Reminiscing about these tiny purple blossoms and their wonderful sweetness got me
thinking about all of the bountiful benefits of Red Clover...and I found myself foraging for
a healing DIY herbal tea before I knew it!
Let me share this sweet treat with you...
Red clover is one of the most unassuming “weeds” there are. We all know her from our childhood, when we would find her in parks nestled next to the playground.
But that’s all I knew her as, a free treat! Now? I’ve found she is so much more! The benefits of Red Clover are seemingly endless, and I’m going to let you in on a little secret: she can be made into a brilliant Red Clover DIY herbal tea!
When I first started studying herbalism, I came across Red Clover right away, and quickly realized it was the same sweet blossom that I had enjoyed so cheerfully as a child.
Red Clover is very easy to spot, and in most places in Canada they are considered invasive.
They grow in fields, parks, on sidewalks, meadows, and open forests.
The benefits of Red Clover are overwhelming, from teas and tinctures, or recovery masks to gentle face oil and so much more! There seems to be more and more scientific research being done on her all the time.
Red Clover is very rich in Vitamin C, loaded with antioxidant properties, and full of ascorbic acid which helps to produce collagen and speed up healing. It is traditionally used as a diuretic, which helps rid the body of toxins, but also acts as a very wonderful face oil, cleanser, mask...you name it!
These factors combined help the skin maintain a healthy thickness, reduce wrinkles, alleviate acne and redness, and can even reduce pore size.
So let’s get to know this beautiful herb, shall we? I am a firm believer that the best way to get to know a plant ally is to forage it, dry it, and infuse it in a tea. Through this process, we are able to learn through touch, taste, smell, and spirit.
Step 1: Start by heading outside, anytime during late May to late October (Red Clover is always the last plant I’m able to forage before the snow hits.) Don’t forget to bring your basket and shears! Once you have spotted a patch (preferably a few feet away from any heavily trafficked area), gather a few handfuls from different sections of the patch. We want to make sure not to “clear-cut” the field. Try and do this in dispersed sections. Cut the stems about 5 inches from the flower.
Step 2: Once you are home with your freshly harvested Red Clover, gently rinse them off in the sink to get rid of any extra critters or dirt. Gather into bundles of about 4 or 5 and tie the bottom of the stems together with garden twine. Hang upside down in a well ventilated corner of your house. Red Clover is very quick to dry out, so this should only take about two or three days!
Step 3: After a few days, they should be completely dried out. Pinch off the head of the blossoms and put them in your favourite jar. I find Red Clover blossoms to be absolutely beautiful, so I like to keep them in a clear mason jar on my counter. Looking at them always cheers me up! Now you have your gorgeous Red Clover DIY herbal tea at an arm's reach whenever you feel like it.
Step 4: Throw a handful in a tea pot and fill with boiling water. Let it steep for 5-10 minutes before pouring it into your favourite mug. Notice the blossoms expanding in the water, the colour comes back into them a bit, the smell is sweet, and the gifts she is about to offer your body are peaceful.
Pro tip – If you are too excited to wait until they are dry, you can pinch off a few of the fresh blossoms and steep them in a mug so you have something delicious to sip on while you are hanging your harvest. Maybe while you’re also letting a gorgeous Red Clover face oil gently heal your skin. The possibilities are endless!
*Please do take careful note that Red Clover also holds isoflavones, which are chemical compounds that can act like estrogen. These are beneficial in most cases, but please do take consideration when you are ingesting them and have a chronic disease or are pregnant.