Thursday, February 18, 2010

dandelion oil gone bad

... who knew ? just checked my dandelion oil and the flowers have all sunk to the bottom with about 1/2" of oil above it... with... the dreaded... mold. it covers the top layer of flowers  :(  so i did some research and this is what i found out. i let it sit to long. it only needs to sit for 7 days. then - strain it through a metal strainer - do not crush the flowers to get extra oil out of them.

a few other things i found out about making oils:

•  use cold pressed or expeller pressed organic oils
• refridgerate the bulk of it afterwards so they don't go bad  - put in a few drops of essential oil for preservative (like lavender) 5-10 drops for every ounce of infused oil
• do not let the oils sit in the sun while they are infusing - the rise and drop of temperature from day to night might make it develop condensation. condensation = water = mold. water is the enemy when making infused oils. do not rinse plants or flowers before infusing
• cuts herbs into pieces and crush flowers before infusing - EXCEPT for dandelion, honeysuckle or rose petals
• times till infusion is ready:
dandelion or honeysuckle - 7 days
most other plants - 2 weeks
comfrey, plantain, selfheal, st johns wort - 3 weeks

so... luckily there has been a lot of rain lately so lawns are covered. i have a new batch starting today and i am looking forward to my dandelion oil take 2.

Monday, February 8, 2010

harvesting lavender

lavender (Lavendula dentata) is in full bloom over here. i'm making a tincture and lavender oil.

Thursday, February 4, 2010


out in the garden today i found that my chamomile (Matricaria chamomile) is finally in bloom. i have tried to grow this so many times - and think i solved the problem... no direct hot sun. it gets way to hot here -  so i placed it behind some other plants where it can get nice morning and early afternoon sun - but not the scorching late afternoon sun.

chamomile is a mild sedative, good for insomnia and nervousness. it is a nervine, sedative and antispasmodic. it has anti-inflammatory properties that are good for rheumatism, arthritis, and other painful swellings. lt can be helpful with menstrual cramps or gas pains.