Perchance To Dream

Herbal Sleep Pillow

Do you know anyone who has trouble getting to sleep?  A friend has recently had heart surgery and is on a prescription medication regimen.  Her physician advised her against using herbs orally, even mildly relaxing, herbal teas that might possibly interact with the medicine.  Her sleep is often fitful, at best.  I recently made  sleep pillow for her, and the sleepy scent of it has helped her relax enough to drift off to a deeper sleep.

These little sleep pillows are naturally and beautifully scented with organically grown, relaxing herbs.  The finished size is 6 1/2″ x 8 1/2″ x 1/2″ (or any size you like), and designed to be placed on or next to your regular bed pillow.  Sew an inner liner case of gauzy cotton,  1/2″-3/4″ smaller all around than the outer case.   Fill it with about 1/2 cup of herbs so it easily slips inside the outer cover.  Attach a velcro closure to the liner so the herbs can be replaced and both parts of the pillow can be washed.  If you have a sewing machine, you can make the liner and the pillow case in about 30 minutes.

Relaxing, dried herbal blend

I assembled the above collection of herbs from those I dried at harvest last fall.  They include Rosa rugosa petals, Chamomile, Lavender, Hops and Lemon Balm.  The herbs hold their vibrancy and scent very well if stored in a jar, out of direct light.  Sleep pillows make great gifts for sleepless friends and relatives!

Rosa rugosa

If you don’t grow herbs yourself, you can purchase them in small amounts from a local, reputable herb store or even order them online.   The dried herbs should be vibrant, recognizable and appear to still contain the life force of the living plant.  Two of my favorite dried herb suppliers are Mountain Rose Herbs or Dandelion Botanical Company, both in the Pacific Northwest.

Fresh, dried hops

Dried hops are only potent for as long as they retain a green hue.  Once they turn tan or brown, they are no longer useful for this purpose.

Are you growing herbs this year?

Provence Lavender



Ostara, Spring Equinox!


Tra-la, it’s finally spring!

We feel really lucky to have a greenhouse. It is not a big one, (8’x10′) and not a new one, but it is just right for us. In 2014 we bought it for almost nothing from friends who didn’t want it, and moved it on a flatbed truck to the field behind our home.  It was a short, but precarious journey at 25 mph on back roads!  Once we got it home, we excavated a 6 inch deep “floor”, lined it with weed cloth and gravel, and secured it with a new foundation.

Last summer  we learned what not to do in a greenhouse, and this year we almost know what we are doing! We celebrated this new season of beginnings by rooting starts of Lavender, Garden Sage, Thyme, Hyssop and Mint from existing plants, and planting many new medicinal herb seeds.


I made some herb garden scrub soap this week, too, as I am definitely going to need it in the coming months.  What are your spring traditions?