Part 2: The Health Benefits of the Humble Hip… Vitamins Aplenty High in Vitamin C and a great source of Beta Carotene (plant based vitamin A). Also contain the B vitamins and vitamin k. Rose hips also contain bioflavonoids, tannins, organic acids and pectin. In China rosehips have long been used medicinally, where they are known as jin ying zi – they are used to increase ‘kidney qi’ which in[…]

Roses, of all the flowers, she probably signifies England the most. Featuring in fairy tales and folklore aplenty. But you know, it’s not just the flowers which have a special place in our history… The fruit of the rose deserves a crown too. Rose Hips When the rose petals fall come summer’s end, the fruit (or hips as we know them) start to develop. When autumn is well upon us[…]

‘Autumn is a second spring… where every leaf is a flower ‘ Perfect title. Funny that today I passed a shop with this quote printed on the window – just as I was taking a tea-break from finishing this blog post. The world does work in strange ways sometimes… Actually I took these photos and wrote a big chunk of this last month but forgot about it totally! So I’m[…]

Very excited to have had an Edinburgh trip over the weekend, gave me a chance to stock up on some goodies from Napiers – Edinburgh’s famous Herbal Medicine shop. Though there is another ‘Napiers’ store in Glasgow, this shop is where it all started, over 150 years ago. Let me tell you a little bit more about this Scottish institution…. A Brief History of Napier’s Steeped in history, Napier’s was[…]

On my last work trip to NY I took a trip across the river to Brooklyn. Total contrast to the towering skyscrapers of Manhattan. Here you’ll find wide leafy streets, beautiful old houses (from the yesteryear where the wealthy of Manhattan used to spend vacations), art, indie, lots of ‘green’ projects around, independent shops, some fantastic organic/health food stores and last but not least… I found a beautiful herbal shop[…]

Ahhh the turquoise seas of the Indian Ocean… straight out of your dreams… Author Mark Twain wrote that ‘Heaven was copied after Mauritius’. I agree, he is not far wrong but it is also so much more than exclusive resorts and beautiful beaches. At the time, Mr Twain recalled it as being lively and culturally rich with “French, English, Chinese, Arabs, Africans …’’ and today this legacy lives on. Naturally[…]

Today’s post is all about the BITTER… OK not the emo bitter kind – the therapeutic kind 😉 Yes there is such a thing, in herbal terms anyway. This post was actually inspired when I passed a little shop/cocktail bar in Manhattan specializing in Bitters only (photo above) tucked away in this urban jungle! So without further ado, here is a little intro into this well known class of herbal[…]

Herbal Medicine: Ancient Art – Modern Wisdom This article is an introduction into the vast and incredible field of Herbal Medicine, so that you will be more confident in getting started and (hopefully!) inspired to continue on a journey of discovery. So what Exactly is Herbal Medicine? Herbal Medicine is basically tapping into nature’s resources and improving health through the use of plants (roots, seeds, leaves, flowers, fruit, bark). It’s[…]

Spring Has Sprung! Finally… The season of growth and all things new is upon us – my absolute favourite time of year. So in the theme, why not try something different this year and introduce a few herbs with medicinal/culinary/cosmetic benefits to your garden? Why not make it functional and multi-use, just like the Victorian’s did! Most houses of the era had their own kitchen garden full of edibles and[…]

Mid-August to mid-September spells Elderberry season, so let the harvest begin! Elderberry syrup is a fantastic anti-viral medicine for the Cold and Flu viruses and of course Elderberries grow everywhere in the UK so it is essentially free (well minus the labour costs of picking and preparing of course but this is worth it!)  Considering that this syrup sells for £10+ a pop (for a 200ml bottle),  it makes econonmical[…]