Video: Fireweed. Blooming Sally. Care, Cultivation, Reproduction. Beneficial Features. Medicinal Properties. Application. Flowers. A Photo
When the fireweed blooms, pink fog swirls on forest glades, meadows, sunny edges for more than two months. This savage is very handsome! And for their amazing properties, fireweed was nicknamed Ivan-tea. Thanks to him, the village of Kaporye became famous in Europe. The local peasants procured leaves and flowers of fireweed and prepared amazing Russian tea. It did not differ in color and taste from Ceylon and Indian, but did not contain puric acids and caffeine. But the set of useful vitamins and minerals is the richest. Correctly dried and brewed willow tea will be to the taste of the most avid teapot.
© böhringer friedrich
My grandmother prepared a young leaf of willow tea in the morning, washed and dried it on a sieve. Then she withers for about five hours and rolls the leaves into tight tubes on the palm or a wooden board until the juice appears. These tubes were laid on a wooden baking sheet in a thin layer, covered with a damp canvas and left in the sun for a couple of days. Only after that, the dried tubes were cut with a knife and put in a hot oven or oven for final drying.
This tea was stored in wooden boxes in a cool, dry place. By the way, they began to consume Kaporsky tea only in the fall, they say, it should ripen. It was brewed at the rate of 1 teaspoon on top of a glass of boiling water. It was golden in color and delicious in aroma. But even more aromatic, sweetish taste was obtained with the addition of dried flowers of fireweed. The flowers were dried separately on a sieve, covered with a canvas, in a ventilated room. A pinch was added to tea. And on a winter day, pictures of a sultry summer filled with a pink mist of fireweed immediately appeared before my eyes.
© Delphine Ménard
Not only tea was prepared by peasants from fireweed. In early spring, when the tender leaves just appeared, they were picked and made salads. By the way, they used to know that fireweed leaves can be eaten only in the first weeks of spring. In times of famine, roots were dug, ground and added to flour. The cakes made from such flour were sweetish. Household peasant women even collected the fluff of fireweed and stuffed pillows with it, and made fiber from the stems and spun threads for canvas.
And what does this most useful plant look like? It has straight, weakly branched stems up to 1.5 meters high, with narrow dark green leaves. Pink flowers, collected in long clusters, located at the end of a long light green ovary. Seeds are small, with a bunch of white, yellow hairs from prolonged lying.
The rhizome of the fireweed is powerful, the roots go to a depth of 2 m and form a dense network of thick pinkish horizontal roots. The plant produces a large number of buds from which shoots are formed. That is why such an ornamental plant is rarely used in garden design. Only in large parks can you find meadows planted with fireweed.
© Frank Vincentz
And yet this plant can be tamed, and then it will become a decoration of the garden. Firstly, it can be planted in moist soils where there is no shade in the morning. Secondly, it is very unpretentious.
The main thing is that when planting, you must immediately dig into the ground a cut-off wide metal barrel with drainage holes made in the bottom. It is advisable to dig it to a depth of at least 1 m. It is in this container that fireweed will grow without harming other plants. Once every 2-3 years, you will need to dig up the plants, remove the excess and plant again. In addition, there is a form with white flowers - Alba, which does not spread so aggressively over the site. Fireweed is not only beautiful, but also fills the garden with a delicate honey aroma.