Category: Herbs

Don’t Kill All the Japanese Knotweed!

By Joyce White Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum) has the unfortunate reputation of “invasive species” which means that there has been a concerted effort to eliminate it. In the process, we may be losing a valuable source of medicine. Not only that but Japanese knotweed has been a food source for both human and animal foragers

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Group Forms to Conserve Medicinal Plant Populations

By Deb Soule I save seeds from more than 13 medicinal plants growing in my 1-acre garden in West Rockport. Some are native to Maine, some to the Northeast, some to Europe, one to China and one to the tropics. Collecting their seed has become an important fall ritual for me. As the growing season

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Saffron A Good Fit for New England

Dr. Arash Ghalehgolabbehbahani and Dr. Margaret Skinner of the University of Vermont gave a fascinating talk about saffron, the world’s most expensive spice, at MOFGA’s Farmer to Farmer Conference. English photo By Jean English Dr. Arash Ghalehgolabbehbahani and Dr. Margaret Skinner of the University of Vermont gave a fascinating and entertaining talk about saffron at

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Calendula Beautiful and Useful

  Calendula offers season-long blooms for pollinators, and its flowers are edible and medicinal. Photo by Mary McAvoy By Joyce White There are so many reasons to plant a big bed of calendula, Calendula officinalis. It blooms until frost for cut flowers and medicine, it isn’t fussy about where it’s planted, pollinators like it, it

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Kitchen Herbs

Cabbage, garlic, rosemary, sage and thyme – just some of the kitchen herbs and vegetables that promote health. English photo By Roberta Bailey As farmers, gardeners and overly busy people, we barely make time to feed ourselves well, let alone truly nourish and support our bodies. Our lives are a constant juggle of making time,

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Herbs Called Adaptogens

Oats. English photo By Joyce White Plants known as herbs have been a part of healing the body, mind and spirit for most of known human history. Cultures have differed, stresses have differed, but the use of plants for healing as well as for food has remained constant through time. The brain, it was previously

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Basil Downy Mildew

Basil downy mildew on the upper surface of a leaf. Photo by Eric Sideman. And on the lower leaf surface. Photo by Eric Sideman. By Eric Sideman, Ph.D. This winter I have been lecturing at organic growers’ meetings about new and emerging insects and diseases. I don’t know if the weather, the climate or some

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By Deb Soule Ginkgo biloba is thought to be the oldest living genus of seed plants on our planet and is the only member of the genus Ginkgo. Its family is Ginkgoaceae. Botanists who study the evolution of plants through their fossil remains have found that ginkgo has remained unchanged for the past 150 million

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Common St Johnswort

Common St. Johnswort, Hypericum perforatum (right), is a useful medicinal herb that is easy to grow in the garden. Illustration from Field Book of American Wild Flowers by F. Schuyler Mathews, G.P. Putnam’s Sons, N.Y., 1902. By Deb Soule Common St. Johnswort (Hypericum perforatum) is native to Europe and has naturalized in fields and along roadsides throughout

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Toki Oshima drawing From the Farmer to Farmer Conference • November, 1997 The business of growing herbs organically has room for plenty of growth, according to West Rockport herbalist Deb Soule, who addressed a large audience at MOFGA’s Farmer to Farmer Conference in November. Anyone who wants to learn about herbs can learn a lot from

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