Herb Blurb October 2023

Herb Blurb – October 2023

October arrives with kaleidoscope colors, harvest festivals, and the first snows. Take a drive up to the mountains, fall color will soon be at it’s peak. The golden aspen against that cobalt sky is a gorgeous site. Later in the month consider a visit to Denver Botanic Gardens, Hudson Gardens, or a local park or bike path to experience the beauty of the fall season.

It’s the last harvest month. Pumpkins, apples, pears squash, kale, and all the cooler veggies are in season. Get family and friends together and celebrate a harvest feast.
Be ready for that first snow and the ensuing freeway chaos by getting the snow tires on early.

Halloween is coming up at the end of the month. I make it a point to visit one of the haunted house venues every year with screaming friends and family. Great fun being chased by a chainsaw wielding maniac.

On a more reflective note, before we made Halloween into a candy/costume fest it was an important Gaelic festival celebrating the end of summer and the start of the Celtic new year. During Samhain, October 31st, it was a time to remember and honor the ancestors, to slow down and contemplate past events and plan for the future. What do you want to honor and bring into your life as the seasons turn?

Fun Things to Do!

Fun Things to DoElk Fest, Estes Park, September 30 – October 1, Bugling elks, fall colors, seminars, bus tours, and arts and crafts. Elk Fest

Cider Days, Lakewood Heritage Center, October 7 and 8. Music, history, tractor pulls, pie-eating contest, and more.   Cider Days

Pumpkin Festival at Denver Botanic Gardens Chatfield Farms, October 6-8. Pumpkin patch, corn maze, music, crafts, hayrides and more. https://www.botanicgardens.org/events/special-events/pumpkin-festival.

Crafts Spirit Festival, October 6-8, Breckenridge. Creative cocktails, small-batch distillers, seminars, historic and haunted tours, sampling, and great views. https://www.breckenridgecraftspiritsfestival.com/

Emma Crawford Coffin Races and Festival, Manitou Springs, October 28, Parade, costumes, coffin races and fun..

Halloween Happenings, Great fun with cemetery tours, zombie crawls, Victorian horrors at the Molly Brown house, and fright fests. Check out https://www.denver.org/things-to-do/fall-winter/festivals-events/halloween/ for all the options.

Free Days
Denver Zoo – Saturday, October 7
Denver Art Museum – Tuesday, October 10
Denver Museum of Nature and Science – Sunday, October 15
Four Mile Historic Park, Friday, October 27

For more free opportunities check out https://scfd.org/find-culture/free-days/

What I’m listening to:

Herb of the Month – Burdock

Common_Burdock_with_bee_(2985446258)Burdock, Arctium lappa and Arctium minus, is a common weed, one you have probably cursed when your dog and your pants come back from a walk covered with clingy burrs. This widely unappreciated plant is also a nutritious food and effective medicine that helps to support the body’s detox system.

Burdock is a biennial, growing a large taproot and basal leaves the first year and the second year sending out a tall flowering stalk of pink or purple flowers which turn into the burr seed heads.

Burdock helps to remove stagnation and get rid of metabolic wastes. It is often used in detox teas and tinctures and for skin problems such as acne, psoriasis, and eczema. It can be used dried or fresh in teas, tinctures, decoctions, and vinegars.

Burdock has been used as a food in Asian cultures for centuries. You can purchase fresh burdock root, sold as gobo, at Asian markets or get it dried online or at your local herb store. I threw out my back years ago trying to remove it by digging, so now I just buy it.

Here is a stir fry recipe to try with the fresh root: https://www.wandercooks.com/japanese-burdock-and-carrot-stir-fry-kinpira-gobo/

Recipes of the Month

I’m guessing we haven’t seen the last of the heat. Here are some tasty fall salads to try. 


“‘It’s never too late to be what you might’ve been.”

?George Eliot

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