St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Oh how I love this flower that I associate with mid summer and the long-awaited mid summer heat. I have been tending the most beautiful community at about 5,000 feet for 8 years now and the active ingredient, hypericin, is potent. This flower is different, as it has an affinity with the sun, and the oil can only be made with fresh plant material. The oil from these bright yellow flowers turns deep red as it infuses. Each year we make about 50 gallons from this alchemistical plant. We crush the flowers in an old ringer washer or with a rolling pin and infuse them in extra virgin olive oil. You don't have to do this step, but it yields a much redder and potent oil. I put the glass jars out in full sun for 3 weeks. Every night I take off the lids and wipe off the condensation on the lids and top off with more olive oil, making sure that all the plant material is covered in oil. When the oil is ready, we decant the oil off, strain with muslin, and store in our cool dark basement. We use this versatile plant medicine as an anti-fungal in our Fungal Salvation. As an anti-inflammatory in our Wildflower Prairie Body Oil. As a nervine in our Sore Muscle Salvation and Sore Joint Salvation. As a wound healer in our Lord My Hands Are So Dry Lotion. Oh and in the very first product we ever made; our Gaia Goo Healing Salve.