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Class Descriptions:
Tremaine ‘Abenaa’ Moore

Starting an Herbal Products Business

Why you should choose natural on your skin. I will discuss my brand and why I started my business. History of dealing with a congenital disease, transitioning my diet to more plant based and creating natural products to compliment my new lifestyle. After discussion about natural products we orchestrate a hands on activity creating a salt scrub.

History and Current Practices of Gullah Geechee Culture 

We will discuss Gullah Geechee history. We will connect traditional West African traditions and cultures and how the Gullah Geechee people still embrace these practices today. To include working with plants and herbs native to this region or used during chattel slavery as cash crops cultivated by my ancestors. We will have a class with indigo dying where we will make tie dye fashions. Indigo was one of the cash crops my ancestors were used to cultivate. They taught their captures how to incorporate color into fashion and other aspects of their lives.

Gullah Geechee methods to Tie Dye with Indigo

Lori Collins Jenkins

Labels and Packaging

Feel the call to offer your community herbal foods and medicine? This class will go through the ins and outs of what you need to prepare for selling at a local market or festival, equipment, bottling and labeling, legal actions and so much more. Farmers markets are a great first step in starting an herbal business. You get an opportunity to find your customers, meet them face to face and educate them on your products. It is a nice and easy way to work on your brand and mission statement. Plus, it is also a great way to get to know your local community. You will walk away with the tools and confidence you need to provide a quality product to your local customers as well as protecting yourself so that you can truly be successful!

Preserving Your Harvest, the Magic of Syrups, Finishing Salts and Infused Honeys

What are herbal syrups, infused honeys and finishing salts and why should they be a part of your diet + medicine cabinet? Honey is an amazing menstruum to extract the flavorful constituents of herbs. Honey is particularly well-suited to extract volatile oils from herbs--so why not eat your medicine? With honey as the base, you can create syrups and infused honeys for coughs, sore throats, first aid ointments and so many other remedies. It is a great way to preserve your harvest and incorporate more local ingredients into your home apothecary. In this class, we will also be looking at what herbs go great added into salts, using fresh herbs to create herbal finishing salts. We will blend an herbal "salt free" salt together.

Crafting With Herbs from the Garden and the Wild

Let's gather together and create for our home and health using herbs from the garden and the wild! Herbs are not just for eating. There is beauty and healing in creating with our plant allies. We will go over ways to dry herbs to maintain their color and beauty for dried wreaths and hangings. We will also blend a small bath salt, make our own saining bundles for burning, make herbal pillows, and so much more. As communities did before us, let us gather together and make herbal magic! Attendees will go home with several small projects and DIY instructions for creating their own magic at home.

Mary Ellen Lough

Growing Sacred Herbs for Home Ritual

Learn about cultivated and wild sacred herbs you can grow at home. We will cover traditions, lore, myth, approaching sacred plant medicine through meditation and home rituals. We’ll look at the everyday pathways of tending the sacred in Appalachia as well as abundant wild plants to build relationships with. Expect to make and come home with a small herbal item.

Todd Elliot

Humans and Mushrooms

Come learn about the importance of mushrooms to humans in the past, present and future. This talk will delve into the importance of mushrooms to different people and ecosystems around the world and will focus on the role of fungi in food and medicine.

Abby Artemisia

Wild Herbs of Appalachia Plant Walk

Abby, a botanist, herbalist, and forager, will take you on a stroll into the wild spaces to see what free herbs surround us, how we safely and ethically harvest them, and talk about how to preserve them. Get an introduction to basic botany to demystify plant identification and use all of your senses, to learn more about these plants. Bring your questions, field guides, notebooks, and cameras, along with hiking boots, rain jackets, and water bottles.

Learning Plants Through Art

Let's get together and study local herbs. We'll take a short plant walk to find a few wild herbs in their natural habitat. We'll sit with them, using our senses to create observations. We'll have time to draw (no artistic talent necessary) and research them. We'll share what we learned and our own experience with the herb. The purpose is to share community knowledge around a circle, so we can feel empowered with our own healthcare, and to create our own Materia Medica (herbal references). We learn so much more together than apart. Bring paper and any drawing materials, some will also be available.

Learning Plants Through Connection

Let’s learn the plants hands-, eyes-, and ears-on. We will walk to observe their habitats, touch them, see them through magnification (bring any magnifying tools), and connect with them through meditation. This will help us connect with them on a deeper level to learn in ways that used to be common. Once your forge this connection, you’ll have it for the rest of your life.

Marc Williams

African American Agricultural Traditions

In this workshop we will explore a multitude of contributions from African Americans to the farm, herbal and garden food traditions of the United States. Items of focus will include crops brought to the USA from Africa, traditional diets combining those plants with the native plants of the Americas and the food as medicine practices that have grown from this synthesis. We will discuss the benefit of reclaiming the good parts of these lifestyles that have often been left behind and forgotten both in the rush to modern urbanity but also away from the challenging past often associated by many folks with what an agrarian life entails. Potentials for alternative crops, increased diet diversity and better health given the knowledge shared will round out the presentation.

Challenges and Opportunities with Exotic Invasive Plants

We will focus in this class on the ethnobotanical applications of exotic invasive plants for food, medicine and beauty. A big drive of the discussion will include the opportunities to employ these plants and potentially make use of what are often characterized as problem species by turning them into resources. We will take a look at some of the prime exotic invasive plants occurring in the United States and around the world which have a host of applications and their use for fermentation in particular. Throughout our time a discussion of the how language is used to describe these plants for better or worse will be engaged.

Woody Ethnobotany Walk

 Spend a class learning more about the food, medicine and craft uses of woody plants. We will take a walk around the Valle Crucis Center campus and practice ways to systematically identify trees, shrubs and vines by their bark, ecotypes, flowers, fruit and growing conditions. Common and obscure sustainable uses for woody plants that may support overall health, well-being and sustenance will also be discussed. The connection between woody plants and other lifeforms such as birds, butterflies and fungal species will be an additional topic of conversation. The possible use of exotic invasive woodies as one potential means of control will round out our discussion.

Robin Suggs

Woodland Medicinal Herb Walk

Sustainable Harvest and Management Protocols for Wild Woodland Botanicals

This outdoor session is designed to give folks a nuts and bolts session on a few of the methods to manage your woodlands for the sustainable production of forest botanicals. Topics covered will include a brief overview of site selection, identification of companion species, understory management and a few examples of seed and vegetative propagation in the field.

Jim Hamilton

"Passion over Profit: A "Poachers" Guide to Growing Ginseng"

The presentation will briefly cover the history/culture of ginseng followed by site selection and management considerations for establishing ginseng on certain woodland properties/environments as a long term non-timber forest product.

Samuel Taylor

Introduction to the Endocannabinoid system

A brief overview of cannabinoids both naturally occurring and synthetic, and our future understanding

Overview of Medicinal, Aromatic, and Flavor Compounds

A brief overview aromatic and flavor compounds that are medicinal

Cindi Quay

Native American Ceremony

Native Plant Medicine Walk.

Henna Wallace

Listening to your gut

Together we will delve into the marvelous, and somewhat mysterious, gut-brain axis. We will explore the connection between our digestive and nervine herbs and actions. Participants will have the chance to taste a few relevant remedies. This class will include an introductory materia medica, as well as lifestyle tools and practical knowledge.

Mimi Prunella Hernandez

Sunflower: A Mexican Ray of Healing

Learn about the healing powers of the sunflower in Mexican traditional medicine in this lecture. Discover how every part of the sunflower, from seed to blossom, is utilized in folk healing and culinary practices. Explore traditional recipes made from sunflower sprouts, stalks, seeds, and flower heads. Understand how traditional healers harness the medicinal properties of the sunflower's rich green leaves and sunny rays for common ailments. We will prepare sunflower stalks to munch on and enjoy a fresh and cool sunflower leaf and ray infusion.

Jeanine Davis

Forest Farming-What is It and Why is Everyone Talking About it?

We will explore forest farming of woodland botanicals, how to include it in your own farm or garden plan with a colorful presentation and have a hands-on plant activity, too. 

Botanical Hammer Prints

We will collect some pretty plant material and then have some fun (and maybe work out some aggressions) by creating botanical hammer prints on cloth and paper. 

Stephanie Smith


Doug Elliot

Human Connection with Plants

Renee Crozier, RH(AHG)

Flower Essences: The Heart and soul of plant spirit therapies 

Come and explore the strengths and benefits of vibrational plant medicine. Leave understanding history, concepts, the making of and the applications of flower essences.

Objectives Covered:  

• History of Essences & Flower Essence Therapy

Overview of flower essence history and the unique role they play in therapy

• Plant Observation & the Language of Nature

Explanation of Plant Perception and immersion into plant profiles, families, and archetypes

 • Structured Flower Essence Therapy Framework

An archetypal map of the human soul can provide a structured framework to bring clarity to your essence practice

 • Principles of Flower Essence Selection

Selecting flower essences for others, practical applications

 • Plant Attunement & Essence Making

Experience learning directly from plants by practicing attunement, observation, and the essence making process

 • Structuring the Client Consultation

Step-by-step approaches to both the practical and therapeutic aspects of working with clients

 • The Art of Formulation & Treatment

Different approaches to formulating blends and application in the context of Flower Essence Therapy

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