We are so pleased to feature another interview with our friend Lucretia VanDyke. On Herbal Radio, we have learned about Lucretia’s upbringing and what led her to work with plants, but we have never gotten to learn what plants she loves and why. In this Plant Stories episode, Lucretia talks about her favorite edible plants of New Orleans and the significance they played in her upbringing that began her herbalism journey.
With a journey that began when she was a little girl mixing herbs, mud, and roots on her grandparents’ farm, Lucretia VanDyke has had a lifelong connection to the plants. She has been in the wellness industry for over twenty-five years. Her quest for knowledge and storytelling has led her all over the world to learn about remedies, traditions, and ceremonies from indigenous healers.
One of the foremost experts on Southern folk healing arts, Lucretia integrates rituals, plant spirit meditation, holistic food/herbal medicine, and ancestor reverence into people’s practices.
Lucretia has worked and trained with many internationally known spa and skin care companies. She is a holistic educator, speaker, herbalist, sacred sexologist, ceremonialist, spiritual coach, intuitive energy practitioner, diviner, author, and world traveler. Lucretia brings her vivacious spirit and her message of ancestral connection in herbal practices to inspire others to embrace their unique relationship with the plants. Teaching herbal classes, cooking, storytelling, and foraging in the woods learning native medicine charges her soul.
Lucretia’s book African American Herbalism: A Practical Guide to Healing Plants and Folk Traditions is now available through Mountain Rose Herbs: https://mountainroseherbs.com/african-american-herbalism
This week’s guest on Interviews on Herbal Radio is esteemed herbalist, David Winston. David is well known in the herbal community for his decades of clinical experience, teaching, and medicine making. We hope you enjoy!
David Winston is an internationally known lecturer, author, ethnobotanist and the founder of Herbalist & Alchemist.
For over 45 years, David has been studying, practicing, teaching and researching Chinese, Western/Eclectic and Southeastern American herbal traditions. David’s world-renowned two-year herbal studies program, the David Winston Center for Herbal Studies, has been educating Herbalists, Physicians, Nurses, Naturopathic Physicians, Veterinarians, and Nutritionists in the art and science of clinical herbal medicine since 1980.
David has one of the largest private herbal research libraries in the U.S. The Herbal Therapeutics Research Library has over 8000 volumes, from 1550 to present, and over 15,000 articles on file. This library is a working library used for research for the herbal and nutritional industry as well as for his writing and for Herbalist & Alchemist.
David was one of the professional herbalists who founded the American Herbalists Guild, the first professional herbalists’ organization in the US, which certifies clinical herbalists. He is on the professional membership review committee. David Winston has been on the Review Committee of the Botanical Safety Handbook, which produced a significant information resource, which the entire botanical industry, from manufacturers to researchers, relies upon.
He is the clinical herbal consultant to hundreds of prominent physicians (MDs, NDs, DOs, DCs) throughout the US, Canada and Europe. David has authored hundreds of articles and a number of books on herbs.
As many of you know, at Mountain Rose Herbs, we invest time and energy into striking a balance between offering as many sustainably grown and harvested organic herbal allies as possible and simultaneously supporting the conservation of at-risk and endangered plants. We are excited that more and more people are recognizing the abundance Mother Nature has to offer and the many benefits that the botanical world provides. Unfortunately, the increasing impact of overharvesting on wild plants has left many of our most important botanicals at serious risk.
With this in mind, Mountain Rose Herbs has been working with United Plant Savers (UpS) to launch a new Seed Stewardship Project! With the help of UpS Executive Director Susan Leopold, we have chosen a variety of at-risk plant seeds that we are giving away to people who are able to plant them and help rebuild our at-risk plant communities. Now, when you place an order on MountainRoseHerbs.com, you will have the option to select a seed package for FREE. Plant them in a window box, in your back yard, or in a natural area where these plants once thrived—together we can ensure their survival one seed at a time.
At Mountain Rose Herbs, botanicals are our business, and the industry has been growing year over year as more people realize the health-supporting benefits of our plant allies. Sounds great, doesn’t it? In many ways, this is a wonderful return to valuing the abundance the natural world has to offer while utilizing the myriad benefits that botanicals provide. Unfortunately, the ongoing and increasing impact of overharvesting wild plants has left many of our native populations at significant risk of decline or even extinction. For this reason, we have invested our time and energy in striking a balance between increasing the availability of the number of botanicals we offer and supporting the conservation of the most at-risk plant varieties.
Dr. Athene Eisenhardt, Licensed Acupuncturist and Herbalist, found her path in life by way of the plant world. Working professionally as a field botanist for Yosemite National Park led her to begin wildcrafting and using native California plants as medicine, and to study the Taoist 5 elements in nature. She maintains a private practice in Oakland, California, offering 5 Element Acupuncture and Integrative Herbalism. Athene is also on the Herbology faculty at the Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine College in Berkeley, CA.
Athene and Jiling discuss:
The Five Elements of East Asian medicine
How the five flavors relate to the Five Elements
Examples of native California plant and Five Elements’ interrelationships
How climate informs plant intelligence
Ethical harvesting of native plants
Some of Athene’s favorite plant meditations!
Herbalist and educator Alex Queathem Payne joins us for an in-person interview after she toured the Mountain Rose Herbs facilities this past spring. Thomas and Alex discuss her naturalist upbringing, the ‘green’ lineage in her family, and her educational path, including her studies at the Columbines School of Botanical Studies. Alex tells us about her childhood connection with mint and her adulthood connection with skullcap. Learn some of the virtues of skullcap and how Alex loves to connect with this special plant and others.
We had the pleasure of interviewing our good friend and esteemed herbalist, 7Song. This conversation was recorded in the Winter of 2022. Learn about 7Song’s upbringing, his path and approach to herbalism, as well as his general advice to up and coming herbalists including practicing in a clinic. Humorous and entertaining, we hope you enjoy this meandering and wonderful conversation.
7Song is an herbal practitioner and Director of Holistic Medicine at the Ithaca Free Clinic and Founder, Director, and main instructor at the Northeast School of Botanical Medicine. 7Song has been studying plants, people, and herbal medicine for over 30 years and currently teaches at schools and conferences throughout the United States. His focus includes herbal practice, free clinic work, first aid, wildcrafting, and botany. He also spends a lot of time taking photographs of things that run, crawl, fly, or photosynthesize.
In this new “Tea Talks Roundtable” series, Jiling gathers four local Ventura and Santa Barbara county herbal teachers to discuss sustainable foraging in southern California (aka. So-Cal). Learn more about the Ventura area’s Mediterranean climate, ethical harvesting considerations, and some of the plants that make this area special. We discuss building relationships with plants, spring nibbles, gardening, white sage, horehound, tasty naturalized plants, warrior plants, and conclude with some of our favorite easy to grow medicinals. Enjoy the chat! Learn more about these Ventura area herbal teachers below:
For this week’s Plant Stories podcast, we interview multi-disciplinary artist Julia O. Bianco. Julia was a Deep Ecology Artist Fellow at the United Plant Savers (UpS) Sanctuary, one of our favorite non-profit organizations focused on protecting native medicinal plants, fungi, and their ecosystems. Hear how an online foraging class, the artist in residency program at the UpS Sanctuary, and the plants Julia encountered in the Appalachian foothills, all helped to shape the course of her life and her creative inspiration. Julia closes the show by reading three of her nature-inspired poems.
Marc and Jiling discuss one of Marc’s previous keynote conference topics, “Weaving and Mending: Herbalism from the past, in the present, for the future.” Learn about empowerment through weeds, heart-songs, ancestral honoring practices, global healing traditions, and more.