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For many, the summer solstice is about celebrating the sun and everything that it so graciously beams upon us: fully ripe strawberries, darkening freckles, and a renewed spirit energy that almost makes it seem as if we are solar powered.
Thank you for all those who said hello to us at the International Herb Symposium at Wheaton College in Massachusetts. We are bee-busy supporting the Traditions Not Trademarks movement. Our solstice is full of fire, cider, fireflies and brightly blooming fire pinks!

Indian Fire Pink Photo credit by Jason Hollinger

On the other hand, many people find themselves performing another solstice ritual (though they might not quite see it that way)…by scratching their poison ivy! If you’ve been enjoying the summer so much that you’re now dealing with some poison ivy – or sister ivy as she is sometimes respectfully referred to in the plant community – never fear…

Luckily, two of the plants that ease and cool poison ivy rashes more than anything else grow abundantly in Appalachia and many other parts of the US. Jewelweed and plantain are the two components of our Poison Ivy Spray, and together they work to support the rash before and after exposure as well as to soothe and treat suffering skin.
Poison Ivy Spray
Harvest tip: many of us might be friends with plantain (Plantago spp.) who is always underfoot, but jewelweed tends to keep her feet wet near creeksides and streambeds. If you have a patch of jewelweed (Impatiens capensis), a fast-growing member of the impatiens family, you can nibble on those nutty-tasting seeds as a mini trail snack – just don’t let those springy seed pods escape your fingers!
June 23, 2015 by Jeannie Dunn

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