Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Botanical Medicine Certificate Program

Our good friend Dr. Les Moore is offering the next part of his Botanical Medicine Certificate Program. This program is an excellent way to learn more about medicinal plants and their usage. Check the information below for course and registration details. Please contact Classical Formulas with any questions you might have.

I've included a link to my favorite reference book on the medicinal plants that grow wild in this area, A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs: Of Eastern and Central North America (Peterson Field Guide). May you enjoy it as much as I have!


Botanical Medicine Certificate Program

Medical Herbalism Part II
January 20 – February 17, 2011  

Medicinal Calendula
This Course is the second in a series of three herbal study programs to be offered at Clifton Springs Hospital through the Integrative Medicine department, The Botanical Medicine Institute, and Classical Formulas. While each series has a similar format, they will contain different information. These classes are appropriate for health care providers, people employed in health related businesses or anyone interested in Herbalism.

Dr. Moore and herbalists from Classical Formulas Herbal Medicinary will instruct these classes.  Dr. Moore has a life-long interest and extensive education in the field of Herbalism, both Western and Eastern.

You may register for the whole series or at the beginning of each class.  Students may begin ANY series at ANY time with no prerequisites of the previous series. Each series is a stand-alone module.  Students completing all three of the series (Parts I, II & III) will receive a certificate upon course completion.  To be certain you have a place in class please register early, as class size is limited.

Tuition is $120 or $20 per class. Contact Classical Formulas for Registration at 315-462-0190 by January 18th.
Female Gingko Tree w/nuts
(Highland Park)

PLEASE NOTE: All classes are held on Thursdays at Clifton Springs Hospital from 6:30-8:30 pm with the exception of the herb walk on Saturday January 29th, 2011 held at Lamberton Conservatory at 10:00am.

Course Descriptions

Class 1 – Botanical Medicine/Single Herbs–January 20th, 2011
Learn about herbs and homeopathy used for stress, immune stimulation and for combating specifically colds and influenza. Will also cover single herbs for traditional Indian medicine, (Ayurvedic Medicine).

Class 2 – Herb Pairs/Drug Interaction and Materia Medica for Children – January 27th, 2011
This class will focus on paired herbs that are therapeutic for specific conditions.  Information on interactions that can occur between medicines and herbs will also be discussed as well as herbal dosages for children. Will also cover Ayurvedic herbs for children.

Class 3 – Plant Identification/Herb Walk – January 29th, 2011
Native medicinal - Pokeweed
This class will be a 3+ hour walk to identify plants in the Lamberton Conservatory located in Highland Park.  This is essentially a green house so temperature will be comfortable without a heavy jacket.

Class 4 – Herbal Medicine Making – February 3rd, 2011
Learn how herbs are used to create various herbal therapeutics.  Participate in some hands on preparation of herbal formulas.

Class 5 – Herbal Formulas/Modifications – February 10th, 2011
This class will focus on herbal formulas and how the herbs in each formulas work on the body and how they can be modified to fit a specific condition or person.  Discussion of how the pulse and tongue can be used to diagnose a condition.  Will also cover Ayurvedic herbal formulas.

Class 6 – Homeopathy and First Aid – February 17th, 2011
Learn how homeopathic remedies are used for first aid, and many other conditions.  Will also cover first aid from Ayurvedic medicine.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Welcoming the Green into Your Life

As I look out my window, I see the snow softly falling. It has snowed all day and has left our Mother Earth covered in a blanket of pure, unblemished white. Some find this cold season dismal and depressing. I don't. I know the Earth needs this quiet season to rest and I also know that many of our most beloved native plants and wildflowers need the conditions of the season so their seeds will germinate.
Native Corn Variety - Dakota Black Popcorn

But most of all, this time of the year is one in which I dream of warm sunny days and my fingers working the dark, rich earth. Yes, I am a gardener, a lover of green growing things, and a tender of the soil. Winter is a terrific time for planning gardens and starting seeds. I know my own mailbox has blossomed with all manner of seed, plant, and gardening catalogs.

January is often a time of new promises and goals for the year. I encourage everyone to add planting a garden this year to your list of 2011 goals. For those with health goals this year, please know that gardening is a terrific activity for your health - see an article I wrote here on this topic. Gardening also allows you to reconnect to millennia-old traditions of sowing seeds, tending the soil, and partaking of the fruits of your labor - whether you be a gardener of flowers, herbs, or vegetables. To help you in this endeavor, I'll share some of my favorite sources with you. All of these places have online store fronts and many have print catalogs free upon request.

My best wishes for you in 2011. May you find beauty, joy, happiness, and peace in your gardens and may that extend to the rest of your life. Namaste.


Vegetables/Food Crops

Heirloom Tomatoes from my 2010 garden
Nothing is better than a tomato fresh from the garden, still warm from the sun's kiss that is sprinkled with a little sea salt. And so I encourage everyone to grow their own foods. Many food plants are ornamental in their own right and can easily slip into your flower beds if you do not have dedicated vegetable spaces. I also encourage everyone to seek out heirloom/heritage seeds, some of which are of direct Native origins. These are wonderful and tasty departures from the bland and tasteless vegetables that crowd grocery shelves. They will certainly be at home in your 3-Sister Garden.

Abundant Life Seeds - Organic and biodynamic vegetable seeds
Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds - One of my favorite heirloom seed sources. Some Native varieties. The owners of Baker Creek recently bought the historic Comstock Seeds company.
Comstock Seeds - A 200 year old tradition of selling seeds being relaunched by new owners (website coming soon)
Johnny's Selected Seeds - A wide range of vegetable and herb seed. No genetically modified seed.
Miller Nurseries - A local company that specializes in fruit tree, shrubs, and plants. Get a variety of plants and varieties including strawberries and blueberries here.
Pinetree Garden Seeds - A favorite place to get not only a wide range of vegetable varieties but a place to get small amounts of seed for a small price which is a wonderful way to test out a variety
Raintree Nursery - All manner of fruit-bearing plants and trees are available here including juneberries, strawberries, and blueberries
Seed Savers - Heirloom vegetable seeds incl. some Native varieties
Seeds of Change - Organic vegetable, flower, and herb seed. Some Native varieties like the Dakota Black Popcorn I grew last year.
Territorial Seed Company - A wide range of heirloom, open pollinated, and hybrid vegetable varieties. No genetically modified or treated seed.
Totally Tomato - Can't find a particular tomato or pepper variety elsewhere? Find it here.
Terroir Seeds - Heirloom and open-pollinated seeds including the Cherokee "White Eagle" corn I grew in 2009. This special seed made the trip over the Trail of Tears.

Herbs/Medicinal Plants

White Baneberry - Poisonous & medicinal
Whether the herbs you grow are to season your food in the kitchen or are to keep you healthy, these are powerful members of the plant kingdom. Last week I had the pleasure to catch the podcast "Bringing Seeds to the People" by Richo Cech Herbalist and owner of Horizon Herbs. That combined along the current book I'm reading, Sacred Plant Medicine: The Wisdom in Native American Herbalism by Stephen Buhner has re-energized my desire to plant medicinal plants this season.

Horizon Herbs - Medicinal plants and seeds of many herbal traditions
Nichols Garden Nusery - A nice selection of culinary herb and vegetable seed
Richters - A wonderful source for medicinal plants of all sorts from nearby Toronto

Flower Gardening

I don't do much ornamental gardening these days but I do always slip some flowers into the vegetable beds to attract pollinators.

Select Seeds - Get antique flower seeds from this company including some of my favorite poppy varieties

Native Plants
Joe Pye Weed - A native beauty

I can't stress enough how important it is to welcome these plants into your life and gardens. Many have become rare in their native ranges. These plants are ideally suited to our growing conditions and they offer beauty, balanced habitats, medicines, and more. See for more details about growing native plants.

Forest Farm - While shipping from the westcoast is costly, this is a wonderful place to find many hard to find plants, trees, and shrubs.
Musser Forests - A nice place to get many native trees and shrubs in small amounts or quantity in nearby Pennsylvania
Prairie Moon Nursery - One of the best native plant and seed sources around.