MOTHER NATURE naturally creates some of the most beautiful plant medicine. I am so fortunate to be living in such a botanically abundant area, I recognize that not everyone is as lucky.
This is where a lot of the inspiration behind my products come from. I want to share these beautiful plants + their healing powers with everyone, near and far. In the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada, there are so many wild botanicals with various properties that it would take me months to cover all of them.
Please remember to harvest responsibly... If you are not sure what you are harvesting, where you are harvesting or how to properly harvest, please do not! A huge part of harvesting is being responsible: knowing where you are and are not allowed to harvest (provincial + national parks are a big no-no!), knowing what you can and can not collect (endangered plants, poisonous plants), and having the proper skillset and tools to do so. By all means, there are amazing resources + teachers that can get you started on your harvesting journey, however your heart must be in the right place first. We want to make sure that we are not exploiting our land + we are leaving behind undamaged plants that will be able to flourish in the future!
Again, the list of native herbs growing in my area is long and plentiful, but these are some of my favourites to collect:
Plantain - Plantago major: helps with inflammation and irritation, rich in betacarotene, effective at pulling out toxins in the skin from insect bites, allantoin helps regenerate cells, and it is edible too! (a rich source of calcium + fibre in the seed stalks). Plantain leaf is one of the star ingredients in our CALENDULA + PLANTAIN salves.
Rosehips - Rosa canina fruit: not only is it delicious in jams, jelly, and syrups, they are full of antioxidants, essential fatty acids and contain high levels of Vitamin A, C + E. One of my favourite ways to reap the benefits of rosehips is by steeping some of them in a tea. I love solar infusing these little ruby red gems in sunflower oil for a couple months along side some other soothing + healing herbs before transforming the sweet oil in to our LAVENDER + ROSEHIP salves.
Sumac - Rhus typhina: Staghorn sumac grows in such abundance in my area; they can be seen lining roadways and highways, in parks and just about everywhere else. Their bright red fuzzy berry cones have a wonderful lemony-citrus flavour. Rich in Vitamin C, a blend of sumac berries + wild roses are infused in sunflower to create our super hydrating + delicious SUMAC + WILD ROSE lip butter. Centuries ago, sumac was used to make tarts, custards + jellies in places where citrus did not grow!
White Pine - Pinus strobus resin: one of my favourite places to be is under a giant white pine tree, collecting little tiny bits of natures gold, with its soft branches protecting me from the summer heat + the bitter cold winds of winter. White pine resin is antibacterial, anti fungal, anti-inflammatory and has been used as centuries to aid with pain + skin ailments. The resin is sustainably harvested (meaning that I am not creating a wound in the tree to later come back and harvest its sap, rather I am just collecting little harden pieces here and there when I find them), and is melted down in to oils and blended with earthy pine essential oil to create our WILD SPRUCE + WHITE PINE salve.
If you are in to foraging, I would love to know what you harvest, feel free to leave me a comment below!