Walk into a meadow or along a woodland trail, and you are surrounded with edible and medicinal plants, many with long-standing traditional uses and each with a unique ecology.
From the slender sassafras tree to the common dandelion, this class will explore the myriad uses for introduced and native plant species, as fruits and spices, as well as in preparations such as teas, salves, oils, and more. We will also discuss each plant's role within its natural habitat.
Plant identification, safety and responsible collecting, and basic ecology will be taught as part of an ethic of stewardship towards the land.
Each class is three hours and features a leisurely-paced hike, during which we'll find, discuss, and in some cases sample wild plants. Classes are offered as a three part series.
All classes meet from 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Class 1: Plants of Early Spring // April 26, 2014
Botany and plant ecology basics
Safety & responsible collecting
Identifying and using spring greens, bitters, barks, and spring ephemerals
Infusions and decoctions for tea
Class 2: Late Spring in the Field and Forest // May 31, 2014
The ecology of late spring - canopy closure and meadow emergence
Preparing plants for food and medicine
Identifying and using edible and medicinal plants of late spring
Class 3: The Summer // June 21, 2014
Plant stewardship at home
Identifying and using edibles and medicines of early summer
Salves and oils for summer complaints
About the teachers:
Jared Rosenbaum and Rachel Mackow, a husband and wife team, are owners of Wild Ridge Plants, a local native plant nursery. Both are also active professionals in conservation organizations with many years of experience in stewardship of wild plant communities. Rachel and Jared present lectures on ecology for diverse audiences, from conservation professionals to gardens clubs, as well as the general public.
Rachel is a writer and photographer whose work can be found online at theshagbarkspeaks.blogspot.com. Jared is the author of Plant Local: Do-It-Yourself Native Plant Gardens. His writings on plant ecology, lore and propagation can be found at wildridgeplants.blogspot.com. Both are prominently featured in the documentary film Sourlands.