This summer has been the hottest on record! The sun has been blazing down, and the poor plants are starting to suffer. If you can, leave a shallow bowl of water and pebbles out in the shade for the bees and birds to drink from, the heat is pretty hard on them too!
As a person of Irish extraction, I am PALE and a bit prone to burning. This heat just makes me wilt. All I want is some iced (Linden) Tea and to stay in the shade. For anyone else who suffers from sunburn in strong sun like this, or just for a refreshing aftersun cool down, try these herbal ice cubes to slather on your skin. Stay Cool people!
This recipe* originally appeared in our book 'The Handmade Apothecary' (Kyle Books, 2017), but the terribly dry weather isn't conducive to picking chickweed, so instead, substitute it with common mallow (Malva sylvestris), marshmallow (Althea officinalis) or plantain (Plantago sp.) leaves. If you don't have these herbs to hand, use a half a cucumber instead.
*External use only. If you are prone to sensitive skin or are unsure whether you may react to any ingredients, patch test a small amount on an area of sensitive skin for 48 hours first.