Planting, preparing medicines from plants

Jan 16, 2014
Deb Soule, owner of Avena Botanicals in Rockport, will discuss planting and preparing medicines from plants at a Tuesday, Jan. 28 talk at Camden Public Library.

Camden — Deb Soule, founder and owner of Avena Botanicals in Rockport, will give a talk on Planting and Preparing Medicines from Plants Tuesday, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m., at the Camden Public Library.

The talk is part of the library’s speaker series, Green Growing January, on environmental and sustainability topics.

Avena Botanicals Herbal Apothecary and Biodynamic Gardens offers a variety of hand-crafted herbal remedies. Most of the products are made with herbs grown and hand-harvested from their biodynamic garden, situated on a 32-acre farm in Rockport. The garden provides an abundance of certified biodynamic herbs for the apothecary, a classroom for students, nectar-producing flowers for pollinators, and a peaceful place for visitors to find healing in nature.

Soule will discuss her new book, "How To Move Like A Gardener: Planting and Preparing Medicines From Plants." The book embodies Soule's deep love and respect for the spirit of the medicinal plants she has worked with for nearly 40 years. Raised in a small town in western Maine, Soule began organic gardening and studying the medicinal uses of herbs at age 16 alongside the internationally-known medical herbalist Mary Bove. Her faith in the healing qualities of plants includes a desire to make organic herbs easily accessible to women and families living in rural areas. As Soule's knowledge and faith in the efficacy of medicinal herbs grew, so did her desire to be of service to her community. In a small 8 by 10 foot room in her house, she began preparing various herbal remedies. In the fall of 1985, with her first mail order catalog and a small selection of herbal extracts and teas, Soule launched Avena Botanicals at the Common Ground Fair in Windsor. Five years earlier, while enrolled as a student at College of the Atlantic, Soule lived in Nepal close to three Tibetan monasteries. She was deeply influenced by the Tibetan peoples commitment to ease physical symptoms and mental and emotional upsets through plants, prayer, and other spiritual practices.

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