Herbalism 101: Lesson 4

Activity 1: Seeing

Plant Families: Asteraceae

  • Read this article on the Asteraceae family.
  • List all the plants in the Asteraceae family that you use regularly and why.
  • Choose three plants from the Asteraceae family that interest you. Read their monographs online.
  • Make three monographs, one for each of your herbs, draw a colour picture of each of your herbs to add into the monograph; include seed, flower and root if possible.
  • Answer these questions: Which medicinal actions would you benefit from in these plants? How could you use them to aid in your health (e.g. as a tea, in food)?
  • Pick 5 more medicinal actions to familiarise yourself with.

Activity 2: Touching, Smelling, Tasting, Hearing

  • Getting to know plants in the Asteraceae family.
  • We will use chamomile, Echinaceae and calendula. If possible, find them fresh outside or in shops.
  • Note the composite flowers, the shape of their stems, the shape of their leaves. Note the similarities and differences.
  • Rub their leaves between your fingers and inhale deeply. Note the aromatic similarities and differences. (Have coffee or coffee beans nearby to inhale inbetween to cleanse your olfactory system)
  • Taste each one and note their similarities and differences. Can you describe their tastes: note the sensation on the tongue from Echinaceae. It should taste somewhat acrid and have a sparking sensation. (You can use lemon or ginger to cleanse your palate)
  • Make teas with each flower. List their medicinal actions.
  • Note: How each makes you feel when you inhale their aromas and their energetics as you taste them.

Activity 3: Practice-Making an Herbal First Aid Kit

You will be making Echinaceae Tincture, Chamomile Tea and Calendula Salve
  • Gather ingredients for the Herbal First Aid Kit recipes.
  • Make the tinture,salve and tea.
  • Write the medicinal actions of these herbs in these remedies. How will you use these preparations for healing?
  • If desired, make labels for your remedies.

Poisonous Plants: Tansy

  • Read this article on Tansy.
  • Read the monograph of Tansy.
  • Do you think you would grow Tansy? Why or why not?

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