Wild Harvest


Balsam Poplar

Balsam Poplar buds

Sticky and aromatic Balsam Poplar buds

Young Balsam Poplars

I have been looking for this tree, Populus balsamifera. I wanted to get to know it and make an oil with some of its buds, a traditional medicine. Today I found a small stand and have permission to harvest.  The trees are a bit invasive where they are and so need to be managed and smaller ones removed so we can work together, a best case scenario! So grateful.


Almonte Farmers’ Christmas Market December 8th and Cheerfully Made Saves Christmas December 21-22!

Yay!  The time is here for Holiday Markets and I have some extra special items to make everything smell and feel good!!

The Almonte Farmer’s Christmas Market is this Saturday, December 8th  from 9-2 at the Almonte Community Centre.

Special Holiday Gifts: Lotion Bars, Frankincense, and Diffuser blends

In addition to our regular stock, I have created really nice gift packs, sets of diffuser blends, and a new luxurious lotion bar with Shea Butter, Cocoa Butter, and Palmarosa essential oil that is great for dry skin and excellent for cuticles!

I love working with the resins of evergreens and yesterday we hand-harvested our own Spruce resin and combined this dissolved traditional remedy with some of our own steam distilled essential oils, along with sustainably harvested fir and cedar oils to create our Winter Woods Salve, a favourite among our customers, family, and friends!

Ancient Gifts Salve
Ancient Gifts Salve: Frankincense, Myrrh, and Cinnamon Bark

The resin of Frankincense has been a special remedy and joy for me and this year I have some extra special infusions just for the holiday markets!  Ancient Gifts oil and salve are each their own unique aromatic treasure.  No need for potpourri as these are rich, warming holiday treats!

Cheerfully Made Saves Christmas

Two weeks later, on December 21st and 22nd, we are very excited to participate in the Cheerfully Made Saves Christmas market at the Bell Sensplex!!  Tickets for the night market on the 21st must be purchased in advance, and can be bought here.  We (and many other vendors) will be offering some specials for that night only, and everyone who attends the night market will receive a tote bag and two raffle tickets.

frankincense, Myrrh, and Cinnamon bark
Frankincense, Myrrh, and Cinnamon bark
Almonte Farmers Harvest Market, November 10, 2018
Almonte Farmers Harvest Market, November 10, 2018
Cheerfully Made Saves Christmas



Winter Woods Salve for the Cedar Hill Christmas Tree Farm

Our neighbourhood is called Cedar Hill, and there are many Eastern White Cedars (Thuja occidentalis) all around us. Also there are Eastern white pine, spruce, and balsam fir, and we are fortunate to be able to sustainably harvest and distill needles and greenery from the various evergreen species.

Cedar essential oil and hydrosol

My Winter Woods Salve is made using Canadian spruce resin dissolved in safflower oil, with added essential oils, many of which are from our own distillations, in a base of beeswax. Apply it to the neck and chest area for a cooling decongestant effect.

Winter Woods Salve

Winter Woods Salves – just poured and now cooling!

Winter Woods Salve is one of my most popular products at markets, and this holiday season we are happy to say that it will be for sale at the Cedar Hill Christmas Tree Farm. The farm is a wonderful local business and the perfect place to find a Christmas tree, but it also features a great sledding hill, horse-drawn sleigh rides, and Cafe Claus, which always features a warm fire and delicious homemade food. Run by the Martin family, the farm is an ideal place for a day of winter fun.

Cedar

Eastern White Cedar, ready for distillation


Yoga Mat Spray and a little info about Hydrosols

June 9th at the Almonte Farmers market I will have a new hydrosol.  Yoga Mat Spray is a co-distillation of  wild harvested Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus )and our own organically grown Lemon Thyme (Thymus citriodorus).    As with all my hydrosol blends there are no added anythings……no added essential oils,  alcohol,  or stabilizers.  True hydrosols are a unique product obtained through the steam distillation of various leaves, flowers, barks, needles and roots and naturally contain all the water-soluble constituents of the plants including 0.05 – 0.2 per litre of essential oils (see “Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy” by Suzanne Catty).  This makes them one of the safest forms of aromatherapy and herbal medicine.

This Yoga Mat Spray  combination is antiseptic, antifungal, and antimicrobial –  Spray on and let dry or spray on and wipe off.  Depending on your own particular mat’s specific cleaning and maintenance instructions you could even add one drop of plain organic dish soap to give a little bit of extra wash.

Of course you may have figured out that the Yoga Mat Spray can be used many places, on many surfaces, and for many other uses!!

Here you can see the cluster of White Pine that this batch of hydrosol came from

Eastern White Pine

Eastern White Pine growing near me.

Pine and Thyme co-distillation

Eastern White Pine (Pinus strobus )and Lemon Thyme (Thymus citriodorus)

Arnica Montana

Arnica Montana just waiting to burst with the first rays of a full sunny day!

Tulsi / Holy Basil

Tulsi / Holy Basil or
Ocimum tenuiflorum (synonym Ocimum sanctum) These little babies will be for sale this weekend!


Spring Ice Storm with the New Moon in Aries in April 2018

I follow a lot of different growers, herbalists and nature websites and it has been hard to see all these baskets of lovely wild greens being harvested and eaten and even flowers blooming while this is my yard – ice so thick on the bird feeder it is weighting it, activating the squirrel proof mechanism that keeps it closed. I keep chipping away at it and am putting extra out on the table.
Everyone is desperate.

The spark of spring only exists in the wood stove just now but the one in my heart is smoldering as I stand in amazement at the variety of life and am beyond thankful that I don’t have to live outside all the time.  Thankful for my family, my warm bed and for my many aromatherapy blends and salves which carry me through while I wait for better weather.

Ice covering everything

Various Finches

Red Wing Blackbirds

Even the fox is hungry enough to come closer before the storm

finches

Arnica, crowded and ready to be outside.

All babies potted up now and much happier but leaves little room for anything else until Spring comes around.

I was looking forward to this sorrel I found last week but……..

And definitely some of the Nettles coming up all around