Happy August! Welcome to this month’s Wild Kids Magazine.
In this month’s issue, kids can learn how butterflies use colors and designs to keep themselves safe and more, with a “design a butterfly” page where they can make up their own colorful butterflies with what they’ve learned (print extras of page 5 if your kiddos like that activity as much as our youngest does!). We also have information about how to use hibiscus flowers and leaves to make bubbles, plus foraging and gardening information about catmint (catnip) and sumac and all the usual nature goodies like seasonal poems, botanical coloring pages, nature study pages and more.
Click here to view or print this month’s issue.
Here is some information to learn more about this month’s topics.
How to make Gumamela (Hibiscus) Bubbles
Here’s a sweet little video where a family shows how they make gumamela bubbles.
Hub Pages also has simple instructions.
Kiddle has lots more information about hibiscus, written for kids.
Foraging and Growing Catmint (Catnip)
Edible Wild Food has great information on identifying and using catmint. Adventure Cats has information on foraging wild catnip for your feline friends. Eat the Planet has information on growing and using catmint medicinally. The Forager’s Path has great information on health benefits, drying it and more. The North Carolina Homegrown Extension has information on growing it and why it’s a great plant for the garden.
The Chopping Block has great information about foraging staghorn sumac, making sumac tea (we call it sumac ade) and making sumac spice. Serious Eats also has a good article with all this information and good photos. The Farmer’s Almanac has more good info and a recipe for sumac red lemonade (no lemons needed). Good Life Revival tells us that sumac species grow in all 50 states and throughout Canada, and has more good foraging information. Edible Capital District has more good info and a link to a recipe for sumac rhubarb syrup. Edible East End also has a good article on how the author uses sumac. Backyard Forager has good info on how to know when sumac is at the perfect state for harvesting and also tells how to make a sumac cordial for the grown ups. Foraging Texas remains one of the best ID sites for foragers, even for those of us who live far from Texas, and once again delivers great info on sumac. Practical Self Reliance also has fantastic, detailed information for foragers.
Remember, it’s easy to tell poison sumac (Toxicodendron vernix) from the tasty and edible sumac like staghorn sumac (Rhus typhina) and smooth sumac (Rhus glabra) because poison sumac, which is relatively rare, has white or green berries and grows in swampy areas. It is a totally different plant in a different genus that you want to avoid.
Please comment if you have any questions or comments about foraging catmint or sumac, or anything else in this month’s issue.
Feel free to share this magazine with anyone who might benefit.
Have a great, wild month!