Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Cleavers or Catch weed bed-straw

Just about everyone has encountered this sticky weed in the woods. It's name is Catchweed Bed-straw or commonly called cleavers. It is in the Madder family and is a highly valuable plant because it contains high amounts of minerals and silica. Goats and sheep seek it out and a poultice can be made using the green plant to reduce tumors.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Another woodland treasure

Throughout the spring and early summer I will be posting about wild or not so common herbs for farm and stable(us included). This is sweet cicely- Myrrhis odorata. A very tonic plant found in shaded woods with a sweet myrrh scent( I think it smells a little like licorice), that goats and horses love. The leaves and roots are used in treating digestive ailments, constipation and coughs. I often gather all kinds of herbs from my garden or woods to feed the goats. If they don't want it I figure they don't need it so I through it to the chickens and what they don't eat gets composted. Herbs and woody plants are very high in minerals and goats usually crave them.