Blog

Erin Stewart

How to Grow Lemon Balm

Lemon balm is one of the tastiest, most abundant plants in my garden. I love it so much that I included it in my must-grow list and I thought I’d share a bit more about how to grow it today so that you can add it to your gardens too. Once you get it started,

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Flower Essences

Last week I shared a post about 14 flower essences you can capture in the early spring (you can read it here) and I soon received several questions about what that meant, so I thought I would elaborate today. Let’s talk a bit more about flower essences – what they are, how you can capture

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Erin Stewart

14 Springtime Flower Essences to Capture Right Now

Early spring flowers are some of the most refreshing, uplifting blooms in the garden. They appear after the cold, grey days of winter and bring vibrant color to the landscape just when we seem to need them. They make absolutely lovely flower essences, but their blooming season is so short that we must be diligent

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Erin Stewart

14 Must-Grow Herbs In My Garden

I love gardening. I find it therapeutic to spend time working with living plants in the company of the native bees, butterflies, and neighborhood birds that visit my garden. It also allows me to have access to high quality herbs for my kitchen and apothecary. Every year, I sit down to plan out what I

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Erin Stewart

The Differences Between Chamomile Essential Oils

[If you like this article, I have also written posts comparing helichrysum and lavender essential oils.] There are two primary kinds of chamomile that are used in aromatherapy. The first is German chamomile, Matricaria recutita, which you will sometimes see referenced as Matricaria chamomilla or Chamomilla recutita. The other is Roman chamomile, Chamaemelum nobile, which

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Erin Stewart

2019 Grow Something Challenge

I recently shared a series of photos on my Instagram feed that illustrated the difference between homegrown herbs and herbs I purchased from a distributor. The photos showed homegrown herbs that were harvested 7 months ago and 1.5 years ago, and distributor-purchased herbs so you could see how different the level of quality was between

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Violet Honey + Sugar

The aroma of violets is notoriously difficult to capture. The fragrance is so delightfully sweet in the flower itself, but the volatile oil is delicate and elusive so there’s no easy way to bottle its beautiful smell. The absolute is sometimes made available, but is usually incredibly expensive and inaccessible for most people. It is

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Salves with Herbs and Essential Oils

Herbal salves are a traditional topical remedy made with beeswax and carrier oil. The beeswax helps to solidify the product while keeping it easy to apply to the skin and helping to sustain its shelf life. Salves are used to address all kinds of skin ailments and muscle and joint aches and pains. Sometimes salves

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Erin Stewart

Behind the Scenes – Feb. 2019

Well hey there! It’s been awhile since I just checked in with a more personal note here on the blog, so I wanted to take some time to do that today. How are you doing? How have you been progressing with your own business and personal goals? Is there anything I can support you in

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Erin Stewart

Selling Products 101 – Ten Things to Keep in Mind

Have you ever thought about turning your passion for herbs into a business? Do you enjoy making herbal products? Maybe you’ve received positive feedback from family and friends who have tested your products for you throughout the years and perhaps you’ve even heard someone say, “You should sell this! It’s amazing!” Here are ten things

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Erin Stewart

Sweet Violets: An Herbal Monograph (Viola odorata)

I really love violets. I can’t remember ever seeing them growing wild when we lived in California, but as soon as I saw them here in the PNW, I knew I wanted them everywhere. I ordered more than a dozen seed packets and sprinkled them throughout my raised beds and waited impatiently for them to

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Erin Stewart

How to Tell If an Essential Oil Brand Is Any Good

Note: This article is an excerpt from our Herbal Aromatherapy™ Certification Program and is protected by copyright (please don’t re-publish my words elsewhere without prior written permission from me). It’s really long, so I’d recommend setting aside 15-20 minutes to really be able to read through it. I cover a lot of questions I commonly

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Erin Stewart

10 Ways to Use Hydrosols Therapeutically

I love hydrosols. I use them more often than essential oils nowadays and I love distilling plants from my garden to gather their hydrosols. A few batches of fresh distillate each year give me more than enough hydrosol to stock my apothecary for the season. Do you like to use hydrosols too? Are you still

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Herbal Styptic Powder

Last week I shared an herbal monograph for yarrow, one of my favorite little garden plants. The pollinators love it and so do I! I grow more of it each year, it seems, and I can only imagine that that will continue to be true. One of things I mentioned in the yarrow monograph was

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Erin Stewart

Yarrow: An Herbal Monograph

Yarrow / Achillea millefolium / Asteraceae Family The yarrow in my garden stays green throughout the winter, though the fresh growth is very small. This is the perfect time of year to start dividing yarrow plants here in our growing zone, so I thought I’d share this yarrow monograph with you today. Parts of it

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Foot Balm for Dry Heels

When I first started to make my own self-care products, the very first thing I set out to re-create was my favorite foot balm. The company that originally made it had been bought by a larger brand and they had changed the formula so that it included a whole bunch of yuck ingredients that I didn’t

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Erin Stewart

Stove-top Potpourri Recipes

I’m really drawn to the forested, woodsy scents this season. Last year I was more drawn to the rich, spicy scents of cinnamon and clove and cardamom, but these past few weeks I just want to breathe in that conifer forest aroma all day long. It helps me to feel grounded, clear-headed, and like I

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Erin Stewart

2018 Recipe Roundup

It’s time for our 2018 recipe roundup! If you’re looking for DIY gift ideas, I think you’ll find a few fun options in this list. I love compiling these recipe roundups at the end of each year because they help me to remember some of the things I loved making throughout the seasons. Scroll through

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Erin Stewart

2018 Holiday Gift Guide

I love putting together these gift guides for you each year. I try to keep a running list of things that I’m loving throughout the year so that I can then narrow it down and share some of my favorites with you. I know how hard it can be to come up with good gift

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Herbal Lotion Bars

I have lotion bars all over the place. There’s one in my nightstand, one in my purse, one in the bathroom cabinet with all my other skin and body care products, and probably several in my apothecary closet ready to take the place of the others when I run out of them. I love them

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Whipped Body Butter with Herbs and Essential Oils

Last Christmas I gave friends and family gifts that I had purchased from some of my favorite local, small businesses. I love supporting small companies and sharing them with other people who I think would appreciate their products. This year, though, I’m revisiting handmade gifts. I tend to switch between handmade and purchased gifts every

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Erin Stewart

New Herbal Books Worth Reading

I’m a major bookworm – always have been. I wear glasses now because I used to read in the dark as a kid when I was supposed to be sleeping and now as an adult, I spend more than I should on books. I just love them – maybe even as much as I love

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Poultices and Compresses

For years, the most complicated poultice I found myself needing in my own home was a simple plantain leaf applied to an insect bite or nettle sting. The first time I used a larger, more intentionally formulated poultice, my husband had just whacked his shin bone with a shovel and a goose egg at least

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Erin Stewart

Cooking with Herbs: Spicy Ginger Syrup

Many years ago, I used to love the sweet and spicy flavor of the sauce that restaurants use to flavor dishes like orange chicken. It was warming and zingy and delightfully spicy, but I ended up developing an allergy to one of its ingredients and hadn’t been able to eat anything like it for a

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Erin Stewart

Fall Season Remedies, Scholarship Applications and FAQ

This week’s blog post is a little bit different from my usual weekly articles. Instead of focusing on one topic or recipe, I’m doing a bit of seasonal housekeeping and sharing a few different things with you all in one place. I’ll be talking about some of my favorite fall season remedies that you can

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Golden Spiced Salve

Every year about this time, I start wanting to use all the warming herbs and spices in everything. It usually starts happening right around the day that the weather starts to feel a bit crisp and our first fall rain arrives. It’s like an instant transition for me. I go from tank tops and flip

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Erin Stewart

How to Make Your Formulas Even More Effective

Herbal energetics can seem like a really tricky thing to learn. Knowing how to choose just the right herb for just the right person in whatever situation they’re experiencing can feel daunting. Have you ever tried an herb with a specific purpose in mind and found that it just didn’t work for you the way

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Erin Stewart

25 Herbs to Plant in Autumn

With fall fast approaching, I’ve been spending a lot of time getting the garden ready for the season; planting out fall-sown seeds for veggies and herbs and flowers and cleaning up things that are starting to go dormant or die back. Fall is my favorite time of year and after a busy spring and summer,

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