Monday, September 22, 2014

More weeds to harvest...

 This morning was amazing. So cool and crisp. Like a perfect fall day. No humidity at all. Just a great day. And tomorrow is the first day of fall. I think I'm ready for cool weather. But not for freezing cold and snow or lots of rain again. Not ready for all that yet. Just some cooler weather, please.

I went out again this morning to pick some flowers and weeds out of my garden. Almost forgot about the marigolds. I got a gallon bag of them in the freezer.

And finally found out what this obnoxious viney weed is. It's actually a pretty cool weed, called Smartweed. The leaves are supposed to be very hot and peppery. They are good to use as a seasoning in salads and soups. I picked some of the little flowers, which the honey bees really like. I simmered a little pot of them to see what the color would be. It's not pink. It's a kind of dirty-ish color. I will see what wool dyed in it looks like.

I love that a lot of the weeds and wild things that grow here are good for something. Lots of medicinal weeds here.

Also some dandelion flowers. I am so happy to see them again. I just got a few today and they went in the freezer too. I'll add more as I pick them. I want to use them in dyeing wool too.

Also picked some plantain to add to the jewel-weed. And some zinnias and goldenrod for the table. Also a basket of okra and some bell and banana peppers. For dinner.

The okra is still going strong. Some is a bit hard and I'll leave to dry on the stalks to use in arrangements. They are really pretty dried. This is one of the last sun flowers, bending over and hiding from the sun now.

I had a pot full of Sumac berries that I simmered today. I LOVE the color. I strained off a half gallon, then simmered them again. Got a totally different color. Also did the goldenrod and got a gallon. I will go tomorrow to see if I can find some alum. Then I'll start dyeing some wool.

I also made another soap, with lime and Patchouli EO.  I just love making soap. Still need to make a spiced apple soap.

What's going on in your gardens and kitchens these days?


Su Ba said...

Wow, you're doing things that I've never tried yet. Using flowers and berries for dye? How cool! You'll have to tell us how you do it as you go along.

My own garden has been getting too much rain this summer and it is suffering. Bugs. Mold. Rot. Slugs. Yuk. I don't want to complain because they are forecasting drought for next year. Then I'll be whining about things being too dry.

Kris said...

I hope they are wrong about drought. We have had a pretty good summer. Rains at just the right times. Winters lately have been really wet.

I will be posting on some of my experiments with dyeing wool. All new to me, so I hope it works. It's fun doing this part anyway.

An At Home Daughter said...

Your pictures are all so pretty. I bet your wool is going to come out beautiful. I have always wanted to make a natural dyed crocheted blanket that was a dark yellow. I can't remember what plants, flowers or whatever you use to make the color, but I've seen it many times in the books on natural dyes.

Your wild plant, Smart Weed, looks a lot like Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate. It must be related.

Tombstone Livestock said...

I have been playing with Kool-Aid for dye, fun.