Lifestyle

WILDCRAFTING AND HERB WALK

Yesterday was a manifestation of my wishes. I’ve always been interested in identifying medicinal plants and their uses. In fact when I was a senior in highschool, my English term paper was about alternative medicine. I almost convinced myself to take a pre-med course over film studies, our Jesuit scholastic convinced me otherwise. In later years, I’ve thought about med school but  knew I didn’t want to take the traditional path. I found out that becoming an herbal medicine doctor was equally long and arduous (not to mention all the chemistry involved) .

Fortunately, the alternate route was learning vibrational healing through plants and herbs. I wanted to apprentice but didn’t know where to start, so I was pleasantly surprised when an email popped-up inviting me to a Wildcrafting Workshop that same evening. Wild crafting is the practice of harvesting plants from their natural habitat for use as food or medicine.

Organized by Purple Thistle, a youth-run center and alternative school. There were about eight of us, all from different backgrounds.
Organized by Purple Thistle, a youth-run center and alternative school. There were about eight of us, all from different backgrounds.

We first went through the garden where we were asked to seek the plant that either attracted us or repulsed us. We had to sit with the plant, spend time with it and feel its own vibrations. While going through the process I was immediately drawn to a white flower, similar to a dandelion. The first image that came to my mind was that of the flowers floating in a bathtub. The others fared better with memories of their childhood coming back to them. Afterwards, our teacher identified the different herbs and flowers in the garden.

Dried mint leaves, chopped plantain, and jars to store our salves, teas, and essences.
Dried mint leaves, chopped plantain, and jars to store our salves, teas, and essences.

Because some plants look alike, it was best to get a feel of their texture, patterns, and even wait to see it go through its full cycle. Some plants are better not to be taken internally but used as balms, salves, tinctures, and oil infusions. These plants were also to be used short-term say, if you were out hiking or biking without a first-aid kit and shouldn’t be used as replacements for treating grave ailments. When out wildcrafting, one should do so ethically. That means not getting too much from nature, saving seeds, planting more so as not to deplete the source.wpid-2014-07-17-04.53.31-1

We ended the day with tea, rosehip jam, and jars filled with plant samples.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s