Thursday, January 7, 2010
(photo from http://www.loudounwildlife.org/HHJewelweed.htm)
Earlier this fall I found a huge patch of Jewelweed in full bloom wrapping along the base of 3 small hills. It lays right along the path of a wet weather creek. Being already fall, I didn't think there was really need for poison ivy relief and the stalks were already a little tough. When I cut them open there wasn't much juice. There were so many flowers though, I decided to go ahead and make a broth.
With snipers and a grateful heart, I harvested a basket full by cutting the stalk at an easy to carry length, leaving on the leaves and flowers. I randomly cut a stalk here and there, because I don't like to harvest too much of anything from one spot. When inside, I chopped the stalks coarsely and put in a pot of water. The Jewelweed was brought to a boil and simmered till the liquid was a dark orange (about 30 min) and then left to cool. Then the whole brew was strained (I used a large cotton cloth that I use to strain large batches).