Monday, June 11, 2007

Wise Women and Their Herbs

My soulful friend and little Earth momma, Anita, was and is a tremendous influence on my love of the outdoors and the garden, especially, herbs. She always had pots of something interesting growing - and I have a very clear memory of her always getting right down into the plants - smelling them, feeling them - simply and completely experiencing them.

Anita was the same way when we would go for hikes - noticing the subtle, awe-inspiring things that I blithely marched past. I was fresh from my move from Manhattan to the end of Long Island and Anita, an environmental educator at work and at play, brought me closer to the ground, closer to the Earth.

She first introduced me to The Herb Quarterly - by far, my favorite read these days. And she used to tell me about this herbal woman's retreat that was held at the New Hampshire camp where Anita had taught ropes courses. I have tracked it down, years later. It is The New England Women's Herbal Conference. Set for this August.

My-oh-my, is this something I want to be a part of . . . workshops with Wise Women on the following - "Creating a Medicinal Herb Garden," "Functional Fragrances - Therapeutic Applications of Plant Perfumes," "Plant Spirit Healing", and "Plants of Wonder - A Wild Weed Walk." Anita, I know you are busy up in East Hampton with twin boys and what-not, but . . . wanna go?!

I see that the matriarch of herbal ways will be there - Rosemary Gladstar (she is leading the Wild Weed Walk!). I was reading one of her books this past weekend and made an iron-supplement herb syrup - with dandelion root, raspberry leaves, nettle . . . SUCH a rewarding project. Has me thinking about a bigger herb garden - learning more, drying more . . . wishing I could secure an apprenticeship with one of these wonderful women. Someday, someday.

For now, I'll just daydream about getting home, curling up with my copy of Rosemary's Herbal Healing for Women - among my pineapple sage, lavenders, mints and rosemary. Maybe make another concoction or two. And quietly thank Anita for all she did to expand my mind and my world . . .


Annie de Blanco said...

You know there is a woman in Charlottesville who runs Sacred Plant Traditions. She has courses and speakers throughout the year on medicinal herbs. Anything to do with herbs is exciting, so I thought you might want one more thing to get excited about!!

Tracey said...

Hi Annie,
I have been looking at classes with Sacred Plant Traditions and love hearing your ringing endorsement. I am so glad you left this comment . . .