Thursday, February 12, 2009

February ...

Two days ago it was 72 degrees and just glorious! Yesterday, 10 degrees cooler and still glorious! Today a tad cooler and still gorgeous! If this is February what are June, July and August going to be like?

This lovely bloom is the flower of our common Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana). We planted this tree 3 years ago and despite the heat and the drought of summer it is doing beautifully. As a native of this area it is very adaptable and will grow in wet soil or very dry soil. This is the time of year it blooms for us and seems to fill this month before the arrival of spring
with wild anticipation!

The bark and leaves of this shrub are used medicinally as an astringent in the treatment of bruises, hemorrhoids and other skin conditions by reducing swelling and relieving pain. It is said that in tincture or tea form it can be used with myrrh and cloves for sore throats and laryngitis; a tea with goldenseal and calendula when applied to the outer ear will treat swimmer's ear.

More about herbs and herbal remedies can be found on my other blog:
Rivanna River Herbal

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