The bounty continues in Penelope’s Garden! I hope that you have all taken some time during your pickups to visit and enjoy the abundance of this garden. Have you seen the myriad of bees and pollinators in the bee balm, catch a whiff of the soothing lemon balm, collected a handful of lovely lavender? I hope that you continue to harvest some of these (and other) herbs to make a cup of tea, dry for the future, make plans for a tincture and more.

Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis)

Hyssop is a sweet-smelling herb that is a member of the mint family. Its beautiful blue, pink, purple and white flowers are often planted by gardeners to attract bees and butterflies. Hyssop is mentioned in the Bible and throughout the ages. It has been noted as a cleansing herb with many uses:

Respiratory Conditions – Hyssop is an expectorant and antispasmodic herb, helping to suppress coughs and help clear the lungs of phlegm. An efficient way to apply is a topical chest rub made with hyssop and mullein, which produces a very clearing aroma.

Digestive Health – Hyssop is known to stimulate digestion by increasing the production of digestive enzymes, stomach acid and bile. Typical use is dried in tea and as a tincture. Harvest by cutting 8” long stems as noted on the cutting guide on the yellow dot. Wash, bundle to hang and dry.

Wood Betony (Stachys officinalis)

Wood betony is used to relieve headaches, neuralgia, stomach and abdominal problems, bloating, heartburn and gas. Tea from this plant has a bittersweet/astringent flavor. Mildly carminative, wood betony improves digestion, dispels gas and gently stimulates the production and release of bile from the liver and gallbladder into the digestive tract.

It can also be helpful for anxiety, tension and mental discomfort. Betony lets you relax and settle in, helping you feel more at home in your body. A simple tea, tincture or elixir of the aerial parts (leaves, stems and flowers) is all you need.

Betony is a great herb for headaches of all types due to its downward-drawing of directionality
and its capacity to releasing tension in constricted muscles, particularly those of the head and neck.
Cut stems, flower and leaves according to cutting guide on the yellow dot. Wash, bundle and hang to dry for use in teas and tinctures.