- Issue #3 Now Available!
- New Subscription Rates Breakdown
- Changes In Your Subscriptions Management
- Exciting New Forager Column by Sam Thayer
- New Interviews Department
- Overview of Issue #3 Topics
New Subscription Rates
Out of consideration for readers who are struggling financially, we now offer 2 subscription options: a new $37 rate that includes a year’s issues without any bonuses, as well as the full $57 membership that comes with over $200 worth of bonus audio, video, art and other learning materials. From now on you can choose either rate plan, when you either sign up or resubscribe.
Improved Subscription Management
Since last issue, an enormous amount of work has gone into infrastructure and software improvements, all for the purpose of making it easier for you to access your issues and bonuses… including moving the magazine files to a new server that promises faster downloads. Our new software program will automatically send you a direct link to your magazine issues that no longer requires your going to the site and logging in, and it will also handle renewal notices. A built in media player will soon make it possible for you to experience your video/audio/pdf bonuses online or download them as you prefer, and we were able to keep the 3D magazine reader that lets you appear to turn actual pages right on the screen.
Some of the things we like about the term “Folk Herbalism” are it’s earthiness and inclusiveness. One can be a certified clinical practitioner and still feel at home under the welcoming umbrella, yet no certification is required to feel a part of an ancient tradition and contemporary community of people, using herbs and innumerable other natural means to heal each other and the world. It’s not an “in-crowd” or “popularity club” regardless of how popular folk herbalism or some of its spokespeople might be, and is instead an alliance of values and aims that anyone can share in no matter how quiet, unassuming or unknown they might be. In addition, there’s no official group position on any subject that anyone has to agree with or adopt, but instead, a medley of subjective feelings and objective information that continuously draws upon new input and experience, feelings and findings. It discourages conformity, challenges treasured illusions and assumptions, and accepts that controversy can sometimes be a vehicle for deepened discussion.
Issue #3 of Plant Healer #3 Released!
The vitality of Folk Herbalism can be measured in its welcoming of difficult questions and critique, even Paul Bergner’s latest column admonishing against Folk Herbalism’s sometimes unrealistic and unhelpful romanticization. In Sean Donahue’s overview of historic herbalist Nicholas Culpepper’s approach and times, we see that the struggle for common folks’ access to herbal knowledge has been going on for far long than many realize. Hopes that existing and future controversies can be useful – to dislodge presumptions and spur new ways of thinking – run high in Wolf Hardin’s extensive new article, “In Balance”, addressing both sides of an Invasive Species debate that could have huge consequences for ecosystem health, plant diversity and population of wild medicinal herbs. Problematic plants have too long been under appreciated and even vilified, but the possibility that our affection for prolific exotics and discomfort with managing them could contribute to the extirpation of beloved native herbs must not be taken lightly.
We look forward to your continued discussion of these and other concepts and concerns raised in Plant Healer, person to person, on any forums you frequent and in correspondence. New this issue, is what will be a periodic Readers Response department, wherein you can not only tell us what you think of Plant Healer, but also share relevant experiences, insights and ideas. So far all we’ve received are much appreciated compliments, though we’re certainly open to your complaints. Also new this time, is a Plant Healer Interviews department, wherein we ask respected herbalists, botanists, conservationists and artists the kinds of questions that draw out new material and connections, stories and conclusions that have never before seen print. It’s all too easy for us authors and teachers to get in the trap of always speaking out of our practiced outline, and ending up sounding scripted. This actually cost us our first intended Interview subject, when a highly esteemed herbalist objected to us straying at all from the topic of his oft recounted 40 plus years worth of accomplishments. But it also gave us the opportunity to begin the Interviews series with a candid and incisive conversation with herbalist Todd Caldecott, touching on a number of subjects that we think you’ll find engaging. Thank you, Todd, for setting a standard by which all future interviews can be measured.
We’re psyched to introduce our newest Plant Healer column by Samuel Thayer, one of the very clearest and most powerful writers ever on the subject of wild foods and foraging…
and to have the continued contributions of our other awesome Plant Healer columnists:
the second exclusive installment of Matthew Wood’s “Energetics Of The Cardiovascular System,” excerpted from his unpublished writings; text and amazing photos on leaf structure by Plant Healer staff photographer and columnist 7Song, too good not to also end up in a book if his some day; further foundations and insights from our insightful elvish friend Jim McDonald; cultural alchemist John Gallagher’s ever so practical column of tools and suggestions for herbalist outreach; and a third delightful article for plant loving kids by Herbal Roots publisher Kristine Brown, once again created by her specially for Plant Healer. As well as the latest column by Kiva Rose on balancing experience and science with tradition and intuition.
You’ll surely be happy to see feature articles by new contributors Christa Sinadinos (Horsetail),
Catie Pazandak (The Roots of Vitalism), Leah Wolfe (on Haiti), as well as return appearances by favorites Phyllis Light (an important piece on herb/drug interactions), Loba (yummy foodways), Rosalee de la Foret (herbs for menopause), Ananda Wilson (courting Spring plants), Virginia Adi (Tobacco), Katja Swift (post birth control part 2), Rachel Browlee (lovely Lavender cream) and still another fanciful children’s piece penned and illustrated by herbalist songstress Jane Valencia.
We’ve been enjoying having a floating or evolving magazine motto, a likely necessary practice given the scope and breadth of this publication, its mission and intent. In its latest rendition, “Enlivening the Practice, Culture & Art of Folk Herbalism”, we emphasize some of the other roles that Plant Healer has been playing besides providing exciting and useful information for intermediate and advanced practitioners. This includes the glad feeding of a cultural resurgence, the community-wide redefining of folk herbalism to suit our truths and times, and a re-envisioning of our identity and the work we’re called to do …explored and expressed through arts and activism, lifestyle and aesthetics.
Note that we said “aesthetics”, plural, as any representative and sustainable folk culture must by its very nature be diverse and adaptable, incorporating the sensibilities and “flavors”
of all its members in an intuitively proportioned recipe. Thus stirred into our mix are woodcuts from medieval texts and posters of tattooed misfit botanists, Victorian flora greeting card images
and special features on contemporary painters with poignant plant obsessions. In this issue, you won’t be surprised to find over 20 more full page posters including twisted parodies of our precious Plant Healer magazine covers, further installments in the Diversity In Herbalism series “Not All Herbalist Are…”, yet more artwork by the wonderful Joanna Powell Colbert and feisty gifted Anima student Rebecca Altman, plus the incredible artist Madeline von Foerster’s well spoken tribute to some of the plants portrayed in her “In The Garden” painting, and even a bizarre pulp fiction cover from the 50s featuring a green woman swooning in the arms of an unlikely plant monster!
If there is a monster, it is perhaps the size of this latest issue, 199 pages long.
We promised ourselves we’d keep it under 200…
Dig in, and enjoy!
“This is the first publication I’ve seen in my 38-year career that captures the wild diversity of herbalism in North America while still reflecting excellence and high-level practice. It does not try to prove anything, just to educate and inspire. It also reflects points of view from many regions, traditions, and schools of North American thought. Its content is aimed squarely at the practicing herbalist from entry level to advanced, inclusively. I’ve learned things in the first issue from the other teachers that I will put into practice.” -Paul Bergner, NAMH
4 issues (over 700 pages total, the equivalent of a large full color book) plus $200 or more worth of bonus materials for $57, or $37 without the bonuses
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We also welcome your help with the growing of this community and movement. On the Plant Healer website you will find downloadable banners for linking to, and a color Plant Healer poster you might print out and post in appropriate places… And thanks so much for networking this announcement.
-Jesse Wolf and Kiva Rose (editors)