Wednesday, May 18, 2011


The People's Home Library, R.C. Barnum, Imperial Publishing Co, Toronto, CA 1915 (p.319)
Actions-Diuretic, Aperient, Antiscorbutic.
Uses-Supperssion of Urine, Kidney Troubles, Gravel, Tumors, Freckles, Erysipelas, Scarlet Fever, Measels.
     This vine-like grass grows in hedges, on low grounds, in meadows and near brooks. It rises from 4 to 6 feet in height, climbing the bushes near it. The leaves are eight in a whorl and the upper side is whitish with sharp prickers. The stem is square, the angles being guarded with sharp prickers which are bent downward. The flowers are small, inconspicious and dividedin 4 segments. These change into a rather large fruit composed of two berries slightly together and covered with hooded pricklers containing two seeds.
     This is one of the most valuable diuretics or kidney remedies that our country produces. It is good and speedy for all suppression of urine and for gravel complaints. The pressed juice mixed with oatmeal tothe constistency of a poultice and applied over and indolent tumor three times a day, keeping the bowles open by castor oil [there are other modern ways as well a.d.{and a warning, as I am remind to use cautions now and again. Caster Oil is NOT recommended; as I also said, there are much better and more modern ways to keep the bowel open, look it up or ask your consultant! I strongely suggest NOT using caster oil!}], and taking a tablespoonful of the juice every morning, will often drive the tumor away in a few days. The tea should be made with cold water. Three or four ounces of the dried herb to a quart of water is sufficient. This should be used every day as a common drink and especially for gravel. it seems to possess a solvent power over the stone or gravel, crumbling it into a sandy substance. It is peculiarly applicable to inflamamation of kidneys and bladder from its crumbling as well as its diuretic quality. You can make a warm tea by using 1 1/2 ounces of the herb to a pint of warm water and steeping for two hours. Take 2 to 4 ounces 3 or 4 days. This may be sweetened with honey or sugar. Take equal parts of cleavers, maiden hair and elder bows and steep in warm water for 2 or 3 hours and when cold drink freely for erysipelas, scarlet fever and measels. The tea made with cold water is good for freckles when applied locally several times a day.

{Disclaimer; there were no disclaimers... back in 1915, but I am only posting this excert for entertainment. Please be consulted before trying any new herb or considering them first} and always remember to smile....tootles.

Easy Breathing, David Hoffman, Storey Books, Vermont, 2000 (p. 82)
Cleaver (Galium aparine)
Parts used: Dried aerial parts and freshly expressed juice.
Actions: Diuretic, alternative, anti-inflammatory, tonic, astringent
Indications: Cleaver is very valuable and may be the best tonic for the lymphatic system. It may be used safely for a wide range of problems, including swollen glands(lymphadenitis) anywhere in the body. It's especially good for tonsillitis and adenoid trouble. It is helpful in skin conditions, particularly those that are dry (like psoriasis). It is useful in the treatment of cystitis and other urinary conditions accopanied by pain; for this purpose, it may be combined with urinary demulcents. Cleavers has traditionally been used to treat ulcers and tumors, perhaps because of its effects on lymphatic drainage, which helps detoxify tissue. Cleavers also makes an excellent vegetable.
Preparation and Doage: To make an infussion, pour 1 cup(240 ml) boiling water over 2-3 teaspoons dried herb; let infuse 10-15 minutes. Drink three times a day.
     When using a tincture, take 2-4 ml three times a day.

Commom Herb for Natural Health, Juliet de Bairacli Levy, Ash Tree Publishing, New York, 1996 (p.42)
Cleavers, Galium aparine, Rubiaceae
A climbing plant found in hedgerows and fields where there are bushes. Small leaves and tiny, almost colorless flowers which are succeeded by small, prickly, ball-shaped fruits. This 'goose grass' is notable for its hairy stemms, armed with hooked bristles which cling to other vegetation and to passing animals.
    Use, internal: Cleaver is rich in minerals, especially silica, which exerts a powerful influence on hair and teeth. It is refrigerant, laxative, and tonic, and is much used in diseases of the urinary system. It’s refrigerant properties make it excellent for all fevers, including smallpox and typhus. For skin troubles, including dandruff. It is also an effective jaundice remedy. Treatment of bladder and kidney ailments, including stone and gravel, inflammation of kidneys, suppression of urine, scalding urine. Derangement of liver and gallbladder. Rheumatism, arthritis, dropsy. Taken internally, cleavers is also a hair tonic and does much to help check tooth decay. An old-time farm workers’ tonic added to beer.

Use external: Cleavers makes a great poultice to reduce tumors, and is useful for all skin disorders, including skin cancer, abscesses, tumors, cysts. An old remedy for scrofula, although of course the reduction of scrofula sometimes indicating phthisis. As an underarm lotion to neutralize acid perspiration.

Dose: A handful of the fresh herb, pounded small and infused in milk. Take two tablespoons before meals. Or make an infusion by macerating a large handful of the plant in a cup of near-boiling water. Keep the water warm for half an hour, then drink the resulting brew. A small cupful before meals. Or cleavers can be eaten as spinach. Not very palatable, but tolerable.

Some little linkies;
the only warning I have found;
This herb may be used freely. But it should be taken for only 2 weeks at a time, and then skip 1-2 weeks.
Juice may cause contact dermatitis.
photo linkie;

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Banana This; Recycle Old Peels~ fertilizer or silver polish

There are things you can do with that old peel.

1. Do you have a green thumb? House hold plants and outside gardens require fertilization. A great way to give your plants nutrients is with a banana peel. The banana peel is very rich in potassium and phosphorus, which give that added boost to your plants soil, especially so with roses. Here is how to use a banana peel to fertilizer your soil for your plants. Remove the peel from the banana. Place the banana peel on a cookie sheet to let it air dry. Grab a paper bag or envelope. Crumble the dried banana peel and place it in the bag. Let the banana sit at room temperature for about two days. When your caring for your plant, give it a potassium treat of crumbled banana peel. Mix well in the soil to ensure the roots are fed evenly.
2. Have you been thinking about pulling out that old silver? Well there is no time like the present. Bananas peel can also be used to polish silver. Yes, polish silver. Take the old peels and place them in a blender. You want the peels to become smooth and creamy. Once they have, grab a cloth and small amounts of the creamed banana peel and begin polishing your silver. The shine will be breath taking.


Wild yeasts exist in the air around you and to some extent on the wheat berries. There are wild yeasts on grapes (unsulphured) and apples and other fruits. It is those wild yeasts which are 'captured' to make a sourdough starter. The process takes from 3 to 5 days. I wish I had specific amounts for you, but you could start with 1/4 to 1/2 cup of flour and mix in enough warm (not hot) water to make a thin paste. DO NOT make it too soupy. That, in fact, is the trick to a good starter, according to the French bread makers, and I think they should know. And after you've fooled around with the flour and water thing, you might wish to branch out into adding those unsulphured grapes, apples, sour milk, etc as a catalyst in order to capture other strains of yeast. Each of these strains has a slightly different taste. In fact if you move to another area, you might end up with a starter that produces an entirely different flavor. For instance, San Francisco sourdough bread is well known and has a distinct taste due to the wild strains in the air there. On day one you mix the flour and water (and add any catalysts to encourage fermentation) and place in a warm spot. After 3 days, the dough should be moist, inflated, and slightly sour. More flour and water is added (mixed in) and left to sit in a warm spot. After 2 days the process is repeated. Then the next day it is done again. Note the order: 3 days, 2 days, 1 day. At this point you should be able to make a loaf of bread using part of the starter and adding back what you took out in the form of more flour and water. Rule of thumb: Use about 10% starter to size of loaf. In the case of a 2 lb loaf this is a bit over 3 oz of starter (3.2 to be exact). For a 1 lb loaf 1.5 oz would be used. A book that describes this process in great detail is The Village Baker by Joe Ortiz, copyright 1993, published by Ten Speed Press, Berkley CA. If it's not still in print, try the used books stores, that's where I got mine. Or try your local library. If they don't have it, they might be able to get it for you. ©2008 by Ernestina Parziale

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