Rowan’s been Gardening!!!!

… oh dear!

The herb garden last year, before weeding

Haha, the reason there’s an ‘oh dear’ about that is that I’m such a terrible gardener. I love getting my hands dirty and there’s nothing better than planting; it’s just that bit where you have to dig up weeds. You see they’re not weeds to me! They have the same right to be there as another plant. Last year I tried growing herbs through my patch of yellow dock and clover… Thus my garden is quite bare, especially since I’ve realised my mistake and removed the said yellow dock and clover. The only survivors? The same things that have been successful every time I grow something, a few Alpines, some Confrey, Rosemary, Strawberries, Chamomile, Mint (spearmint, apple mint, chocolate peppermint and I can’t remember what else but I went mint crasy!), Sage and Lemonbalm. All those pretty flowering seeds I threw onto the ground, that structural Borrage that attracted so many bees last year, all three varieties of Thyme I tried to grow, Anise Hyssop, oh and so many more I can’t bare to think! And why won’t Lavender ever survive?!!! (I’ve been trying to grow it for nearly ten years!!!!)

Garden this year, after weeding

Yesterday and today I moved some plants (they were growing anyway but not in the places that will work best for them).

They are:

  1. Confrey
  2. Chocolate Peppermint
  3. Lovage
  4. Yellow dock (Yes, I love it so much that usually instead of weeding it I just find it a new home)
  5. I really don’t know what it is, all I know is it grows!… and it has leaves… GREEN leaves…

This post is really to tell you about the wonders of yellow dock!

Ok, it’s really not that wonderous. Anyway, ready for the anecdotes?!

As a child, I was always told to rub burdock on nettle stings. This is a perfectly effective way of treating nettle rash, although mum got the names mixed up and all this time we’ve been rubbing nettle rash with Yellow Dock! ^.^ The thing is, it is an effective help as well… it’s just the names were wrong. 🙂 Yellow dock’s main attribute is not the leaves, but the roots. They’re full of thinga that will detoxify you. I’ve never made any of the recipes suggested in my books for decoctions and tinctures, so I can’t really say how good or bad they taste. They’re supposed to help with constipation and detoxifying the body, which in turn will help all sorts of ailments from acne to osteoarthritis!

Another little thing. I used to wonder why on Earth is it called yellow dock?! There’s nothing very yellow about it. It has a green stalk, green leaves and rust coloured flowers(? They’re where it reproduces anyway, but I’m not sure if ‘flowers’ is the right word… very leathery little things). The answer came when I was trying to dig some out and just broke the root. IT’S REALLY, REALLY YELLOW IN THERE!!!!

Yellow Dock

Look at its lovely yellowness!!!

Yellow Dock is a wild plant that is native to Africa and Europe. It’ll grow almost anywhere though. It has a deep growing root, like dandelions, so once it’s in it’s in for good! I had to dig almost a foot down to get mine out! It grows to about a couple of feet tall and is very hardy. It’s hard to find attractive, but it grows on you but as I previously said once it’s started growing there’s just no stopping it. ^.^ Most soil types will be perfect for it. If you live in the countryside, why not harvest the wild specimen rather than bring some in to tame. It usually grows in very large patches so if it’s native to where you live it should be abundant. Harvest the root in the autumn, and dry for use in decoctions and tinctures.

only just remembered to add this: IF YOU ARE PICKING SOME FROM THE WILD MAKE ABSOLUTELY CERTAIN THAT YOU HAVE THE RIGHT PLANT. IF YOU ARE AT ALL IN DOUBT THEN REFRAIN!

Enjoy.

Rowan

x~x

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