Category Archives: Weeds

Evening Primrose for Hormonal Health

Evening Primrose, Oenothera biennis

Believe it or not, it seems as though every part of this plant can be used. The leaves can be cooked and eaten as greens. The roots can be boiled like potatoes and allegedly taste like sweet parsnips. The flowers are sweet and can be used in salads or as a pretty garnish. The young seedpods can be steamed and the ripe seeds can be roasted in an oven for 15 to 20 min. at 350° and used on bread or in salads. You can also sprinkle the roasted seeds over any dish like pepper.img_4171

Ways to use Evening Primrose

This beautiful plant is known as a woman’s herb. It is especially helpful with PMS symptoms such as breast tenderness, bloating, water retention, acne, depression and irritability.

Apparently evening primrose oil is an extremely rich source of an omega 6 fatty acid called Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA). Getting enough GLA is crucial to support overall hormonal function within the body. In fact, many women with Premenstrual Syndrome (PMS) struggle to convert the fats they eat into GLA.

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When you make a salad dressing or are eager to get some omega’s in the form of Flaxseed Oil and Evening Primrose, please make sure your oil is fresh. Flaxseed oil goes rancid quickly, and I learned the hard way. Taste your oil before mixing with precious seeds!

Since I learned the hard way. Here is another way to use those precious, mood boosting seeds!

Hormone Boosting Avocado Dip/Dressing

Mix 1/2 avocado, 1 Tbsp of fresh ground flaxseed and 1Tbsp ground evening primrose, 1 tsp dried wild greens (such as smartweed, mallow, nettle, plantain), dash salt,  2 garlic cloves, 1/2 cup water 2 Tbsp lemon juice, 1/2 Tbsp honey, and 1/2 cup (more or less) olive oil.

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Plantain, Plantago major

This summer was an epic crop of plantain. We have two large hugel beds which retain a lot of moisture. We had a very wet summer again, so along with the nettle going crazy, we had a healthy patch of plantain growing right along side. The leaves are edible raw as well as the seeds. When going for my morning nettle harvest, I would inevitably get stung. The plantain is a super quick aid to stop the burn. Simply chew it up and place on the red spot.

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Plantain is well known for its antimicrobial properties and ability to draw out infection and speed healing, which is why it’s so often recommended to relieve insect bites and stings. Since I had so much, I decided to make an infusion so I could benefit from it’s healing properties throughout the year as a salve. This is really helpful to have on hand when going on hikes or anywhere you face mosquitos, as it has the ability to take the itch out of the bite. It’s also wonderful for scrapes, cuts and bruises. My kids use it throughout the summer. In the winter, it can be used as a moisturizing lip balm.

I am continually learning new things about a plant. And plantain is a good one to research. It is often the plant easiest to recognize and the most available in the city, often growing in the most disturbed places. Herbalists consider plantain to be a “sacred herb” and it’s called the “Mother of Plants.”

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Plantain and Olive Oil infusion made this summerimg_6475