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Seeds & Berries

Only a few indigenous seeds and berries are used for tincture-making, but they form a therapeutically indispensable resource, generally being highly nutritive. Angelica and Lovage are usually used for their roots, but the seeds are usefully carminative and may be harvested in all respects the same as Fennel seed.

Celery seed, Apium graveolens 1:2 60%, 14 days

The seeds of the wild celery are collected in late summer of the plant’s second year, just before they start to brown off. The whole umbel is removed and as much of the stalks as possible stripped off and discarded.

Should you find a cultivated celery running to seed, allow the seed heads to mature and prepare the same as Wild Celery. The result may be slightly inferior but still well worth having.

Chillie Peppers, Capsicum frutescens – 1:2 60%, 3 weeks

Chillies are easily grown in a greenhouse, polytunnel or even a warm sunny border provided they have been raised from seed under heat early in spring. A plant or two will yield a surprisingly good harvest. Handle with care at all stages, perhaps wearing gloves. Wait until the peppers are fully ripe (i.e. a deep, even red) and comminute the whole pepper including seeds finely, ideally in a food processor. Handle with care! If ripening is uneven, add to waiting menstruum in batches.

Capsicum minimum is quoted in nearly all herbal texts, but if it ever existed, you’ll never find it in a seed catalogue! No matter, C. frutescens, C. annuum in any number of cultivars abound in vegetable seed catalogues – simply choose a good red variety that scores high on the Scoville scale or the catalogue’s own ‘heat’ scale. Some compromise may be needed as the hottest chillies may take longer to grow and ripen than you are able to accommodate.

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