12600 Pelican Beach Road, Merrifiled, MN (218) 851-1937
Herb Basket, Living Naturally, Ranch Life, The Boys, Thyme Out
We like to do things naturally as much as we are able around our ranch. Feeding our horses sugar treats is just not an option so researching and understanding what herbs our horses need is very important!

We have 10 favorite herbs we love to mix into blends for their everyday needs which also makes a wonderful treat for them. It’s exciting that 10 herbs we were able to grow ourselves, or grow naturally around the ranch. We didn’t realize it until late into Spring so we will be ready for next year.

When you start to pay attention to what is growing naturally around your home, you will delight in harvesting the herbs without the work of seeding and watering.   

You have to keep in mind horses in the wild can choose the foliage that their bodies need and domestic horses do not always have that opportunity. That is why we created a special “Thyme Out” pasture where they can roam the area and feed freely. In this pasture we have planted :

 

CalendulaCalendula arvensis This flower is so beautiful! The deep orange and yellow pedals form a wonderful contrast, which makes your garden stunning! Its nickname in the middle ages was Mary Gold or Marigold. Calendula is so gentle it soften given to children for upset stomach. It’s astringent and anti-inflammatory properties make it particularly useful for treating heartburn or stomach issues in horses. For teens it is great to fight off acne breakouts. I will make a lotion to put on the horses when there are skin irritations or rain rot. It also contains an anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal which is wonderful for wound healing. If your into cooking and know the expensive ingredient Saffron, this herb can be a replacement and you can impress all who enjoy special delights in their food.

Helichrysum– This herb is amazing! It is often and more commonly used as an essential oil but it is quite expensive. This oil has literally stopped bleeding and prevented scaring on me and my horses for different scrapes and cutes. Like yarrow, it almost gave a clotting like way as it absorbed the blood and stopoed it quick. Love this herb. It is known to regenerate cells and can assist in the healing of scars, acne, streach marks and abscesses. The herb is often put into a tincture form to be more user friendly. Wonderful herb and OIL if you can swing the cost, so worth having at your farm. Especially in your first aid kit!

MarshmallowAlthea officinalis-The marshmallow root is specific for digestive disorders, while the leaf is favored for respiratory or urinary problems. It is ideal for burns, minor wounds or eczema. If you add a powdered slippery elm bark will further enhance theses actions of drawing out properties of infections. I like to use this for when my horse has diarrhea. If your horse has any digestive disorders this herb is for you! This plant is very easy to grow and makes a beautiful look to your garden with its lilac color bell like flowers.

MeadowsweetFilipendula ulmaria -is a mild yet effective anti-inflammatory herb. It has been used for several centuries to treat body aches and pains, including arthritis and joint pain. In horses it helps relieve the pains that come with age especially in the winter months. It has also been used as a digestive remedy for acid indigestion or peptic ulcers. It protects the inner lining of the stomach while providing the anti-inflammatory benefits of silicates. As a tea use about a ¼ cup to start and can give up to 1/3.

ValerianValeriana officinalis Wonderful herb to have in our horse garden. It puts out beautiful blooms in pretty pinks or white flowers and attracts butterflies too. It calms horses and controls spasms, making it very good in colic situations. You must use with caution due to its sedative qualities. 

Naturally growing in the pasture:

Yarrow Achillea millefolium- is a perennial. Yarrow can be an efficient diuretic as it helps promote urine production and flow assisting in the removal of excess fluids and toxins and helping prevent urinary tract problems caused by standing around in a stall during the winter months. It also contains anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties as well as astringent tannins. The silica also found in this plant helps repair damaged or worn out tissues in the body. Made into a tea, yarrow stimulates appetite and improves digestion. Tea recipes below.Stinging Nettles- Urtica dioca- One of my favorite herbs and one that grows naturally around our area. This herb is rich in iron, which can often be a mineral lacking in an equine diet. Nettles also contain histamine, serotonin, potassium, silica, vitamins A and C, and a whole bunch of other minerals. It’s one of the most widely used plants that I know and it strengthens and supports the whole body. Nettles support the immune, respiratory, urinary and reproductive systems, and can help the body fight allergic responses. Also, nettles will strengthen hoof and  give a healthy coat. You can add about a ½ cup to your horses daily feed.

PlantainPlantago Major-This plant is seen as a weed by most people as it grows wildly in most yards and fields. Since it is so easily available it is easy to harvest, dry, and can so you can make it into tinctures and salves. This plant is wonderful as tea or in your salad. Put some olive oil and favorite vinaigrette and you have just helped your body with a natural anti-inflammatory and anti-bacterial. If you have a wound, bite, and itching you can make it into a tea and spray it on the area. The horses love this herb! The anti-inflammatory properties is always a wonderful go to herb.

Red and White Clover.-Trifolium– This herb has the effect that can be used to calm anxiety and reduce irritability . Horses especially love the red clover tops a few every day can make a world of difference. Our horses love this stuff and they find it all over our ranch. I try and harvest, dry, and jar as much of it as I can.

We also have our share of Dandelion, which is awesome to harvest and make treats as here in Minnesota they last until beginning of June than are gone.   Each of the herbs has different medicinal properties and I purposely planted a few of them because of the needs our horses can benefit from. We dry them, and put them in mason jars to keep all year round to feed our horses, use in blends, and of course use ourselves in teas, cooking, tinctures, and skin salves. This is the BEST part of herb growing is harvesting and having them all year round!   We also will purchase these herbs as they are harder for us to come by but are needed to make some of the blends the horses need for good health. Our one horse especially needs  additional herbs as he suffers allergies. Let me tell you, our first year doing all natural herbs, he had NO coughing His eyes still will get gunk in them but once I give him the needed herbs in a day or two he is all cleared up. SO amazing! I just LOVE it!  

10 Purchased Herbs needed for blends:

Comfrey Symphytum officinale (don’t use more than 14 days) This is a herb I only use if my horse is dealing with diarrhea, cough,or  bronchitis. But it has been a wonderful treatment for inflammation, arthritis wounds and bruises as well. This is an herb you need to be cautious of how much you give. I do use it in a blend so little is used.

Chamomile Flowersmatricaria chamomilla-theses little flowers are filled with medicinal purpose! High in phosphorus and calcium, they strengthen and regulate the parasympathetic nervous system. Chamomile is one of the gentlest sedatives, and it can be used in all cases of anxiety, sleep issues, and hyperactivity. In addition it can treat allergic reactions both externally and internally. I have the essential oil as well. Again having the oil helps to treat something more quickly than the herb.

Lemon Balm– making this into a tea you will only want to use 1/8 cup. I like to use it in blends more than individually. This herb helps with those tummy issues.

Peppermint (we had too much rain this year and our harvest didn’t make it) This is a herb that is often chosen first to treat colds and flu. It attacks and alleviates multiple symptoms at the same time. Wonderful for headaches for you and for horses it helps sooth muscles and congestion. This is one herb that I have as an oil to easily apply onto my horses and they love the smell. Essential Oil works faster into the body than dry herbs, one reason I keep this oil on hand. I use this herb often in tea blends as well.

ColtsfootTussilago farfara- This herb is used primarily for coughing and to release mucus. For my one horse that suffers from this in the spring I will add this to his cough blend. I will only use it for 5 days in his feed unless I don’t see any change. It also can have anti-inflammatory, anti-spasmodic and anti-catarrhal (eases inflammation of mucous membranes) properties and can be useful for respiratory tract disorders, particularly to relieve coughing.

Raspberry Leaf – (they adore this stuff plus the bunnies like it too) Rubus idaeus- The leaves of the common raspberry plant have been used for centuries as strong female tonic. They can help strengthen and tone the uterus to aid in fertility, pregnancy, and foaling. In additions to its strong uterine benefits, raspberry leaf is a good astringent herb, and can be used effectively in anything “loose” like wet cough, bleeding gums, or diarrhea. Give about a ½ cup for any thing containing these conditions.

Fenugreek SeedsTriganella foenum-graecum– My horses love this stuff! I add it to most blends just because the flavor will make them eat up the blend. These little seeds help to strengthen the respiratory system, mucus membranes, and the sinus incase of upper respiratory infections. I will add about 2 tablespoons to my horses feed when any of the above issues arise and of course in my cough blend as well. This makes for a wonderful tea to pour over their feed. Those cold fall and winter mornings brings a little extra NAY!  

Rose hip: Rose Hips are known to be a rich source of bioflavonoid, pectin, vitamin E, selenium, manganese, and B vitamins. It also contains trace amounts of mf magnesium, potassium, sulfur and silicon. Recently Roe Hips have become a popular natural treatment for arthritis. It is a wonderful ingredient in blends to help with colds and flu like symptoms for humans so they help the immune system in horses as well. This is a MUST have herb to keep on hand!

EchinaceaEchinacea pallida this herb has so many beneficial properties I don’t know where to begin. There has been cases of horse with strangles that symptoms reduced and began eating again. It has reduce the length of the common cold and boost the immune system. It is a natural pain reliever and simply put an herb you must have for you and your animals! So full of good stuff!

CornsilkZie mays– the stringy white by product off corn is usually thrown away is a diuretic. It has long been used to treat chronic inflammation of the urinary tract and kidneys. Many use it as a tea to help bladder and kidney infections.   There are so many others, but these are foundational for most of my blend recipes. I give them individually too as needed and for our herb basket that our ministry uses to help folks who come to our ranch understand natural living.   Any of these herbs can be made into a tea. Blend a couple or make individually. Yarrow and Rose hips we make often individually and put into their feed. Especially on cold winter mornings.    

 

Tea Time: Use ½ Cup of dried yarrow flowers, stems are fine too placed in a tea strainer. Using a quart mason jar, POUR boiling water OVER herbs to the bottom of the jars rim. Let steep for an hour. Pour over horses feed and mix. Save the herbs and give as a special treat. I will be blogging soon my favorite blends we use around the ranch.

Until next time enjoy blending and living healthy!
Love deeper, talk sweeter, Lee
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Health, Ranch Life, Thyme Out
I went to do some harvesting today and found those little brown bugs on my herbs! 
So I googled away some ideas and this one so far has been the best one. 

I will keep you posted if it truly works! I also added some Peppermint essential oil into the “tea” to board off deer as well. 

 Remember to keep it natural to protect you, your animals, and the environment. NO harsh chemicals are used on our ranch! 

The picture below is Mullein another wonderful herb. The flower, leaves, and root have all been used for inflammation including diarrhea, cough, and asthma. It is also wonderful for helping with bruising, burns, and gout. It can be ingested, applied topically, and even smoked! I like making it into a tea as well as a tincture.  



Strong smelling plants, herbs and spices deter insects and other pests.

  • Tea Spray for Bugs:
  • Mix together plants like garlic, rhubarb, mint, onions, cayenne, and ginger.
  • Cut them up into large pieces and place them in a pot or saucepan.

  • Cover them with water and boil.
  • Turn off the heat and allow the “tea” to sit overnight.
  • Strain the liquid away and pour it into an amber spray bottle.
  • Add about 15 of so drops of Peppermint essential oil to your spray. 
  • Create a caffeine mixture, if you are having a problem with aphids.(brown bugs)
  • Mix 1 cup (240 ml) of yarrow, lavender and/or catnip with 2 tbs. (10 g) of used coffee grounds and 2 cups (473 ml) of water. Allow the mixture to sit overnight.
  •  

  • Strain the liquid and pour into a spray bottle. Only keeps for a week or two.  
  • What is really awesome is the Yarrow and Lavender I can get right out of my herb garden! I just love that I have grown the herb myself! Yarrow grows all over our ranch naturally, so we have an abundant amount to use. That was of course before I knew what yarrow was. 

Hope it works!

Remember today to
Love deeper, talk sweeter,
Lee

 



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Ranch Life, Thyme Out
The most common form of thyme has the scientific name Thymus vulgaris, and is an evergreen shrub that has been used in medicinal and culinary applications for thousands of years. Thyme leaves are curled, elliptically shaped and very small, measuring about one-eighth of an inch long and one-sixteenth of an inch wide. The upper leaf is green-grey in color on top, while the underside is a whitish color.

Heart Health
The rich blend of antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins in thyme have many small effects on the heart, but the potassium and manganese are particularly important. Potassium is a vasodilator, which allows it to reduce the stress on the cardiovascular system by relaxing blood vessels and lowering blood pressure. This can extend your life by preventing atherosclerosis and avoiding strokes, heart attacks, and coronary heart disease.

Immune System
Getting all the vitamins your body needs every day can be challenging. Thyme is packed with vitamin C which stimulates the production of white blood cells, which are the first line of defense in the body’s immune system. Vitamin C also plays a crucial part in the production of collagen, which is essential for the creation and repair of cells, muscles, tissues, and blood vessels. If you feel a cold coming on, thyme can help get you back in good health.

Reduce Stress
One of the vitamins in thyme (B6) has a powerful effect on certain neurotransmitters in the brain that are directly linked to stress hormones. Regular inclusion of thyme in your diet can help to boost your mood and ease your mind when stressful thoughts come calling.

Skin Health
Thyme helps in maintaining skin health by eliminating the bacteria that is responsible for causing various skin problems. Thyme essential oil can be diluted with water and used as a toner to tighten mature skin. It is gentle on your skin and can be used for all skin types.

Anti-Inflammatory
Thyme contains several anti-inflammatory properties which are effective in preventing chronic inflammation in the body. Thyme’s anti-inflammatory action can also help with localized pain. You can mix a few drops of thyme oil into a basic massage oil and rub it into an area where you’re experiencing pain, such as muscle aches, headaches, or skin inflammation. Thyme has several health benefits past these five which lead it to be a resourceful plant to help individuals all throughout the world. Whether it is taking it over the counter, getting a shot from your physician, or cooking with it, learning to include it in your daily life will bring a change to your overall and long-term health.
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Healthy Eating, Living Naturally, Ranch Life, Thyme Out

I am so excited I can hardly stand it! Starting in February I took all the egg shells we have been collecting and began filling them with dirt. I planted seedlings in each one, and of course placing them in the sun. I had so many seeds that I had to get some seedling trays and plant some more.

I think I have over 250 plants! I guess I am an over achiever! HA! I have NEVER done this before, but we want to have a huge garden this year and I don’t want to take any chances I may loose some.

SO…why not plant a ton!!! We are also going to plant a special  herb garden for our horses that we will be calling the  THYME OUT PASTURE. Isn’t that cute? Get it?
 A garden full of herbs the horses can walk in and choose what their bodies need.

I think this will be a wonderful asset to the ministry this year!


Unlike us, God has given them the ability to know what herb to choose when they have an element like a cold, cough, tummy upset, etc. 


So above I have one of my favorite herbs, Calendula. I love this herb! I can’t wait to see what it will do and how it will dry and of course, make into teas and tinctures. Calendula has many medicinal properties to it. One being that I love is making it into a gargle to help reduce inflammation of the mouth and throat. I also love it in my tea mixed with a mint.

If you would like more health info, you can visit the Bulk Herb Store and read more about this wonderful herb!

I may have to wait a month or two to plant all these babies, but for now I can enjoy a little bit of Spring right here in my home!

Have a wonderful day and remember to Love deeper, and Talk Sweeter,
Lee
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