The Kitchen Herbalist: DIY Elderberry Syrup

You know the scene. It’s 4 a.m. You wake up, chilled and feverish. In denial, you toss and turn, hoping that you haven’t caught that cold going around the office. Instead of ignoring the symptoms, reach for this homemade elderberry elixir. Medical research has shown that taking an elderberry-based tincture within the first 48 hoursContinue reading “The Kitchen Herbalist: DIY Elderberry Syrup”

The Dandy Lion of Spring

The dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is much more than a weed — it is a healthful salad green and important herbal medicine. As a food, dandelion should be included at the dinner table. Bitter greens such as dandelion help the stomach in digestion by increasing bile production. It’s a good spring habit to add handfuls ofContinue reading “The Dandy Lion of Spring”

Herbal First Responders: Cold & Flu Care

  Sometimes when you feel a cold or a flu coming on, it’s easy to brush it off and keep pushing ahead. But when that little voice tells you that your body has caught a virus, heed its warning!  Learning when and how to use popular herbal remedies can help you prevent from getting stuck at theContinue reading “Herbal First Responders: Cold & Flu Care”

The Herbalist’s Line

I’ve been in-house blending organic teas at The Spice Merchants in Grand Rapids as their resident herbalist. My favorite combos are now located right there at the shop under “The Herbalist’s Line.”     I also have some of my own wildcrafted, Burdock & Rose herbals in stock at the Grand Rapids location, as well as my book, “MidwestContinue reading “The Herbalist’s Line”

Botanical Balms For Dry Winter Skin

Old Man Winter is upon us and rough lips, chapped cheeks and split cuticles are all signs that the dryness of winter months has gotten under our skin – literally. I love winter.  As a runner and skier, the cold doesn’t keep me inside. BUT, the time outside in the dry cold can wreck havocContinue reading “Botanical Balms For Dry Winter Skin”

The Pine: A Woodland Tree Medicine

Winter is at its peak — the smell of cold, crisp, harsh air reminds us of the scarcity of the dark months. But even in the depths of winter’s darkness, nature offers us healing winter remedies for the season’s ailments. Up above in the canopy of the woods, the boughs of pine (Pinus spp.) sendsContinue reading “The Pine: A Woodland Tree Medicine”

Boo-tanical Fun For Halloween

It’s that witchy time of year when the leaves blow from the trees and the winds howl through the misty October darkness. Apple cider, pumpkin carving and costume decorating is underway for the fun celebrations that fall across the last days of October. For a bit of botanical fun, my colleague at The Chicago Tribune and I wereContinue reading “Boo-tanical Fun For Halloween”

High Summer Wild Harvests

The days are long and warm for now, but we all know that winter will return and with it – cold and flu season as well as all sorts of other general maladies we face across the year. There are many ways to keep the ills and chills away with wild plants! Some helpful herbsContinue reading “High Summer Wild Harvests”

Don’t Bug Me: Herbal Spray & Bite Remedies

A PureMichigan summertime is made up of camping trips, picnics, and summers by the lakeshore surrounded by family and friends. But usually unwelcome visitors to the festivities include the pesky mosquitos, ticks and spiders – unavoidable in our forests and backyards. To fully ensure you will stay bite free, cover the skin up in lightweightContinue reading “Don’t Bug Me: Herbal Spray & Bite Remedies”