The Medicinal Effects of Chickweed

The little chicks are going to be all right. Yesterday they were eagerly eating chickweed that I tossed into them. They even began to fight over it. Next my husband dropped them a tiny worm he had found when planting a fruit tree. The chick’s reaction turned quickly from curiosity to something of a frenzy, and at one point they each had hold of the worm.

Chickweed Flower

Chickweed Flower (Photo credit: The Equinest)

Chickweed is so named because chickens and birds love it. It is a low-growing, ground-cover type plant found all over the world in the spring; it is flourishing now in south Alabama. Chickweed (Latin name Stellaria media) is a highly nutritional plant, used as a medicinal herb by many. I pull it by great handfuls and toss to the big girls, too. No doubt they find it when they are allowed to free range in the pecan orchard and along the fence rows, however, where I find the most chickweed is growing in the gardens surrounding the house, which is off limits for the girls for obvious reasons.

You can find out more about the benefits of chickweed here and here.

Run a search on Google for images of chickweed. Once you know what it looks like, you’ll have a ready and nutritional treat for your chicks. But it only lasts through the cooler temps of the spring!

 

The Stick, the Chick, and Me…

Here’s how it turned out since my previous post:

The gardenia stick is dead as it’ll ever be.

I believe I killed it by procrastination. I would have done better to plant it in a little pot the instant I saw the roots. I kept saying, “I’ll do that tomorrow.” I am still saying that, because the stick is still in its cup beside my sink. You win some, you lose some, but at least you tried, and in every case you gain more knowledge.

I appear to have won out better with Elvira.

She can now walk well and for longer periods. She continues to often hold her right foot in an arched position. She can grip with the foot, however.

I am now the reluctant owner of a somewhat lame truly backyard chicken. Our Elvira spent much of the past three weeks in our backyard, with overnights in private accommodations in the garden room. After much picking up and carrying, much confinement so she wouldn’t overuse the leg, soaking her feet and legs in Epsom salts and coating with antibiotic cream (she had red spots of inflammation on her feet), she now follows me, comes at the sound of my voice. I’m not altogether happy about a pet chicken, but there you are. She is giving eggs again. As of yesterday, I eased her fully back in with the flock. She was as reluctant to do that as I was to have a pet chicken.

I look forward, and press on, with making this book available in the coming month.

On the Me front, I’m writing again, purposefully, enthusiastically. I have, in these weeks that I’ve been tending a chicken and silent on this blog, finished revising and expanding a novella I originally wrote and published with Silhouette Books twenty years ago. Oh, the delight the moment I realized I had finished the final edit–and that I was happy with it!

I am in the midst of learning how to e-publish. I’ll be writing more on all of this in the coming weeks.

In the words of Rainey Valentine, my heroine in Lost Highways:

I don’t know where I’m goin’, but I’ll know when I get there. ~Rainey Valentine, Lost Highways

I’ll Let You Know How It All Turns Out

So…my cutting from Aunt Winnie’s gardenia bush, of which I proudly blogged here, is now this discouraging stick.

And this morning we found our dear Elvira flopping down with an injured right leg. She seems to be in the same condition as happened to our precious Princess Puny when Puny was only a week old.

Here is what I have done:

Right beside my little stick of Aunt Winnie’s gardenia, I have placed this pot of a successfully rooted cutting from one of my own gardenia bushes. I thought it might encourage the stick. It does encourage me. Plan B will be to send for another cutting in the spring and try again.

Those of you who follow this blog may remembering our little Princess Puny, who at just over a week had an injured leg, hip, something that had her flopped over. This little photo is of when she could stand but not walk.

I went out and took a photo of Princes Puny now to remind me of miraculous recovery. 

I am deliberately expecting the best on both counts. I’ll let you know how it all turns out.

It’s a funny thing about life; if you refuse to accept anything but the best, you very often get it. ~ W. Somerset Maugham