Lingonberry is one of those few plants whose beneficial properties are provided not only by berries, but also by leaves. However, the discussion today is not about this, but about when and how to harvest raw materials.
When to collect cowberry leaves
The most valuable composition of lingonberry leaves can boast in the spring. It was in April-May, when the plant still does not even think to bloom, the leaves have the highest concentration of beneficial substances, which they are so famous for. If this time of gathering was missed, then the next harvest of the “harvest” will have to wait until the fall, namely until the end of September and the beginning of October. The leaves of the lingonberry, which are not collected on time, darken during drying and as a result of this, even the few substances that form them disappear.
How to collect cowberry leaves
Harvesting leaves of lingonberry, it is not superfluous to think about the future. No need to pull up the plant with the root, because it will destroy the bush. Try as carefully as possible with the help of scissors to cut the leaves, or gently tear them.
After the leaves have been collected, you must immediately begin to dry them, because the raw materials deteriorate rapidly. Go through the leaves, removing excess debris, twigs and leaves of other plants, and lay them on pallets for subsequent drying.
When and how to pick berries lingonberry
The ripening period of lingonberry berries falls at the end of summer and the beginning of autumn, however, often hunters for this bitter-sour bitter berry with “prey” can be found in October, before the first frost. It is necessary to harvest lingonberries in dry warm weather early in the morning after the dew or at sunset. A wicker basket is considered to be the best container for gathering, since berries practically do not crumple in it, which means that the loss of valuable raw materials will be minimal.
After the berries have been harvested, they need to be sifted, choose from them green, dry, spoiled, remove the leaves and the stem. Then cranberries need to be washed several times under running water. Washed berries removed from impurities cranberries spread on a clean, dry towel and lightly dried. After dried in traditional ways - either in an oven at a temperature not higher than 60 degrees, or in a well-ventilated warm room for several days, shaking occasionally. Store dried berries of lingonberries in tightly sealed glass jars away from sunlight.