Community Herbal Intensive 2023

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In 2023, spend one day a month learning how to make seasonal home remedies from the garden with herbalist leah wolfe

This year, the Community Herbal Intensive will be held at Resilient Acres in Chardon. Resilient Acres is a novel exploration of regenerative health and agriculture located on 122 acres of fields, forests, streams, and gardens. Read more about Resilient Acres.

The Trillium Center hopes to improve community health through herbalism, gardening, and connecting with nature. These two organizations hope to connect herbalism and regenerative health and agriculture as a way to build community and develop local food systems rooted in seasonal traditions of healing.

The intensive starts in March with identification of late winter twigs and barks used as food and medicine. Then on to spring greens, through summer flowers and berries, ending with the deep nourishment offered by autumn roots. Monthly topics cover the how, when, which, and why to use herbs, weeds, and wild plants. 

CHI picnic and learning at the park

Topics covered:

  • basic botany
    • learn to identify common plants in NE Ohio
    • learn patterns to help you identify plants in other areas
  • developing projects for health and healing
    • planning for personal or community projects
    • how to include plants safely and appropriately
  • basic anatomy and physiology for herbalists
    • this is not a replacement for medical information but a starting point for learning how herbs interact with organ systems and tissues
  • basic methodologies and ideologies for using plant remedies
    • intro traditional systems
    • differentiation between allopathic and naturopathic and traditional use
    • herbal safety
  • materia medica: the medicinal uses of plants and trees
  • from field to apothecary:
    • wild crafting, foraging, and garbling
    • ethics and safety of wild crafting
  • medicine making: oils, salves, tinctures, cordials, and more

The foundations of traditional herbalism provide a framework for eating to nourish instead of eating to simply fill with calories. Learning to make a simple herbal tea blend increases dietary diversity. Learning how to pair herbs with food improves digestibility and nourishment. Contact with garden soil has been  shown to improve mood and immune function. Time in nature enlivens the spirit. Experience all of this through the Community Herbal Intensive.  

LOCATION

Most of the workshops will be held at Resilient Acres in Chardon, first Saturdays, March to November (no class in July). Workshops will be held from 12-5 pm. Field trips in the Cleveland area will allow participants to see other ecosystems. Location may change due to weather. Read more about Resilient Acres.

REGISTRATION

The registration fee covers program materials, the Herbal Foundations textbook, supplies and ingredients for medicine making, online programming and resources, and 5 hours in-person and hands-on instruction for NINE MONTHS. Early bird registration is $825 due February 1. After February 1, the registration fee is $850.

Refunds on the registration fee(s) are accepted up until Feb. 15. If for some reason you can’t participate, you can transfer your fees and seat to another person that same year.

Participants are required to complete all assigned worksheets, readings, and attend classes to receive a certificate. Absences are allowed, but may require make-up work. You are not required to get a certificate, but it is helpful if you are considering building a history of your herbal experience. 

INSTRUCTOR

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Leah Wolfe, MPH, community herbalist and health educator, leads the workshops. Leah is a founder of the Trillium Center, an educational project for natural arts. Her teaching style interweaves science with intuition and hands-on experience in order to engage students on multiple levels. She hopes to inspire participants to deepen their understanding of plants while engaging with local communities to develop projects that improve health and healing. Leah teaches classes across the country for gardening groups, conferences, and other gatherings. She has a background in research and community health. 

For Leah, herbalism is based on relationship. Relationship with community. Relationship with friends and family. Relationship with self. And, of course, relationship with each plant. Those relationships should be characterized by respect, willingness to learn, the courage to help when help is needed, and direct experience. Direct experience is important because it requires being present and engaged in the process, whether that process is dealing with a conflict, learning about a new plant medicine, or working with a community that’s been hit by a disaster.