Greetings from the farm!
Wildcrafting herbs has been part of my life since I was a little girl and my grandmother made us all pull over on our way anywhere to pick “a mess of poke” or the occasional, “Oh heavens! Pull over James! There’s a whole stand of Lambs Quarter out there, I can see it from here! We can use that for dinner!” My wise grandmother knew more about herbs than I did. I had no idea you had to boil poke before you could eat it or it could poison you. (BTW, Green Deane wrote more than I have ever known about that herb, see the Poke page.) Without regard to the reckless abandon with which my grandmother allowed me to jump out of the car to help, she turned it into lessons I was never to forget.
While a young mother with a budget of $50 a week for five, I learned to scavenge what was in the woods around our home. With the help of a local herbalist, we ate extremely well for “poor folk”.
I can’t say I’ve always been interested in herbs that didn’t come in pill form. I cannot say I always wanted to know every single plant that grew within walking distance. I just knew that somewhere inside, I knew I would come back to “the old ways”. I have often been “intellectually interested” at best. But I have watched the plants that grow on every property I have ever lived on, planted things no matter where I’ve been. I have watched the way people do things; asked a LOT of questions. I haven’t always followed suit… I mean am sincerely NOT a fan of chickweed tea, I don’t care how good it is for me; but everyone can develop a tolerance for what is good (for you!) and it becomes better tasting the better you feel. This site is built for those of you who know that without the use of herbs we are just somehow, more vulnerable.
I feel stronger when I use herbs every day. I feel more accomplished when I grow my herbs myself and I feel happier selling organic homegrown herbs to people. I feel more comfortable in my own skin in at the farm. How do you feel? Does something always nag at you, urge you? … to go out there, to be responsible for your health? Does something tell you that the anti-depressants that the doctor prescribes are NOT working? Feel like you should DO something but you are just not sure where to begin? Do you feel there is simply a way to feel better; more energetic? Healthier somehow?
I KNOW that feeling. And I have tried to harness it here. There is a reason you feel that way… it is up to you to decipher exactly what it is that compels YOU, but there IS a reason. Some of it is very tangible. Our food supply is in peril. Pesticides are damaging us in ways we are only beginning to understand. People die every single day by the thousands of diet induced disease. This begs the question, “Is it our food supply?” or “Is it the irresponsible way we put anything down our throat without fear of consequence?”
I think it’s a lot of both.
I watched my grandmother a lot when I was a young girl. She was walking around barefoot in the yard with her hands out to her side, looking up at the sky. I asked her what she was doing. She said, “I’m grounding myself.” I thought my grandmother was weird till the day she passed from this world. It was only after she was gone that I picked up on her innate wisdom. It somehow thankfully stuck in my brain’s hard drive.
Years have improved my knowledge and my skill has followed suit. I have moved many times in my 50 plus years and I have become intimate with many herbs. If I’m not an expert on anything, I AM an expert on how to find and grow an herb I would like to use. I’ve been very poor and I have made do with what I could find growing in the woods and prairie about me to start it all out. My point is, I have covered a lot of ground and hopefully you can benefit from my experience.
I’ve spent the last sixteen years growing and using plants and pursuing my somewhat formal education. I’m currently an obsessed colorado potato beetle picker, an OK junior master gardener, and avid wild crafter. I’ve taken herbal correspondence courses, miscellaneous herbal courses from some of my favorite herbalists, canning, food and nutrition classes, aroma therapy classes, bee keepers meetings every second Thursday of the month and get in on any and all herbal webinars I can. I am currently attending The Herbal Academy.
Fay Boulet – Farm Assistant
Okay, here’s Fay…. “Herbs? Like the kind you put in your soup? or the “funny” kind?”
That’s Fay. She’s funny. She is fun to work with, does anything you ask her to do (like even spending hours de-seeding all those itty bitty basil seeds to make
Nam Mengluck). She was not impressed with vitex tincture results, but came quickly to realize the power of bitters. She values the fragrance of rosemary in the garden and she loves growing tomatoes. It is her specialty.
After living a crazy life, like we all do, she came to respect more wholistic healthy lifestyle choices. Her childhood memories of climbing the fruit trees in her backyard and eating fresh fruit was always with her, making some of the choices later in life a bit easier to swallow ;). She came to the farm willing to work, willing to help, and willing to learn. Everything about Fay screams helpful and kind.
We are very blessed to have her assistance. And all of you that buy our herbs can feel oh so good knowing her loving hands probably touched the nutritious, organic, hand processed plant material; helping it make its trip from the soil in which it grew at Our Herb Farm and into your hands.
Then, there’s my charming daughter, Hannah. She is a happy wife of Jonah and mother to Sebastian (aka, Bash) and she does a LOT of the harvesting, washing, and processing. This, straight off her facebook page, “her desire set her apart from the pack. and now she has an aura that floats around and that’s intimidating.”, yes, that would be her.
She home schools Bash, studies a lot, uses herbs daily, and comes to the farm when I call on her. I had to have surgery on my hand a couple of years ago (in MAY, no less) and she managed the garden, harvesting, canning, bagging, boxing, orders and “Yes you did TOO let the weeds get the best of you!” But we all survived it, through thick and thin around here. We are a team!
My goal is to acquaint you with common herbs and what they can do for you.
We hope to do this by…
- Providing organic herbs and herbal products for you to use; enhancing you and your family’s health through
education on what herbs can do for you and helping to promote an all around healthy lifestyle.
- Providing detailed information about the herbs we grow organically, or responsibly wild craft and how they can improve your health.
- Remaining in operation, which means we have
to make a profit! We encourage you to buy our herbs and use them,
subscribe to our newsletter and purchase the various publications and materials which are available on this and our sister site, Grow Your Own Food.
I am sort of old-fashioned I guess. I don’t think that personal service is a crutch for a bad product. I believe personal service is the bedrock that any business sits on.Why? Because the business of health is the most personal business there is. And often, by the time a person has begun to search for herbs, they are already
in need of help. I want to help. Whether curative or preventative, I believe that taking responsibility for our health is the most personal and necessary action one will take on in their lifetime. (well, right next to choosing a mate or having and raising children!)
I invite you to browse around this web site, comments are always welcome. Be proud of the achievements you have reached thus far and the goals you have set for yourself. You deserve to come home to your own beautiful garden; eat from it, learn from it, grow in it.
The internet is full of so much marketing hype and promises that make us hopeful, I hope that it can be restorative for your heart, mind, and spirit to find a place that is simple, straight forward, and down to earth: I have worked terribly hard to make Our Herb Farm that kind of place.
It is my sincerest hope that it is that kind of place for you too.