Lavender Festival 2017

The 6th Annual Lavender Festival will again be held at Cyherbia Botanical Park in Avgorou, from the 10th until the 25th of June. The only place in Cyprus with specially landscaped lavender gardens, a new lavender labyrinth for meditation walks, a distillation room where daily extraction of lavender essential oil will take place, and many other unique features for all the family, such as the maze, the woodland walk around Cyprus, and the fairy village.
 

During the lavender festival you can:

*Enjoy our lavender gardens in full bloom

*Witness the extraction of Lavender essential oil

*Take part in lavender craft workshops for all ages

*Join the fragrant processing of lavender

*Enjoy a cooking demonstration with lavender

*Go on a meditation walk in the lavender Labyrinth

*Book a professional photoshoot in the lavender gardens with our resident photographer, for

yourself or your family

*Taste free lavender cake, sorbet, liqueur and ice tea

Kids activities include a treasure hunt and lavender crafts

A unique experience for all the family to enjoy.

Entrance including lavender ice tea only 5 euro p.p. Children 3 euros.

From June 10th – 25th.

Open daily 9:00- 20:00

Schedule:

Essential oil extraction with presentation on the benefits of lavender, every day 12:00

Creative workshops: make a lavender wand or lavender doll and kids crafts Saturday 10th, 17th, 24th

at 11:00 and 16:00 Sunday 11th, 18th, 25th at 11:00 and 16:00. No booking required.

Cooking with lavender demonstration Sunday 11th, 18th 15:00 No booking required.

Lavender and sage smudge sticks workshop Sunday 11th, and 25th 14:00 Call 99915443 to book

Labyrinth workshop with Susan Rudd Sunday the 18th

Kids treasure hunt available every day all day

Photoshoot upon appointment. Call Melina Tringis 99401503

3rd Fairy Folk Fest 29th & 30th April, 2017!

Faeries, goblins, princes and princesses, knights, pixies and pirates, gather round!

The 3rd Fairy Folk Fest in Cyprus will be held again at Cyherbia in Avgorou, on April the 29th & 30th

2017.

Dress up as your favourite fairytale character and experience a day of adventure and enchantment, in the natural surroundings of the botanical park. Games and activities in the Herb gardens, Labyrinth and Enchanted Forest for all the family include:

A Pirate Treasure Hunt in the Maze, find the Rainbow Fairies in the herb gardens, Dreams Come True in the Dreamcatcher forest, Ring Tilting, a Steampunk Teapot race, Maypole dancing and Storytelling with the Forest Fairy in English and Greek.

All activities will be ongoing from 9.30 am till 6 pm.

Storytelling times: English: 11.00, 13:30, 16:00 Greek: 12:00, 14:30, 17:00

Entrance 6 euros p.p. adults and children. Ages 3 and under free.

There will be prizes for best costume, both for children and adults.

Information: tel. 99915443, www.cyherbia.com, www.facebook.com/cyherbia

Egg Ηunt in the Maze – Easter Monday &Tuesday

On Easter Monday and Tuesday from 9:30 until 18:00,once again hundreds of Easter eggs will have found themselves hidden in the Maze at Cyherbia in Avgorou. Can you help to find them?
Also, Easter I Spy game in the Herb Garden, find the nests in the Woodland and have you seen the hidden bunnies?

Other games include Egg & Spoon Race, Sack Race and Tug of War. The games are ongoing all day, last admission 4 pm.
Entrance including all games and a cup of herbal (ice) tea is 5 euros for adults, 3 euros for children 5-12. Ages 4 and under free.
* Kids clubs and schools can book a separate day for the Egg hunt during the Easter holidays. Call 99915443 for more info. Cyherbia will be closed on Easter Sunday.

Halloween at Cyherbia

 

Halloween at Cyherbia

 

The biggest and most popular family Halloween event in Cyprus will again take place at Cyherbia Botanical Park & Labyrinth in Avgorou on Saturday the 29th and 30th of October 2016, with games, challenges and activities for all ages from 3 till 99. This Halloween we will enter the frightening world of classic fairytales.

Find the seven dwarves in the herb gardens but watch out for the wicked witch! Mission in the Maze: Can you take the biscuits to grandma and outsmart the big bad wolf?

Who is that nice old lady giving out sweets in the Forest, and is that cottage really made out cake and candy?

Interactive storytelling in English and Greek, at 11:30, 13:00, 14:30, 16:00.

 

Teenagers and adults will enjoy testing their knowledge of classic horror characters in the Freaky Forest, but watch out! Is that a giant spider in there in that bush?

Also, apple bobbing, a broomstick race, I-Spy in the Haunted Herb Garden,lucky dip and facepainting. Best costume competition both for adults and children.

Activities will be ongoing all day from 9.30 am till 5 pm on both days.

Entrance for both adults and children is 6 euros, including a cup of witch’s brew and a gift for each child. Under 3’s free.

Cyherbia Botanical Park & Labyrinth is situated just outside Avgorou, towards Ormidia. For directions, check the Directions page.

 

pumpkin-carvingPumpkin Carving 

On Saturday the 22nd of October you can carve your own pumpkin at Cyherbia! Cost incl. all materials 10 euros. No entrance fees.

Workshop times: 10:00, 12:00, 14:00, 16:00

Book your place, stating the time slot of your choosing by phone 99915443, email cyherbia@gmail.com or messagewww.facebook.com/cyherbia.

Keeping Cool in the Heat of Summer

Many of you may be on holiday or have just come back, and for those of us who live on the island, the summer can seem endless at times. We put ourselves into a lower gear, spend lots of time at the beach or in a pool and stay out of the sun during the hottest hours of the day.

flower tea

Eating cooling foods such as salads, watermelon or cold soups also help the body cope with the heat, as does herbal ice tea. You have to try it to really appreciate just how much a herbal tea cools you down, but once you do, you’re likely to prefer this healthy drink over anything fizzy or sugary!

This summer I made a new ultra-cooling and constitution-moistening blend of herbs and flowers which effectively cools the body, is relaxing, light, digestive and very tasty! It consists of mulberry leaf, hibiscus flower, jasmine, passionflower, lemon balm, fennel and lemon verbena. I named the blend Summer Breeze. The unique combination of these herbs makes this an oasis for the body and mind in the midst of heat and heat stress.

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To make ice tea all you need is a little preparation ahead. For a litre of tea use a modest tablespoon of herbs, put these in a teapot or tea press (a cafetiere used only for this purpose is the handiest), add a pinch of stevia leaves or a little honey and leave your tea to infuse until it has cooled down enough to be placed into the fridge. Chill for a few hours and serve with ice cubes.

Ice tea will keep in the fridge for 48 hours maximum.

Stay cool!

By Miranda Tringis, Herbalist.

Lavender Festival 2016

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The 5th Annual Lavender Festival
will again be held at Cyherbia Botanical Park in Avgorou!

The only place in Cyprus with specially landscaped lavender gardens, a new lavender labyrinth for meditation walks, a distillation room where daily extraction of lavender essential oil will take place, and many other unique features for all the family, such as the maze, the woodland walk around Cyprus, and the fairy villages.

During the lavender festival you can:
*Enjoy our lavender gardens in full bloom
*Witness the extraction of Lavender essential oil
*Take part in lavender craft workshops for all ages
*Join the fragrant processing of lavender
*Go on a meditation walk in the lavender Labyrinth
*Book a professional photoshoot in the lavender gardens with our resident photographer, for yourself or your family
*Taste lavender shortbread, sorbet, liqueur and tea to taste
A unique experience for all the family to enjoy.

The full program of activities will be published soon.
Entrance including lavender ice tea only €5  p.p. Children €3.
From June 11th – 26th.
Open daily 9:30- 19:00

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March News

Dear friends,

Spring is upon us and the plants in the botanical park are waking up from their winter slumber. The bay laurels and hawthorn trees are blossoming and the herbs are putting out new growth. We are busy planting our new baby calendula, yarrow and lavender. Spring is our favourite season, the eternal cycle of new life, growth and abundance has started again.

calendula

 

Αγαπητοί φίλοι
ήρθε η άνοιξη και τα φυτά στο βοτανικό πάρκο ξύπνησαν από την χειμερία νάρκη.
Οι δάφνες και οι μοσφιλιές ανθίζουν και τα βότανα άρχισαν να βάλουν νέους βλαστούς.

Αυτές τις μέρες φυτεύουμε τα νέα μας σπορόφυτα όπως καλεντούλα, αχίλλεια και λεβάντα. Η άνοιξη είναι η αγαπημένη μας εποχή.
Ξεκινάει ο νέος κύκλος της ζωής, της ανάπτυξης και της αφθονίας στην φύση.

 

 

March is also the month in which we are hosting one of our major family events of the year. On Saturday the 26th and Sunday the 27th of March the Second Cyprus Fairy Folk Fest will be held. We are very excited about this, as this year’s event will be bigger and with brand new activities.

FairyFolkFest_Eng

Αυτόν τον μήνα διοργανώνουμε μια από τις πιο μεγάλες μας οικογενειακές εκδηλώσεις: το Σάββατο 26 και τη Κυριακή 27 Μαρτίου θα γίνει το Δεύτερο Φεστιβάλ Νεράιδων στο πάρκο μας. Είμαστε πολύ ενθουσιασμένοι γι’ αυτό! Μικροί και μεγάλοι μπορουν να ζήσουν μια μέρα στον κόσμο της φαντασίας και της περιπέτειας.

FairyFolkFest_Greek

Some dates for your diary: On Saturday the 30th of April and Monday the 2nd of May we will hold our annual Easter Egg Hunt in the maze and other fun games.
Are you a teacher or kids club leader? Groups, clubs and schools can book an Easter Egg Hunt any day throughout April. Please contact us for details.

Also, please note that the annual Lavender Fest will take place this year from June 11th till 26th. Our latest feature, a Lavender Labyrinth will be opened during the Fest! Here you will be able to enjoy a relaxing meditation walk brushing against the lavenders..

Όπως κάθε χρόνο έτσι και φέτος διοργανώνουμε το παραδοσιακό Κυνήγι Αυγών στον Λαβύρινθο και άλλα Πασχαλινά παιχνίδια, το Σάββατο 30 Απριλίου και τη Δευτέρα του Πάσχα 2 Μαϊου.
Είστε εκπαιδευτικός ή έχετε παιδική λέσχη ή φροντιστήριο; Για οργανωμένα σύνολα προσφέρουμε Κυνήγι Αυγών καθ’ όλη τη διάρκεια του μήνα. Επικοινωνήστε μαζί μας για κρατήσεις.

Τέλος, σας ενημερώνουμε ότι το ετήσιο Φεστιβάλ Λεβάντας θα γίνει για 5η φορά στο βοτανικό πάρκο, από τις 11 μέχρι και τις 26 Ιουνίου. Θα εγκαινιαστεί τότε και ο νεοφυτεμένος Λαβύρινθος από Λεβάντα, όπου θα μπορέσετε να κάνετε ένα χαλαρωτικό περίπατο διαλογισμού ανάμεσα στις αρωματικές λεβάντας…

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We hope to welcome you soon in the herb gardens!
Until then,
Green blessings,

Miranda

 

Spring Splendour

spring

Spring is the season of renewal, with nature discarding the cloak of winter decay and putting on its colourful garments of fragrant new growth. The fields are green and abundant with wild herbs and flowers, most of which can be used as food or as medicine. What a wonderfully abundant part of the world is our precious island, giving us all we need for health and wellbeing. As soon as the citrus trees have been harvested of their delicious fruit, they start to come into flower, spreading their amazing aroma all over the countryside. Bees love orange blossom and make a fantastic honey from its pollen, but the delicate white flowers of the bitter orange tree (citrus aurantium) also produce a highly aromatic essential oil: neroli. This is the oil the famous Eau de Cologne was made of. It is still a component in many expensive perfumes. The essential oil has many healing properties and is a favourite in aromatherapy treatments. The intoxicating aroma is a powerful antidepressant, aphrodisiac, tonic, digestive and cytophylactic, promoting the generation of new cells, which makes it a useful ingredient in anti-aging products.

Calendula, also known as pot marigold, is another bright example of a spring herb which does wonders for the skin, it is packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and flavonoids. The bright yellow flowers, once dried, are infused in almond oil for a month, extracting all the soothing and healing properties of the plant. This precious golden oil can then be used as is or made into salve, healing all kinds of skin problems, such as eczema, psoriasis, rashes, burns, wounds and scars, as well as inflammations and fungal infections. I have seen amazing results with calendula clearing up nasty rashes in just a few days. Used over time, it also reduces scars. The dried flowers make an excellent anti-inflammatory tea, which is soothing to the stomach, effectively fights internal fungal and viral infections and also relieves menstrual cramps. The fresh petals can be added to salads, butter or cakes.

The ultimate queen of spring flowers is undoubtedly the wild rose, Rosa Damascena. Rose yields one of the most exquisite and expensive essential oils. The oil is produced by steam distillation and is used in perfumery, cosmetics and aromatherapy. Vast quantities of freshly picked flowers are necessary for even a small quantity of oil, as many as sixty thousand roses make one ounce, which means sixty roses make just one drop! Feminine and sensual, the aroma is truly breathtaking and lifts the spirits. It is rich in antioxidants and has an anti-aging effect on the skin, as it stimulates new cell growth and restores moisture balance. The dried flowers can be brewed as a relaxing and uplifting tea. Rose water, which is often used in confectionary, is also an excellent skin tonic. The village of Agros in Cyprus is known for its production of rose products and hosts an annual Rose Festival in early May, which is well worth a visit.

By Miranda Tringis, Herbalist.

Eat the Weeds!

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Now the fields are green and the Cyprus countryside is full of them: wild edible plants. Weeds, that is, although that word is rather derogatory, as most wild plants are edible and they are a powerhouse of health! In fact, the Cyprus countryside these months is a free organic vegetable market! Mallow, white mustard, nettles, wild lettuce, even asparagus, grow all over the place, ready for picking. These wild greens are most delicious to eat, and a real boost to our health.  Take mallows for instance, these are the plants with the big round leaves that grow on just about every roadside. Of course, it’s best not to pick plants next to the road but go a bit further into the fields to pick clean, uncontaminated plants. In Cyprus mallow is mainly eaten boiled with an olive oil and lemon juice dressing. The water in which it was boiled is an excellent herbal drink to soothe the throat. The boiled plant can be used in pies, egg dishes and soups. Mallow has anti-inflammatory, astringent, laxative and diuretic properties. Mallow is one of the most soothing herbs we can find in Cyprus. Tea made from the dry leaves, stems and flowers are an excellent remedy for dry cough, stomach ulcers, inflammation and constipation.

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Wild asparagus is another delectable delicacy. It takes a little skill to spot them in the spiny bush that protects them, but that’s all part of the fun when it comes to foraging wild foods. The asparagus are the young shoots of the plant, they contain vitamin A, B and C and are very rich in minerals. Medicinally wild asparagus is a powerful diuretic, its consumption helps in prostate enlargement, urinary problems, kidney stones, gout, arthritis and rheumatism.  Asparagus also helps to lower blood pressure, stimulates and nourishes the liver and pancreas and helps in fluid retention. Furthermore, it lowers blood sugar levels, kills parasites  and soothes the intestines. It increases milk flow in breastfeeding women. The seeds of the plant are helpful in male impotence. Do not eat asparagus if you have inflammation in the urinary system, because it will likely worsen the pain. A traditional way to eat wild asparagus is fried with spring onions and egg. The shoots soften and are less bitter if you put them in a bowl of boiling water with salt for 2 minutes before frying.

White mustard plant is another health booster we can find literally everywhere, with its beautiful yellow flowers. You should only pick the young shoots and tender leaves, with the flower still in bud. Traditionally in Cyprus this plant is eaten boiled, served with an olive oil and lemon juice dressing, but you can add the leaves to egg dishes, make a veggie lasagne or add the young leaves to a salad. The plant is a rich source of vitamins and minerals and an ideal winter food, as it has a warming effect on the body and  has expectorant properties, making it an ideal healing food in coughs and colds. It also ‘cleanses the blood’ and should be an integral part of a winter detox diet. It gives energy and nourishes the entire body.

Stinging nettle really is one of the most nutritious and medicinal plants. Nettle is very rich in minerals , especially iron, and is the best natural iron supplement, as all of it gets absorbed by the body. It also contains vitamin A, C and K. to use nettle in cooking we pick only the young tender shoots. Nettle makes an excellent soup, as all the healing properties stay preserved. At Cyherbia we serve soup made with all 3 of the above wild greens, it has become a favourite with visitors. Tea made from nettle relieves a number of health problems such as arthritis, asthma, bladder infections, bronchitis, kidney stones, laryngitis, prostate enlargement and seasonal allergies, as the plant contains natural antihistamines. Externally it is a remedy against hair loss, oily hair and dandruff. In Germany today stinging nettle is sold as an herbal medicine for prostate diseases and as a diuretic. It is a common ingredient in other herbal medicines for rheumatic complaints and inflammatory conditions (especially for the lower urinary tract and prostate) The leaf is used as a diuretic, for arthritis, prostatitis, rheumatism, rheumatoid arthritis, high blood pressure and allergic rhinitis.

With all these benefits, why not take a walk in the fields today and forage your dinner!

By Miranda Tringis, Herbalist.

Winter Herbs for Immunity

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As the days and nights turn colder even in Cyprus, we may find ourselves and our children coming down with the sniffles, there’s nothing like a warming cup of herbal tea to keep winter chills at bay. There are numerous wild herbs growing on the island to help us combat colds and many other common ailments too. These precious gifts of Nature help us to boost our immunity and keep us strong and healthy. Traditionally in Cyprus one of the main herbs to turn to in winter is Sage (Salvia Officinalis). Sage has a pungent and bitter flavour, the endemic Cyprus sage of the mountains Salvia Fruticosa much more so than the cultivated Salvia Officinalis.

Sage is a powerful warming and drying herb, very helpful in clearing up phlegm and catarrh, is anti-microbial, decongestant and antiviral, making it a perfect remedy for colds with lots of phlegm.

sage

Thyme (Thymus Vulgaris) is another local herb with powerful antiviral, expectorant and antimicrobial action. A tea made from the leaves gives immediate relief from a persistent cough.

You can combine these herbs and make a soothing tea by putting one teaspoon of dried herbs per cup into a teapot, then pour boiling water over them and let the herbs infuse for ten minutes. Strain and sweeten with honey if you wish.

In order to combat dry, persistent coughs we need to turn to other green allies, such as peppermint, licorice root or marshmallow root. These herbs moisten the respiratory tract and soothe the dry irritation, and help to expel any mucus too. Roots and bark should be boiled in a saucepan with water for five to ten minutes in order to release their therapeutic properties. Then strain the herbs and enjoy your healing tea. Licorice root is very sweet of itself so you probably won’t want to add any honey or sugar.

warming winter tea

The Cyprus countryside offers us various wild berries too, which are full of vitamins, especially vitamin C, antioxidants and flavonoids.

When we go on a hiking trip in the mountains we can find blackberries (Rubus Sanctus), elderberries (Sambucus Nigra) and rosehips (Rosa Canina) in great abundance.  These are rich in compounds that disarm viruses and prevent them from taking over healthy cells. We can make a syrup from each of these and take a few teaspoonfuls daily to boost our immunity or to hasten our recovery from a cold. The taste and quality of homemade healthy syrups greatly surpasses any store-bought one and it is a pleasant and easy job to do at home.

Here’s how:

Place one cup of fresh elderberries or rosehips and three cups of water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer on medium-low for thirty minutes. Mash the berries to release any remaining juice. Strain the mixture into a glass bowl using a cheesecloth. When the liquid has cooled down to room temperature, gently stir in one cup of raw honey and mix thoroughly.

Enjoy the wonderful and delicious gifts of Nature in Cyprus!

By Miranda Tringis, Herbalist.