strain the liqueur, bottle, seal and label.

Herbal Teas

Herbal “infusions’ are made by steeping fresh or dried herbs in boiling water, “Decoctions’ are made by boiling the herbs for a few minutes before steeping. What we now call herbal teas are becoming increasingly popular and can easily be made with the leaves of sage, marjoram, borage, summer savory, thyme, rosemary, mint or lemon balm or with camomile or elder flowers.

To make herbal tea, steep 2 tablespoons of the fresh herb of your choice in 1 cup of boiling water for a few minutes then strain. You can flavor the tea with clear honey or flower honey and float a slice of orange or lemon in the cup. Herbal seed teas made from fennel, caraway or dill seeds need only 1 tablespoon of the crushed seeds but should be left to infuse for 5-10 minutes.

Iced Teas

Many herb teas, such as thyme and mint, taste excellent when flavored with clear honey and chilled. Traditional tea can also be flavored with herbs to make an aromatic and refreshing drink. Pour 2 ½ cups of strong hot tea into a jug and add two bruised sprigs of mint and the juice of half a lime. Leave to infuse for 30 minutes, then strain and chill. Sweeten with clear honey and serve with ice, mint sprigs and time slices.

For a fragrant marjoram drink, dissolve 2 tablespoons of sugar in 1 cup of water then boil for 5 minutes to a syrup. Leave it to cool then chill. Process a handful of marjoram leaves with 4 tablespoons of water and add the juice of a lemon. Stir into the syrup, cover and chill for at least 1 hour. Stir 2 cups of chilled, fizzy, mineral water and serve with borage-flower ice cubes.



Learn to grow your own herbs

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Kali S. Winters

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Herbal Crafts

Herbs are not only valuable in the kitchen, in cosmetics and medicines, they are also very beautiful and can be used, both fresh and dried, to decorate and scent your home or as charming gifts.

Fresh Herb Arrangements

Herbs can be made into decorative and fragrant arrangements either alone or with other garden flowers. Rosemary, sage, borage, feverfew, marjoram, lemon balm, thyme, chives, mint, camomile and parsley are all attractive either in leaf or in flower, while seed heads of fennel, caraway or dill add contrast and interest.

A limited color range often works best; include variety of texture as well as of leaf shape. Most containers can be used but country-style pottery looks particularly attractive, especially as informal arrangements suit herbs best. Evergreen herbs, such as sage and rosemary, make excellent foliage backgrounds for brighter flowers, especially in the winter when options for fresh arrangements are limited. Use dry florist’s foam (Styrofoam) held in place with a spike or tape, to help you shape your arrangement.

Posies of fresh herbs make delightful gifts or table decorations. Tie a few herb sprigs into a posy, sit a small doily to the center and wrap it around the back of the posy to resemble a lace frill. Finish with a pretty ribbon. A handful of posies in a basket makes a pretty and fragrant table- center decoration.


Dried Herb Arrangements

Herbs make excellent additions to your dried flower arrangements, whether you use seed heads, flower stems, leaves or grasses. Follow the same design principles as you would when creating a fresh arrangement. For dried arrangements, your choice of containers is unlimited as they do not need to be watertight and baskets really come into their own. If the materials are fragile, wire the stems or wire bunches of stems together.

Dried herbal wreaths can be made using a florist’s foam (Styrofoam) ring, available from good florists, or you can bind thick twine or straw around a circle of wire. Use dense leaves, such as bay to form a dark background then gradually build up a pattern of sprigs of lavender, rosemary, sage and other herbs. You can vary this idea by making dried arrangements on spheres of dry florist’s foam (Styrofoam).

Lavender Bottles

Traditionally used to scent linen drawers and keep away moths, lavender bottles require long stemmed lavender flowers, picked just as they come into flower. Tie together a bunch of about 20 stalks just below the flower heads, then bend the stalks up and over the flower heads and tie again above the flowers so that they are enclosed in the stalks. Trim the ends. Weave a fine ribbon in and out of the stalks to enclose the flower heads.

Scented Sachets

Sachets made of cotton lawn, tied at the top and decorated with a ribbon bow, make lovely gifts or are also nice to keep for yourself! Use 1 cup each of dried lavender flowers and dried rosemary and mix with 1 cup each of ground orris root and a few drops of oil of roses or with a few tablespoons of crushed cloves and a tablespoon of powdered fried orange rind.

Pressed Herb Crafts

Pressed herbs can be used to make bookmarks, greeting cards and pictures or even to decorate jars for gifts of homemade herbal cosmetics or preserves. Collect together all your materials before you start: a soft paintbrush, rubber-based glue, the pressed petals and leaves and the item you wish to decorate.

Sketch your design roughly then practice positioning the herbs, moving them with a paintbrush until you have a pleasing arrangement. Your designs should be simple until you have gained a little experience and confidence; try reproducing a simple flower, banquet or arrangement.

When you are happy with the design, lift the pieces and apply some glue with a cocktail stick (toothpick). If there are several layers to the design, let one layer dry before adding the next. Cover flat designs with a sheet of glass or board and weigh down with books overnight so that the herbs dry flat. Cover designs on glass or jars with adhesive film or glass, or paint with lacquer to protect them. Pressed flower pictures should be kept out ot direct sunlight so that they do not fade.



Learn to Grow Your Own Herbs At Home Here!

Kali S Winters

Articles of Interest:
Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own
Starting An Herb Garden
Herbal Skin Lotions
Herbal Shampoo Recipe

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More On Sachets



Herbal Cosmetics

Originally toiletries and cosmetics were, of course, all made from local, natural ingredients. Today cosmetics abound in chemists, department stores and specialist shops. But it is very satisfying to create effective and natural cosmetics of your own. What is more, herbal preparations have many beneficial qualities in addition to their distinctive fragrances. Lavender and camomile are relaxing, comfrey regulates ageing skin, sage gives relief from aching muscles, spearmint and thyme are refreshing, rosemary and angelica are stimulating, while lovage is supposed to make you more lovable!

Herb Soaps

You can add the herbal fragrance of your choice to unperfumed castile soap by grating the soap and melting it in the top of a double saucepan over simmering water. Stir in a teaspoon of almond or vegetable oil and a teaspoon of honey and stir over the heat for 5 minutes. Stir in a few drops of essential herb oil and leave the soap to cool and harden.



Soap used to be made with tallow but you can substitute vegetable oils and make your own soap, following the recipe below. Take great care when using the caustic soda. Vary the herbs you use, add honey or oatmeal and use a variety of different shaped molds such as jelly molds, yogurt pots or baking dishes.

Ingredients:
1 ¼ cups Water
4 Tbsp Caustic Soda
3 Tbsp Sunflower Oil
5 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 tsp Herbal Oil
3 Tbsp Chopped Marjoram

Directions:
Place the water in a glass bowl, add the caustic soda and stir with a wooden spoon until it is dissolved. The soda will heat spontaneously. Set aside until lukewarm. Meanwhile, warm the oils to the same temperature. Pour the oil slowly into the soda, stirring continuously, then add the marjoram and beat until the mixture thickens and turns opaque. Pour into molds, stand on a cooling rack and leave in a warm, dry place for 24 hours until set. Remove from the molds, wrap in wax paper and leave in a col plac for 2-3 weeks to harden.

Fragrant Oils

Natural oils which encapsulate the fragrance of the flower or herb, form the essence of many cosmetics. Concentrated herbal oils must be purchased from a herbalist or chemist as there is great skill in preparing such items. However, the following instructions will enable you to create light floral oils with scented flower petals. Use a measuring cup to weight the petals.

Ingredients:
1 ¼ cups Almond Oil
2 ½ quarts Flower Petals
1 tsp Liquid Storax
1 tspTincture of benzoin

Directions:
Warm the oil in the top of a double saucepan over simmering water. Add 2 cups of petals, stir, cover and leave over a low heat for 2 hours, checking regulary to ensure that the pan does not boil dry. Strain and reserve the flowers. Add another 2 cups of flowers to the oil and repeat the process until all the flowers have been used.

Pour the oil and all the flowers into a large pan, bring to a boil slowly then simmer gently for 40 minutes. Strain the oil through muslin (Cheese Cloth), pressing to extract all the oil from the petals. Stir in the liquid storax and tincture of bonzoin to fix the fragrance, pour into bottles, seal, lable and store in dry, dark place.

For a relaxing and fragrant bath oil, mix one part homemade floral or herbal oil with three parts almond oil for an oil which will float on the water, or with Turkey red dispersing oil. Pour the oil into bottles, seal, label and store. These bath oils make excellent gifts. Only a teaspoonful is needed in the bath. To counteract the drying nature of soap add a cupful of herbal vinegar to your bath water. Brush on skin after each bath…store in a dry place.

Herbal Powders

Make small quantities of fragrant powders to brush lightly on the skin after a bath – all you need to do is grind the following ingredients together until they are very fine. Mix ¼ cup each of dried rose petals, lavender flowers and ground orris root with ¼ cup of cornflour (cornstarch).



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Kali S. Winters

Articles of Interest:
Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own
Starting An Herb Garden
Herbal Skin Lotions
Herbal Shampoo Recipe

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Using Kitchen Herbs


There are lots of interesting recipes available plus many more ideas to encourage you to experiment by adding herbs to your favorite recipes.

With a little imagination, you can find all sorts of ways to use herbs in your cooking, supplementing home-grown herbs with fresh herbs from the supermarket if necessary.

Fragile herbs-parsley, chervil, tarragon, mint and basil- are all best used coarsely chopped as their leaves bruise easily. They are frequently used raw or added at the end of cooking as their flavor is lessened by heat. More robust herbs—rosemary, bay, sage and marjoram—are generally used cooked and they also dry more successfully than fragile herbs. Herbs should be chopped with a sharp knife until they are the texture you require, or they can be ground with a pestle and mortar or in a food processor to release their essential oils.

Herbs in Soups and Starters

Many plain soups can be given extra flavor with the addition of a few fresh herbs; chives or lemon balm are excellent in a potato or leek soup, sprinkle borage in a tomato soup, or add coriander (cilantro) seed to give extra spice. Parsley is often used to garnish soups but will release more flavor if it is stirred in just before serving or sprinkled in the soup. Croutons are tasty when they are fried with chopped garlic and a few chopped herbs.

Light vegetable starters will benefit from herb sauces: lemon thyme or lemon balm can be added to a white sauce made with a mixture of milk or stock to create a light, lemony sauce to coat vegetables such as broccoli. Prawn can be served on cucumber slices with a minty or chervil flavored mayonnaise, or tossed in flour spiced with ground coriander seed and fried quickly. Fish pâtés benefit from the addition of a little dill or parsley.

Herb Combinations

A fresh bouquet garni takes only moments to prepare: simply tie together sprigs of thyme of parsley and a bay leaf. You can vary this traditional mixture by substituting sage or basil, rosemary, marjoram, tarragon or dill for either the parsley or thyme. Leave a length of string to tie on to the handle of the saucepan or casserole dish so that the bouquet garni can be easily removed before serving.

To make a bouquet garni with dried herbs, place spoonfuls of dried herbs in the center of a circle of muslin (cheesecloth), gather up the edges and tie them into a sachet. A few sachets of bouquet garni in an attractive box makes a useful gift.

Take equal quantities of finely chopped fresh herbs – tarragon, chives and chervil, sometimes with parsley – and add to savory dishes at the end of cooking.



Learn to Grow Your Own Herbs Here!

Kali S. Winters



Harvesting Herbs

It is important to harvest your herbs at their peak so that you can preserve the maximum of their essential fragrances and flavors. Whether your are going to use them fresh in a salad, or dry them for crafts or Culinary Purposes use. They should be at their best.

Using Fresh Herbs
Fresh herbs have only a limited life span before they begin to lose their qualities, so if you have herbs in the garden, only pick what you need when you need it. Use a sharp pair of scissors so that you do not damage the plant; most garden herbs will benefit from such regular trimming.

If you need to store fresh herbs, wash them gently, taking care not to bruise the leaves. Shake them dry, then place them in an unsealed polythene bag and keep at the bottom of the refrigerator; they will last for about a week.


M

Leaves & Flowers
When you are harvesting herbs for preserving, pick them at their most aromatic. Choose a dry day, as the herbs need to be as dry as possible when you pick them and be up early; harvest in the morning when the dew has dispersed, before the midday heat.

Leaves should be harvested just before the herb comes into flower. Snip off sprigs about 10cm/4 inches long, using sharp scissors so that you leave a clean cut and do not damage the tender stems of the plant. Flower heads should generally be harvested when the flowers have just opened and are in perfect shape; lavender flowers, however should be slightly immature.

Deal with small quantities at a time for the best results and collect only the plants that are healthy, well established and free from disease or pests. Handle the herbs carefully as they bruise easily and bruising will affect their flavor and aroma. Never leave cut herbs lying around waiting to be prepared, as they will rapidly deteriorate; deal with them as quickly as possible.

Roots and Seeds
Roots are usually lifted in autumn at the end of the growing season, when they are mature and richest in stored food. Lift the whole root with a fork, being careful not to puncture the skin. Shake off excess soil and carefully wash the roots. Cut off the top growth and fibrous rootleys then cut the root into section or slices.

Seed heads are ready for harvesting when the seeds are ripe and brown, just before the plant is ready to shed them. Check the seed heads by rubbing one between your palms; the seeds should shed easily. Put a muslin (cheesecloth) or paper bag over the seed head and secure with a twist-tie or twist of wire. Now the seed heads can be snipped off without losing any of the seeds.



Learn to Grow your Own Herbs Here!

Successful Gardening ~
Kali S. Winters

Articles of Interest:
Harvesting and Drying Herbs
Preserving Herbs
Pressing Herbs

              




Herbal Shampoo Recipe


Use camomile for fair hair, rosemary or sage leaves or lavender flowers for dark hair and marigold petals for red hair. Eggs add protein to the shampoo and make it richer; for greasy hair, use egg whites only.

Ingredients:
7 cups Boiling water
1 cup Herbs or petals
5 Tbsp Grated Castile Soap
2 Eggs (optional)

Directions:
Pour the water over the herbs or petals, stir well, cover and leave to infuse for 2 hours. Strain into a saucepan, pressing all the moisture from the herbs. Stir in the soap and whisk in the eggs, if using, pour into bottles and label. Shake the bottle well before using and rinse thoroughly after use.

Conditioners & Rinses

The herbs suggested for shampoos for different hair colors can be used in conditions and rinses as well, or you can try peppermint or nettle leaves, elder or yarrow flowers or fennel seeds. As a scalp conditioner, mix equal quantities of almond oil and herb oil and warm them slightly. Rub the oil into the scalp, wrap a warm towel around your head and leave for 15 minutes before shampooing and rinsing. For a richer conditioner, mix a teaspoon of fragrant oil and an egg into 4 tablespoons of plain yogert and apply in the same way.

Add a few spoonfuls of herbal vinegar to the final rinsing water for healthy, shinning hair or make specific herbal hair rinses. For a lemon hair rinse for greasy hair, mix the grated rind of 2 lemons, 2 tablespoons of chopped lemon balm leaves and 2 ½ cups of water in a saucepan, bring to a boil, then simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to infuse for 2 hours. Strain well then stir in the juice of 2 lemons, pour into bottles, seal and label.

Rosemary hair rinse is said to stimulate the scalp and help to prevent dandruff. Place 1 ½ cups of rosemary sprigs and 4 ¼ cups of water in a saucepan, bring to a boil and boil for 15 minutes. Strain, stir in 5 tablespoons of white wine vinegar and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and store in an airtight jar.

Discover 50 Recipes & Techniques to Use to Make Your Own Natural Aromatherapy Shampoo & Conditioners.



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Kali S. Winters

Make Over 1000 Home Hair Remedies ~ Visit Our Sister Site At:
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Articles of Interest:
Herbal Cosmetics
Herbal Skin Lotions
Herbal Soap ~ Making Your Own
Fresh & Easy Herb Gardens
Gardening Gift Baskets

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Store Garden Produce #10-More on Root Cellaring-Part 2

In How to Build a Cellar Part 1, the construction of a root cellar was introduced where anyone could build within the confines of their own basement. Below are several other options available instead of building a full-fledged root cellar. Even though building a cellar may require a bit of an investment, alternatives are available for little or no cost at all. This article is not inclusive. This is a wrap up to Kali’s Store Garden Produce Series #1-10.   Follow the whole series Here!

Any type of root cellar will eventually pay for itself by allowing its owner to store up produce or additional food that might either be homegrown or purchased at their local farmers market during the harvesting season. Fresh, homegrown produce is more economical, provides more nutrients and definitely is tastier than produce purchased at the Supermarket. Furthermore, a cellar of any type is quite inexpensive to maintain, it requires optional electricity and if built correctly, will not require further maintenance or upkeep.

Root Cellaring Concepts: As mentioned in Store Garden Produce # 9, when considering any form of root cellar you will need to understand the main concepts. Good results in storage depend upon:

1––Ventilation: You will need constant air circulation in any cellar to remove air-borne molds. Use a warm air vent as well as a cold air return as discussed in store garden produce #9 of this series.
2––Regulation of temperature: Temperature is maintained by venting as well as packaging the individual produce in newspaper, moss, or others stated below.
3––Sufficient moisture: The air must not be allowed to become too dry, as this will cause the produce to shrivel. Sprinkle with water when needed.
4––Type of insulation: Clean straw, corn stalks, dry leaves, hay, newspaper or sawdust are all common forms of root cellar insulation. Dirt is the most inexpensive and most natural insulation readily available. A slightly more expensive alternative is peat moss. However, it is only recommended for a single storage season due to the contaminating molds and bacteria it might develop within.  Straw and dry leaves as well need to be replaced every year. Faced or unfaced insulation with a proper vapor barrier can also be used for longer-term use.
5––Quality of vegetables stored: Always use produce at its prime, without lack of maturity, puncture marks or presence of decay.
6––Darkness: Stored produce is best if kept in total darkness for maximum freshness and longevity, especially potatoes; they are the most susceptible to turning green when exposed to light.
7––Ethylene Ripening: Special care needs to be taken into consideration with ethylene gas ripening. For a complete list of Fruit & Vegetables of ethylene ripening criteria as well as a chart on Temperature and Humidity control.

Timing of Storage: Another aspect to root cellaring is the timing of storing the produce itself. It is not so much as how to store garden produce, but as when to store garden produce for the winter. If you place fruits or vegetables in storage, either in pits or in cellar rooms before the cold weather sets in for the fall, this will become your major cause of early spoilage. The most difficult steps with successful storages is to keep the produce in prime condition after harvest until the temperature of the cellar is able to provide a dormant state. Most root vegetables can be left in the ground after several frosts. Some can even be stored in the ground all winter depending upon how cold your climate gets. Visit my other articles for available charts on the difference.


How to Make a Root Barrel: Outdoor pits and root barrels can be used as an alternative in storing produce if the drainage is thorough. Outdoor pits can be either lined or unlined. A lined pit is one that is sealed against ground water and rodents. This typically consists of a 55 gallon barrel or drum that is buried semi-horizontally in the ground. Place 2-3 bushel full of mixed roots in the barrel, using insulating material or wrapped individually, then put the lid loosely in place to allow for airflow. Cover the barrel with about 12 inches of straw held in place by a 3-inch layer of soil. You can add more straw depending upon the amount of cold for your particular climate.

In the unlined pit, the roots are piled on a layer of straw and the pile is then covered with more straw held in place by a layer of soil. The unlined pit must be dug in an area where water will not fill the pit and where rodents are not a problem.

A storage mound is similar to the unlined pit. It is used where groundwater is a problem or where only a short storage period under mild temperatures is anticipated. The produce is piled on a layer of straw on top of the ground. The mound is then covered with a layer of straw that is held in place by a layer of soil. The mound usually contains one or two bushels of mixed roots, so when the mounds are removed, all the produce can be taken into the house. Click Here for Diagrams.

There are many different options available to build your own cellar. I heard of one person using an old bus. To expand upon this further, you would want to dig out a pit with a backhoe that is larger than the bus itself. Make sure to dig down at least 6-12 inches further, depending upon your climate, so that you will be able to cover the roof of the bus with dirt. Seal the front doors shut and close off any other holes to provide an airtight enclosure. Remove all the seats and replace them with shelving. Use the windows as venting by applying the venting system described in Store Garden Produce #9.

Drive the bus front first, into the pit. Then use the emergency exit as the main entrance for the cellar. Backfill all around the bus and cover the roof with dirt. You could also build stairs to walk down to the level of the door as well, but then you will want to black out the window and insulate the door against the cold. Another option is build an antechamber as you first walk into the bus as extra storage. Then build a second door which actually enters the cellar itself. Since the bus is quite large, you would be able to patrician off several areas, one for vegetables, one for fruits, one for the smelly items such as cabbage or turnips. Make sure to vent each patrician individually.

Instead of using an old bus, shipping containers and freight train boxcars will work just as well. Or how about using a discarded walk in freezer from an old restaurant that perhaps went out of business. Use your imagination. The possibilities are endless.

On a smaller scale, consider using discarded dryer drums or old refrigerators that can be picked up from the local dump or recycling center. I personally prefer the refrigerator due to the two separate compartments and the addition of an icemaker in the door. Depending upon how the icemaker is constructed, remove the icemaker parts and you will find holes going to the freezer compartment, one for ice and one for water. These holes can be used for the cold and warm air return. Insert plastic tubing in the holes then seal around the tubing. You will probably have to drill two holes within the icemaker unit in the refrigerator door to allow the exchange of air to the refrigerator compartment as well. Add elbows or screening at the top to keep out the snow, rain or insects. Next, dig your pit large enough to place the unit in, making sure to allow the depth slightly below ground level. Place some rocks in the bottom of the hole for drainage. Place the unit into the hole on its back. The door or doors will open like a lid. You can use the discarded bins and shelves to pack the produce with in the unit. Use the insulating material described above when packing your produce. Place a plastic tarp over the door seals of the unit so that water will not ice the doors closed.  Surround the outside of the refrigerator with dirt but leave the top uncovered. For the top, several hay or straw bails kept intact are preferred due to the ease of removal when accessing the produce within.

http://www.holisticherbsinfo.com/store-garden-produce-part-10/”>


More Tips & Techniques for Root Cellaring Here!

Follow Kali’s Entire Series on Storing Garden Produce for Winter
Parts 1-5: Store Garden Produce For Winter
Store Garden Produce #6-Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types
Store Garden Produce #7- Storing Cherries – Freezing Apples
Store Garden Produce #8-Ethylene Ripening-List of Fruits & Vegetables
Store Garden Produce #9-How To Build A Cellar-Part 1
Store Garden Produce #10-More on Root Cellaring-Part 2

More Root Cellar Alternatives Here ~

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters

        



Time-Table For Blanching & Sterilizing


The following time-table shows blanching time for various vegetables and fruits, as well as the sterilizing time in the hot-water bath outfit, and in equipment for sterilization by the water-seal method, the steam-pressure method and the aluminum steam-cooker method.
The time given in this table is for quart jars. Add 30 minutes for 2-quart jars and deduct5 minutes for pint jars.

Sterilizing

Vegetables

Blanching

Hot-water

Water seal

Steam pressure in lbs.

Minutes

Minutes

Minutes

5 to 10 Minutes

10 to 15 Minutes

Asparagus
Beets
Brussels sprouts
Cabbage
Cauliflower
Carrots
Corn
Greens
Lima beans
Okra
Parsnips
Peppers, sweet or hot
Peppers, pimentos
Peas
Pumpkin
Salsify
Sour-crout
String beans
Squash
Tomatoes

Fruits

Apples
Apricots
Blackberries
Blueberries
Dewberries
Cherries, sweet
Cherries, sour
Currants
Fruit juices
Gooseberries
Oranges
Pears
Peaches
Plums
Pineapples
Quinces
Raspberries
Rhubarb
Strawberries
Fruits without sugar

10 to 15
5
5 to 10
5 to 10
3
5
5 to 10
15
5 to 10
5 to 10
5
5 to 10
Roast
5 to 10
See directions
5

5 to 10
See directions
To loosen skins


1-1/2
1 to 2
none
none
none
none
none
none
See directions
1 to 2
1 to 2
1-1/2
To loosen skins
none
3 to 5
1-1/2
none

none

120
90
120
120
60
90
180
120
90
120
90
120
35
180
120
90
120
120
120
22



20
16
16
16
16
16
16
16

16
12
20
16
16
30
20
16
20
16
30

90
80
90
90
40
80
120
90
120
90
80
90
25
120
90
80
90
90
90
18



12
12
12
12
12
12
12
12

12
8
12
12
12
15
12
12
15
12
20

60
60
60
60
30
60
90
60
60
60
60
60
20
60
60
60
60
60
60
15



8
10
10
10
10
10
10
10

10
6
8
10
10
10
8
10
15
10
12

40
40
40
40
20
40
60
40
40
40
40
40
15
40
40
40
40
40
40
10

The time given is for fresh, sound and firm vegetables. Increase the time of sterilization by adding one-fifth for vegetables which have been gathered over 24 hours.

The time given is for altitudes up to 1000 feet above sea level. For higher altitudes increase the time in hot-water bath 10 per cent for each additional 500 feet. For example, if the time is given as 120 minutes in the table and your location is 1500 feet above sea level, the time should be made 132 minutes.

Neither home-made nor commercial hot-water bath outfits are entirely satisfactory, however, for such localities water-seal and steam-pressure outfits are advisable, as they give higher temperatures.

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters


Follow All 10 Parts of Kali’s Store Garden Produce Series Here!



Tips on Root Cellaring


Choose a site that usually stays dry and has good drainage in which to bury the root barrel in.

The kind of storage facility that you will need depends largely on the climate in your area.

Cone-shaped outdoor pits or root barrels are often used for storing potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, salsify, parsnips, and cabbage. They are sometimes used for storing winter apples and pears.

The pit may be built on the ground, or in a hole 6 to 8 inches deep in a well-drained location.

Do not store vegetables and fruits in the same pit.

To ventilate large pits, place two or three stakes up through the center of the pile of vegetables or fruits to form a flue. Screen the flues at the top to ward off rodents.

Once a pit is opened, its entire contents should be removed. For these reasons it is better to construct several small pits rather than one large one.

Place a small quantity of different vegetables in each pit. Then you will only need to open one pit at a time for a variety of vegetables.

Pits should be made in a different place every year.

Pack tubers in dry compost, ancient leaves, straw, wood shavings or sand.

Place not more than three to six weeks’ supply in a single pit.

In extremely cold climates the total thickness of earth layers should be as much as 12 inches.

The air of the chamber must not be allowed to become too dry, as this will cause the produce to shrivel.

Vegetables requiring moist storage should never be left directly exposed to air.

Perforate plastic bags or liners at regular intervals to allow air circulation and prevent condensation.

Alternating layers of produce with packing materials reduces disease transmission.

Wrapping individual items of produce with newspaper aids moisture retention and reduces the possibility of cross-transfer of odors and disease.

Potatoes sprout as a result of exposure to light or warm temperatures.

While root cellaring is low-tech, you can buy a high-tech battery operated temperature and humidity gauge to help you monitor conditions in your root cellar.

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters


Check out All 10 Parts of Store Garden Produce Here!

Root Cellar Temperature & Humidity Chart
Ethylene Ripening Chart



How to Make a Cellar Alternative


As mentioned in Store Garden Produce #10-More on Root Cellaring, Outdoor pits can be either lined or unlined. A lined pit is one that is sealed against ground water and rodents. Figure 1. This typically consists of a 55 gallon barrel or drum or any suitable container such as metal garbage cans or barrels, leaving about 4 inches exposed at the top, that is buried semi-horizontally in the ground. Place 2-3 bushel full of mixed roots in the barrel and put the lid loosely in place to allow for air venting. Cover the barrel with about 12 inches of straw held in place by a 3-inch layer of soil. You can add more straw up to 3 feet deep, depending upon the amount of cold that must be endured by your climate.

In the unlined pit, the roots are piled on a layer of straw and the pile is covered with straw held in place by a layer of soil. The unlined pit must be dug in an area where water will not fill the pit and where rodents are not a problem.

Figure 1: An outdoor barrel storage pit

Using a 55 Gallon Barrel Drum
Root-Barrel

A storage mound (Figure 2) is similar to an unlined pit. It is used where groundwater is a problem or where only a short storage period under mild temperatures is anticipated. The vegetables are piled on a layer of straw on top of the ground. The mound then is covered with a layer of straw that is held in place by a layer of soil. The mound usually contains one or two bushels of mixed roots, so when the mounds are removed, all the produce can be taken into the house.

Storage-Mound



Check out All 10 Parts of Store Garden Produce Here!

Tips on Root Cellaring
Root Cellar Temperature & Humidity Chart
Ethylene Ripening Chart



Store Garden Produce #9-How To Build A Cellar-Part 1

The year round availability of fresh produce at supermarkets in this modern society has pretty much eliminated the use of the historic age-old root cellars. It appears that all that remains of its existence are the fond childhood memories of that deep dark scary place known only to a kid as a fort! However, as more people are reverting back to the basics of home gardening, there is a revitalization of the good old-fashioned root cellar. It has been reborn into an indispensable addition. You can easily build a root cellar in your very own basement, outbuilding or even as an outside pit. This article covers root cellars and is not inclusive. It should be shared with Kali’s Store Garden Produce Series #1-10. Store Garden Produce #10 covers root barrels, outbuildings and storage pits.

In the root cellars heyday, our ancestors used cold storage to keep food fresh when temperatures made it advisable for produce to be stored underground. Root cellars were the basic equivalent of today’s refrigerators. Nowadays, those dedicated to eating locally often preserve foods at the height of the season when produce is less expensive and more nutritional compared to buying food in the dead of winter when produce is an expensive commodity.

Root Cellaring: A root cellar is any storage area that uses the earth’s natural resources to cool, insulate and humidify the produce stored within. They are earth-friendly, non-polluting and require no electricity. To work properly, a root cellar must be able to hold temperatures of 32º to 40º F and maintain a relatively humidity level of 85 to 95 percent. A good quality hygrometer will check for humidity and temperature levels within various locations within the home, whether it be an unused storage room, basement or back porch. While the ideal root-cellar combination for fresh foods is low temperature and high humidity, the worst situation would be high temperatures and high humidity. This situation nurtures bacteria, mold and yeast. Therefore, a root cellar requires high humidity only for its ability to maintain freshness. Low temperatures (above freezing) are then needed to counter balance the bacteria and mold problems created by high humidity. Cool outdoor air circulation is also a requirement to regulate the conditions of the stored produce.

Maintaining Proper Humidity Levels: The main culprit for shriveling of produce in storage is low humidity. A dirt, sand or gravel floor is the best option for maintaining proper humidity control as well as for proper drainage. To raise the humidity of the storage air, the floor can be sprinkled down. Gravel floors provide the best “humidifiers” in this instance, especially if the gravel is several inches deep so that it is able to hold some water at the bottom. While most produce like moist conditions, standing water must be avoided. It will quickly decay your contents. Assess your own specific situation. Homeowners in the south might even consider installing a cellar sump pump or other drainage alternative if you happen to have a high water table.

For dirt or sand floors, place water in shallow pans under fresh-air intake vents to increase humidity levels. You can also pack root vegetables in damp sawdust, sand or moss to reduce surface evaporation. Covering food with dry burlap or towels can absorb some of the moisture in the air. If the air becomes too dry, dampen burlap cloths or pack root vegetables in wet sawdust to help increase humidity levels. Use your hygrometer daily!

Some root cellars wisely include two rooms, one with and one without a concrete floor. Concrete floors provide slightly lower humidity levels and are typically utilized in basement root cellars. Concrete floors are best when storing dry goods, grains, beans as well as some fresh foods such as pumpkins, onions and squash. In addition to proper temperature and humidity, all fruits and vegetables must be kept in a dark, ventilated environment. Produce must not be allowed to freeze and should be protected from rodents such as mice.



Maintaining Proper Temperature: The first consideration to provide longevity to root vegetables is to lower the storage temperature to 32° to 40° F (0 to 4 C). The goal of storage is to keep produce in a dormant state. Temperature can be regulated using 2 types of a ventilation system to the outside, either through one or two windows or by using 2 separate venting pipes. Both options allow cold air in and warm air out. Without proper ventilation for air circulation to control temperature, your stored produce will spoil. You don’t want a strong draft; however for this will remove moisture from the produce.

Cellar Ventilation: You need to install two pipes vented to the outside; one at the lowest point of the room and one at the highest. Both pipes should be a minimum of 3 inches in diameter. Cool air is denser than warm air and will collect in the low areas. Anytime the air outside your root cellar is cooler than the air inside, the air transfer from one pipe to the other will allow a heat exchange: cool air is drawn in while warm air is vented out. As outside temperatures fluctuate, you will be able to maintain continuous airflow to regulate the temperature as low as possible. Sites that include at least two windows on opposite sides of the root cellar are the least expensive to maintain and are more desirable in creating proper ventilation, particularly if the room is divided for separate dry storage goods.

The warm air pipe can be vented out the window, equipped with a elbow, at the highest point while the cool air pipe can go through the wall at any location just as long as there is an elbow attached to a length of pipe running down the inside so that it ends up about a foot from the floor. The elbows should be loose fitting since you want to be able to rotate the elbow toward the incoming wind…or direct it away from it. An alternative is to just add blast gates to each pipe. The two vents or pipes will create a siphoning effect. When the temperature outside goes below freezing, one of the gates or valves should be closed or turned from the wind. You will receive reduced venting but it will keep the produce from freezing. If the outside temperature goes below 32° F or 0 C, the freezing level, you’ll need to partially close both valves. Make sure to seal the wall or window around the pipes with aerosol insulating foam. This will fill in any gaps or cracks. Once it sets, it does a great job of holding the pipes in place. A finishing touch is to fasten a rod as a handle for each blast gate and run it through the outside wall of your cellar. This way you can open and close the valves as well as see the valves in their position without having to open the door to release the cold air. Additionally, shade the windows in a way that will prevent light from entering the cellar. Only a small amount of heat is necessary to prevent subfreezing temperatures. A light bulb left on during the coldest days provides just enough heat to keep the air above freezing. However, if you do keep it on, be sure your produce is covered with heavy cloth as protection against light and condensation, especially for potatoes!

How to Make a Cellar: You will need to consider the location of your root cellar. Some root cellars are built into hills and buried on three sides with a normal, walk-in door on the unburied side. Others are completely buried and must be entered by stairs often accessed through a door in the ceiling. If maximum coolness is a priority, as it will be in the south, then bury the cellar completely. As an alternative to a ceiling entrance, a stairwell can be dug just outside a cellar wall with a landing at the bottom, where an insulated door can be installed leading into the cellar. Keep that door out of the sun and away from any hot summer breezes. Too large of a room can become unstable over time. It may be better to build more than one if you need more room. Site your underground room in a place away from drains or other areas that may trap water. You need a good roof that doesn’t allow moisture to penetrate the cellar. It also needs to be structurally sound in order to cover the roof with at least 2 feet of soil. Dirt is the cheapest insulating material available; so do not skimp on adding more dirt. When the cellar is completely covered, scatter grass or flower seeds. Mint makes an excellent groundcover. Mint grows vigorously and produces a thick and binding root system to hold the soil in place.

When choosing a basement location, consider partitioning off the farthest northwest corner, preferably closest to the sump pump for additional humidity and one located by windows for ventilation as discussed above. Avoid heat ducts and hot water pipes that would generate heat. It will provide the coolest, dampest, darkest storage area. If located near a furnace, you can easily patrician off a section for dry storage such as grains, onions, garlic, squash and pumpkins as well as being able to insulate the actual root cellar within.

Insulating a Cold Cellar: A space eight-by-eight feet should be plenty room for the average family The best method is to use the foundation walls on the northeast corner for two sides then build the other two walls in the basement with stud and board. Due to the moist conditions, you should make the walls out of 2X4s made of cedar or other rot-resistant wood for framing as well as some moisture-resistant wall board such as “green board” used in shower stalls. While the exterior walls do not need to be insulated, the inside partitions should have 3½” thick fiberglass insulation. Faced insulation should have the vapor barrier closest to the warm side of the storage. If unfaced insulation is used, a vapor barrier such as 6-mil thick polyethylene can be used. The ceiling also requires insulation and a vapor barrier. Then it is time to apply the foam aerosol insulation to any nooks and crannies. You want the room to be as air tight as possible.

Root Cellar Door: One customized feature worth noting is to construct a door in two pieces, called a Dutch door that splits across the middle. You are able to access the bottom door when temperatures are warm and the upper section when temperatures are cold. This way you can open the upper half to grab a few items without letting out the coldest, dampest air at the bottom of the root cellar. Double-doors or a small anteroom (fore-room) provide an additional degree of protection from temperature swings.

Cellar Rack: Keep in mind that lower shelves will be cooler and wetter, higher shelves will be warmer and dryer. Arrange and space your shelves to suit the items that will likely be stored on them. Wooden wall shelves, bins, and pallet shelving is recommended, as wood does not conduct heat or cold as rapidly as metal shelving units. Do not use aluminum shelving which tends to cause condensation. Although moisture is good, icicles or water droplets are not. When you place the cellar rack, do not let the rears of shelves contact the cellar walls, as this restricts air circulation. Air circulation is critical for minimizing airborne mold, so shelves should stand 1 to 3 inches away from the walls.

Store vegetables and fruits in wood crates or boxes rather than in bins. Slatted crates for better air circulation utilize space more efficiently than baskets. Use containers that have smooth inner surfaces. Protruding wire staples in baskets and hampers are particularly damaging to a crops outer skin. Lightweight tub buckets are good containers for harvesting as well as standard apple and lug boxes used for shipping tomatoes, grapes, and nectarines.

Vegetables that are piled together will generate heat. Only stack 2-3 layers within any one container. You will want to place some of the crops on the cellar racks while others can be placed on pallets on the floor–always rotate or “air” your crops accordingly. Some crops such as potatoes, apples or pears can be covered in straw or individually wrapped in newspapers to retard ethylene gas discussed in Store Garden Produce #8.

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Find Additional Information on How to Build a Cellar Here!

Root Cellaring Temperature & Humidity Chart Here!
Follow Kali’s Entire Series on Storing Garden Produce for Winter
Parts 1-5: Store Garden Produce For Winter
Store Garden Produce #6-Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types
Store Garden Produce #7- Storing Cherries – Freezing Apples
Store Garden Produce #8-Ethylene Ripening-List of Fruits & Vegetables
Store Garden Produce #9-How To Build A Cellar-Part 1
Store Garden Produce #10-More on Root Cellaring-Part 2

More on Root Cellar Alternatives

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters

        



Root Cellar Temperature-Humidity Chart


How long can certain vegetables be keep in the garden soil before the cold weather demands their removal indoors? Generally, the less susceptible they are to frost, the longer you can keep the vegetables in the ground by using a 12-18-inch covering of mulch. You might consider building a two-to-three foot wall all around the garden to keep the cold winds off the plants during this period that you are stretching their garden life. This will also keep all your mulch from blowing away. The wall can even act as a solid foundation for a temporary greenhouse frame that you could quickly erect and drape with inexpensive plastic film, to keep the plants in their garden soils even longer.

Check out Kali’s 10 Part Series on Store Garden Produce Here!

Learn How to Start a Vegetable Garden-Free Bonus e-Book Here!

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters

Table 1

Fruits & Vegetables that require cold, moist conditions

Temperature (oF) Relative Humidity (%) Length of Storage
Asparagus 32-36 95 2-3 weeks
Apples 32 90 2-6 months
Beets 32 95 3-5 months
Broccoli 32 95 10-14 days
Brussels Sprouts 32 95 3-5 weeks
Cabbage, Early 32 95 3-6 weeks
Cabbage, Late 32 95 3-4 months
Cabbage, Chinese 32 95 1-2 months
Carrots, mature 32 95 4-5 months
Carrots, immature 32 95 4-6 weeks
Cauliflower 32 95 2-4 weeks
Celeriac 32 95 3-4 months
Celery 32 95 2-3 months
Collards 32 95 10-14 days
Corn, sweet 32 95 4-8 days
Endive, Escarole 32 95 2-3 weeks
Grapes 32 90 4-6 weeks
Kale 32 95 10-14 days
Leeks, green 32 95 1-3 months
Lettuce 32 95 2-3 weeks
Parsley 32 95 1-2 months
Parsnips 32 95 2-6 months
Pears 32 95 2-7 months
Peas, green 32 95 1-3 weeks
Potatoes, early 50 90 1-3 weeks
Potatoes, late 39 90 4-9 months
Radishes, spring 32 95 3-4 weeks
Radishes, winter 32 95 2-4 months
Rhubarb 32 95 2-4 weeks
Rutabagas 32 95 2-4 months
Spinach 32 95 10-14 days
 

Table 2

Vegetables that require cool, moist conditions

Temperature (oF) Relative Humidity (%) Length of Storage
Beans, snap 40-50 95 7-10 days
Cucumbers 45-50 95 10-14 days
Eggplant 45-50 90 1 week
Cantaloupe 40 90 15 days
Watermelon 40-50 80-85 2-3 weeks
Peppers, sweet 45-50 95 2-3 weeks
Potatoes, early 50 90 1-3 weeks
Potatoes, late 40 90 4-9 months
Tomatoes, green 50-70 90 1-3 weeks
Tomatoes, ripe 45-50 90 4-7 days
 

Table 3

Vegetables that require cool dry conditions.

Temperature (oF) Relative Humidity (%) Length of Storage
Garlic 32 65-70 6-7 months
Onions 32 65-70 6-7 months
Table 4

Vegetables that require warm dry conditions.

Temperature (oF) Relative Humidity (%) Length of Storage
Peppers, hot 50 60-65 6 months
Pumpkins 50-55 70-75 2-3 months
Squash, winter 50-55 50-60 2-6 months
Sweet Potato 55-60 80-85 4-6 months

Additional Tips:

  • ·Apples: I don’t foresee growing these, but they’re considered the ‘queen’ of storage fruits.
  • ·Beets: good keepers. The ‘Long Keeper’ variety is just that — a great keeper. The leaves are vitamin-rich. Can last 4 to 5 months in storage.
  • ·Brussels sprouts: might keep 4 to 5 weeks if kept in perforated plastic bags. This reminds us we might want to stock up on plastic grocery bags for this purpose.
  • ·Cabbage: if it splits, it won’t keep.
  • ·Chinese cabbage: can last up to three months. You can even replant them in a box of soil in the root cellar.
  • ·Carrots: a summer planting is best for winter keeping. They are the backbone of any food-storage plan. The roots are rich in vitamin A and they can last several months in storage. With adequate mulching, you can even keep them right in the garden row for the winter.
  • ·Cauliflower: keeps only a short time at best, two to four weeks.
  • ·Celeriac: a good keeper.
  • ·Celery: see how late you can keep this in the garden, and then maybe you can get a month or two of storage out of it.
  • ·Garlic: needs lower humidity than root vegetables. If you can find a cool, dry place, it can last seven or eight months.
  • ·Horseradish: very hard and a good keeper.
  • ·Jerusalem artichoke (sunchoke): can last several weeks in plastic bags or in damp sand.
  • ·Kale: high in vitamin content, easy to grow, extremely cold-hardy.
  • ·Kohlrabi: the leaves are good to eat. Packed in damp sand or sawdust, it can keep well into the winter.
  • ·Leeks: especially cold-hardy. Can make it through a winter outdoors if well mulched, or you can plant some in your root cellar in tubs of sand or soil.
  • ·Lettuce: has a short storage life.
  • ·Onions: seed-grown onions are especially good for storage.
  • ·Parsnips: these are perhaps the hardiest of all root vegetables. Be sure to dig them out. If you pull them, you can lose half the root. If you nick the roots with the shovel, don’t store them. Nicks and blemishes invite spoilage, and this applies to all root vegetables. For longer storage, pack them in damp sawdust. Leaves, moss, or sand will work well too. The leaves are edible.
  • ·Sweet Potatoes: the roots are vitamin-rich, and they can keep several months if stored well. Must be cured.
  • ·White Potatoes: beware of planting the kind you buy in the store — they may contain disease. Cool nights promote storage of starch, making for a longer-keeping potato, so the later-maturing ones are best for storage. Must be cured and kept in a dark spot. They can last four to six months.
  • ·Pumpkins: those that have lost their stems won’t keep well.
  • ·Winter radishes: they’ll last until February if well stored.
  • ·Rutabagas (Swedish turnip): will last two to four months in storage.
  • ·Squash: if it’s well stored, it will keep for up to six months. Cure them for 10 to 14 days. Like pumpkins, keep them dry and moderately warm.
  • ·Tomatoes: late-planted tomatoes are best for storage.
  • ·Turnips: these are among the hardiest of vegetables. In storage they might put out pale, leafy tops, good for stews.



Additional Links



Root Cellaring- Fresher Longer Food Storage


Root vegetables are named as such due to their underground plant parts that are eaten. They are easy to store and with just a few simple steps you can enjoy a bountiful harvest throughout the winter months.

  • Root crops, including potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, rutabagas, winter radishes, kohlrabi and parsnips, adapt best at near freezing with a high relative humidity.
  • Root vegetables, such as potatoes, carrots and onions, have a long storage life. They require minimal preparation before storing.
  • Root crops store best where they are grown until there is a danger of soil freezing. Postpone harvesting by tilling the soil over the shoulders of carrots and beets to protect them from freezing. If straw and soil are piled over the row as insulation, harvest may be delayed even longer.
  • Bring most vegetables and fruits into the root cellar immediately after harvesting. Some vegetables, however, such as onions and garlic, need to be dried in the sun for a week before dry-cellar storage. Squash and pumpkins need two weeks in the sun to develop a hard rind, and they need a warm cellar. Sweet potatoes also need to be cured.
  • Freezing is fine for some fresh vegetables and destructive to others, like potatoes. However, you will want to completely avoid repeated freezing and thawing that can take place in root cellars from a warm spell to a cold spell and back to warm. You can solve this problem if you build a section of your root cellar that never freezes during these wavering spells on either side of the winter deep-freeze.
  • Store onions near freezing but with a low relative humidity to discourage neck rot.
  • Parsnips will withstand freezing. Leave part of the crop in the ground and dig in the spring when the flavor has greatly improved.
  • It is important to time your final harvest for the latest possible date. As well as planting vegetables as early as possible in the spring to be able to eat them in late spring or early summer, plant a sizable crop later than usual so that their peak arrives only in the nick of time before the killing frost. This late crop will represent your fresh supply of food throughout the winter.
  • Take into account that vegetables planted later than normal will grow slower in the cooler months of fall.
  • Kale and collards can be left in the garden long after the first fall frost. Harvest as needed until the foliage finally succumbs to cold weather. Wind protection will prolong its usefulness.
  • Celery and late cabbage may be harvested after the frost has stopped their growth. Pull celery with its roots attached. Cut cabbage and remove the loose outer leaves.
  • Plant lots of potatoes and carrots as they might last 4-6 months, but you would not want to plant too much broccoli since it only keeps for a couple weeks.
  • Leafy crops such as celery and cabbage may also be stored. Store them by themselves — they give off ethylene gas while in storage, which has proven detrimental to other vegetables.
  • Celery may be harvested and stored directly in trenches that are dug for that purpose. Pull the celery plants and pack them upright in the trench. Cover with paper, boards and soil. They will root, bleach, tenderize and develop a nutty flavor when removed in late December.
  • Many cool-weather crops taste better after frost has nipped them. Among these are parsnips, salsify (also called “oyster plant”), kale, Brussels sprouts, collards, and Chinese cabbage.
  • Potatoes grown in sandy soils last longer in storage than those grown in heavy soils.
  • Fruits and vegetables grown in soil with high potash levels store better and longer than others. Wood ashes are a good source of potash.
  • Store the ashes all winter long where the wind won’t blow them away, and any manure your animals provide can be collected at the first thaw, but don’t over-dose your garden soil.
  • Beets 4-5 months
  • Broccoli 1-2 weeks
  • Brussels Sprouts 3-5 weeks
  • Cabbage (long keeper)
  • Chinese Cabbage 1-2 months
  • Carrots 4-6 months
  • Cauliflower 2-4 weeks
  • Celery (long keeper)
  • Chives (not a root-cellar crop)
  • Collards 1-2 weeks
  • Cucumbers 2-3 weeks
  • Eggplant 1-2 weeks
  • Horse Radish (long keeper)
  • Jerusalem Artichokes 1-2 months
  • Kohlrabi (long keeper)
  • Leeks N/A
  • Onions (good keeper)
  • Parsnips 1-2 months
  • Pepper (good keeper)
  • Sweet Potatoes (long keeper)
  • Potatoes 4-6 months
  • Pumpkin (good keeper)
  • Radishes 2-3 months
  • Rutabagas 2-4 months
  • Salsify (good keeper)
  • Soybeans (long keepers)
  • Squash 4-6 months
  • Tomatoes 1-2 months
  • Turnips (long keepers)

The following are root-cellar products that are best stored in cold and very moist conditions (32-40 º F and 90-95% relative humidity): Beets, collards, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, carrots, turnips, radishes, rutabagas, parsnips, Jerusalem artichokes, celery, salsify, celeriac, parsley, Brussels sprouts, leeks, and kohlrabi.

The following products do best in the same temperatures but at a slightly reduced humidity (80-90%): Potatoes, endive, escarole, cabbage, cauliflower, quince, apples, pears, oranges, grapefruit, and grapes.

The following do best in 40-45º F cellars with a relative humidity of 85-90%: Cucumbers, cantaloupe, eggplant, tomatoes, watermelon, and sweet peppers.

Reduce the temperature and humidity of the following vegetables (35-40 º F and 60-70%): Garlic, onions and green soybeans in the pod.

The following need high temperatures and lower humidity (50-60 º F and 60-70%): Hot peppers, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, winter squash, and green tomatoes.

Very Susceptible to Frost:
Cucumbers, Eggplant, Lettuce, Squash, Sweet Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Tomatoes, Pumpkins.
Moderately Susceptible to Frost:
Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage (young), Carrots, Cauliflower, Escarole, Garlic, Onions, Celery, Spinach, Parsley, Peas, Radishes.
Least Susceptible to Frost:
Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage (mature), Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi, Parsnips, Salsify, Turnips

For squashes, sweet potatoes and pumpkins shelves near furnace afford good storage.

For squashes, sweet potatoes and pumpkins shelves near furnace afford good storage.



Check out Kali’s 10 Part Series on Store Garden Produce Here!

Root Barrels & Storage Mounds

Learn How to Start a Vegetable or Herb Garden-Free Bonus e-Books Here!

Successful Gardening!
Kali S Winters



Ethylene Ripening Chart


Determine which foods shouldn’t be stored close together. Some foods affect others, such as potatoes and apples. Unless you wrap apples individually or cover them, potatoes transfer a moldy taste to them. Apples also give off more ethylene gas than some other foods and can cause premature ripening of tomatoes, pears and peaches.

Ethylene gas has the following effects: decay (fresh produce and flower bulbs); russet spotting (leafy vegetables and eggplants); yellowing (cucumbers, broccoli and brussel sprouts); odor (garlic and onions); wilting (vegetables and cut flowers); scald and loss of crunch (apples); and rind breakdown (citrus). If you control ethylene gas levels you can help preserve freshness.


Learn more about Ethylene Gas Here!

N=None   H=High   L=Low    M=Medium   VH=Very High    VL=Very Low

Fruit or Vegetable
Temperature
C/F
Ethylene
Production
Ethylene
Sensitivity
Apple (non-chilled)
1.1 / 30
VH
H
Apple (chilled)
4.4 / 40
VH
H
Apricot
-0.5 / 31
H
H
Artichoke
0 / 32
VL
L
Asian Pear
1.1 / 34
H
H
Asparagus
2.2 / 36
VL
M
Avocado (California)
3.3 / 38
H
H
Avocado (Tropical)
10.0 / 50
H
H
Banana
14.4 / 58
M
H
Beans (Lima)
0 / 32
L
M
Beans (Snap/Green)
7.2 / 45
L
M
Belgian Endive
2.2 / 36
VL
M
Berries (Blackberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Blueberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Cranberry)
2.2 / 36
L
L-Mold
Berries (Currants)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Dewberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Elderberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Gooseberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Loganberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Raspberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Berries (Strawberry)
-0.5 / 31
L
L-Mold
Breadfruit
13.3 / 56
M
M
Broccoli
0 / 32
VL
H-Yellowing
Brussel Sprouts
0 / 32
VL
H
Cabbage
0 / 32
VL
H
Cantalope
4.4 / 40
H
M
Cape Gooseberry
12.2 / 54
L
L
Carrots (Topped)
0 / 32
VL
L-Bitterness
Casaba Melon
10.0 / 50
L
L
Cauliflower
0 / 32
VL
H
Celery
0 / 32
VL
M
Chard
0 / 32
VL
H
Cherimoya
12.8 / 55
VH
H
Cherry (Sour)
-0.5 / 31
VL
L-Softening
Cherry (Sweet)
-1.1 / 30
VL
L-Softening
Chicory
0 / 32
VL
H
Chinese Gooseberry
0 / 32
L
H
Collards
0 / 32
VL
M
Crenshaw Melon
10.0 / 50
H
H
Cucumbers
10.0 / 50
L
H-Yellowing
Eggplant
10.0 / 50
L
L
Endive (Escarole)
0 / 32
VL
M
Feijoa
5.0 / 41
M
L
Figs
0 / 32
M
L
Garlic
0 / 32
VL
L-Odor
Ginger
13.3 / 56
VL
L
Grapefruit
13.3 / 56
VL
M-Mold
Grapes
-1.1 / 30
VL
L-Mold
Greens (Leafy)
0 / 32
VL
H-Spotting
Guava
10 / 50
L
M
Honeydew
10 / 50
M
H
Horseradish
0 / 32
VL
L
Jack Fruit
13.3 / 56
M
M
Kale
0 / 32
VL
M
Kiwi Fruit
0 / 32
L
H
Kohlrabi
0 / 32
VL
L
Leeks
0 / 32
VL
M
Lemons
12.2 / 54
VL
M-Mold
Lettuce (Butterhead)
0 / 32
L
M-Spotting
Lettuce (Head/Iceberg)
0 / 32
VL
H-Spotting
Lime
12.2 / 54
VL
M-Mold 
Lychee
1.7 /35
M
M
Mandarine
7.2 / 45
VL
M
Mango
13.3 / 56
M
H
Mangosteen
13.3 / 56
M
H
Mineola
13.3 / 56
L
L
Mushrooms
0 / 32
L
M
Nectarine
-0.5 / 31
H
H
Okra
10.0 / 50
L
M
Olive
7.2 / 45
L
M
Onions (Dry)
0 / 32
VL
L-Odor
Onions (Green)
0 / 32
VL
M
Orange (CA,AZ)
7.2 / 45
VL
M
Orange (FL,TX)
2.2 / 36
VL
M
Papaya
12.2 / 54
H
H
Paprika
10.0 / 50
L
L
Parsnip
0 / 32
VL
L
Parsley
0 / 32
VL
H
Passion Fruit
12.2 / 54
VH
H
Peach
-0.5 / 31
H
H
Pear(Anjou,Bartlett/Bosc)
1.1 / 30
H
H
Pear (Prickley)
5.0 / 41
N
L
Peas
0 / 32
VL
M
Pepper (Bell)
10.0 / 50
L
L
Pepper (Chile)
10.0 / 50
L
L
Persian Melon
10.0 / 50
M
H
Persimmon (Fuyu)
10.0 / 50
L
H
Persimmon (Hachiya)
5.0 / 41
L
H
Pineapple
10.0 / 50
L
L
Pineapple (Guava)
5.0 / 41
M
L
Plantain
14.4 / 58
L
H
Plum/Prune
-0.5 / 31
M
H
Pomegranate
5.0 / 41
L
L
Potato (Processing)
10.0 / 50
VL
M-Sprouting
Potato (Seed)
4.4 / 40
VL
M
Potato (Table)
7.2 / 45
VL
M
Pumpkin
12.2 / 54
L
L
Quince
-0.5 / 31
L
H
Radishes
0 / 32
VL
L
Red Beet
2.8 / 37
VL
L
Rambutan
12.2 / 54
H
H
Rhubard
0 / 32
VL
L
Rutabaga
0 / 32
VL
L
Sapota
12.2 / 54
VH
H
Spinach
0 / 32
VL
H
Squash (Hard Skin)
12.2 / 54
L
L
Squash (Soft Skin)
10.0 / 50
L
M
Squash (Summer)
7.2 / 45
L
M
Squash (Zucchini)
7.2 / 45
N
N
Star Fruit
8.9 / 48
L
L
Swede (Rhutabaga)
0 / 32
VL
L
Sweet Corn
0 / 32
VL
L
Sweet Potato
13.3 / 56
VL
L
Tamarillo
0 / 32
L
M
Tangerine
7.2 / 45
VL
M
Taro Root
7.2 / 45
N
N
Tomato (Mature/Green)
13.3 / 56
VL
H
Tomato (Brkr/Lt Pink)
10.0 / 50
M
H
Tree-Tomato
3.9 / 39
H
M
Turnip (Roots)
0 / 32
VL
L
Turnip (Greens)
0 / 32
VL
H
Watercress
0 / 32
VL
H
Watermelon
10.0 / 50
L
H
Yam
13.3 / 56
VL
L



Fresh Apple Recipes


Discover How to Freeze Apples Here!

Dried Apple Rings Here!

Applesauce Recipe

There is nothing better than homemade applesauce from hand-picked apples, and it is so easy to do! If you want chunky applesauce, use a potato masher to mash the cooked apples. If you prefer smooth apple sauce, run the cooked apples through a food mill. The key is adding a few strips of lemon peel to the apples while cooking. The lemon heightens the apple flavor.

Preparation time: 45 minutes. The sugar amounts are just guidelines, depending upon your taste and on the sweetness of your apples, use less or more. If you use less sugar, you’ll likely want to use less lemon juice. The lemon juice brightens the flavor of the apples and balances the sweetness.

Ingredients:

  • 3 to 4 lbs of peeled, cored, and quartered apples. (Make sure you use a good cooking apple like Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, Fuji, Jonathan, Mcintosh, or Gravenstein.)
  • 4 strips of lemon peel – use a vegetable peeler to strip 4 lengths
  • Juice of one lemon, about 3-4 Tbsp
  • 3 inches of cinnamon stick
  • 1/4 cup of dark brown sugar
  • Up to 1/4 cup of white sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • Directions:
    1. Put all ingredients into a large pot.  Cover.  Bring to boil.  Lower heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes. Stir often.
    2. Remove from heat. Remove cinnamon sticks and lemon peels. Mash with potato masher.
    3. Ready to serve, either hot or refrigerated. Delicious with vanilla ice cream or vanilla yogurt.
    Freezes easily, lasts up to one year in a cold freezer.

    Home Made Apple Cider

    The apples you choose are very important as they define the taste of the cider. Most manufactured apple ciders use a variety of different types of apples in their standard apple ciders. You can employ this mixing technique or simply use one variety of apple to make your cider. Red Delicious, Green Delicious, Fuji, Jonagold and other sweet-tasting apples. Granny Smith, McIntosh, Pink Lady and other tart-tasting apples will produce sharper ciders due to their tangy flavors.

    Step 1:Choose your apples
    1.   Experiment with a variety of different types of apples, if you are going to mix apple types in your cider. Try to get a good mix of red, green and gold apples.
    2.   Choose fresh apples that are picked directly from the trees. You should never use apples that have fallen on the ground as these may possess cider toxins and bacteria.
    3.   Discard any apples that are bruised or discolored. You should only use fresh, healthy apples to make apple cider.
    4.   If you don’t grow your own apples, try to visit a local farmer’s market to purchase the apples. While you can purchase apples from any grocery store, you’ll have a fresher cider if you opt for farmer’s market apples.

    Step 2: Prepare the Apples

    * Before you begin pressing the apples to get the juice out of them, you’ll need to first prepare them.

    1.  Wash all the apples thoroughly.
    2.  Core the apples. You can do this manually, however, it’s much faster to use an apple corer.
    3.  Slice the apples into quarters.
    4.  Put the quartered apples into the blender or food processor and puree them.
    5.  Continue pureeing the apples until they are very finely ground. You will be able to extract more juice from the apples if you attain a very fine ground.

    Step 3: Press the Apples

    Now that you have cored and pureed your apples, you are ready to press them.

    1.  Place the cheesecloth over the container in which you’ll store the apples.
    2.  Pour the pureed apples into the cheesecloth.
    3.  Squeeze the pureed apples through the cheesecloth and into the container below.
    4. Apply firm, steady pressure as you squeeze. This will ensure that you extract all juice possible from the pureed apples.

    If you are making large amounts of apple cider, you may wish to use a cider press. A cider press is a device with mechanically pulps and squeezes apples, and will extract juice more efficiently than squeezing by hand. Or you can use a fruit/vegetable juicer sold in a variety of shops.

    Step 4: Store the Apple Cider

    Now that you have extracted all the juice from the apples, your cider is ready to be stored. If you wish, you can also pasteurize your cider.

    1.   Cover the container with an airtight lid. The cider should not be exposed to air or it will go bad much more quickly.
    2.   Store your apple cider in the refrigerator. If kept refrigerated, it should stay fresh for about seven days.
    3.   Pasteurize your apple cider by heating it to 160 º F. This will help to kill any bacteria present. Pasteurized apple cider will stay fresh in the refrigerator for up to three weeks.
    4.   Freeze your apple cider if you won’t be consuming it in the near future. When frozen, apples and apple cider will remain fresh for up to one year.

    According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, pregnant women, elderly people and children should not drink unpasteurized apple cider as it may contain bacteria.

    Variations on Apple Cider

    You can have a lot of fun by experimenting with different seasonings and additions to your homemade apple cider. Don’t be afraid to try your own variations! You might discover a sensational combination.

    1.   Add cinnamon sticks to your apple cider for traditional holiday taste.
    2.   Mix apple cider with a bit of rum and brown sugar for an alcoholic beverage that tastes great.
    3.   Drizzle caramel into your apple cider for a decadent warm beverage.
    4.   Try various spices in your apple cider. Nutmeg, cloves, ginger and lemon peel all add tasty flavors to hot cider.
    5.   Pour apple cider over vanilla ice cream and top with caramel and whipped cream for a rich dessert. Add a slice of pound cake for added texture and taste.
    6.   Blend apple cider with orange juice, ice and honey for a refreshing summer beverage.

    Recipes for Apple Tart:

    Dough:

  • 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, just softened, cut in 1/2-inch pieces
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons chilled water
  • Filling:

  • 2 pounds apples (Golden Delicious or another tart, firm variety), peeled, cored (save peels and cores), and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 5 tablespoons sugar
  • Glaze:
    1/2 cup sugar

    1.    MIX flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl; add 2 tablespoons of the butter. Blend in a mixer until dough resembles coarse cornmeal. Add remaining butter; mix until biggest pieces look like large peas.

    2.    DRIBBLE in water, stir, then dribble in more, until dough just holds together. Toss with hands, letting it fall through fingers, until it’s ropy with some dry patches. If dry patches predominate, add another tablespoon water. Keep tossing until you can roll dough into a ball. Flatten into a 4-inch-thick disk; refrigerate. After at least 30 minutes, remove; let soften so it’s malleable but still cold. Smooth cracks at edges. On a lightly floured surface, roll into a 14-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick. Dust excess flour from both sides with a dry pastry brush.

    3.    PLACE dough in a lightly greased 9-inch round tart pan, or simply on a parchment-lined baking sheet if you wish to go free-form, or galette-style with it. Heat oven to 400º F. (If you have a pizza stone, place it in the center of the rack.)

    4.    OVERLAP apples on dough in a ring 2 inches from edge if going galette-style, or up to the sides if using the tart pan. Continue inward until you reach the center. Fold any dough hanging over pan back onto itself; crimp edges at 1-inch intervals.

    5.    BRUSH melted butter over apples and onto dough edge. Sprinkle  sugar over dough edge and over apples.

    6.    BAKE in center of oven until apples are soft, with browned edges, and crust has caramelized to a dark golden brown (about 45 minutes), making sure to rotate tart every 15 minutes.

    7.    MAKE glaze: Put reserved peels and cores in a large saucepan, along with sugar. Pour in just enough water to cover; simmer for 25 minutes. Strain syrup through cheesecloth.

    8.    REMOVE tart from oven, and slide off parchment onto cooling rack. Let cool at least 15 minutes.

    9.   BRUSH glaze over tart, slice, and serve.





    Types of Cherries & Apples


    Discover more about Storing Cherries – Freezing Apples Here!

    Recipes with Fruit Here!

    Types of Cherries

    Sour Cherries:

    Montgomery
    This variety is the best known sour cherry. It is mostly canned or frozen for use as pie filling or sauce. They are grown mostly in the eastern and Midwestern states.

    Sweet Cherries:

    Bing
    This variety is the best known sweet cherry. It is large, round, extra-sweet and has a purple-red flesh and a deep red skin that is close to black when fully ripe. The Bing is available from the end of May until early August.

    Lambert
    This variety is the second most popular sweet cherry. It is smaller than the Bing and is more heart shaped. It has a dark-red skin and a rich flavor. Lamberts are available a bit longer than the Bing, usually until the end of August.

    Rainer
    This variety is sweet with a yellow or pinkish skin. It is milder and sweeter than the Bing. However, this variety is grown in limited quantities.

    Royal Ann
    This variety has a blush-yellow skin and is often canned or made into maraschino cherries.


    Types of Apples

    Apples are free of fat, cholesterol and sodium; but very high in fiber. The pectin and the boron content in an apple helps in digestion as well as strengthening the bones respectively.

    Here is a list of various types of apples:

    Arkansas Black – Arkansas Black apples are mostly used for cooking. It is used as one of the ingredients in sauerkraut recipes. This variety of apple has a firm texture and a sour taste.

    Braeburn – This variety of apple is available anytime between October and July. The skin color of a Braeburn apple is reddish-orange with shades of yellow. This variety is usually used for making salad, applesauce, and pies. These apples can be frozen for later consumption.

    Bramley’s Seedling – Are among the best cookers and for keeping

    Cameo – Though the Cameo apples are harvested in the month of September, it is available in the market only between October and August. This variety is identified by the white spots on the red skin. Cameo apples are used in various desserts such as apple crumble or apple crisp and many more. It is also used to make salads, sauces and pies. Cameo apples can be frozen.

    Cortland – Cortland apples are available almost throughout the year. The only time it is not available in the market is during the months of January, March and April. This variety of apple is sweet and the skin color is red spread over a yellowish-green skin. It is used for baking and freezing. It would make a good snack after a meal.

    Egremont Russet – A desert apple which tastes sweet and wholesome, even when wrinkled.

    Empire – Empire apples are available throughout the year. It is has a sweet and a sour taste. The skin color of this apple is a combination of red and green. You can freeze this variety of apples for future consumption.

    Fuji – Fuji apples have reddish-pink skin. This variety belongs to Japan and was introduced in the US in the 1980s. This variety makes a good snack after a heavy meal. It tastes good in salads, pies and sauces. Fuji apples have longer shelf life without refrigeration. This is available from August to October.

    Gala – This variety of apples is available from September to May. Though it is not good for freezing, it can be used for baking and apple pies. Gala apples have pinkish stripes on yellow skin. This variety of apples is very sweet.

    Ginger Gold – This variety of apples have a sweet-sour taste. Ginger Gold apples are available from August to November. Apple pies and sauces could be made from this variety. However, it is not good for freezing. The skin color of a Ginger Gold apple is yellow.

    Golden Delicious – As the name suggests, this variety is not only sweet and delicious but also golden yellow in color. It is used to make jams, salads, pies and sweet sauces. Golden Delicious apples are good for freezing too. This variety is available throughout the year.

    Granny Smith – The skin color of this apple is green and it is very sour. It is available throughout the year. It can be frozen for later consumption. You can make pies and sauces with this variety.

    Honeycrisp – This is a new variety of apples, which was introduced in the early ’90s. The skin color of a Honeycrisp apple is a combination of red and yellow. It is used for baking and making salads and sauce. It does not taste good in pies. This variety can be frozen.

    Idared – Idared apples are available through out the year. The skin color of an Idared apple is pink. This variety has a sweet and sour taste. Idared apples can be used for baking and freezing. It is used for making pies and sauces.

    Jonagold – Jonagold apples are a hybrid variety of the Jonathan and the Golden Delicious apple. This variety is mostly used for making sweet-sour sauces, pies and salads. You can freeze Jonagold apples for future consumption. Jonagold apples are available between October and May.

    Jonathan – This variety has a shade of red and green skin color, and the taste is sour. Jonathan apples can be frozen. It is widely used in salads and sauces.

    McIntosh – This variety of apple makes an excellent snack. You can make pies and sauces with McIntosh apples. However, these are not good for baking or freezing. The skin color of this apple is a blend of red and green. It tastes sweet with a tinge of sourness.

    Red Delicious – The skin color of this variety of apple is red and it has a very sweet taste. This apple is good for making jams and would make a good dessert after a heavy meal. These apples are available in the market throughout the year.

    Rome Beauty – This variety of apples are commonly used in baking. The skin color of this apple is crimson red and it is mildly sour. It is mostly used in salads and pies. It can be frozen too.

    Winesap – Winesap apples are not good to eat raw and mostly used for making apple cider. This variety of apples is sour and has the flavor of a seasoned wine. The skin color of this apple is deep red.





    Freezing Cherries-Dehydrating Apples


    Fall is Fruit Harvesting season where I live and going to a local orchard to either pick your own or to buy a box of fresh fruit is an enjoyable family outing. The smell and taste of freshly picked cherries or apples just doesn’t compare to the grocery store. If you don’t have a local orchard, there is sure to be a farmers market nearby where you can stock up on local fruit.

    Re-Visit Your Local Farmers Market

    Dehydrating Apples:

    It is easy to make your own dried apple rings or pieces to keep in your pantry for snacks or an addition to your morning oatmeal especially if you have a food dehydrator.

    You can use your oven as well, but without a fan it takes longer and ties up your oven as well as heats up your kitchen.

    Core and slice your apples in as uniform pieces as possible. The thinner they are the faster they will dry. Cut out any bruised or bad spots as you go. Place the apple rings on the dehydrator trays or oven racks and set the temperature to about 140ºF. If you’re using a dehydrator with a fan check back in about 8 hours to see how they’re doing. The apple slices will be dry when they have a leather consistency. Be sure they are completely dry before you package them so no mold can grow and contaminate your whole batch. Store in air tight containers in a cool dry place.

    Learn about an Apple Slicer-Peeler-Corer as well as Freezing Apples Here!

    Keep Apples from Turning Brown by three easy methods: Apples are notorious for browning. Once you have washed, cored and/or peeled your apples, you will want to either:

    (1) Dissolve ½ teaspoon ascorbic acid, also known as “FruitFresh”, into 3 tablespoons of water then sprinkle over the apples and blend.

    (2) Soak sliced apples in a solution of 2 tablespoons of salt per 1 gallon of water, stir water a bit to make sure all have been submerged, or

    (3) Steam-blanch them for 1 ½ minutes then cool them in ice water before freezing.

    Any of the three methods mentioned above will keep apples from browning and must be applied before apples are frozen.

    Freezing Cherries:

    Cherries are already little bundles of natural sugar dressed up as fruit, so there is no need to add additional sugar.

    There are several ways to pack cherries for freezing. The best method selected will depend upon how you want to use the frozen product.

    Sugar Syrup Recipes: The sugar syrup recipe is useful because it preserves the flavor and texture best. Use 2 cups of sugar added to every 3 cups of water. Of course, you can scale this up or down to according to the table below. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil until the sugar is dissolved. Chill. Add ½ teaspoon of ascorbic acid (Fruit Fresh) to each quart of syrup. Pour ½ cup of syrup into the freezer container then add cherries. If necessary, add more syrup until the cherries are completely covered and place a small piece of waxed paper on top to keep the cherries submerged. Leave ½ inch headspace for pints, 1 inch for quarts.

    Syrup Pack: A light syrup is recommended for sweet cherries while a medium syrup can be used for sour cherries. Allow at least 1/2 to 2/3 cup of syrup for each pint size jar of fruit.

    Type of

    Syrup

    Sugar

    (cups)

    Water

    (cups)

    Approx.

    Yield (cups)

    Light

    1 1/2

    5 3/4

    6 1/2

    Medium

    2 1/4

    5 1/4

    6 1/2

    Heavy

    3 1/4

    5

    6 1/2

    Sugar Pack: Mix 2/3 cups sugar per 1 quart of sour cherries or 1/3 cups sugar per quart of sweet cherries. Place cherries into freezer containers leaving at least 1/2 inch head space.

    Loose Cherry Pack: This method entails placing the freshly pitted cherries directly into freezer containers.  Make sure to remove as much air as possible and remember to leave at least 1/2 to 3/4 inch head room at the top.

    Unsweetened Pack:  Place washed, pitted fresh cherries in a single layer on a cookie sheet or shallow tray, then place in the freezer. Once the cherries are completely frozen,  transfer them to freezer bags or plastic containers for long term storage. Squeeze as much air out of the container as possible. You can even use a straw to suck the air out if you would like.

    Use frozen cherries in smoothies, shakes, or any baked goods in which you would use fresh pitted cherries.



    Recipes with Fruits – Cherry Tarts!

    Fruit for Gifts Here



    Recipes with Fruits


    Fresh Apple Recipes Here!

    Learn How to Pit Cherries Here!

    Discover the Different Types of Cherries & Apples

    Cobbler Pie:

    This is a delicious cherry cobbler made with fresh cherries instead of canned. It may take a little longer to make because you need to pit the cherries, but it is well worth it when you taste the finished product.

    Ingredience:

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups pitted sour cherries (you can substitute any fruit here)
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • Directions:
    1. Preheat the oven to 350º F (175º C). Place the butter in a 9×13 inch baking dish, and place in the oven to melt while the oven is preheating. Remove as soon as butter has melted, about 5 minutes.

    2. In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup of flour, 1 cup of sugar, and baking powder. Mix in the milk until well blended, then pour the batter into the pan over the butter. Do not stir.

    3. Rinse out the bowl from the batter, and dry. Place cherries into the bowl, and toss with the remaining 3/4 cup of sugar and 1 tablespoon of flour. Distribute the cherry mixture evenly over the batter. Do not stir.

    4. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. A toothpick inserted into the cobber should come out clean

    Note: This cobbler recipe is easy & really delicious. You may want to doubled the sour cherries (4 cups), add 1 tsp. vanilla extract & ½ tsp. cinnamon. This recipe is a keeper! Addition: Please note the extra cherries could add additional cooking time (about 20 min.)

    Cherry Cobbler:

    Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Pinch nutmeg
  • Pinch salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 cups stemmed, pitted fresh cherries
  • 1 tablespoon cherry brandy
  • Basic Sweet Pie Crust, (recipe below)
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, for top of pie
  • 1 half-gallon vanilla ice cream, for topping
  • 1/2 cup blueberries, for top of cobbler and ice cream
  • Basic Sweet Pie Crust

  • 16 ounces flour, about 3 and 1/4 cups
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 sticks cold butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 3 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons ice water
  • Directions:
    Preheat the oven 350º F .

    In a bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.

    In a large saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the cherries and cook, stirring gently, for 1 minute. Add the sugar-flour mixture, and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and begins to boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the brandy. Let cool.

    Divide the pie dough in two, one portion slightly larger then the other. Roll out the larger portion on a lightly floured surface to about 11 inches in diameter. Transfer to a deep 8-inch cast-iron skillet or Dutch oven, fitting the dough up the sides, leaving a slight overhang. Roll out the remaining dough into a large rectangle and cut into 1-inch thick strips.

    Pour the fruit mixture into the bottom dough. Working one strip at a time, create a lattice top crust by laying the strips across the top in one direction, then turn and lay across in the other, interweaving the strips if desired. Roll up the overhanging bottom crust over the edges and pinch to seal. Crimp together around the pan. Brush the top with the cream and lightly sprinkle with one tablespoon of granulated sugar. Bake until the crust is golden and the juices are bubbly, about 40 minutes.

    Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before serving.

    Basic Sweet Pie Crust
    Sift the flour, sugar, and salt into a large bowl. Using your fingers, work in the butter and shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

    Add 3 tablespoons of ice water and work with your fingers until the water is incorporated and the dough comes together. Add more water as needed to make a smooth dough, being careful not to over mix.

    Form the dough into a disk, wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.

    Cherry Tarts:

    Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 ounce) package refrigerated crescent rolls
  • 1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 cup canned cherry pie filling
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • Directions:

    1. Place crescent dough on a lightly floured surface; seal seams and perforations. Cut into 2-in. circles. Place in greased miniature muffin cups. In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar until smooth. Place about 1/2 teaspoon in each cup. Combine pie filling and extract; place about 2 teaspoons in each cup.

    2. Bake at 375º F for 12-14 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove to wire racks to cool. Refrigerate until serving.

    Cherry Cream Cheese Tarts:

    Ingredients:

  • 2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 12 vanilla wafers
  • 1 (21-ounce) can cherry pie filling or other pie filling
  • Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350º F .

    2. Place a paper cupcake liner in each cup of muffin pan. Beat cream cheese with a handheld electric mixer until fluffy. Add sugar and vanilla, beating well. Add eggs, 1at a time, beating well after each addition. Lay a vanilla wafer, flat side down, in each muffin cup. Spoon cream cheese mixture over wafers. Bake for 20 minutes. Allow tarts to cool completely. Serve with cherry filling on top, or pie filling of your choice.

    Fresh Cherry Tarts Recipe

    Ingredients:

  • 2 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cup light corn syrup
  • 3 cups fresh, sour cherries, pitted
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 6 3’2-inch baked tart shells
  • Directions:
    1. Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt in top of a double boiler.
    2. Add corn syrup and mix well.
    3. Add cherries.
    4. Place over boiling water and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens.
    5. Cover and continue cooking about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
    6. Remove from heat and add almond extract.
    7. Cool.
    8. Pour into baked tart shells and chill.
    9. Serve with whipped cream, if desired.
    Makes 6 tarts.

    Baked Fresh Cherry Pie

    Ingredients:

  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
  • 4 tablespoons quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 4 cups pitted cherries
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter
  • Directions:

    1. Preheat oven to 400º F (205º C). Place bottom crust in piepan. Set top crust aside, covered.

    2. In a large mixing bowl combine tapioca, salt, sugar, cherries and extracts. Let stand 15 minutes. Turn out into bottom crust and dot with butter. Cover with top crust, flute edges and cut vents in top. Place pie on a foil lined cookie sheet — in case of drips!

    3. Bake for 50 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown.





    Store Garden Produce #7- Storing Cherries – Freezing Apples


    About 30 years ago, I started planting apple trees on our land. Shortly thereafter, we also started growing cherry trees. When it came time for harvest season, we lived by trial and error. I learned more about the facts of fruits than herb gardening in those first several years. I would like to share with you my experiences to help you further develop your own skills. I will be covering Ethylene Gas in Part 8 of this series. This article is not inclusive and should be shared with Parts 1-10 of this series. (See Link Below)

    Cherries-Types: The nutritional value in cherries varies somewhat amongst the two main types: sweet and sour. Sweet cherries can be eaten raw to protect their high vitamin C but they virtually contain no vitamin A. Sweet cherries also contain anthocyanin and melatonin, an antioxidant that fights insomnia and jet lag.  Sour cherries, on the other hand, are tastier when cooked. Sour cherries are lower in calories and are full of vitamin A but contain only ½ the amount of vitamin C. Sour cherries also contain fiber, manganese, copper and beta-carotene. Being a red fruit, the health benefits from cherries provide antioxidants, especially lycopene, which helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Black cherries make the perfect gout cherries. Cherries nutritional value is high in potassium and carbohydrates but low in saturated fat and cholesterol.

    Sweetness will vary from farm to farm, even tree to tree and week to week. The darker the cherry, the sweeter its flavor and the more health benefits. Good cherries should be large (one inch or more in diameter), glossy, plump, hard and dark-colored according to variety. The stems should be left on and be green and fresh, bending easily and snapping back when released. If buying cherries, they should be kept cool and moist, as the flavor and texture both suffer at warm temperatures. Avoid sticky cherries (they’ve been damaged and are leaking), red cherries with very pale skin (they’re not fully ripe), and bruised cherries whose flesh will be discolored under the bruise. If you find many damaged cherries, eliminate them for they will speed up the decaying process.

    A Word of Caution
    : Like apple seeds, cherry pits contain amygdalin, a naturally occurring cyanide/sugar compound that breaks down into hydrogen cyanide in the stomach. Accidentally swallowing a cherry pit once in a while is not a serious hazard, however, there have been reports of humans being poisoned after eating apple seeds.

    Storing Cherries: Cherries have a limited growing season and are highly perishable. By storing cherries in the refrigerator, keeping them cold and humid, you will be preserving their nutrients and flavor. Loosely pack unwashed cherries in plastic bags or place them in a single layer in a shallow pan then cover with plastic wrap to minimize bruising. Check the fruit occasionally and remove any damaged cherries. Always wash your fruit before eating.  For the best, most sweetest flavor, allow the cherries to come to room temperature before eating. Fresh cherries will last up to 4 days in the refrigerator.

    Pitting Cherries: To remove cherry pits, there are two methods applied.  The first is to use actual cherry pitters. After washing and stemming the cherry, place the cherry pitters curved side, underneath the spike. Squeeze the pitter so that the spike goes through the cherry, forcing out the pit. The second method entails using either an un-bent large paper clip, or my favorite, an orange manicure stick. Insert the instrument of your choice into the stem-end of the cherry. You should feel it hit the pit. Then twist it around the pit and scoop it out. Sour cherries are the easiest to pit but after experimenting a bit to see which twisting motion works best for you, the mangled mess won’t look so bad, besides, they will still taste just as good.

    Drying Cherries: Cherries take longer to dry compared to many other fruits. Both sweet and sour cherries are great for drying and they rehydrate easily. They can be used in baked products in place of raisins or in cobbler pie. You can also put them into lemonade or ice tea. Some of their vitamin C content is lost during drying however. Fresh cherries are known for their short shelf life so drying cherries will extend this process up to about a year. Select only fully ripened fruit. Wash, stem and pit them. Large cherries can be cut in half for drying. Place on the dehydrator screens and dry at a medium temperature of 140o F until pliable and leathery with no pockets of moisture. Depending upon your dehydrator’s wattage, the drying process may take anywhere from 6-18 hours. As a rule of thumb, you might want to wait an additional hour for each additional rack.

    Freezing Cherries: Learn about the 4 methods of freezing cherries as well as how to preserve their color and flavor by clicking on the link below. I have also included several fresh cherry recipes-desserts like cherry tarts as well as ideas for gift giving such as fruit for gifts and fruit in a basket.

    Preserving Apples:  The first rule when harvesting apples is to store only perfect fruit.  All apples should be handled with care. If any are dropped or knocked around, they should be set aside for immediate consumption. The tiniest puncture, pinprick, or bruise will be enough to cause immature decay. Use caution when storing apples with other vegetables as they give off ethylene gas that causes other vegetables to rot. I talk more about ethylene gas in part 8 of this series.

    Storing Apples:  Apples can be kept for as long as 6 months if they are kept in temperatures between 32 –45ºF. Fruit must be completely dry upon storage. Moisture breads decay! Rain or dew on the skin when harvesting should be carefully dried off. An alternative is to gather your fruit on a breezy, dry summer day. As mentioned in Part 1 of this series, it is worth wrapping individual fruits in newspaper and storing them in cardboard boxes or trays in the darkest, coolest corners of the basement. Parts 9-10 of Store Garden Produce- will address alternative Root Cellars. Examine your fruit from time to time in any type of storage, removing any that show signs of ageing. Mid-season and late varieties tend to store much better than earlier season varieties.

    Freezing Apples: Some types of apples freeze better than others, especially the ones for making pies or sauce. Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and Winesap hold up well to freezing and resist bruising. McIntosh bruises easily and Red Delicious is the least favorite to freeze. You will need approximately 1 ¼  to 1 ½  pounds of sliced quartered apples to fill one pint and about 2 ½  to 3 pounds to fill a quart.

    Preparing your apples is the most time consuming part of freezing. You can peel, core and slice your apples by hand or use a handle-crank, apple peeling machine that sits on the counter. There are basically 2 types of apple peelers: those that have a suction base and those that clamp on to the edge of a table. I prefer the suction type due to its portability. They are relatively inexpensive and work great, an apple slicer-peeler-corer all rolled into one. I always peel my apples but that’s a personal preference.

    Keep Apples from Turning Brown by three easy methods: Apples are notorious for browning. Once you have washed, cored and/or peeled your apples, you will want to either (1) dissolve ½ teaspoon ascorbic acid, also known as “FruitFresh”, into 3 tablespoons of water then sprinkle over the apples and blend. (2) Soak sliced apples in a solution of 2 tablespoons of salt per 1 gallon of water, stir water a bit to make sure all have been submerged, or (3) steam-blanch them for 1 ½ minutes then cool them in ice water before freezing. Any of the three methods mentioned above will keep apples from browning and must be applied before apples are frozen.

    Choose Your Method of Freezing Apples: There are several methods to freeze apples depending upon how you intend to use them afterward. Freezing apples dry, in sugar or the syrup pack method are the most popular.  The sugar pack is preferred for apples in uncooked desserts or fruit cocktail.  A sugar or dry pack is ideal for pie making.  Dry packs can be used generically. The sugar and syrup pack methods are less likely to brown or develop freezer burn. Containers suitable for freezing should be airtight and include plastic bags or rigid plastic containers. Apples in syrup or sugar packs will keep for 10-12 months when stored at 0ºF. Dry packs should be used within 3-6 months.

    Dry Pack: This is the easiest method for freezing apples, but it does not retain the texture and flavor as well as the other methods. Treat apple slices to preserve color, pack them into a suitable container leaving ½ inch of headspace then freeze. Apple slices can also be frozen first on a tray and then packed into containers as soon as they are frozen.

    Sugar Pack: You will need ½ cup sugar per quart (1¼ pounds) of peeled, sliced apples. After treating the apples to preserve their color, place the sliced apples into a shallow bowl. Mix in sugar then pack the apples into containers, leaving ½ inch of headspace per pint and freeze.

    Syrup Pack: The sugar syrup recipe is useful because it preserves the flavor and texture best. Use 2 cups of sugar added to every 3 cups of water.  Of course, you can scale this up or down to suit the amount of apples you have. Combine sugar and water in a saucepan and bring to a boil until the sugar is dissolved. Chill. Add ½ teaspoon of ascorbic acid to each quart of syrup. Pour ½ cup of syrup into the freezer container and add apples. If necessary, add more syrup until apples are covered and place a small piece of waxed paper on top to keep the apples submerged. Leave ½ inch headspace for pints, 1 inch for quarts.



    Learn about Dehydrating Apples & Freezing Cherries Here!

    Recipes with Fruits – Cherry Tarts – Fruit for Gifts Here!

    Follow Kali’s Entire Series on Storing Garden Produce for Winter
    Parts 1-5: Store Garden Produce For Winter
    Store Garden Produce #6-Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types
    Store Garden Produce #7- Storing Cherries – Freezing Apples
    Store Garden Produce #8-Ethylene Ripening-List of Fruits & Vegetables
    Store Garden Produce #9-How To Build A Cellar-Part 1
    Store Garden Produce #10-More on Root Cellaring-Part 2

    Successful Gardening!
    Kali S Winters



    Herb Companions For Garden and Kitchen


    Herbs are great companions to food in your culinary masterpieces, and they are great companions in the garden too.

    Anise:

    In the garden: Plant with coriander, which promotes its germination and growth.

    In the kitchen: Use in cookies, cakes, fruit fillings, and breads, or with cottage cheese, shellfish, and spaghetti dishes.

    Basil

    In the garden: Plant with tomatoes. Repels flies and mosquitoes.

    In the kitchen: Use in tomato dishes, pesto, sauces, and salad dressings.

    Borage

    In the garden:  Plant with tomatoes, squash, and strawberries. Deters tomato worm.

    In the kitchen:  Use leaves in salads; flowers in soups and stews.

    Caraway

    In the garden: Plant here and there. Loosens soil.

    In the kitchen: Use in rye breads, cheese dips and rarebits, soups, applesauce, salads, coleslaw, and over pork or sauerkraut.

    Chervil

    In the garden: Plant with radishes.

    In the kitchen: Use with soups, salads, sauces, eggs, fish, veal, lamb, and pork.

    Chives

    In the garden:  Plant with carrots.

    In the kitchen:  Related to the onion, chives enliven vegetable dishes, dressings, casseroles, rice, eggs, cheese dishes, sauces, gravies, and dips.

    Dill

    In the garden: Plant with cabbages. Keep away from carrots.

    In the kitchen: Use seed for pickles and also to add aroma and taste to strong vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, and turnips. Use fresh with green beans, potato dishes, cheese, soups, salads, seafood, and sauces.

    Fennel

    In the garden: Plant away from other herbs and vegetables.

    In the kitchen: Use to flavor pastries, confectionery, sweet pickles, sausages, tomato dishes, soups, and to flavor vinegars and oils. Gives warmth and sweetness to curries.

    Garlic

    In the garden: Plant near roses and raspberries. Deters Japanese beetle.

    In the kitchen: Use in tomato dishes, garlic bread, soups, dips, sauces, marinades, or with meats, poultry, fish, and vegetables.

    Lovage

    In the garden: Plant here and there to improve the health and flavor of other plants.

    In the kitchen: It’s a great flavoring for soups, stews, and salad dressings. Goes well with potatoes. The seeds can be used on breads and biscuits.

    Marjoram
    In the garden: Good companion to all vegetables.

    In the kitchen: Excellent in almost any meat, fish, dairy, or vegetable dish that isn’t sweet. Add near the end of cooking.

    Mint

    In the garden: Plant near cabbage and tomatoes. Deters white cabbage moth.

    In the kitchen: It is common in Middle Eastern dishes. Use with roast lamb or fish and in salads, jellies, or teas.

    Oregano

    In the garden: Good companion to all vegetables.

    In the kitchen: Of Italian origin, its taste is zesty and strong, good in any tomato dish. Try oregano with summer squash and potatoes, mushroom dishes, beans, or in a marinade for lamb or game.

    Parsley

    In the garden: Plant near asparagus, corn, and tomatoes.

    In the kitchen: Use fresh parsley in soups, sauces, and salads. It lessens the need for salt in soups. You can fry parsley and use it as a side dish with meat or fish. It is, of course, the perfect garnish.

    Rosemary

    In the garden: Plant near cabbage, beans, carrots, and sage. Deters cabbage moth, bean beetles, and carrot fly.

    In the kitchen: Use for poultry, lamb, and tomato dishes, stews, soups, and vegetables. Try it finely chopped in breads and custards.

    Sage

    In the garden: Plant near rosemary, cabbage, and carrots; away from cucumbers. Deters cabbage moth and carrot fly.

    In the kitchen: Use in cheese dishes, stuffings, soups, pickles, with beans and peas, and in salads. Excellent for salt-free cooking.

    Summer Savory

    In the garden: Plant with beans and onions to improve growth and flavor.

    In the kitchen: Popular in soups, stews, stuffings, and with fish, chicken, green beans, and eggs.

    Tarragon

    In the garden: Good companion to most vegetables.

    In the kitchen: Great with meat, eggs, poultry, seafood, and in salad dressings, marinades, and sauces.

    Thyme

    In the garden: Plant near cabbage. Deters cabbage worm.

    In the kitchen: Use in casseroles, stews, soups, ragouts, and with eggs, potatoes, fish, and green vegetables.

    Successful Gardening!
    Kali S Winters



    Start your own Herb Garden~Here!

    Other Articles of Interest:
    Growing Herbs in Pots-
    Home Herb Garden Basics-
    Herb Garden Kits-



    Dehydrated Beans


    Drying Green Beans –

    The “Leather Britches” Way

    Early American settlers used this drying method with green beans. Before refrigeration, food was preserved by either drying, or storing food in a root cellar. By drying whole green beans into “leather britches”, people could enjoy an exceptionally good quality green bean all season long.

    The whole process begins by sitting on the front porch swing, sipping a cold glass of iced tea while shucking the green beans.

    After you have gathered and snapped the beans ends, the drying process begins. Traditional methods of drying greens beans entailed stringing them up by using a needle and heavy thread, although conventional methods prefer to dry the beans on a screen for several days.  The use of old screen windows are used for the drying process which allows enough air to circulate all around the beans evenly. Be sure to place some fine netting or cheese cloth over the beans to keep the insects away.  After several days they are ready for storage.

    For the “sewing” method, you do not have to rise or dry your beans first.  If you sew your beans on thread to dry and they are damp, they could possible rot. Take a thick needle and sturdy thread and thread the needle through the pod, not the bean or you will never get the thread out afterward.  Then hang them to dry. I have dried green beans in the shade and full sun and both methods work fine as long as the been remains dry and no moisture gets to them.  You want to dry them with the least amount of humidity as possible.

    Once the beans are dry as leather, which usually takes several days up to a week,  depending upon the humidity, they are then ready to be stored in the freezer.  Afterward, “Leather Britches” will need to soaked before cooking, they are best soaked over night and then the liquid drained off, followed by two more fresh-water soaks in the morning. After soaking the beans, they are then ready to be cooked as if they were fresh beans. Everthing depends upon the “moisture removal” process during the initial drying period in order to obtain the “freshness” quality or “raw” quality of the original “green bean”

    When you’re ready to cook, you rinse them really well and set them in water to soak overnight, then simmer slow on the back of the stove with a piece of white bacon for seasoning for a few hours. Add salt when the beans are tender, not before and serve with cornbread.

    Instructions for drying Shucky Beans

    String very full beans as you would for cooking, but do not break them. Thread beans on twine, using just enough beans on each string for one or two meals. Then drop them into a brine of ½ cup coarse salt and one gallon of water for 15 minutes. Drain on newspaper. The brine will keep bugs away from your beans. Hang the strings of beans on wire or rope in a dry place for at least three weeks. Make sure they are completely dry or they will mold.

    Successful Gardening!
    Kali S Winters



    Calories of Green Beans – Chart Here!

    Green Beans Types Here!

    Green Bean Casseroles Recipes!



    Calories of Green Beans – Chart


    Green Bean Casseroles Recipes Here!

    Dehydrated Beans Here!

    Store Garden Produce #6 – Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types Here!

    Calories of Green Beans – Green Beans Types

    Serving Size

    Calories

    Fat (g)

    Carbohydrates (g)

    Protein (g)

    Beans, snap, canned, all styles, seasoned, solids and liquids
    100g

    16.00

    0.20

    3.49

    0.83

    0.5 cup

    18.24

    0.23

    3.98

    0.95

    1 can (303 x 406)

    70.24

    0.88

    15.32

    3.64

    Beans, snap, green variety, canned, regular pack, solids and liquids
    100g

    15.00

    0.10

    3.50

    0.80

    0.5 cup

    18.00

    0.12

    4.20

    0.96

    1 can (303 x 406)

    65.85

    0.44

    15.37

    3.51

    Beans, snap, green, canned, no salt added, drained solids
    10 beans

    12.40

    0.06

    2.79

    0.71

    100g

    20.00

    0.10

    4.50

    1.15

    1 cup

    27.00

    0.14

    6.08

    1.55

    1 can (303 x 406)

    52.40

    0.26

    11.79

    3.01

    Beans, snap, green, canned, no salt added, solids and liquids
    100g

    15.00

    0.10

    3.50

    0.80

    0.5 cup

    18.00

    0.12

    4.20

    0.96

    1 can (303 x 406)

    65.85

    0.44

    15.37

    3.51

    Beans, snap, green, canned, regular pack, drained solids
    10 beans

    12.40

    0.06

    2.79

    0.71

    100g

    20.00

    0.10

    4.50

    1.15

    1 cup

    27.00

    0.14

    6.08

    1.55

    1 can (303 x 406)

    52.40

    0.26

    11.79

    3.01

    Beans, snap, green, cooked, boiled, drained, with salt
    100g

    35.00

    0.28

    7.89

    1.89

    1 cup

    43.75

    0.35

    9.86

    2.36

    Beans, snap, green, cooked, boiled, drained, without salt
    100g

    35.00

    0.28

    7.88

    1.89

    1 cup

    43.75

    0.35

    9.85

    2.36

    Beans, snap, green, frozen, all styles, unprepared
    100g

    33.00

    0.21

    7.58

    1.80

    1 cup

    40.92

    0.26

    9.40

    2.23

    1 package (10 oz)

    93.72

    0.60

    21.53

    5.11

    Beans, snap, green, frozen, cooked, boiled, drained without salt
    100g

    28.00

    0.17

    6.45

    1.49

    1 cup

    37.80

    0.23

    8.71

    2.01

    Beans, snap, green, frozen, cooked, boiled, drained, with salt
    100g

    28.00

    0.17

    6.45

    1.49

    1 cup

    37.80

    0.23

    8.71

    2.01

    Beans, snap, green, raw
    10 beans (4″ long)

    17.05

    0.07

    3.93

    1.00

    100g

    31.00

    0.12

    7.14

    1.82

    1 cup

    34.10

    0.13

    7.85

    2.00





    Green Beans Types – Chart


    Green beans are separated into two types — Pole beans vs bush beans. The varieties within these two types are listed below.

    Bush varieties:

    • Burpee’s Tenderpod- stingless green pod, harvest at 50 days, has 5-inch-long green pods.
    • Contender, 50 days (green)
    • Rocdor, 53 days (yellow)
    • Cherokee Wax, 55 days (yellow)
    • Golden Wax/Improved Golden Wax/Pencil Pod Black Wax/Top Notch, 55 days (yellow, heirloom)
    • Red Swan, 55 days (red)
    • Blue Lake 274, harvest at 58 days, has green, 61/2-inch pods with white seeds.
    • Maxibel, 59 days (green fillet)
    • Improved Commodore/Bush Kentucky Wonder, 60 days (green), 1945 AAS winner
    • Roma II, harvest at 59 days, has green romano, flattened pods, 41/2 inches long.
    • Brittle Wax, harvest at 52 days, has rounded, yellow pods, 7 inches long. Royal Burgundy, harvest at 51 days, has 6-inch-long purple pods.
    • Dragon’s Tongue, 60 days (streaked)
    • Festiva, harvest at 56 days, is deep green and disease resistant.
    • Soliel, harvest at 60 days, is a high-yielding yellow.

    Pole varieties:

    • Kentucky Wonder, harvest at 65 days, is a proved standard variety with heavy yields of 9-inch green pods.
    • Meraviglia di Venezia (Marvel of Venice), 54 days (yellow romano)
    • Fortex, 60 days (green fillet)
    • Kentucky Blue, 63 days (green), 1991 AAS winner
    • Old Homestead/Kentucky Wonder, 65 days (green, heirloom)
    • Rattlesnake, 73 days (streaked, heirloom)
    • Purple King, 75 days (purple)
    • Blue Lake, harvest at 60 days, has pods that are 6 inches long with white seeds.
    • Scarlet Runner Bean, harvest at 65 days, is often grown ornamentally for its scarlet flowers; pods are green and up to 12 inches long.

    Snap beans require a short growing season — about 60 days of moderate temperatures from seed to first crop. They grow anywhere in the United States and are an encouraging vegetable for the inexperienced gardener. Snap beans require warm soil to germinate and should be planted on the average date of last frost.

    You can plant bush beans every two weeks to extend the harvest, or you can start with bush beans and follow up with pole beans. Plant seeds an inch deep, directly in the garden. For bush beans, plant the seeds 2 inches apart in single rows or wide rows. Seeds of pole beans should be planted 4 to 6 inches apart in rows 30 to 36 inches apart. Or, plant them in inverted hills, five or six seeds to a hill, with 30 inches of space around each hill.

    For pole bean varieties, set the trellis at the time of planting to avoid disturbing the roots. Keep the soil evenly moist until the beans have pushed through the ground. When seedlings are growing well, thin the plants to 4 to 6 inches apart. Thin plants by cutting excess seedlings with scissors to avoid disturbing the roots of neighboring seedlings.

    Green, Wax, String, or Snap Beans: Green beans, wax beans, string beans, or snap beans are long and rounded. Most are green, but some are yellow or even purple. Heirloom varieties may still have a fibrous “string” running down their sides, but most varieties for sale today have had that inconvenience bred out of them. Steamed Green Beans are delicious with just a pat of butter and a sprinkle of salt. They are also delicious when turned into pickles.

    French Green Beans: These delicate green beans are very thin. They are usually green, but yellow varieties are out there, too. Many people consider them the best of the green beans, and they are priced accordingly.

    Purple string beans are simply purple version of classic green beans or wax beans. They loose their purple color when cooked, so consider them for raw recipes or lightly steam them and dip them into ice water to preserve as much of their color as possible.

    Romano beans are flat and wide and flavorful. Smaller ones tend to be more tender. Large ones will have more developed bean seeds inside. They require a bit more cooking, but have more flavor. Try them as Braised Green Beans to bring out their nutty sweet essence.

    Long Beans: Sometimes called yard-long beans, these beans are, in fact, a completely different family of plant from green beans. They are similar in flavor and look (except for their length) to green beans, however, and can be cooked in the same ways. Look for long beans between 12 and 18 inches long for the best flavor and tender texture.

    Dry Beans:

    Azuki (adzuki) – These small, dark red beans, native to the Orient, are thought to be useful in treating kidney ailments and other ills. They are loaded with nutrients and are a good source of calcium, phosphorus, potassium, iron and vitamin A.

    Anasazi – Similar to pinto beans, these red and white speckled beans were originally grown by Native Americans. Try them tossed with noodles as a cold side salad or mixed with rice or quinoa as a complement to any meal.

    Black turtle – These small, compact black beans are especially popular in Mexican and Southwestern cooking. Fresh cilantro, crushed garlic, and a little hot sauce are all you need to transform a pot of black beans into a distinctive side dish or quick lunch.

    Black-eyed peas – Also known as cow peas, black-eyed peas are a southern staple. They are rich in potassium and phosphorus and loaded with fiber. Try them the traditional way, served with steamed greens and a splash of vinegar.

    Garbanzo (chickpeas) – Garbanzo beans, or chickpeas are a staple food in the Middle East and are high in potassium, calcium, iron and vitamin A. These round, pale yellow legumes are traditionally used to make hummus – a thick mixture of chickpeas and tahini used as a dip or spread – and they are also great with grains.

    Kidney Beans – These medium-sized red beans get their name from their distinctive shape. Kidney beans are a mainstay in Mexican meals, and they work equally well in soups and stews. Try mixing them with other cooked beans and tossing them in a light vinaigrette for a quick and easy, super nutritious salad.

    Lentils – A member of the pea family, these small, disk-shaped seeds have been found in excavations dating from the Bronze Age. These little legumes are nutritional dynamos – they are high in calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, chlorine, sulfur and vitamin A – and are available in brown, red, and green varieties.

    Lima Beans – Lima beans have a distinctive flavor and are loaded with potassium, phosphorus and vitamin A. They take a little longer to cook, but they are worth the wait. Serve them hot, tossed with fresh basil or rosemary and a little olive oil.

    Mung Beans – These small, dark green beans are grown in India and the Orient. Sprouted, they are the mainstay of stir-fries and make a wonderful addition to salads. Try tossing a handful of sprouted mung beans in soups just before serving, or mix them with millet and a little ground cumin for a savory side dish.

    Navy Beans – The hefty size and hearty texture of these flavorful white beans makes them the perfect bean for soups and stews. Or try mixing them with diced carrots and slivers of green pepper for a hot side dish or cold salad.

    Split Peas – These flavorful members of the legume family come in both yellow and green varieties and make a wonderfully substantial soup that is easy to make and loaded with nearly any grain and are especially delicious with buckwheat or wild rice.

    Pinto Beans – Along with black turtle and kidney beans, pinto beans are a favorite from the Southwest. They are rich in calcium, potassium, and phosphorus, and they make great soups.

    Soybeans – The soybean has been a major source of food and oil in the Orient for thousand of years, but it was unknown in Europe and America until 1900. The soybean is the only legume that’s a complete protein by itself, and it is the most versatile bean around – you will find soybeans in a variety of forms, from dried or toasted soybeans to tofu, miso, tempeh and tamari.

    In general, beans are warm-season annuals (although the roots of tropical species tend to be perennial) that grow erect (bush types) or as vines (pole or running types). Field beans are mostly the bush type and are used as stock feed. This has also become the principal use of the ancient large-seeded broad bean (called also the horse or Windsor bean), still widely grown in Europe but seldom as food for humans.

    The common garden beans comprise several bush types and most of the pole types; the most often cultivated and most varied species, P. vulgata, is familiar as both types. P. vulgata is the French haricot and the Spanish frijole. String beans, snap beans, green and yellow wax beans, and some kidney beans are eaten as whole pods; several kidney beans, pinto beans, pea beans, and many other types are sold as mature dry seeds. The lima or butter beans (P. lunatus, including the former P. limensis), usually pole but sometimes bush types, have a long history; they have been found in prehistoric Peruvian graves. The sieva is a type of lima. The scarlet runner (P. multiflorus), grown in Europe for food, is mainly an ornamental vine in North America. The tepary (P. acutifolius latifolius), a small variety long grown by Indians in the SW United States, has been found better suited to hot, arid climates and is more prolific than the frijole.

    Other beans are the hyacinth bean or lablab Dolichos lablab, grown in E Asia and the tropics for forage and food and cultivated in North America as an ornamental vine; the asparagus bean or yard-long bean Vigna sesquipedalis, grown in E Asia for food but often cultivated in the West as a curiosity; and the velvet bean Stizolobium, cultivated in the S United States as a forage and cover crop. The carob, the cowpea or black-eyed pea, and the chickpea or garbanzo are among the many other legumes sometimes considered beans. The sacred bean of India is the seed of the Indian lotus (of the water lily family).

    Soya beans: These are rich source of proteins. They can be used in preparing delicious dishes. You can extract milk from these beans. Soya milk is healthy and tasty.

    Kidney beans: These are most popular beans and widely used in North Indian cuisine. These beans are soaked over night and then cooked. These beans good for women who are going to reach their menpause state.

    White beans: These are widely used in south-Indian cuisine. They are generally used with cauliflower, brinjal, reddish and tomato.

    Black eye beans: They are rich in taste. These are generally prepared by soaking them in water overnight. Tomato and black eye bean combination is very tasty.

    Other varieties are:

    • Pitto beans
    • Cranberry beans
    • Azuki bean
    • Lima bean
    • Black bean
    • Red bean

    Caution: These beans must be cooked thoroughly to prevent toxins. That is why we need to soak them overnight and then cook on pressure for 5 to 6 whistles.

    There are many different varieties of beans, Below is a list of all the different types of beans from around the world:-

    1, Black-eyed peas, also known as; Field peas, cow peas, cream peas, Jerusalem peas, ton kin peas, crowed peas, and marble peas. These are small and shaped like kidneys with a black patch.

    2.  Cranberry beans, these are oval with a nutty flavor.

    3. Fava beans, which are long sometimes nearly 18 inches long, they are also known as broad beans, horse beans, and Windsor beans.

    4. Lima beans, these were named after the capital of Peru.

    5. Ford-hook Lima’s, also known as sieve beans, butter beans, civet beans, saawee beans and sugar beans.

    6. Baby Lima’s.

    7. Soya beans.

    Most beans that people use today are canned or dried. They should be used regular as part of a healthy diet. They are high in dietry fibre and complex carbohydrates. Soya beans are the only beans that are a complete source of protein.

    There are numerous types of beans, but very few were known before the discovery of the Americas. Broad (fava) beans, soy, mung, lentil and French haricot were the main beans known to the ‘Old World’, and they are still extremely important beans in much of the world.

    http://www.holisticherbsinfo.com/green-beans-types-chart/



    Green Bean Casseroles Recipes Here!

    Store Garden Produce #6 – Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types Here!

    Calories of Green Beans – Chart Here!


    Green Bean Casseroles Recipes


    Discover:

    Store Garden Produce #6 – Storing & Freezing Green Beans Types Here!

    Dehydrated Beans Here!

    Calories of Green Beans – Chart Here!

    String/Green Beans Salad

    1 frozen whole string bean
    olive oil
    wine vinegar
    2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint (or 1 Tbsp dried)
    1/2 teaspoon oregano
    1 garlic clove (thinly sliced or chopped)
    salt & pepper

  • Cook your string beans and then cool in cold water.
  • Add oil and vinegar as you would for any salad.
  • Toss.
  • Add 1 thinly sliced or minced clove of garlic.
  • Shake on some oregano (to taste).
  • Add fresh (or dried) cut up mint leaves. Chill thoroughly.
  • If needed add salt & pepper to taste.
  • Cucumber, String Bean and Olive Salad

    kosher salt for boiling
    1/2 lb string bean
    2 cucumbers (1 1/4 pounds)
    1/4 lb  black olive, pitted, cut in half
    1/4 cup fresh flat leaf parsley
    1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
    1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
    fresh ground pepper
    2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    bowl ice water (for green beans)

  • Boil string beans in salted water 3-4 minutes or until just tender.
  • Remove then Cool in bowl of ice water.
  • Drain then cut green beans in half lengthwise.
  • Peel cucumbers, cut in half and remove seeds.
  • Cut into ½-inch-thick slices on the diagonal.
  • Combine cucumbers, string beans, olives, and parsley leaves in a medium bowl.
  • In a small bowl whisk together mustard, red-wine vinegar, and salt and pepper.
  • Slowly add olive oil, whisking constantly until well combined.
  • Toss everything together before serving.
  • Easy & Fast–Market Place Campbells String Bean Casserole

  • 1 can string beans, drained
    1 can cream of chicken soup
    1 can Swanson chicken, chunky
    Durkee onion rings
    1/2 c. milk

    Combine all ingredients except onion rings. Put in a casserole dish. Sprinkle with onion rings and bake 350 degrees for approximately 25 minutes until bubbly.

  • Green Bean Bake Recipe

    1 (10 1/2 ounce) can cream of mushroom soup
    1/2 cup milk
    1 teaspoon soy sauce
    pepper (optional)
    4 cups fresh green beans, cut in half,cooked until just crisp
    1 can French-fried onions

  • In a 1 1/2 qt casserole mix soup, milk, soy& pepper.
  • Stir in beans and 1/2 can fried onions.
  • Bake 350 for 25 minutes.
  • Top with remaining 1/2 can of fried onions.
  • Brown for 5 minutes more.
  • Beans Casserole

    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 large onion, sliced
    1 medium carrot, sliced
    2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    1 teaspoon white sugar
    1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    6 fresh mushrooms, sliced
    1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
    1/2 cup water
    1 tablespoon tomato paste
    1/2 teaspoon dried basil
    1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
    1 (14.5 ounce) can red kidney beans, drained
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    ground black pepper to taste
    1/2 (1 pound) loaf French bread, cut into
    1/2 inch thick slices
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C).
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and carrot; cook and stir until onion is tender and transparent. Stir in the sugar, red pepper and mushrooms and continue to cook until onion is browned.
  • Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and stir to blend. Cook for 1 minute then mix in the water and tomato paste. Season with basil and thyme. Mix in the beans and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a greased casserole dish.
  • Pour the remaining oil into a shallow dish. Dip one side of each slice of bread in the oil, then arrange on top of the casserole with the oiled side up. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese over the top.
  • Bake for 10 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the bread and cheese are toasted.
  • Recipe for String Bean Casserole

    This Green Bean and Potato Casserole recipe makes 6-8 servings. To add even more flavor, crumble a few slices of bacon and add near the end of the cooking time.

    2 16-oz. packages frozen cut green beans
    5 medium red-skinned potatoes
    1 large onion, sliced
    1 teaspoon dried dill weed
    1 teaspoon salt
    1/2 teaspoon pepper
    1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
    Margarine

  • Slice potatoes a quarter-inch thick.
  • Spray crockpot with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Layer sliced potatoes, sliced onion and green beans in crockpot, sprinkling with dill, salt and pepper as you go.
  • Dot with margarine, about 1 tablespoon total, and add about 2 tablespoons of water.
  • Cover; cook on high 4 hours.
  • Stir in soup, reduce heat to low and cook an additional 30 minutes.