Part of being biodynamic is to learn to use the wild natural vegetation on Rumar farm in our preparations to help the soil and plants thrive. Preparation 504 is made up of nettle which stimulates soil health and provides plants with the individual nutrition components needed. It also enlivens the soil. Preparation 508 is horsetail which serves as a preventative to lessen the effects when conditions conducive to fungus problems exist. Both are plentiful on our farm.
We also are very interested in other wild foraged plants that grow here such as Sumac. A variety of flowering shrub that belongs to a family of plants known as Anacardiaceae, people can steep the fresh fruits to make tea or dry and powder them for use as an herbal supplement or culinary seasoning. It is rich in antioxidants, which work to protect your cells from damage and reduce oxidative stress within the body. It may play a role in lowering blood sugar and alleviating muscle pain.
How to use Sumac? To make a sumac tea, soak the berry cluster in a pitcher of cold water over night or longer to enhance the flavour. Next strain the tea through a coffee filter or cheese cloth to remove the berries and particles from the fruit so all you are left with is the tea. You can add sugar, honey or other additives of your choice to suit your palate. Be aware that this plant is in the cashew family and if you have any allergies to nuts, especially cashews you may want to pass on this beverage. Want a boozy sumac-aide? Add 1 oz of your sprit of choice to a glass filled with ice, add ½ oz simple syrup and top with sumac tea. It has a tart, lemony flavour that makes a refreshing summer beverage.
Here is what is in our online store at www.rumarfarm.ca this week:
Zucchini and Summer Squash
Swiss Chard and Kale
Cucumber Mix and Slicers
Ruth and Marc