Birch Tree Foraging 2011-

After a short stop on the Latvian Kurzeme seaside, we travelled back to Aizpute via minor roads of gravel. Turned left off into the forest, past the clear cuts and semi-managed forest. Deep along the paths we came to a marker in the earth marking private land, a circle cut in the side turf next to a junction. This was a good place to stop and collect birch leaves (Betula pendula) from the younger trees on an stream embankment.

Careful not to pick too many from each young tree, we moved about the spring green speckled haze. We all picked at different paces. Nokarenais bērzs, Silver Birch, Rauduskoivu: Tea made from the leaves was suggested by S. to be good for spring cleaning the insides, the kidneys and bladder, as a powerful diuretic. Just don’t drink at night: your sleep will be interrupted.