Herbfarmacy, Herefordshire; a natural canvas of colours
Over thirty years ago, as one of the earliest members of the Soil Association, Paul Richards established a small, certified Organic, herb farm on a few acres of land in North Herefordshire. For many years, Paul opened the farm to visitors so that they could see and enjoy the spectacular plants he grew, many of which are used in a range of skincare products. Sadly, this year it’s not possible but we hope you enjoy reading about what Paul and his team do and seeing these images of the splendid herbs.
A closer look
In early spring, herbs are sown by hand using seeds collected from the previous year’s crop. During May, rows of new green shoots can be seen, surrounded by rich red soil overlooking the Wye Valley. All the herbs are tended by hand, including hoeing out weeds between each one; it really is a labour of love! These tiny herb-shoots flower in June and July to produce a wonderful canvas of colours that many visitors return to enjoy each year. The fields are full of butterflies, bees and other small creatures. Everyone loves seeing the farm a sea of orange, purple, blue and yellow.
Herbs like Marshmallow have emollient properties; when applied to the skin, they soften and soothe. Calendula, with its bright orange flowers, is a renowned healing-herb that help aid skin repair. Another useful anti-inflammatory herb is the beautiful blue Cornflower. The tall, yellow herb you can see is Mullein; it grows over six feet tall and the yellow petals are used to help soften and smooth ageing skin. The beautiful purple flower is Echinacea and, as well as being a firm favourite with bees, is used in traditional cold and flu therapies, and as an astringent for skincare.
Other herbs grown on the farm include Chamomile, Comfrey, Hypericum, Meadowsweet, Chickweed, Dandelion, Burdock and Horsetail, all of which can be used to help care for the skin.
All being well, we hope Paul and his team will be able to welcome visitors next year. For more information about openings click here and to find out what they do and to look at the products made, you can head over to the Herbfarmacy website
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