A cleansweep, naturally!


• 1 clean large glass container with lid
• Sprigs of your favourite herb (e.g. lavender, rosemary), or leaves (e.g. sage)
• Carrier oil – either olive oil or coconut oil

• Choose your herb or plant and collect leaves or sprigs
• Tie the sprigs or lay out the leaves on a flat surface and place in a warm, sunny space to dry
• Once fully dried, fill your container until it is two-thirds full
• Poor over the oil to fill the container, making sure the sprigs/leaves are completely covered
• Put the lid onto the container and place it on a sunny windowsill
• Shake the container every couple of days and check the strength of fragrance
• Add extra sprigs or leaves to enhance the fragrance level
• After around 2 to 3 weeks your oil should be ready
• Strain the oil through a muslin cloth and put into a storage container
• Use a few drops as required, e.g. to add to your ironing water or laundry

I love creating blends of different herbs to give my oils maximum fragrant interest – after all, who doesn’t love a designer perfume? Enjoy your wild cleaning creations!

Words by:
Nikki Bawn
Featured in:
July 2023

Nikki Bawn of Boggle Lane Foods shares the delights of using wild cleaning solutions.

Midsummer has been and gone. For some, this means the days begin to shorten again. For me, it heralds the beginning of summer and countless opportunities to harness the power of nature for more than just medicinal or culinary creations.

Just as the sap rises in our plants and trees, so it seems do my energy levels. As I fling open windows to welcome in the summer breeze, I’m overcome by the urge to get my house in order.

Having a little foraging knowledge comes in handy here and it may surprise you to know that there are things to be gained from your gatherings which extend even beyond beauty, diet and healing.

My foraging workshop peeps are always gobsmacked when I tell them about the power of plants, especially when they learn that you can even clean the oven and do the laundry with wild pickings.

From making your own apple cider vinegar to banish limescale and bacteria, to producing top notch detergent, the options really are endless.

Natural alternatives
There’s something intensely satisfying about a fresh and orderly home and doing things naturally makes it even better. Reducing harmful chemicals and costs are good reasons to discover natural alternatives to shop-bought products, but I believe the blissful satisfaction from using pure, wild resources is the biggest win.

It’s not unusual for me to plonk my oven shelves on the freshly cut lawn, cover them in grass cuttings and leave them overnight to help loosen that baked on gunk. While some may be compelled to hack at rambling strands of ivy, you’ll find me gathering them with enthusiasm while I admire their irresistible allure to pollinating insects.

Believe it or not, popping 60g of ivy in a muslin bag and throwing it in the washing machine can be used to clean your clothes. No prep required and best of all, it’s free! I like to add a naturally fragrant softener, so I use a few drops of homemade essential oil.

Again, there are no bounds to the selection on offer. Just a few sprigs of your favourite one will add a wonderful aroma and freshness.

I like to put some in with my wash, or add it to my natural ironing water, which I make from boiled rainwater. There is a plethora of uses for essential oils, from luxuriating baths to cleaning solutions and every herb or plant used has its own power. For example, rosemary will help repel insects while lavender brings with it uplifting and calming perfume.

Why not have a go at making some of your own? A warning, though: it can become quite addictive, as my lengthy shelf of different preparations and oils demonstrates. But it’s definitely worth a whirl!

For more information visit: www.bogglelane.co.uk or email nikki@bogglelane.co.uk

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Calling all UK young artists!Doddington Young Sculptor Exhibition Doddington Hall and Gardens, Lincolnshire invites submissions from UK-based sculptors and 3D artists, aged under 30, for an exciting new open exhibition to be held this summer. Doddington is looking for pieces to be exhibited in the historic working Kitchen Garden, which complement the Garden and its surroundings. The Doddington Young Sculptor Exhibition will run alongside the main bi-annual Sculpture at Doddington exhibition and is an opportunity to exhibit alongside some of the finest contemporary sculptors selected from across the country and further afield. Prizes: 1st prize – £750, 2nd prize – £250Submission deadline: Sunday April 21st 2024Further details about eligibility, terms and conditions can be found at: www.doddingtonhall.com/event/young-sculptor-exhibition/To apply, please email your submission as a PDF document to angus@doddingtonhall.com ... See MoreSee Less