Sunday, January 23, 2011

Herbal Ally Challenge

So, I discovered this over at Dancing In a Field of Tansy and decided it would be a great way of really learning and discovering more about herbs and focusing on one in particular.

The steps she has listed so far are as follows:


After reading the first two links she has posted regarding having and finding an herbal ally, it has become a bit hard to choose. There have been several plants that have spoken to me in my life, dandelion, lemon balm, lavender, yarrow and plantain. They seem to be the ones I am most drawn to. But I suppose if I had to choose just one, I would have to go with lavender since I can never resist brushing my hands past a lavender plant when I am going by. There has also been some tremendous emotional moments in my life when it comes to lavender.

I became obsessed with the scent of Lavender when I lived in Maryland and discovered Crabtree and Evelyn had wonderfully scented lavender soaps. Soon after, I discovered English Lavender and found and bought fragrances that made me swoon. The love affair was sealed as such and I fell completely and utterly in love. I first planted lavender back when I lived in Lancaster and I so dearly loved it. I got the courage to plant it because of one of my favorite scenes in the Jane Austen BBC (2007 with Kate Beckinsale) movie adaptation of Emma where Emma is walking through a courtyard filled with lavender and she is brushing her hands over it. Mr. Knightley is about to arrive and propose and the whole scene made my heart skip a beat I tell you.

(if you want to see the scene click here and wait until 1:48)

When I moved to Philly, I was sad to have to leave my beloved lavender behind but soon bought new plants. I really did not know much about caring for them and they became leggy and woody and so one winter I decided to prune them back. Too late, I discovered my grave mistake. spring came and my lavender did not bud. I looked up all kinds of reasons as to why this might have happened and discovered my folly had cost my lavender its life. As dramatic as this may seem I sobbed as if I had lost my best friend. I was truly heartbroken and could not believe I had been so careless. I promised myself to be more conscious of my herbs in the future and now have several lavender plants growing quite well.


That same year I reaped a lovely bounty of lavender from and obliging neighbor who was quite eager to have her three large bushes trimmed. Let me tell you that was quite a joyous time for me!
Whenever I want to gift something to friend I often snip some lavender and wrap it in ribbon to bless them and just this past year, my dear friend Angelique gifted me with yet another lavender plant. I imagine myself sometimes being Miss Rumphius, the Lupine lady, but with lavender planting it every where I go.

Well, after all this writing I have done I am quite settled that my ally for this year will be lavender. I will be posting all that I discover and learn about Lady Lavender. I will be creating a journal to record my discoveries and musings in. I will do my research and record my findings. I will write about her, poetry and prose. I will create with her, edible, medicinal and decorative goodies. Most of all though I will let her teach me all that she can and find how this gentle, small yet stately plant speaks into my life.

You are welcome to come along with me on my journey or better yet find your own and share your adventure with me!


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3 comments:

  1. Oh how lovely! I am looking forward to following your journey. I also love lavender, although I only have one sad little plant left due to some norty puppies.

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  2. I am so glad you chose lavender! I will so enjoy reading about your journey xx Love that scene in Emma also xx Smiling about Miss Rumphius!

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  3. There are so many wonderful things to explore with Lavender!!! I look forward to hearing about your Journey with it, and fresh ideas that spring from someone new to the old I've heard about the plant in the past! Many Blessings )O(
    ~Shamanic Winds

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Thanks so much for you comment! I look forward to reading it! Blessings!