Primrose Hill herb walk

I spent this Saturday morning walking around the lovely Primrose Hill with herbalist Christopher Hedley and a group of keen herbal students and enthusiasts.  It rained, it was cold, we were cold, but it was fantastic!  Christopher led us through tips on identifying our medicinal plants (never taste until you are sure!) and told stories about the magic of the hill.

The view down Primrose Hill from under a Hawthorn tree

We ate leaves from Hawthorn and Linden trees (above dog height is always best).  We found and then discussed the use of fresh plants like Chickweed for itchy skin, Common Dock for Nettle stings, and Plantain for insect bites.

Chickweed - a fresh plant tincture is helpful on itchy skin conditions

I am so inspired!  It is wonderful to walk around a park in the middle of a big city like London and remember that there are traditional herbal medicines growing all around.  I have some freshly picked Cleavers ready in a pot for an overnight cold infusion which Christopher recommends to be drunk over a few days for a Springtime lymphatic cleanse.

Horsechestnut tree - the nuts can be used as a tonic for varicose veins

3 thoughts on “Primrose Hill herb walk

  1. Fascinating! It’s lots of fun to identify useful plants growing in public spaces. I’ve started to notice rat tailed radishes and purslane dotted around the place here in Chicago. They aren’t medicinal plants but they are delicious ‘weeds’. ‘Above dog height’ is a tasteful way to guide urban foragers to untainted leaves. I hope your Cleavers do the trick. I haven’t heard of it.

    • Thanks for your comment, I would love to hear more about the edible weeds near you! Do you have any favourite recipes?


      • I just saw your question when I came to check out your recent tea post. I like to eat young purslane dressed with sesame seed oil and a little vinegar. It’s full of omega 3 and grows as a weed through many of the urban farms I work at.

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