The untrained eye may only see trees, grasses, weeds, and shrubs, but in First Nations teachings, many of these plants are medicine.
Herbs and plants are an amazing natural resource, the health and abundance of which is crucial to the practice of herbal medicine. As herbalists, one of the things we both love about what we do is working directly with plants, whether it is putting herbs together in a formula or even more importantly, learning about and from them in their natural habitat through one-on-one contact and observation.
On the March 5th episode of Holistic Healing with Herbs and Chinese Medicinewe interview Susan Leopold, the executive director of United Plant Saversa nonprofit organization whose mission is to protect native medicinal plants of the United States and Canada and their native habitat.
We talk with Susan about the work United Plant Savers does to monitor and protect native plants like American Ginseng Panax quinquefolius pictured aboveGoldenseal Hydrastis canadensisand Black Cohosh Cimicifuga Racemosa to ensure that these plants continue to propagate in the wild.
Being herbalists, we are concerned with the preservation of medicinal herb species because we are well acquainted with the vast healing properties for not only the herbs used in the Chinese materia medica, but for herbs used all over the planet.
There is a steadily increasing amount of research confirming the medicinal power of herbs, however, there is a vast amount of knowledge plants have yet to reveal to us. The greater part of traditional therapy involves the use of plant extracts or their active principles.
The preliminary results of a study on behalf of WHO has shown that the number of individuals using medicinal plants is large and on the increase, even among young people. It is not just in developing countries that medicinal plants are important. However despite an increasing interest in plants there are also increasing and severe threats to the habitats and knowledge of medicinal plants.
It is increasingly important to find ways to support ecological systems that house these plants in a sustainable manner. Much traditional wisdom concerning plants remains underutilized. Medicinal plants are facing extinction all over the world and there is little to no effort to preserve them, as well as little effort to document their properties.
It is important to find ways to preserve plant knowledge, as well as plant habitats. The long history of herbs, medicinal minerals, and animal parts in China has been both a blessing and a curse.
This is large scale farming. This is also a potential way to preserve forests and rain forests, as there are many medicinal plants that require shade. A strong immune modulator is the rain forest mushroom agaricus.
Such intentional cultivation could be a way to preserve other rain forests like the Amazonian rainforest from which agaricus originally hails. Correct identification and knowledge of the medicinal uses of all plants in a given country is essential.
Click here for an article from the Huffington Post for more information about the health benefits of American Ginseng. For any plant lovers and consumers of herbal medicine alike, it is important that we understand our individual and collective roles in ensuring that these plants are not used to extinction, but are protected for future generations.
Only with a combination education and conservation can both our habitats and the vast medicinal knowledge within them be preserved.CHAPTER 17 DRYING OF MEDICINAL PLANTS JOACHIM MÜLLER AND ALBERT HEINDL University of Hohenheim, Institute of Agricultural Engineering, D Stuttgart, Germany Abstract.
Drying is the most common method of medicinal plant preservation and, due to high investment and energy costs, drying is also a large expense in medicinal plant production.
Bhutan is a biodiversity hotspot with several endangered species of flora and fauna and more than 7, species of vascular plants. More than medicinal plant species are identified in Bhutan, around half of which are currently used in preparing medicines.
Progress 10/01/06 to 09/30/07 Outputs Progress Report Objectives (from AD) The long term objective is to develop a strategy for the collection and preservation of medicinal plant species native to Appalachian region of the U.S.
The specific objective of this project is to identify potential medicinal or other useful properties of black cohosh (Cimicifuga racemosa) and promote conservation of the species. supply of medicinal plants impact the long term viability of traditional health systems.
Training of practitioners and preservation of traditional ecological and medical knowledge lie at the core of future prospects for ancient but challenged traditions.
Medicinal plants are facing extinction all over the world and there is little to no effort to preserve them, as well as little effort to document their properties. It is important to find ways to preserve plant knowledge, as well as plant habitats.
establish a basis for the conservation of medicinal plants, so as to ensure that adequate quantities are available for guture generations. This pl,aces medici nal plants, their rational and sustainable use, and their conservation, firmly in the arena of public health policy and concern.