Herbalist Robin Rose Bennett

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First Aid Recipes - Store-bought, Home-made, and Trailside

By Robin Bennett
Posted in Blog, Recipes
On August 13, 2020

(Originally posted as a newsletter 8/13/20. If you are not signed up for my newsletters, signup here!


Hello Friends!

It's always great to be an earth-loving herbalist but heading into the forest makes the joy and benefit of knowing your plants even more obvious.

Plants and trees are waiting to help you fall in love with life on planet Earth, especially essential in difficult times, like now. Herbs help you learn to slow down and listen, to your body, to your heart, and to the life all around you.

As you learn the truth, that you can find what you need most anywhere, it is empowering, and more than that, you find out that you have green sisters and brothers, grandmothers and grandfathers, a huge, loving, family ready to embrace you and offer you healing wherever you are and wherever you go!

I was sitting at my computer most of the day, and was hot and tired.
I spontaneously decided to hike up into the forest ...
... for a dip in the lake!

I was so excited, but it's a long, uphill walk, and I wanted to be back before dark, so I packed my back-pack quickly. My water bottle went in first, along with my phone, just in case I needed the light to get back down!
(I usually leave my technology at home.)

There is a narrow turn in the trail that always feels like a doorway into the next sacred part of the path. A blackberry bush scratched me as I made that turn, reminding me to pause
And note the special place where I was ...
I made my apologies, and expressed my thanks for being woken up...
then looked around for medicine.

I could have used what I had in my pack, but fresh leaves often make the best medicine for external uses when they are available. So I gathered one oak leaf for the astringency to stop the minor bleeding, then added one fresh black birch leaf, knowing that the wintergreen oil/salicylates from which we derived aspirin would also take away the pain and sting of the fresh scratch.
Plants to the rescue, again!!

And as far as I'm concerned, everyone looks great in green ; )

fresh oak and black birch leaf poultice

I made it to the lake in record time.

Sweet satisfaction of a sunset swim!

Store Bought/Pre-packaged Supplies
Rescue remedy flower essence (liquid)
Arnica montana, 30C (pellets)

I usually bring these homeopathic remedies with me
when hiking, in case of injury and resulting trauma.
The bottles are tiny and easy to carry.

St J's wort sunscreen - small glass bottle with screw top
Yarrow/Rose Geranium ** Bug Repellent - small glass spray bottle

**This blend also doubles as an antiseptic, because
yarrow alone excels in case of bug bite, bee sting or bruise.
It will reduce swelling, ease pain, stop bleeding and prevent infection!

My favorite Sunscreen Recipe
(must be made, or purchased, in advance of need!)
Fresh Hypericum perforatum (St J's wort)
Olive oil

Fill a clean, dry jar with fresh tops of St J's
(stalks, leaves, flowers and buds).
Do NOT wash the herbs.
Cut up the herbs finely and put them in the jar, almost to the top.
Pour cold-pressed olive oil over them,
Fill the jar to the top.
Use a chop stick to poke around
And ensure all the herbs are saturated with the oil.
Poke some more to get out the air bubbles.
Leave no air space and no herbs sticking up out of the oil.
Cap, label and sit atop a saucer to catch oil that will usually
Bubble up and over the sealed lid
Decant six weeks later, pour off the oil,
leaving just a bit
As it will contain the water layer* that has fallen to the bottom of the jar.
It will be a different color, making it easier to tell the difference!
Squeeze out your herbs to get all the oil you can, and compost them.

* you can still use this layer, just use it up first, and
don't add it to the whole bottle
As it can cause your oil to mold.

My favorite Insect Repellent recipe
(and good antiseptic)
Yarrow tincture
Rose geranium tincture

Mix them together ½ and ½ in a glass spray bottle and you're good to go.
Bugs don't like it, and you smell great!

You can buy the tinctures or make them yourself.
Make them separately for the most versatility of use.
I know a lot more uses for yarrow than for rose geranium!

Gather yarrow flowering tops - (Achillea Milfoil)
Cut leaves, stalks and flowers finely and fill a bottle with them.
Cover the herbs with 100 proof vodka.
Label your jar with the name and date.
Wait six weeks before decanting. Pour off the liquid.
Squeeze out the herbs and compost them.
Your tincture is ready!


Love and Green Blessings,
Robin Rose

Robin Bennett

Robin Bennett

Robin Rose Bennett is a writer, teacher, green witch, herbalist, and a wisewoman… one who loves the earth and gives voice to the healing wild food and medicine plants which surround us. She has been a practicing herbalism for over 30 years, based in New Jersey & NYC. Robin focuses on the spiritual and ecological lessons of plants and treatment of illness.