Spring Tonic Honey {with dandelions & violets}

Spring has sprung around my house!  Two of my favorite plants to work with – dandelions and violets – are everywhere. By infusing them in pure honey we can enjoy the health benefits that each one offers.

Today, I want to show you how I use these lovely weeds to make a Spring Tonic Honey that’s helpful for allergies, sore throats & more!

We’re going to need three ingredients:

  • raw honey (local if at all possible)
  • fresh dandelion flowers
  • fresh violet flowers

 

Raw Honey infused with dandelions and violets.

Raw honey is a healing food, all on its own. It’s soothing to the throat and GI tract, inhibits the growth of H. pylori (that nasty organism associated with ulcers), it can be used on the skin for acne or burns, and daily use of raw, local honey may help seasonal allergies. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that honey should not be given to children under one year of age.

The entire common dandelion plant is edible and is a classic liver tonic. It’s traditionally used for joint pain, eczema and as a blood toner and mild diuretic. Dandelion root extract is even being researched for it’s cancer fighting abilities! The flowers are high in vitamin C, beta carotene and other nutrients. Dandelion is safe for most people but is not recommended if you have active gallstones or are on a prescription diuretic.

Violets are not only lovely to look at, but are cooling and healing. The stems, leaves and flowers are all edible and are traditionally used in fighting chronic diseases such as oral cancer and fibrocystic breast disease. They are especially useful for soothing skin irritations and eczema. Violets are generally recognized as safe, just be aware that they can act as a laxative in large enough doses.

Combine these three ingredients together and we have a super-charged honey to use in a myriad of way!

 

Spring Tonic Honey with Violets and Dandelions

Spring Tonic Honey

  • fresh dandelions and violets (make sure they are from unsprayed areas)
  • raw, local honey (try your local farmer’s market for some)

Remove the green from the dandelions so that you have just the yellow petals. (Some bits of green might remain, that’s okay.) Remove the stems from the violets, but you don’t have to individually remove the petals.

Now, stuff these flowers into a small jar and slowly pour your raw honey over them. Stir with a knife to remove air bubbles. Let this sit in a cupboard for several days (some sources say several weeks) to allow the flowers to infuse into the honey.

Once sufficient time has passed, you can strain the flowers from the honey by slightly heating the mixture (don’t go above 110 degrees F since high temperatures negate the benefits of honey) then straining through cheesecloth. Alternatively, you can do what I do and just leave the flowers in and spoon around them. You can actually eat the honeyed flowers by the spoonful too. I find them quite yummy!

The shelf life of this honey (strained) is at least a year, but if you don’t strain the flowers be sure to check for freshness each time before consuming.

 

dandelions violets and raw honey

Here are some ways to use your Spring Tonic Honey:

  • Seasonal Allergies: The general recommendation is to take one tablespoon of unprocessed honey per day to help alleviate seasonal allergies. You can stir this into hot tea, but make sure not to heat the honey over 110 degrees so that you don’t destroy the benefits of it being raw. Remember, honey is only recommended for those over the age of one year old.
  • Detoxing: Take one to two tablespoons of unstrained Spring Tonic Honey per day. Eat the flower petals as well! For a stronger effect, you can make a tea from dandelion leaves and drink daily. (Finely mince leaves and place in a jar. Pour boiling water over and cap with a saucer. Let sit until cool enough to drink.) Note: high levels of dandelion are contraindicated for those with active gallstones or on prescription diuretics.
  • Face Wash: This is not only great for acne but for dry, flaky skin as well. Honey seems to balance your skin no matter what type it is. Gently rub Spring Tonic Honey over your face. Rinse clean with fresh warm water. Towel dry softly. Straight dandelion sap, dabbed directly on blemishes, may help acne as well. Be careful not to get the sap in your eyes and do a small test patch first to make sure you’re not allergic.
  • Wounds and Burns: This supercharged honey is amazing for using on wounds that won’t easily heal, or for mild burns. Be sure to strain it first before using in this way.
  • Sore Throat: Take by the spoonful for sore throats caused by allergies or spring time colds. The extra nutrients and demulcents in the flowers help boost the soothing factor. If sinus drainage is making you feel a little queasy, try adding a dash of powdered ginger to the honey as well.

Remember, If you’re ever unsure about taking or using herbs, or if you’re pregnant, nursing or on any medication, be sure to consult your medical professional. Those with allergic reactions to dandelions, honey or violets should avoid this home remedy.

 

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Violet Vinegar | Dandelion Lotion Bars | Violet Leaf Balm

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24 Responses to Spring Tonic Honey {with dandelions & violets}

  1. Jodi says:

    Love this idea!!!

  2. Farmer Doug says:

    The selection of photos you’ve chosen really embellishes your post, Jan. Very nicely presented. You have made me think twice now about mowing over or digging up the dandelions in our lawn! :)

    • Jan says:

      Thanks Farmer Doug! I’m quite passionate about dandelions and am happy to know that I may have contributed to saving the lives of a few in your lawn! ;)

  3. Lacey says:

    is it possible to refrigerate this?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Lacey, you could refrigerate it, but honey usually crystallizes when you do so. Honey is a natural preservative, so it’s fine to keep at room temperature. I keep mine in my pantry (it’s a bit cooler there than the rest of the house) and usually use it up within a month or so. I’ve read of people keeping infused honey longer – a year or more (one book I read said 10 years!!), but I like doing a lot of things seasonal, and this is one of them so have never kept any that amount of time to know for sure.

  4. Angela says:

    What a great idea to mix two favorite spring flowers together into one fabulous creation. As usual the pictures are gorgeous and the post inspiring!

  5. Pat says:

    I would like to make the Spring Tonic Honey. But, where can I buy violets and dandelions because I nor my neighbors do not have any of these. Is there a store such as a Sprouts or Whole Foods that sells flowers to eat?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Pat!

      I’m not sure, but you could check with the produce manager of one of those stores or possibly a local florist. If they don’t sell them directly, they may be able to place a special order for you.

      Honey can also be infused with dried herbs and flowers (just use less of those than you would fresh), so if you find a source of dried blossoms they should impart some benefit as well. I hope you have good luck finding a source!

    • Jan says:

      One more thing Pat, you could look for Johnny-jump-ups instead of violets. They are in the same family and have similar properties. Since they are cultivated, they may be easier to obtain than wild violets. (Just make sure they haven’t been sprayed with chemicals since you’ll be ingesting them.)

  6. Thank you for this! Now I just need to find some violets!

    • Jan says:

      You’re welcome Stevie! :) There are several types of violets, not just the purple ones I have pictured, so you might want to do a google search on violets in your area. Also, Johnny-jump-ups are in the same family and act similarly, if you have access to those!

      • I will start doing my research this weekend. I’ve never heard of Johnny-jump-ups so that could be fun!

        Do you know of any good uses for Scotchbroom? It’s a weed and it’s a horrible one at that…allergies galore around here…but if there is a good use for it, I may start liking it more than just for being pretty (since the hate outweighs the beauty at this point)

        • Jan says:

          Hi Stevie!

          I’m not sure where you live, but here in Zone 7 U.S., there were tons of Johnny Jump Ups in my local garden center (Lowes) when I was there last weekend.

          As far as Scotchbroom, I’m not overly familiar with it, but just from what I’ve peeked at online it looks like it has been used medicinally in the past, but can cause problems with respiration and your heart. I read enough to scare me away from using it!

          So, unfortunately, I’d have to say it still belongs in the invasive weed category. I’m just a hobby herbalist though; you may find someone with more knowledge on the plant who would know better information than I! :)

  7. Pingback: How To Make A Spring Tonic Honey

  8. Beverly says:

    I just harvested about a sandwich bag full of violets from my yard. My husband warned me that he was cutting the grass tomorrow. I am so glad I found this today. :) You don’t list any measurements, how full should you put the flowers before you pour in the honey?

    • Jan says:

      Hi Beverly, I’m so glad you rescued those violets! :) I actually just put in as many flowers as I can find. Sometimes, I have a smaller supply so use a smaller jar and just fill it part way with flowers then fill with honey. At other times, I have a greater amount available so will stuff the jar full. There’s no right or wrong amount – any extra flowers in there will be of benefit!

  9. Karen says:

    I love your site. I’ve only been looking at it for a few minutes but I will be here often! Keep posting on fb. I’m looking forward to the emails also.

  10. Christine says:

    What type of violets? I live in ct and new to harvesting.;)

  11. Dean says:

    Thank You from Sunny Cape Town South Africa about the Raw Honey you used on a Leg Ulcer . I will try it .

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