(herbalaide.org) Herbal Aide is a non-profit based organization founded to document, inspire and fund grassroots herbal projects/businesses that are working towards creating positive, sustainable social change.
"The week-end workshop was a celebration of California native foods. Above are stinging nettle leaves wild-gathered by students on the grounds of the Idyllwild Arts campus, then stir-fried with garlic, onions, tomato, and cilantro."
By gathering our own medicines carefully and conscientiously, we can be assured that our medicines are fresh, of high quality, and gathered in a sustainable fashion. When we are more personally involved in our herbal medicines (by growing or gathering), we reduce the environmental impact of packaging and transportation. Considerations when harvesting plants from the wild include:
"Like so much in this consumerist society, it is easy to ignore the connections between a bottle on a shelf in some store and a living, growing plant out in the world somewhere. It can be hard to know if the plant grows a mile away or on another continent. There is much to be said for reconnecting, for educating ourselves about the herbs we use and gathering our own medicine when we can. That's how we will be able to build a whole new system of healing ñ one that can support our movement away from the corporate power structure that medicine has become."
"If you want to truly feel the power of plant medicine you must try Spilanthes. Either by chewing on one of the leaves or flower buds of the plant you will almost instantly note the effect this plant has within the body. Spilanthes is a wonderful plant to help you understand terms like Sialogogue, acrid, aromatic, stimulant and diffusive."
"We’ll be honest! Fresh Ginger root oil is one of the hardest infused oils to make because Ginger is so juicy. But with the magic of a crock pot and a little patience, this heartwarming, inexpensive oil can be treasured by anyone. The fresh oil is gingery, golden, and deeply but gently warming."
"While I'm an herbalist, it certainly doesn't mean I only use plants. I freely and happily use many things that aren't in themselves plant material, from bone broths to provide deep nourishment to lanolin in salve making. And of course, I use honey, which is, I deem, an absolutely fascinating substance..."
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