Many moons ago I met two awesome ‘herbalistas’ called Karen and Fiona at the first Radical Herbalism Gathering (RHG).
RHG is definitely a weekend I recommend you get to, if you like earthy herbalists who talk about real issues rather than just how to make your face look pretty with plants!
Back then Karen and Fiona where known as the Witch Doctors, but recently they have been joined by the wonderful Belle and re-invented themselves as The Seed SistAs.
Collectively they run ‘Sensory Solutions Herbal Evolution’ which is an arts and health-education community interest company.
These plant funksters promote empowerment, autonomy, freedom, health and diversity through teaching plant medicine.
Personally I like rooty, earthy, practical and radical plant folk.
I suppose it’s because “punk rock” still sings in my heart, even if these days the fury, rage and self-destruction has been tempered and replaced with kindness, compassion, equanimity and appreciation.
Punk was always about taking back our own power from the usurpers and cultural manipulators.
To “be your own authority” was a clarion call to freedom at a time when the government was mouthing hot air, making promises to get your vote, and delivering nothing once in power.
That was back in the 1970s and 1980s (before some of you reading this where even born!)… and oh my… not a lot seems to have changed. If anything its got worse!
Fear not however… for hope has a funny way to overcome despair, and the Seed SistAs are at hand to help put a little spring in your step, and lightness back in your heart.
It’s always a blessing to hang out with them, and I was lucky enough to spend time one afternoon to get their puck-like, free-spirited approach to herbal medicine and plants recorded for posterity.
So without much ado, I’d like to introduce you to the wonderful Seed SistAs chin-wagging about Passion Potions and Wild Herbalism as well as all things plants.
Sensory Solutions Herbal Evolution is an arts and health-education, Community Interest Company run by the Seed SistAs, Fiona, Karen and Belle. We promote empowerment, autonomy, freedom, health, and diversity through teaching about plant medicine. All our courses, publications, talks and tours promote the aims of the CIC: to educate about and promote the growing and use of herbal medicine. We combine medical training and years of clinical experience with our love of creativity and plants to put herbal medicine back where it belongs: in your hands.
Like so much in this fast paced materialistic society, it is easy to ignore the connections between a bottle on the shelf in a health food shop and a living, growing plant out in our local surroundings. Many of the herbs contained in bottles in shops come from other continents. We use local plants and aim to demystify complicated medical jargon with something accessible to all.
We believe that a positive shift occurs in each person that is educated about the harvesting and utilisation of herbal medicine. A reconnection with our beautiful plants and planet ensues. That’s how we will be able to build a whole new system of healing relevant to today. A system that takes the pressure off the NHS by empowering people to treat their minor ailments with abundantly growing herbs and a system that builds healthy communities by connecting people to their local plants, to each other, good health and our beautiful Earth.
Robin Harford is a self-taught ethnobotanist, and has spent over a decade traveling, researching, recording and uncovering the traditional and contemporary use of wild plants in Britain and beyond. More recently his work has taken him to Africa, India, SE Asia and Europe. He is a co-director of Plants & Healers International, a non-profit that connects people, plants and healers around the world.
Plants and People Podcast Episode 14
Plants and People Podcast Episode 13
Plants and People Podcast Episode 11
Episode 10: The Wild & Wonderful World of Fungi
Episode 9: Interview With A Foraging Grand Master