self-heal withers 28/72

working as part of a ‘Japanese 72 season micro-climate’ artist collaborative initiative within Treesisters)

Japanese season called ‘Geshi’/ summer solstice, 21st June until 6th July .
Micro climate ‘self-heal withers’ 21st – 26th June.

What a great title for a micro-season!
My first response to this title was ‘What happens when we interfere with the planet’s ability to heal herself?’.
Answer ‘It becomes up to us to support her in healing.’

But Yes! to summer solstice and the longest day.
It intrigues me that the Japanese should celebrate such a humble herb in this way. It must be important to them.
A plant often treated as an undesirable weed here.
I went online to see what it was and realised that we have something very similar here!
I was taught that this flower is called ‘bugle’, (Ajuga reptans) and I always let it seed and grow where it likes…often in the lawn though so does get the chop sometimes….but on closer examination I am not so sure….perhaps this is self-heal (Prunella vulgaris)!
Of course it is possible we have both here….but whatever it is, I think it is the same species, just adapting to different conditions.

How privileged I feel to have either variety as both have powerful healing properties for wounds. Good to learn!

The cut on my thumb is healing nicely and needs no bandage now….but I am suffering, (what are my usual), mid-summer sinus and throat infections. The humidity here, coupled with the warmth, seem to bring all into mould.
My cherry trees always succumb to some kind of fungal disease at this time of year and all food has to be carefully packed and stored. My sourdough starter has gone off (not the mother though…the table top one for everyday use…thank goodness as my starter is now 7 years old!).
I used my neti pot this morning to clear out my face (and feel much better for it!) and need to step up my vitamin C……which is easy now, with all the elderflowers out, ready for making into a cordial and the plethora of ever-giving herbs popping up all around. Herbal salads will bring me round, I am sure, and I picked a huge bunch of rhubarb today.
Rhubarb ginger crumble calls!

On my search for flashes of purple on this plot I had an unexpected surprise! More orchids! Growing where I have never spied them before. Hidden at the base of my husband’s garage bund. The purple one might actually be considered quite rare, but I have not had time to identify it yet.
The one on the left is a Common Spotted Orchid, not rare, but I do find them utterly enchanting.

Work on the tiny gallery continues.
It was quite a significant day when I cut out the side hatch/window. I felt terrified as I approached it with the jigsaw! But all went well. Phew!
I have designed this so that I can pop the whole hatch out like this. A ‘hide’ or artist’s viewing window….serving hatch even, but also to use as a puppet show theatre.
A real piece of ‘found’, recycled glass is waiting to be inserted, as a window, into the pop-out bit, so light will still come through this wall, even when the hatch is in place.
Something lovely about opening up spaces to the great outdoors, letting the air through, my ‘intuitive build’ structure breathes too now.

I have been continuing with making time to thank the Earth and Gaia daily in meditation.
Asking for strength and guidance on this quest and connecting back into the OM of life. It always brings me back to here,the breath, and sets the intention for the day, enabled to proceed, mindfully, with the next step, stopping me from racing on. The message always ‘Slow down little one, slow down…’
I cannot imagine life without this ritual now….my disabling anxiety is becoming a thing of the past, that is, unless I do not do this!!
It really is very noticeable how this practise helps me to control my serious ‘time’ anxiety and general over thinking of everything. Thank you Gaia and trees for this breath!
This image has been popping up for me a lot so I thought I’d do a quick doodle.
When I lie in ‘child’s pose upon the ground, I often feel guided to widen my legs and become ‘frog-like’ against the soil. This image is born from wondering what that might look like from underneath!
At the moment it is called ‘Earth Touch’, but feel like there is a better title coming soon…..

Then there is this little musical experiment to share.
I do not know if anyone has changed the words of this familiar song before in this way, but it seems fitting in these times….I cannot stop humming this as I build….so I thought I’d have a play with myself again!

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