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Plantain grows wild around our own backyard. Once it starts, it really takes over. Harvest young leaves before flowering and seeding start. Plantain is cooling and moist, but can have an astringent quality.

I really like plantain because I have the kids help me identify it in the yard whenever they get an ant bite or sting. It can also draw anything out that’s in the upper layer of skin. Plantain is anti-inflammatory and mildly antibacterial as well.

Plantain can aid with

  • inflammatory bowel disorders
  • staph infections
  • boils
  • allergic rashes
  • eczema
  • hives
  • acne
  • burns

Fresh plantain tincture can be useful for anyone suffering from inflammatory bowel disorder. Plantain is also used internally to remove phlegm from the lungs and is safe for use in children, using proper dosing.

Other than its beneficial properties in aiding one’s health, plantain also has its culinary uses. It’s a pretty easy plant to harvest for use in salads. Young leaves are great for salads. Older leaves need to be cooked. Plantain is rich in calcium and Vitamin K.


If you have a burn, you can apply a plantain poultice immediately and bandage with the leaves. Afterwards, using a plantain salve can aid in healing.

Photo by Pixabay on

Cuts and Open Sores

Wash cuts with plantain tea or a diluted tea.

Do you have plantain growing in your yard? How do you use it?

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Appreciating Home

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Home Sweet Home. Finally feeling more settled and comfortable. We moved from a little under 3 acres to 10 acres. The solitude is bliss. Today’s post is just going to be me sharing our new home with our readers. It’s breathtaking.

Photographed by Amanda Harman

We have two ponds on our property (hubby calls them lakes). One pond is entirely ours, and the other we share with a very select few. I love to sit and watch the water when it rains. Watching the lightning behind the line of pine trees is mesmerizing. I’ve never really been drawn to bodies of water and I particularly dislike the ocean. I do find quite a bit of solace wandering the perimeter of our bodies of water though in our backyard.

Photographed by Amanda Harman

The lily pads in the ponds are in bloom. They’re still beauty demands attention when you walk past.

Photographed by Amanda Harman

Happy caterpillars enjoy their do nothing but eat stage of life.

Our animals are enjoying the extra space as well.

New life was celebrated on the new homestead. We moved the animals on May 5. Lyris gave birth to two healthy polled bucklings the same day. It is her first time being a mama. She didn’t know what to do so I had to stay home an extra day to teach her how to nurse patience since she didn’t want to sit still while the kids greedily ate. She finally accepted that she had to take care of these babies, not run away from them nonstop.

There was not a barn on the land, so we had to add that before the animals moved. It has come such a long way.

The house itself is gorgeous. Very little actually needs to be done do it on the inside. We’re told it’s a French style home. Whatever it is, I am in love with the brick and the trees on the driveway.

The treasures we find in the yard are priceless. The magnolias are intoxicating and the wild mushrooms are mystical.

I cannot get enough of how much the animals love it here. Our family is adjusting nicely to the isolation. It’s really not the bad though. We’re about 20 minutes from town, which is great. It’s so quiet and I’m really learning to appreciate that quiet.

We’re slowly, but surely, creating a paradise at home.

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We’re BACK!

Botany & Wildcrafting Course by Herbal Academy

It’s been forever. So much has happened in the past three months that has prevented me from writing. First, it’s the end of the school year. I teach special needs and this time of year is pretty paperwork heavy for me. This year is particularly busy because over half of my caseload is graduating. Which means more paperwork and more meetings than normal.

On top of that, we moved the WHOLE farm. ALL OF IT. I cannot believe we did it. We knew that our long term goal was to one day own more land, but that goal became a reality much sooner than we had originally anticipated. Everything happened so quickly and it demanded all of our attention.

My husband got a zillow notification of a property that was on sale a few months back. It was a nice looking house on about 10 acres. We knew we wanted to build but decided to look at this house on a whim. It’s not often than we instantly fall in love with a home, but we did upon looking at this house.

The stars were definitely lined up for us because we hit the ground running as soon as we made the offer. Before we knew it we were packing up the entire house we were living in and getting it ready to be shown to be sold.

Moving a whole farm is far from easy. I enjoyed 0% of the whole moving process. Our animals shared the same feelings with me. On the day we had to move the animals, I rode a donkey.

It wasn’t an experience I would brag about. It provided much comedic relief and thankfully didn’t end in harm to anyone. We had both donkeys in the trailer. The younger one decided she didn’t want to be on the railer anymore and was able to leave before we could shut the trailer. I was thinking, since she’s my buddy and all, that if I stood in her path and redirected her she would comply. I also knew that plan might not work. It didn’t work.

Merida, our younger donkey, trotted up to me. I tried to kind of nudge her back, but she somehow got her head under my armpit and lifted. That’s when a trot turned into a gallop. Next thing I know, I’m further up on this donkey. I had to lift my leg to get off of her. I was riding her backwards and didn’t realize she was about to turn. As she turned, we both kind of–fell. I fell on my back and as she started to lean down towards me I was able to push her back up to her feet with my hands to make sure she didn’t actually fall on me.

We looked at each other after I stood up. I swear the look on her face said And we will never speak of this. To anyone. Ever. But it was too late. My husband was dying from laughter. And you know what she did later? Simply walked on the trailer by herself.

We got all the animals moved on Cinco de Mayo. Hours after the move, Lyris had her first kidding. She brought two baby boys into the world and she couldn’t have been more terrified. She just didn’t know what to do with them. Three days in a pen with her babies and me encouraging her to nurse and now she’s an attentive mother. Her boys are gorgeous and I’m hoping to sell them for breeding as they’re just simply stunning.

The property itself is breath-taking. I will be posting more about the property next week. Now that we’ve moved and mostly settled I’m hoping to be writing a bit more routinely again. I don’t have my camera unpacked yet, so you’ll have to settle for my pictures off my phone.

Looking forward to writing about our crazy adventures on the farm again. Thank you everyone who waited so patiently for us to return. Have a great week!

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New Toy on the Farm

Botany & Wildcrafting Course by Herbal Academy We’re getting ready to expand our farm! We began to design and plot out a new location on our property to build a greenhouse and expand pasture for our animals. We realized that we need to move a pond, take down some large trees, build a pad, and construct 250′ of road and place a parking lot. Our current BX25 would not be up to the task. We found ourselves faced with two difficult choices: rent a larger piece of equipment during our expansion or replace our small, but reliable Kubota BX25 TLB.
Photographed by Amanda Harman
We began where we always do: calculating project costs. After many weeks of projections, we found that renting would be wasteful; so, we decided to upgrade. We found ourselves asking: What do we get? What do we need? How much will we grow? The search was on.  After having a Kubota there was no question that we wanted another Kubota. There are so many models. We looked at the B series, L-series, and the B26 TLB Series. The research was completed after combing through all the specifications. The Keyboard Warrior was done. We progressed to the next step: obtaining trade in values on our current BX25 and purchase price of the required equipment. We sent out several requests to separate dealers and–to our delight–most responded promptly. The dealership that sold us our original BX25 was even among the many who responded to our request. The quotes were all in, the purchase price and trade in values were all comparable between dealers; however, there was one individual that stood out: Roy at Futch’s Power Depot. His sincerity on the phone was unmatched.  One statement that was made created quite an impression; Futch’s Power Depot stated that they will earn our business if we give him the chance, no matter what. Roy was confident that their service, price, and staff were the best. Roy worked with me over a two-day period to finish the paperwork, complete the financing, and get the tractor built. Roy constantly communicated with me until delivery day. Roy and staff personally delivered our tractor and the trailer we ended up buying as part of a package. They also picked up the trade which made it easy for us to begin our projects.
Photographed by Amanda Harman
The test: the new Kubota l-Series has power, speed, and performance.  I performed a few minor tasks and one thing became apparent: the loader had an issue. I was initially uneasy with a million thoughts running through my head. I wondered to myself, Is this the beginning of a nightmare?  I prepped myself and called Roy to let him know the issue.  Roy was more than accommodating and scheduled pick up. Roy went out of his way to ease my mind and make sure I was at ease and not upset.  I told Roy that I do not judge a business by a single issue that arises. It happens. I reserve judgement for how the issue is dealt with.  A few days went by with Roy consistently communicating with me and asked that I come to the service shop to go over options with them. I traveled to the Futch’s and met Lonnie and Steve. Both were understanding and just wanted me to be able use the new equipment. They were straightforward and honest and by the time I left the dealership I knew that the issue would be resolved one way or another.  Futch’s delivered a loner to use until we get this issue figured out. Lonnie and Steve communicated with me regularly and within a few days the issue was resolved, with the tractor back on the farm so that we can continue our work.
Photographed by Amanda Harman
Now, there are no issues left. Now it’s time for us to get to work on our expansion this year.  Our experience with Futch’s Power Depot was–by far–one of the easiest and best that we have had with a major purchase.  Harman Farms highly recommends visiting Futch’s Power Depot and talking with Roy for your future purchases.  Roy was correct from the beginning that he would earn our business and he also earned our respect. We will definitely be purchasing from them in the future. Follow our blog to stay updated. We’re also on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and Instagram. Come check us out. Affiliate Disclosure

Cascara Sagrada Bark

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Cascara sagrada is a cooling drying stimulating laxative. Cascara sagrada is very–very–strong. Much stronger than yellow dock. This should be avoided unless the need is dire. And, of course, as long as you’re not leaving the house.

Because this herb is so strong, it is advised to use on a situational basis rather than an ongoing one. This is not a herb to use for the longterm. It is advised to take cascara sagrada with a carminative like cardamom or fennel. This can help prevent griping.

The bark needs to cure for 1-3 years. Fresh bark is dangerously potent.

The active constituents in cascara sagrada are hydroxyanthraquinone glycosides called cascarosides. Cascarosides induce peristalsis, which promotes a bowel movement.

Cascara sagrada improves the flow of secretions from the pancreas, stomach, and liver to promote digestion and aid in elimination.

Cascara sagrada also increases bile secretion from the gallbladder. This can be helpful if you have gallstones, or as a preventative from gallstones.

The recommended dosage is 1-2 teaspoons of dried bark per 8 ounces of water. Decoct for 20 minutes. If you’re using a tincture, use .5-2 mL once a day. Again, this stuff is dangerously strong. You really need to be sure this is what you need before using it.

I have never had a need to use this powerful herb, but heard it is very effective. Have you ever used cascara sagrada?

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