Harvesting and Infusing St. John’s Wort

Food Preservation

Thursday Food (and Herb) Day!

Continuing with the wildcrafting herbal remedy theme, today we will collect and infuse some St. John’s Wort.  This pretty herb grows wild all over the place on my homestead and all over the side of the road.  Plenty available for sutainable wild harvesting.

St. John’s Wort is best known for it’s ability to fight depression.  It is also good for anxiety, inflammation, helping regulate hormones, and many other things.

St. John’s wort, along our driveway

The plant is quite easy to identify.  It is a tall, bushy plant with yellow flowers and tiny leaves.  When you hold the leaves up to the light and you can see the tiny holes all over.

I gathered the tops of a bunch of plants, making sure to leave plenty to go to seed for next year.  The best time to gather many herbs, including St. John’s Wort, is early morning just after the dew dries.  Then I found a comfy place to sit and snipped away so that I had a plate full of flowers.

St John’s Wort flowers

Then I put the flowers into a clean glass jar with a lid.  I found these great jars for $1 at a local thrift store.  This picture is the tincture. I covered the flowers in 90 proof vodka and watched.

S. John’s wort tincture, turning pink before my eyes

I know its St. John’s Wort when I see it change to that beautiful pink color.  I also did the same thing with the flowers in olive oil.  About 3 weeks later, the oil was pink as well.

Herbal infusions

Let the infusions go for about a month.  Longer if you want it to be stonger.  Oils can also be warmed to decrease the infusion time.

For more information, please checkout these links:

Hobby Farms

Eclectic Institute

Henriette’s Herbal

Superfoods for Superhealth

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