The plants in my life have always had a strong and clear voice, especially when I put my focus on listening.
I was beginning to prepare my modest raised bed garden this week for the growing season. Which is always a tricky proposal for me, because there are so many nourishing and delicious plants already growing there.
Any gardener has to decide, do I let this one keep growing and harvest it responsibly over the season, or do I pull it out by its delicate little roots? Often it becomes a dance of blending everyone’s gifts and needs. For instance, this year so far I “weeded” the first raised bed by pulling up all the volunteer grass and feeding the greens to my happy hens, who were quite pleased with that development. But when I got to the 2nd bed, there was this gorgeous patch of grass and chickweed (Latin =Stellaria media) which clearly was having a great time growing here.
So, I trimmed the tops of the grass for my cat and dog to munch on and cut a big bunch of cooling tasty chickweed to have for my fresh salad tonight. You could not get a fresher, more nutritious, more packed full of minerals and vitamins plant then this one… unless you turned around and looked at my friends the Stinging Nettles, which I brought to plant here when we moved here, and who was kind enough to come in for dinner tonight. Yum yum yum. I haven’t felt this totally nourished after any store bought or restaurant meal I can remember. There is so much goodness free right outside our back door, especially if we commit to never poisoning the plants (and ourselves) with herbicides and pesticides, which are also often hidden in lawn care products – another reason to grow food not lawns on your quarter acre.
This above is Mugwort. A lovely and magical plant that volunteers many places and is one of the plants resistant to Roundup- ugh- so you will see it many places where people have been foolish enough to spray. Mugwort, called Cronewort by herbalist Susun Weed, is a main ingredient in moxibustion, a technique used in the ancient art of Acupuncture for deep and soulful healing-one of my favorite techniques! I also have been really loving making Smudge bundles to burn and use for purification of one’s energy and living spaces. This is a wonderful deep plant to spend time with and learn from – she is called Cronewort for a reason!
Well, that’s enough plant lore for one post – go out and love a wild plant today!