A bit over a month ago, in mid December, I took a rustic, hand-woven basket out of our kitchen closet. I then packed it with a multitool and a few other small bags. Several layers of clothing, a hat and fingerless gloves. I was ready for my foraging expedition in my beautiful neighborhood.
It was a grey, cloudy and chilly December day in Seattle, very characteristic of the weather the rest of the country attributes to the Pacific Northwest. But my heart was light, I was excited to meet new friends in the neighborhood – plants that I would harvest from to make an infused oil I planned to turn into a salve.
I started in my own yard. Brimming with evergreens, I first said hello to the cedar. Thanking it for its gifts, gently touching its bark to communicate my gratitude I clipped its needles and collected them into my basket.
For the next hour or so I walked around saying hello to a local pine, a mighty douglas fir and even a few bushes of lavender that despite the cold were still blooming and happy to give their healing gifts of pain relief and relaxation to my oil and salve.
At home I finely chopped all my glorious bounty, shook off any excess and placed the aromatic evergreens and lavender into a jar that I then poured over with oil. Into a dark and cool cupboard this jar went and nearly six weeks later, today, I took it out to finally strain the oil and make it into the salve.
It’s too bad Internet can’t convey smells because you would absolutely love the wonderful aroma of the oil that I was left with. It turned a deeper shade of green/yellow and the smell was simply divine.
The process of making plant medicine is so rewarding and rooting to the earth. I am beyond thrilled to have made a healing salve – with the powers of evergreens to alleviate muscle aches and pains, and with lavenders relaxing vibe this salve will be a joy to use. I can’t wait to share it with family and friends so they too can reap the benefits of the gifts of healing plants.