Flowering tops are harvested at the peak of catnip bloom (stage 3). We use only the top most portion that includes the tops flowers and the smaller side branches close to them. We do not include the whole stem since we feel this contains too much unwanted material. Since the flowers are borne on branching stems it is unavoidable to have some stems but by using only the top portion we obtain the most flowers and the least stem possible.
Floral encounters produces only high quality organic catnip. We use no pesticides at all ever on our catnip or any other plant grown on our farm. All our catnip flowers are harvested by hand to ensure high quality. They are then washed to remove any unwanted material such as insects, as well as bird and insect poo (unavoidable in any farm field). The flowers are then dehydrated using cool air the dark to ensure the maximum amount of active compounds are retained. The flowering tops are then stored in sealed cool dark containers until they are packaged specifically for each individual customer. This ensures that best quality possible.
Very few if any other catnip suppliers do this and almost none wash their catnip.
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We also offer a series of articles to help you understand about the best time to harvest catnip and what to look for in a premium catnip.