Week of September 22 - Weed Walk on the Burned Burned Barn Site

Tuesday, September 22, 2015 7:57 PM | Anonymous

Weed Walk on the Burned Barn Site

Look at all the beauty, food, and medicine growing from the charred remains of the barn. One could live long and well on pumpkin, game, fish, and amaranth and lamb’s quarter seeds and greens, most of which are growing right here, gifts of the abundant Earth. Though I still grieve the loss of what I loved so well for so long, I am cheered and heartened by these gifts of green blessings. Please allow me to share them with you as we walk. 

Frozen Amaranth Seeds and Greens

Amaranth Plant

Amaranth Seed Head

Amaranth (Amaranthus retroflexus)
This excellent plant provides both edible greens and seeds. The cooked greens freeze well; we have several bags in the freezer to enjoy this winter. The small black seeds shake out of the plants easily, but must then be winnowed to remove the unpleasant chaff. We have started to harvest them and will continue to do so every day or so for several weeks. I add amaranth (and lamb’s quarter) seeds to all cooked grains, cereals, and baked goods for an extra hit of protein and wildness. Amaranth is a nutrition powerhouse that is well worth the effort to get to know and love.

Lamb’s Quarter (Chenopodium album)
Everything said about amaranth is true for this common weed, too. Like amaranth, it provides exceptionally nutritious greens and seeds. Unlike amaranth, the leaves are good in salads. Lamb’s quarter is related to chard and spinach and beets/beet greens. We have harvested enough leaves from this patch for numerous salads, and for one meal of cooked greens. We are getting ready to harvest seed, which does not have to be winnowed. Ahhh.

Motherwort (Leonurus cardiaca
Such a delight to see motherwort sprouting and growing here amid the blackened and burned bits of lumber. She brings us calm acceptance of what is, without interfering with our desire to make it better. Motherwort was my ally during the weeks immediately after the tragedy.  And, I am certain, she will continue to soothe me – and keep my heart healthy – during times of stress and distress for as long as we live.

~ Weed Walk, contd. ~

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