Monday, 7 July 2014

Fifteen Things To Gather Now For Giving Later

I gather wild food from all around our area, all year 'round.  It's a rare thing for me to go for a walk without a bag or a basket in hand for gathering as I go. At this time of year, food is especially abundant but there are other things to forage for during the summer months too. You can gather all sorts of natural materials to use for gift giving later in the year.

While at the beach, look for
shells and shell fragments to make into jewelry and wind chimes,

pebbles to make into jewelry,

beach glass to make into jewelry, sun catchers, and wind chimes,

and seaweed to press for use on greeting cards.

While hiking, look for
berries to make into jams and jellies, 

chicory, so you can dry the roots and 
grind them together with your favourite beans 
for your own New-Orleans-style coffee blend,

fireweed flowers to dry and use for herbal teas and jelly,

Queen Anne's lace and other wildflowers and foliage to press and use on greeting cards,

pearly everlasting for using on wreaths and in dried flower arrangements,

fallen branches to use for basket handles, coasters, and buttons,

and cones for making wreaths, Christmas decorations, and fire starters. (Conifers drop their cones at this time of year, as do alder trees. They can be gathered well into fall but are at their cleanest and driest right now.)

While you're enjoying your garden or walking around the neighbourhood, you can gather 
(always with permission, of course)
lavender to mix with Earl Grey tea, to use in herbs de Provence, to make sachets, and to make scented water for spraying on linens and clothing while ironing,

hydrangea heads for dried flower arrangements,

flowers and foliage to press and use on greeting cards,

and seeds you can package in homemade envelopes.