Monday morning after being away on vacation for 4 weeks, It is great to be back on the dyke with my trusty 4 legged companion! It is 13 degrees, wind is warming, blowing the sweet honey scent of the cottonwoods in the air. Try it! Just pick a branch and bring it close to your nose and inhale the scent of the sticky resin or sap that is on the outer covering of the leaf buds, of which most have fallen to the ground now. Better yet cut a few branches and take inside your home, the sweet scent will permeate your rooms for days!

The stinging nettles are proudly standing straight and already a foot tall in some places, best for foraging (eating) is when little smaller and just the finger length tips. If you intend to try to start eating nettles, make sure to bring gloves, bags and scissors, small spray bottle with water to keep fresh. ( Look for places where dogs cannot get to the nettles to) Once you get home , gently rinse nettles and place in boiling water in pan for 1 to 2 minutes, drain in colander OVER bowl or pan, the liquid has lots of nutrients and can be used in gravies or soup or drink as is!!!! Squeeze out excess liquid over bowl and chop like you would cooked spinach. Enjoy in an omelet right there and then!

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