I’m experimenting with some herbal infusions this week. I find the process simple, magical, and gratifying. All the goodness and magical properties of the botanicals get infused into an oil, in this case olive oil, that can then be used in soaps, salves, scrubs and more for healing. On this round, I used calendula petals, elderberries, rosehips, usnea (an algae/lichen found on ailing trees), nettles, comfrey, and lavender. Some of these I bought and some I collected. Even if I have to buy some now, I am trying to stick to plants that I could eventually source locally. That’s the goal anyways.
Basically, I put some of the dried herbs straight into the clean jars and some into teabags and covered with olive oil and put them into my crockpot with some water, heated the water and let steep for around 4 hours or so, and kept them in jars over night. At some point in the next day or so, I’ll strain out the plants and pour the oil into fresh jars. This was by no means a scientific case study or the best way to collect all the medicinal qualities of these lovely herbs. Things can get more exact over time. I just want to get a basic idea of how to work with some of these plants. Can you see in the last picture how the colors are changing? I love getting to “see” part of the transformation!