Finding Peace in the Garden

The Herb Society of America Blog

By Karen Kennedy
HSA Education Coordinator

LemonBalmClose200911The lazy days of summer quickly transition to the more scheduled and hurried days of autumn. While glorious hues are found in changing leaf color and late season blooms like goldenrod and Joe-Pye weed, the pace of our world undeniably quickens during this season. Add the additional stress and worry about the Covid-19 pandemic and the message is clear–take time to personally cultivate peace and manage stress.

Research by environmental psychologists like Rachel and Stephen Kaplan, as well as landscape architects like Clare Cooper Marcus and Naomi Sachs and others, points to the overall positive impact of plant-rich environments and contact with nature on reducing mental fatigue and increasing feelings of restoration, recovery from stress, and improved mood (Haller, Kennedy and Capra, 2019).

Gardeners, without knowledge of the research, often say they find peace and solace in the garden. The act of gardening, tending…

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A 21st Century Wheel of the Year: Cultivating Receptivity at the Fall Equinox

The Druid's Garden

Nature Mandala

The Fall Equinox is traditionally about harvest, harvesting the fruits of your labor and the fruits of the land in preparation for the coming of winter. This model of the wheel of the year focuses on earned outcomes: you’ve planted your crops, you’ve tended them all season, you’ve invested the time, and now, you are able to receive the rewards of your efforts. And a lot of our own understanding of the celebration of these seasons works on that narrative: planning, planting, tending, harvesting, and the cycle of the seasons. This same cycle is expected, perhaps, anticipated, in our everyday lives. For example, if you put the effort into getting degrees and starting a career, or if you put in a ton of hard effort at your workplace, you will eventually be rewarded with a harvest, a payoff, and a sense of stability. There’s this large sense that…

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Sacred Trees in the Americas: Paw Paw (Asimina triloba) Medicine, Myths, and Meaning

The Druid's Garden

PawPaw leaf - as big as your hand! PawPaw leaf – as big as your hand!

The PawPaw is a tree that is so wild and unique and wonderful, and yet, is often quite unknown–it is the only native citrus tree we have in the upper east East Coast and midwest areas. Like some of the other trees I have recently shared in this series, Paw Paw is an underappreciated and under-recognized tree. Within the bushcraft and permaculture circles, it is quite well known as an amazing tree to find, plant, and tend. One of the reasons that PawPaw is probably not more well known has, unsurprisingly, everything to do with the commercial viability of the fruits. PawPaw fruit is absolutely delicious but it only stays good for a few days after picking–so it would never survive the rigors of modern industrial agriculture.  You can occasionally find it at a good farmer’s market, and it is well worth…

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Native American History

secretsoftheserpent

The Americas have been inhabited for a very long time. The people of the Americas have been here just as long if not longer than the people of the east. The Native Americans traded with others around the world. There have been many artifacts found in the Americas that are considered Asian, Egyptian and Viking. The Bering Straight is one big lie. The ancients were very good seafarers.


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Hermetically Sealed

secretsoftheserpent

Thoth, who is Hermes, is the one who gave us the Hermetics.  Check out my post Hermetic Philosophy to understand it.  Thoth was a master architect and is said to have written most if not all the ancient books in Egypt.   We use the term hermetically sealed today without really understanding what it means.  We think its is to just close something and seal it shut.  As you will see its much more.  


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New Moon in Virgo Moonthly Lunar Report | Entering the Harvest Moon

The Harvest cycle represents the fruits of your labor so it’s important to take stock of what is happening and manifesting in your life. Are you proud of what is manifesting? Or would you like to shift it somehow? The best way to shift your energy into a higher frequency is gratitude. Begin to practice gratitude for the blessings that are already present in your life and you will expand your heart for more. The cards pull for the cycle show that there is an opportunity for renewal, support, and reconnection. Reconnect to your heart and take this cycle to ground yourself in your gratitude and allow the blessings to flow.

Mars is opposite Neptune on the 2nd. Be careful not to fool yourself or chase fantasies right now. This aspect has a sense of illusion and mystery around it. You might be feeling motivated towards a goal, but make sure it is aligned with your true intentions. It is also important not to rush things right now.

Read original article at: Spirit de la Lune ~ New Moon in Virgo Moonthly Report | Entering the Harvest Moon

Horehound – Herb of the Month

The Herb Society of America Blog

By Maryann Readal

Horehound leavesThe fuzzy, light gray, deeply-wrinkled leaves of horehound (Marrubium vulgare) offer a nice contrast to other colors and textures in the garden. I love that contrast around the base of the red roses in my garden. Horehound is a perennial herb that grows from one to two feet tall, and can spread in the garden. It prefers dry sandy soil and a sunny location, tolerates poor soil, and is hardy in USDA Zones 4‒8. It may be started from seed in the spring, although germination is slow and sometimes not reliable. Cuttings can be taken from a mature plant or the established plant can be divided. Its leaves have a very bitter taste. Horehound produces whorls of small white flowers at the top of the stalk in the second year. The flowers are very attractive to bees, which makes for a tasty honey. The barbed…

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Starting a Successful Front Yard Garden and Avoiding Legal Trouble: Interview with Linda Jackson of Natures Harvest Urban Permaculture Farm

The Druid's Garden

Original design for Nature’s Harvest Urban Permaculture Farm

Six years ago, I shared about Natures Harvest Urban Permaculture Farm, a front-yard garden located in the Detroit metro area. When I shared this post, Linda was in her first year of gardening in this new location, and was regularly selling her produce at a local farmer’s market and engaging with her community.  Here are links to my first two posts about her incredible garden that discusses the original process, design: Nature’s Harvest Urban Permaculture Farm and Return to Nature’s Harvest Urban Permaculture Farm.

A few weeks ago, when I was visiting Linda, I shared some photos of her garden to my social media, and many people responded by saying “she must not have a homeowners association”, “ how did she not get in legal trouble?”, or “my township would make me tear that down!” The questions and comments of…

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Wild Food Profile: Yellow Dock (Rumex crispus) Seed Flour & Yellow Dock Pancake Recipe

The Druid's Garden

Harvested dock seed with a ready-to-harvest yellow dock plant

This past month, I had a chance to visit Silver Acres, my friend’s 5 acre farm in the thumb of Michigan, where she is practicing rewilding, restoration agriculture, and permaculture.  We were walking through her field and found a good deal of yellow dock that was in seed form–which for the Midwest US, usually happens around Lughnasadh (August 1st) and continues to the Fall Equinox.  While I’ve eaten the young leaves and used the roots as medicine, I haven’t had a chance to try making any seed flour yet–so we set about our task joyfully.  I’m quite impressed by how easy this flour is to make (compared to say, acorn flour) and it cuts nicely with other flours.

Foraging for wild foods is not only a fantastic way to connect deeply with the land but also allow us to reconnect…

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Rites of the Goddess

secretsoftheserpent

The Sacred Feminine is the mysteries. She is the Great Mother. The mother of the mysteries. Her secrets have been guarded generation after generation. There have been initiations and tests to prove one is worthy to hear her secrets. Humans are born from their mother and leave for a short period of time. In this short period of time, which is this life, one of the things we can hope for is that by some wonderful reality while we are still alive we can die and be born again. When you are born again you are born from the womb of the mysteries of the Sacred Feminine. The Sacred Feminine is forever bearing her children yet forever a virgin.


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