My secret world of plants
On Mondays, I descend down into the basement to disappear into my world of herbs. Once there I spend a couple hours smelling, touching and tasting, to create formulas to help the animals I work with. As I work I can hear the ancient wisdom of the past herbal masters whispering to me and feel the vibrations of these plants, many which were on this planet before us. To me working with these herbs is like cooking, only I am making up a recipe for healing by harnessing the amazing powers of these living things.
One of my clients is a paralyzed dachshund. Making up a formula for him, I call upon four of my favorite herbs to form a blood tonic. The four are all roots – foxglove, peony, Chinese angelica, and lovage – and are earthy and strong. I love to tea these in the winter and sit on my window seat sipping the strong rich tea they make. I can feel how these herbs work to strengthen me from the inside so that I have the energy to heal. This is what I want for this little dog.
Roots are also very grounding because they come from the earth and they help to hold us to the ground so we do not float away with our thoughts. In China this herbs are cooked up with a chicken soup in the winter to help older people with aches and pains.
After opening and tonifying, I add a few generous pinches of the light and vibrant orange safflowers to move and lift up these heavy grounding roots. These along with peach seed will help to move the blood down this little guy’s back legs so they can work again.
Finally to work with pain, I add corydalis, which is a powerful mover of blood, and painkiller.
Chinese Herbal Medicine is all about how the herbs work together and most formulas have ten or more herbs. It is an art based on the powers that emerge when these herbs joint forces. No one herb is powerful on its own but together these amazing plants can perform miracles.
Many times I will not know what I am going to put in a formula until I am staying in front of my herbs. Then one herb will just leap out and say, “use me!” Sometimes it will be an herb I am not familiar with but when I rush to my materia medica and look it up turns out to be exactly what I need.
Plants have an energy and a power of their own and often my job is to listen more than to think. When I think too much I come up with a generic formula, which may help, but my most powerful formulas come when the herbs lead the way.
By the end of my day, I am usually covered with herb dust and my nose is full of the many smells and flavors of the herbs I have mingled with. Up the stairs I go once again out to the busy world of traffic and electronics…until next week.
This formula is now available through my etsy store Kingdom of Basil