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8 Weeks to Making and Using Herbal Medicines- Herbs for Acute Respiratory Illness and Insomnia

photo (4)Welcome to Red Root Mountain! In this course, you will engage and learn the flexible art of herbalism. Come look at plants, and experience how they work according to taste. Learn the language of herbal applications and gain the skills you need to make plant medicines.

  • We will learn the about plants (our Materia medica) according to taste, and apply these plants to acute illness and insomnia.
  • You’ll learn basic assessment and herbal application skills and formulation for managing fevers and coughs, healing sinus infections, getting to sleep, and more…
  • In medicine making, we will prepare hot and cold-water decoctions, macerate herbs in oil, make salves, and fresh and dried plant tinctures.
  • For the final class, you will put your formulating skills to work, and come up with a salve of your own creation to present to the class!
  • You will learn to identify basic herbs of this area.

Madison has become a hot bed of budding herbalists, both hobbyist and professional. This past year, Red Root Mountain unleashed 13 amazing professionals herbalists on the community. I feel strongly that everyone should know an herbalist, or know a thing or two about plant medicines. This course is an excellent place to begin.

Read on for a descriptive list of the 8 classes included in this series, and class schedule. If you are interested in joining the class, please email me at kathyweeds@yahoo.com for an application.

Dates: Wed. October 11th-December 6th (NO CLASS THANKSGIVING WEEK)

Time: 6:30-8:30 pm.

Cost: $375 (Credit card payments accepted through Square.)

Place: My house

What will you gain from this course:

 An understanding of the function of herbs according to taste, the qualities hot, cold, dry and moist, and whether they relax or stimulate
 Gain an active working knowledge of the energetic actions of plant medicines (i.e. demulcent, anti-inflammatory etc.)
 Learn the practical and mystical application of some 20+plants, as we begin to delve into the history and energy of plants, and learn clinical applications.
 Begin to learn Latin plant names, their meanings, botanical identification and growing conditions.
 Get hands on experience making fresh and dried plant tinctures, infused oils and salves. You’ll get tinctures that you made to begin or add to your herbal apothecary.
 Gain knowledge and experience in assessing patterns of 15+ acute conditions of the respiratory tract and for first aid. We’ll address what to use based on energetics, quality and taste learned in Materia medica classes, and how to formulate.
 Acquire tools for self study to expand your knowledge of plants individually.

Required reading:

• A Modern Herbal, Volume I and II, by Maude Greive (you may purchase these books, or visit http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/mgmh.html to access the book online for assigned readings)

• Make Your Way To Being An Herbalist, by Kathy Eich (purchase from me, Community Pharmacy, or Amazon)

Make note: Handouts are emailed out. The cost of the course includes 95% of materials for medicine making. You will need to provide the following: 5 oz. of olive oil, 1 oz. of dried plant of your choice (this will become clear later), three 2 oz. glass containers or 1 pint size mason jar, and ½ oz. of beeswax for at the home salve making assignment.

Classes 1 and 2: Introduction and Materia medica I

Materia medica is a Latin term. It is a compendium of substances used for healing, in this case, medicinal plants. We will study up to 20 plants that can be grown regionally, wild crafted locally, or found at Madison businesses. We will address some of the following: part of plant used, habitat, energetic actions of plant on the body, plant categorization, taste, smell, clinical application, contraindications, and history.

Homework will be: reading, and to taste a plant, and write a short report describing it’s use and history.

Class 3 and 4: Medicine Making:

Learn to make fresh and dried plant tinctures, infused oils and salves! We will also talk about the difference between long and slow infusions. Not only will this class give tools for mastering medicine making, but you will also be using these tinctures and oils to fill your own medicine chest later.

Homework: making an infused oil at home

Class 4: Respiratory Class 1:

It is the nature of being human to become ill. But the discomfort that arises from respiratory infections is high, regardless of the severity. In this class, we will discuss the application of herbs and aromatherapy to help resolve acute infections naturally. A broad array of illnesses and symptoms will be covered, from fevers, shingles that occur around the eyes, pink eye, and sinusitis, to chronic and acute ear infections, and afflictions lungs and throat.

You will learn: basic anatomy with some physiology, assessment, formulation, herbs for symptom relief and tonics for long term wellness, supporting organ systems, and essential oils that may be helpful.

Please note: The focus of these the classes will be on wellness, how to support the warrior that is our immune system, and dealing with acute illness.

In this first class on the respiratory tract, I will introduce our Materia medica with applicable energetic actions in the context of very basic anatomy and physiology. The focus will be on healing acute illness.

Class 5: Respiratory Class 2:

Building on what we learned in class one, we’ll address maladies individually, how to assess need, talk energetic’s to support each, formulation and dosage. Breakout sessions will give hypothetical situations that groups assess and make recommendations for. It’s the beginning of learning application skills.

Class 6 and 7: Herbs for Insomnia

In class 6, we will talk about plants for the nervous system, and in class 7, we will address applications of these plants with a focus on insomnia.

Class 8: Salve Presentations!

All of your studying and work culminate in the salve class, where you get to invent and make a salve and present it to the class. More on this will be talked about in the course, and presented in a handout. I will add that this is one of my favorite classes, and a favorite of most who have taken the course.

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