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April Newsletter
What’s Happening at Four Winds Farm

This newsletter includes:
  •     News from the Farm
  •     Info on the new Farm Stand & Co-op
  •     Herb of the Month column – Stinging Nettle
  •     Herb of the Month class – April 25th
  •     Fairy Gardens with Susan Daggett: AP 21st & 28th May 12th &19th
  •     The Artist Gardening classes with Deborah, May 2nd & 9th
  •     Juice Plus+ Healthy Living,  May 17, 6:30 – Spring Lake Country Club
  •     Outdoor Herb Trek: May 27th, Wild and Free…Use those Weeds!
  •     Essential Oils to keep you above the wellness line
  •     Tools for Transformation – Private Sessions with Deborah
  •     April’s coupon hidden somewhere in the news

More information is on our website:

 News from the Farm
Additions – Fences, and more, are being added to the main “International Herb of the Year” garden, along with other changes including: a new potting/drying shed with a shaded front porch; a “herb info to go” mailbox, various theme gardens and a lot more flowers. If you’d enjoy some hands-on gardening experience, let me know. I’d love to have hardy helpers.Book your event – Four Winds Farm is going to be a very flowery place this summer! The Bella Sol teaching center, Bella Luna covered patio and the herb garden are available for you to book your private group. Ideas include: business meetings, wedding or bridal showers, “make and take” herb class with Deborah (minimum 10) and youth programs. Summer dates are filling; book your private group as soon as possible.Terripin Farms (owned by Brad and Jessica Whiston) will again be growing chemical-free veggies on 4 acres of land here at Four Winds, and their 12 acres nearby. Note: there are still a few CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) shares available for Quincy and Hannibal. For details on this 18 week vegetable program see:  or
Terripin will also be operating a Farm Stand & Co-op by the front driveway. Come shop for spring starter plants (vegetables, herbs and flowers), also spring greens and herbal products. As the seasons progress the store will have more wonderful vegetables, FWF herbs and cut flowers, plus locally-grown items from neighbors and colleagues.
Herb of the Month – Stinging Nettle   by Deborah
One of the first plants to spring forth each year is Stinging Nettle. You usually see it growing near water. I transplanted some into a shady, damp part of the Farm’s gardens last year and it is doing well.Stinging Nettle, Urtica dioica, is often called common nettle, burn nettle or nettle leaf. An herbaceous perennial, Nettle is a flowering plant in the Urticaceae family. It is native to Europe, Asia, North Africa and North America. Having been introduced elsewhere, Nettle grows in many regions.Many sub-species of Nettle have tiny stingers on their stems and leaves. (Photos below.) Plant chemistry reveals that a cocktail of acetylcholinehistaminemoroidinleukotrienes, serotonin, and possibly formic acid can be shot out the plants’ needle-like stingers. So, wear gloves and a long sleeve shirt when you are out harvesting this plantBy now you may be wondering why a person would even want to gather Nettle. Aw, sometimes we need to overcome hardship to find treasure. Our mid-western Stinging Nettle offers a wonderful resource for nutritious food, beverage, medicine, hair rinse, fabric dye and fiber. The good news is: the stingers instantly collapse when dried or placed in hot water.

Nature’s wisdom: Native cultures understood that any toxic plant had an antidote growing within 3-4 feet. This is because Nature is a balanced system. To remove the sting of Nettle, crush leaves of either Yellow Dock, Jewel Weed, or Plantain leaves to help stop the sting. Simply pick a few leaves from one of these helpers, crush and rub them on the affected area. Before people had gloves, this understanding was especially helpful. If you wear shorts in the woods, like me, you may appreciate this insight too! The stings can really hurt.

As a food source, Nettle contains up to 25% protein, dry weight. This is high for a leafy green vegetable. Nettle is also abundant in vitamins A and Ciron, calcium, potassium and manganese. Like many wild spring greens, spring nettle delivers a powerhouse of nutrients.

Culinary uses: Infuse young leaves in water to make a pleasant tea. Use it like spinach in casseroles, such as rice and cheese; soufflé; egg frittata or omelet; even puree’ it to use in pesto. I like to dry the leaves to make Nettle tea in winter.

Traditional Medicinal uses: Nettle has long been prepared both as a leaf infusion or tincture and a root tincture. Historically it has been used for: kidney and urinary tract disorders; gastrointestinal problems and to stop diarrhea; support to the cardiovascular system; decreased bleeding, hemorrhaging or menstrual flow; skin rashes and eczema; aid with gout and influenza. A common usage over centuries has been as a rubefacient for rheumatism. Treatments often included picking the leafy stems and either flogging or applying the stinging needles on the skin to cause inflammation. New mothers through-out time have used Nettle as a galactagogue to promote lactation. As you are beginning to see, Nettle has a big footprint in the herbal medicine cabinet.

Nettle leaves and growth resemble mint                 Stingers are on both the stem and leaves

Spring Nettle offers the best time to harvest

Botany: Urtica dioica is a dioeciousherbaceousperennial plant, 3 to 7 feet tall in the summer, dying down to the ground in winter. It has widely spreading rhizomes and stolons, which are bright yellow, as are the roots. The soft, green leaves are 1 to 6 inches long and are borne oppositely on an erect, wiry, green stem. Leaves have a strongly serrated margin, a cordate base, and an acuminate tip with a terminal leaf tooth longer than adjacent laterals. Nettle bears small, greenish or brownish, numerous flowers in dense axillary inflorescences. The leaves and stems are very hairy with nonstinging hairs, and in most subspecies, also bear many stinging hairs (trichomes), whose tips come off when touched, transforming the hair into a needle.
In the Garden: Nettle is sometimes suggested for companion planting because it has the potential to welcome beneficial insects and also enrich soil. The plant thrives in phosphorus-rich and nitrogen rich soils, especially areas recently disturbed or aerated. So, a wise gardener or farmer views a Nettle patch as an indicator of soil fertility soil. Rudolph Steiner’s Biodynamic Agriculture suggests adding Nettle to your compost pile (along with Yarrow flowers, Chamomile   blossoms, Oak barkDandelion blossoms and Valerian flowers) and to enhance soil vitality. Nettles contain a lot of nitrogenous compounds which help activate compost.
April Herb of the Month ClassStinging Nettle
After this study group we hope Stinging Nettle will become your new valued friend! Le Kellum and I are psyched about our 2nd monthly class featuring this amazing herb used for: beverage, food, health enhancement and fiber. During the evening you will:
  •          Walk through the gardens to explore Nettle and some of its friends
  •          Move indoors to prepare, and sample, a few ways to use Nettle
  •          Learn about Nettle’s many virtues
  •          Make an herb preparation to take home
  •          Receive a great study guide for later use
  •          Take a little time to visit the new Farm Stand
Tuesday, April 25th 6-8pm; Four Winds Farm, 3729 N. 36th 
Fee $25 – includes:  all supplies and instruction. Please register early so we can plan ahead. Limit 12
Purchase tickets online at
Or send a check to Four Winds Farm, 3729 N 36th, Quincy, IL 62305
For details:  OR  217-257-1480
May Herb of the Month – Yarrow
The monthly class will feature Yarrow the Protector. This amazing plant grows all over the world and has been respected for thousands of years for medicinal use. It is also a powerful flower remedy:Tuesday May 30th, 6-8pm
Fairy Gardens and Other Garden-Art
Friday evenings with Artist Susan Daggett at Four Winds Farm. End the week with a little fun and creativity. Susan has a series of “make and take” fairy gardens, plus other unique garden-art happenings. She also is leading summer programs for kids this summer at the Farm. Let your creativity flow! Pre-registration is a must. All supplies will be provided. You will take home a miniature garden. $35 for each. These events are filling quickly. Here’s the April and May listings:April 21st – Fairy Gardens (a JWCC Community Ed class) – full
April 28th – Fairy Gardens (a JWCC Community Ed class) – 1 spot
May 12th –  Make a Garden with/or for Mom: Fairy or Gnome:
1 adult & 1 youth, $35 per garden

May 19th – Fairy Gardens, $35To enroll or inquire contact Susan Daggett:
217-666-4961 or 217-223-0337
The Artistic Garden
Unwind with Deborah in the Four Winds Farm gardens. Discover artistic gardening “secrets” for both your landscape and your container plantings. Explore the use of color, shape, height, texture, aroma and the art of placement. Realize how perennials and annuals provide uniquely different roles in the garden, also which takes the most work. Plan to take home a few treasures; plus lots of creative and useful ideas. Just for the fun of it, BYO wine. We have the glasses.
Tuesday eve, May 2nd, 6-8pm, $20
Buy tickets online at:
Or send a check to:  Four Winds Farm, 3729 N 36th, Quincy, IL 62305
For details:  OR  217-257-1480
The Artistic Container Garden
Unwind and get creative with Deborah. There’s more to creating an awesome container garden than just transplanting a few starter plants. Discover the “secret” trilogy of fillers, thrillers and spiller. Explore the use of color, shape, height, texture, aroma and the art of placement. Discuss potting mixes and mulch, including ways to stretch your need to water daily. Look at some examples of eye-pleasing planters versus ones which look chaotic. Plan to take home some great ideas and a few treasures. Just for the fun of it, BYO wine. We have the glasses.
Tuesday eve, May 9th, 6-8pm, $20     Registration same as above
Concerned about Toxic Chemicals in Your Home?
Want to learn how to kick them to the curb? Robin Jarvis and Sandy Trudell walk you through step by step and give easy, simple, and affordable tactics that anyone can do with the best essential oils on the planet. Gear up for a fast-paced, ground-up lecture on everything oils, and have some fun and pampering in the process. We can’t wait to see you! You are the gatekeeper of your home…it’s time to take control of what crosses your threshold!
May 16th 6:30pm, Four Winds Farm
For more info and to register: Sandy Trudell, 217-440-4458,
Wild and Free…Use Those Weeds!  May 27th
Nature is in her full spring glory by late May. There are SO many edible and medicinal plants to explore. We will meet at Quinsippi Island (unless otherwise instructed) to become acquainted with numerous wild plants. After a few hours we will drive to Four Winds Farm, gather more plants and add them to our meal.  Everyone will bring a lunch item to share. Deborah will make soup and salad to which foraged items will be added!
Saturday, May 27th, 9am – 3pm.  $25, Includes: light lunch, study guides and instruction
Quinsippi Island, Quincy, IL then Four Winds Farm, 3729 N. 36th Quincy, IL
Buy ticket online at:
Questions or to join: email or call 217-257-1480
Juice Plus+ Healthy Living Evening
What would you do if you could enhance your health? I have spent a lifetime growing and eating a vegetable-based diet. I have also experienced some amazing healing miracles. That’s the only way to express it. As a Dr. of Nutrition, I learned that nutrient-dense vegetables and fruit offer the foundation for health. But, who eats 5-12 serving a day of fresh produce??? That is the suggested goal. What if I could show you the way I’ve accomplished this goal, easily, for 24 years? Would you be interested? To me, health is the most important resource I have.Join me, Dr. Margie Williams and other health care professionals for an evening dedicated to transforming your health.
May 17th 6:30pm – Spring Lake Country Club. More details in the May newsletter and at:  OR  call Deborah at 217-257-1480 for details.

Tools for Transformation – Client sessions with Deborah

Read all about it at the links below!

Flower Remedies

Emotional Re-Patterning

Juice Plus+ Vegetables, Fruit, Berries in a Capsule!
       MD approved in 26 countries
Deborah’s private sessions are at Body-Mind-Spirit Wellness Center,1702 N 24th, Quincy. Also available on the web via Zoom (or phone) for those outside our area.