Plenty of clean, dry dandelion flowers
Organic seed oil – rapeseed is easy to obtain, but any seed oil should work.
Lavender essential oil
Geranium essential oil
Check over the flowers for bugs – you may find them covered in little black bugs hiding under the petals. These wee beasties are drawn to all yellow and orange flowers and can be difficult to remove – a useful trick I find is to lay the flowers out in a basket and pop them in some shade out in the garden. You should find most of the black flies will hop off and fly back out into the sunshine over the space of an hour or so. These flies are more of a problem from May through to September, but can sometimes be around in April if the weather is mild enough.
Once you have evicted the unwelcome guests, pop your flowers into the top of a double boiler and pour over enough oil to cover them completely. Making sure there is enough water in the bottom half of the pan, put the whole lot over a low to medium heat and allow to steep for an hour or so, until the oil changes colour and turns a deep, rich yellow. Strain out the herbs and put your oil in a jug, then ignore it for a few hours, or even for a day or two. You should find that any moisture and bits from the flowers will sink to the bottom of the jug and stick there, allowing you to pour off the clear oil which can be used to make a balm.
Add 10g of beeswax to every 100mls of oil. Put the oil and beeswax back into the double boiler and warm until the beeswax has melted, then add 10 drops of lavender and 5 drops of geranium oil for every 100mls of oil mixture, stirring quickly and immediately pouring into clean, dry jars. Put the lid straight on and allow the balm to set. This can be applied as needed to relieve sore muscles, especially when this is due to stress.
This recipe is excerpted from the April lesson of my new distance learning course ‘Hands in the Earth’. Please feel free to message me at email@example.com for more information! 😀