Sunday, 23 June 2013

plants formerly known as weeds

a different part of the jacket wicking after having been washed, ironed, not satisfied with results in top half, fresh flour-resist with humming-bird stencil; old dye topped up with tea dregs to add a bit of warmth, will see in a couple of days what the next stage looks like

experimented some more with the flour-resisit with friend M.  yesterday, she also did some black-bean-tie-dye on a linen shirt; the dye consists mainly of sorrel and comfrey with tea leaves added and tartaric acid, used rainwater as fluid (the rainwater we didn't need to flush the loo) 


flour-resist results from 'old bucket of dye' the one I initially used for the jacket wicking
fresh pan on the go, comfrey, sorrel, nettles, tea leaves plus tea and rainwater

flour-resist lizard from yesterday's trial, all the other cloths are still in the pan

visited friends J.&N. today and came away with this Fantastic Book: Eating and Drinking with Wild Plants by Laurette van Slobbe

I'm thrilled, not only is our garden full of plants (formerly known as weeds) I can dye with, many of them and more can be eaten as well!!!!oooohhhhh this is great news for the lazy gardner that I am, also I like slugs and snails and the normal gardenplants  you go out and buy 
often get eaten by the critters and now I truly don't have to worry about them anymore not that I did really, I admire their tenacity and strength in numbers, plus they are a food source for all the birds

this book is particularly easy to use as it has this flip-over page-continued on back- with images of which (part of the) plants you can use for a certain purpose, and when best to collect them!! The book has recipes for each month, a chapter on cheesemaking (Grace!) teas and the practice of drying the herbs, oh my word I am delighted

11 comments:

Marti said...

Wonderful book you have and I love the format. I love to forage for dyeing materials and to eat as well but I am a novice and need to find a good book about what to eat from the land here in New Mexico. When I started dyeing cloth, it became very important to me to know what I was using so I have done some studying and continue to do so. Presently I am reading a book borrowed from grace and although it has no recipes it has excellent color photos and lots of information. It is titled, Wees of the West and has many authors. Published by the Western Society of Weed Science in cooperation with the Western United States Land Grant Universities Cooperative Extension Services.

Marti said...

Oh and one more thing Saskia: your flour resist lizard is beautifully amazing.

Nancy said...

Ahhh...the lizard is fantastic! Isn't funny how an easy to use guide book can make all the difference. I love how you are redefining 'weeds' :)

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

i so want to come here and say
stuff...in response to the last
few posts, but am so deep in Goat
Energy and that is demanding all i
have in the moment....and i so am
loving remembering the Jack Sparrow
shirt and today see that Johnny Depp
is back in N Mex again and SIGH, oh
jeez, Saskia.
but i come here several times a day
just to Be here.
the LIZARD, actually ghecko, i
think, is oh SO Fine and could it
be possible that i saw Little Bird
today?????? a fast fluttering caught my eye coming from the East?
no...it couldn't be, not so soon...
LOVE

saskia said...

hi Marti, I continue to learn how I can use plants, that sounds rather utilitarian, but I'm a lot happier letting them grow wild in our garden; before I used to enjoy them purely for decorative qualities, now that I'm discovering their dyeing ánd edible properties, well they have so much more to offer; I do realise I have to be careful and only eat what I truly recognize as edible; the dyeing is less of a health risk in that respect; it must be rather wonderful for you embarking on a new adventure in NewMexico: I cannot begin to imagine what kind of plants grow there......oh and to share all that with Grace

Nancy: isn't he sweet, and I'm not even sure the way I'm using this flour-resist technique is correct! redefining like this is such a relief for All the lazy gardners

Grace, I am glad you like visiting and it's really nice to know you do; of course the goats keep you busy, as they will do for some time....
I like to think of the gecko as a lizard as it reminds me of you.
no news yet from LittleBird.....

patricia said...

would love for you to tell me how you did lizard gecko. was the flour paste tinted?

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

yes...a gecko IS a lizard but they
also have magical qualities...their
FEET!...wow...feet again. maybe
i find out that i have a hidden
foot thing?????
gecko is truly tryly beautiful....

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

i can see differently on this
screen different times of day and
this morning, i see the Shadow
of Lizard...! unexpected wonder

grace Forrest~Maestas said...

this book is the BEST...seems it
is lacking Nothing.
what does it tell you about Nettles?

and...cheese????? i assume using
the wild herbs in the cheese????

saskia said...

Patricia: the flour paste was just that, no tint; two things have happened with the flour-resist experiments:
either the dye colour was intensified
or the resist spot remained lighter;

I expected the flour-resist to work as a resist, which it should have I think, I have to do more research and experiments!

Maybe it has to do with the type of fabric itself, maybe with the consistency of the flour-mix, or a combination of factors, perhaps the heat of the dye, anyway, loads more experimenting!

saskia said...

Grace: the cheese making recipes are for what she calls 'soft curd cheeses' and you can flavour them with all sorts of wild herbs and flowers all year round!
for eample:
fresh meadow cress, daisy leaf, shepherd's purse, yarrow, dandelion leaves/petals;
dried nettles, colts foot, goutweed
and for decoration and taste: flowers of lungwort, ground ivy, poppy, evening primrose, marigold.....

what the book tells me about nettles:
you can use them for teas, in smoothies and as vegetables; they are used to stimulate metabolism, very rich in minerals: iron, magnesium, manganese, calcium and potassium(kalium), lots of vit C, B and provitamin A; dried leaves contain up to 40% protein, the leaves contain lots of chlorofyl which helps break down waste products. Nettles are of major importance for blood purification, blood forming and blood deacidification. The enzyme secretin encourages gastric juices, increasing digestion.
The plant is medicinal and an excellent hair and skin conditioner; whereever they grow they imrpove soil quality, It has been shown that when they grow near to aromatic and medicinal plants the ratio of ethereal oils in these plants augments.
They are host to the caterpillars of the atalanta, small turoiseshell (kleine vos) and peacock butterfly (dagpauwoog)
I think I have fallen in love with nettles!!
there's more information, but I'll leave it at this for now, maybe I'll have to devote an entire post to the humble nettle