Forage Walk at Horse Haven UK – 11 September 2016 (Part 2)

Mint

All forms of this plant are edible – including the white and red dead nettles which are part of this family

The family can be identified by the fact that they have square stems with leaves growing on opposite sides and a space in between each set on the stem.  Also the flowers all have 2 petals

Benefits:

  • Ÿmint can be good for digestion
  • Ÿhorses might prefer varieties with less menthol, eg spearmint

mint

 

Cow Parsley

Caution:

  • Ÿnot to be confused with Hemlock which is poisonous
  • Ÿthe leaves of Cow Parsley are a lighter green
  • o its stems are ribbed and have a groove running along them – like celery
  • o the flower heads are more lacey
  • ŸHemlock has smooth, non-hairy stems that are more oval in shape and they have red spots
  • o the flower heads are bigger and more ball-like in shape

Benefits:

  • aids digestion
  • has calmative properties
  • speeds the healing process

cow-parsley

Cleavers

Benefits:

  • diuretic therefore good for cleansing blood
  • Ÿgood for inflammation

cleavers

 

Elder

Benefits:

  • flies dislike the smell of the leaves therefore hang bunches or rub them on your horses skin as a deterrent

elder

 

Burdock

Young leaves are edible but it’s generally the root that is used medicinally

Benefits:

  • good for kidneys, blood and lymph cleansing therefore can help in cases of arthritis
  • good for skin and eyes (taken internally)
  • helps balance blood sugar levels

burdock-flowers burdock

 

Dog Rose

Benefits:

  • high in vitamin c
  • good for horses with breathing problems

dog-rose

Chickweed

This plant is great for growing on a track, or at gateways into fields, as it helps to hold soil in place

Benefits:

  • high in antioxidants therefore helps ‘mop up’ free radicals
  • If your horse is a little overweight, or has fatty pads these can be a source of free radicals and so chickweed and other sources of antioxidants will be of benefit

chickweed

 

Dock

The leaves are edible and when young are good in salad or steamed like spinach

Benefits:

  • high in iron therefore of benefit if your horse is deficient (can happen for some laminitics as some of the bacteria involved can steal iron)
  • high in vitamin C

dock

Comfrey

Benefits:

  • good for arthritis
  • inflammation of stomach lining
  • lungs
  • externally:
  • o       a poultice can be made from the root and applied to areas with muscle, tendon or ligament damage to support healing

*Comfrey should not be taken internally over long periods of time as toxicity can build up in the liver

comfrey

Flea Bane

Benefits:

  • used to be used for dysentery
  • can be burnt to keep fleas  / flies away

fleabane

St John’s Wort

Benefits:

  • helps to stabilise mood
  • pain relief, eg for arthritis
  • great for use as a macerate (ie soaking the herb in oil until it absorbs the plants oils)
  • o       (turns red)

st-johns-wort