From Hand-harvested to Handmade: A Kettle Care Field Trip

Posted by Kettle Care Team on Jun 25th 2022

From Hand-harvested to Handmade: A Kettle Care Field Trip

The Kettle Care Crew

In our last blog post, we explored the importance of enjoying the outdoors and reconnecting with nature to recharge our bodies and minds. We’ve just had a great opportunity to do this together as a small business with our annual Arnica and Comfrey harvest!

Despite daily rain showers in the last weeks, we headed out to one of our favorite trails, where we picked newly blooming Arnica flowers and leaves. Arnica fights bacteria and inflammation while soothing the skin. We make sure only to take one for every 10 flowers we see to ensure sustainable wildcrafting and to be considerate of other Arnica foragers — namely, the deer who love to munch on it.

It was refreshing to be in the quiet damp forest with just the flowers, moss, and newly sprouting mushrooms for company. In fact, it was so beautiful there that we decided to play with an impromptu product photo shoot! Leave it to wild nature and some quiet time to feel deeply inspired and joyful with your creative forces bubbling up and unfolding. 

Oatmeal Spice and Tangerine Bar Soaps

Kettle Care Hair Care

Arnica and Comfrey Muscle Rub

We then headed over to one of our local organic farms, Terrapin Farm,  for a Comfrey harvest. Comfrey softens skin, promotes rapid cell growth, and holds a number of powerful natural compounds, including Allantoin and Rosmarinic Acid.

The key to harvesting Comfrey sustainably is in carefully cutting the plant off at the stalk, allowing it to sprout back up again. Anyone who grows Comfrey will now grin a bit, as we all know that it is a hard to kill a Comfrey plant. It needs to be cut back two, three times during summer and it usually grows back with a vengeance, blooming vigorously and providing much needed nectar to our pollinators. 

Organic Comfrey

Besides its rejuvenating benefits in skincare, its leaves are nutritious feed to animals, or mulch in the garden, as it breaks down without stealing nitrogen from the soil. 

We spent the afternoon cutting Comfrey, chatting with our farmer friends, and relaxing a bit with their barn cats. This little guy's name is Echo and he is ball full of love!

Joel and Echo

Echo the Barn Cat

We topped the day off with a lunch feast at one of our favorite local eateries in Whitefish.

At the end of this refreshing trip we headed back to the shop and laid out the fresh Arnica and Comfrey on screens to dry them.

This ensures that no mold or bacteria will develop when we store them till next harvest time. Then, it’s off to the lab to be worked into an oil infusion or extract.

Fresh Wildcrafted Arnica

Dried Wildcraft Arnica

And that’s it — from plant to product in just a few weeks!