Diary - 05/03
Diary - Mar 2005
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March 2005


The workshops were held on the veranda of the summerhouse, occasionally moving inside for tasting sessions.


This workshop went well with bright sunshine and warmth


The spring, which was going to become the subject of some significant work through the summer.

Any new venture is entered into with a mixture of hope and trepidation, but the 2005 herbal workshops were enjoyed by presenter and participants alike. Most participants have said they are looking forward to the coming year’s events, expressing a desire to return. 

The workshops were held on the veranda of the summerhouse, occasionally moving inside for tasting sessions. We were fortunate in attracting sunshine and warmth for every workshop except one, and even then, the rain did not last more than an hour and did not curtail any activities. Of those who experienced the workshops over the year, some came great distances from Devon, London, and Swindon in the south to Tamworth and the Black Country in the north. Some people were only able to attend one workshop, but many came for most or all of the sessions and even returned to help with the Sanctuary tidying weekend in November.

We watched how the Sanctuary changed from the bare trees and earth with patches of green in the Spring, through the lushness of summer and autumn to the falling leaves of winter. Each season had its own beauty and richness, whether it was the purple of the Echinacea, knapweed and New England Aster and gold of the calendula or brilliant white of the boneset, yarrow and black cohosh. The year ended with the stately red plumes of the pineapple sage and the revealing of a gnarled face within one of the hollow willow trunks.

We began the year in March by looking at "Weeding, Sowing & Cuttings". Participants were shown around the various herb areas and new seedlings of various herbs were identified. We also talked about sowing herbs from seed and the conditions needed for those plants which could safely be sown in Springtime such as calendula, thyme, sage etc, compared with wild flowers such as primrose and cowslip, which required the harshness of winter to break down the seed coats. Root cuttings for prolific plants like mint, and vervain were also potted up and taken home. We talked about using wild plants, which would normally be thought of as weeds and participants were able to try nettle and potato soup and learn about the many uses nettle can offer as a tonic and blood cleanser.

Recipe: Nettle and Potato Soup

Recipe: Tuna and Nettle Pasta


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