Evening Primrose (Oenothera biennis)

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP–Living in Natures Love Lifestyles insideawareness.com)

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Evening Primrose (Oenothera biennis) Photo by Renee Lindstrom

Also known as:  Evening Star,  Butter Rose, Cowslip, Fever Plant & King’s Cure-all, Sun Cup

Uses: Culinary, Medicinal, Tea

Parts used: Flowers, Leaves, Stems, Roots

Preparation:  Cosmetics, Essential Oil, Flower Essence, Infused Honey & Oils, Recipes, Tinctures









  • Symbolizes:   Life of Fulfillment
  • Language of Flowers: Fickleness, faithlessness, sweet memories
  • Associated with: Protection, Love & Luck
  • Chakras:  Root, Sacral & Heart
  • Element:  Water
  • Governed by:  Moon
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All parts of the evening Primrose can be integrated into ones diet.  The roots can be eaten raw or cooked as a vegetable.  They grow large and are similar in appearance to parsnips and can be cooked like potatoes, carrots or parsnips.  One can add them fresh or dried to soups and , stews.  The leaves can be added to salad or steamed if tough and flowers can be added to salads and used as garnish or decoration on cakes, custards and puddings.

The seed pods can be roasted or when dried the seeds inside can be ground and added to smoothies, shakes, cereals, breads, muffins, etc.

Health & Wellness

“A study by the Highland Psychiatric Research Group at the Draig Dunain Hospital, Inverness, Scotland, found that evening primrose encouraged regeneration of liver cells damaged by alcohol consumption. Other researchers think it may also prevent alcoholic poisoning, hangovers, postdrink depression and alcohol withdrawal. It is thought to stop alcohol from damaging brain cells by bolstering them with unsaturated fats”  Herbalpedia

  • Evening Primrose has:
    • protein
    • carbohydrates
    • beta carotene
    • calcium
    • potassium
    • vitamin B3
    • Omega-6
    • amino acid tryptophan
    • bioflavonoid quercetin
  • Herbal Actions:
    • Gentle Sedative & Mood Enhancer – relaxing, grounding and uplifting
    • Anti-spasmodic – PMS cramping
    • Endocrine System  – relaxing
    • First Aid – bruised cuts, scratches, bug bites & stings
    • Digestion – stimulant, cooling & healing inflammation
    • Eczema & Rosacea – used topically
    • Hair Growth – used topically
  • Nutrition (per 1/2 cup):
    • Protein: 2.4 g
    • Carbs 7.3 g
    • Calcium 140 mg
    • Potassium 410 mg
    • Beta Carotene 4000 ug
    • Niacin 700  ug
  • Early North American uses:
    • Ojibwa – poultice for bruises
    • Cherokee – root tea to lose weight
    • Shakers – poultice for wounds & leave or root tea for upset stomach
  • Folklore:
    • increase desirably to potential lovers & friends – infuse into bath for encouraging inner beauty to shine through
    • Magical use in spells for increasing success in achieving ones goals


Growing Evening Primrose

The flower of the Evening Primrose may open before dusk, however the scent of the flower is not released until evening.  It is Native to Canada and the United States.  It is a self seeder so it can be found growing in full sun along rocky roads, in meadows, on dunes and beaches.  It has been naturalized in parts of Europe by Early Settlers transporting seeds back as early as 1614.  I have started mine by seed in the Spring as starters and transplanted them.  They seem to be hardy and though they enjoy full sun, these pictured above are growing in partial shade and are 1 year bloomers (unusual).  I would consider now starting them later in summer or early fall to have them come up as second year plants in spring.

Buy Canadian Evening Primrose Seeds

More Edible Garden Plants 



Traditional uses and properties of herbs are for educational purposes only.  This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.  Every attempt has been made for accuracy, but none is guaranteed. Any serious health concerns or if you are pregnant, you should always check with your health care practitioner before self-administering herbs.

Creating Yogurt at Home is amazingly easy and inexpensive!

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP–Living in Natures Love Lifestyles insideawareness.com

I was reminded of home-made yogurt when my neighbour served me with some of his this week.  He has made yogurt for years and he mentioned he adds dry milk  to thicken it into a Greek style.  It had a nicer taste than any commercially sold yogurt and I couldn’t stop thinking about it.

It was the inspiration to dust off the thermometer and gather up the milk and yogurt.  Two ingredients!  That all it takes to make yogurt.  Milk and a few tablespoons of yogurt to use as a culture.






  • 4 cups of milk
  • 4 tablespoons of yogurt

Heat four cups of milk slowly to 185 degrees and then cool to 115 degrees.  Once cool whisk in four tablespoons of yogurt evenly into the warm milk.  The yogurt acts as a culture to create a custard like solid.

Once mixed together place somewhere warm to sit for 6 to 8 hours.  This could be in a warm oven that has been turned off and oven light left on.  If left in cooler space it will take longer for the liquid to become custard like.  I have read up to 24 hours.

Kefir is the stage that is pre-custard like when the yogurt culture is active however before  it has begun to  solidify.  This means you can’t spoil a batch.  It simply means you have kefir!

Make Cream Cheese from Home-made Yogurt & end up with whey (a whole protein!)

Yogurt – Yellow Food

Yogurt is one of the milk products I enjoy and have continued with in my diet.  It is a fermented food which means it is a natural probiotic.  A good quality of yogurt can be beneficial for optimal gut health however many commercial yogurts contain sweeteners, artificial flavours and thickeners or pectin.  The ingredients that do not lead to good gut health!

Another consideration is what are the cows are being fed that produce the milk the commercial yogurt is made with?

Curious baby cows check out grass labyrinth

Are they free range cows eating grass in the meadows over the summer and home-grown hay  like the ones grazing at the Farm of our recent August retreat or are they eating a GMO diet (Genetically Modified)?  This a huge consideration in my mind and one I seriously considered when I had my own babies.



A good quality yogurt is high in protein and has the same nutrients as milk; calcium, phosphorus, potassium, riboflavin and vitamin A.  Yogurt also has a cancer-fighting conjugated linoleic acid.

When making your own yogurt you can choose a variety of milks or mild substitutes to experiment with such as *nut and rice milks.  Being curious about creating your own can be an adventure and bring some fun back into the kitchen.  Seasonal whole foods and  sweeteners can be added to your yogurt like fresh or frozen berries, fruits, nuts, honey or molasses and yes even grains!  I drizzle plant and flower infused honey I have created through Spring and Summer.  Fall into a  loving relationship with your food again or find out where to buy food that has been lovingly made!

In my opinion gut health is the building block to good health and could be one of the first considerations during any illness from colds and flues to more serious diagnosis.

*Nut milks require so many ingredients that I have chosen not to pursue this myself. I like the ease of two ingredients and eating simpler foods.

Create your own Yogurt Face Make with Dandelions Flowers 

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Copyright 2014 – 2019  Living in Nature’s Love by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP,
Feldenkrais® Practitioner since 2007, Communication & Empathy Coach since 2004, Art of Placement  since 2000

Infusing Garlic Cloves with Apple Cider Vinegar

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP–Living in Natures Love Lifestyles insideawareness.com


Here are some pictures demonstrating how simple it is to infuse garlic and apple cider vinegar.  These are easy to create and a tasty addition to garnish, salads and main dishes.  The only ingredients are cloves of garlic and apple cider vinegar.


Peel the cloves of garlic being careful to not scare or cut into them.  While you are doing this heat apple cider vinegar without letting it boil.  Add cloves to your jar and cover.  Add lids and put aside to sit and infuse.

If you are concerned about measurements you can pour apple cider vinegar into the empty jars to find out the right amount before adding garlic cloves.  The garlic needs to be covered and the vinegar should almost reach the top of your jar.


I noticed that during the infusion process the garlic cloves temporarily turn green.  This is a natural occurring event and part of the infusion process.  It is recommended to leave for 15 to 20 days.  The shorter the time the stronger the flavour.  If you prefer a milder flavour leave to infuse longer.

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Here are the lids I purchased to make fermentation easier.  It came with a pump to burp the jars that makes it easy and  efficient.

Simply Sauerkraut

by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP–Living in Natures Love Lifestyles @insideawareness.com

Home made sauerkraut


After only 12 days of fermenting green cabbage here is this wonderful tasting mild sauerkraut with a nice taste and colour.

I am familiar with a stronger tasting sauerkraut yet now recognize that a milder flavour has more appeal.  If I had left it to ferment longer I imagine the taste would be stronger.

Now I am excited to try fermenting another batch experimenting with another favourite flavour.  Today I intend to add some fresh ginger together with the cabbage to explore the two flavours together.

Until that’s ready though I am enjoying adding this sauerkraut to foods that wouldn’t be the same without it now.  Not a regular connoisseur of smokies I now find them irresistible with the combination.

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Here are the lids I purchased.  It came with a pump to burp the jars that makes it easy and  efficient.