The Forager's Path - School of Botanical Studies

Category Archives: Essential Oils

Resources for Studying & Using Essential Oils

Resources for Studying & Using Essential Oils

Having access to reliable information and being able to cut through the marketing hype is important in herbal medicine. It is even more so in the essential oil community due to the multi-year boom in the popularity of using essential oils. There is no shortage of quality oils on the market and accurate, in-depth teaching… Continue >>>

Photo-Toxic Essential Oils

Some essential oils contain furanocoumarins. These organic chemical compounds can cause phyto-photo-dermatitis, which is the skin’s hypersensitivity to the UV rays of sunlight. Possible skin reactions include stinging, itching, blisters and burning. When using essential oils on the skin, it is important to either avoid using furanocoumarin oils or avoid exposure to the sun for… Continue >>>

Pinaceae for Herbalists

Pinaceae for Herbalists

The Pinaceae family, commonly known as the Pine family, includes the Spruce (Picea) and Fir (Abies) genera in addition to the Pine (Pinus). Cedar is also in this family although the common cedar in the southwest is actually juniper, a member of the Cypress family. There are no true cedars native to the area. Therapeutically,… Continue >>>

The Role of Cortisol in Health and Disease

The Role of Cortisol in Health and Disease

Cortisol is commonly known as the “Stress Hormone” and is released by the adrenal glands in stressful situations. It is primarily a catabolic hormone as it signals the body to release energy for what it perceives to be an emergency survival situation. It has short term beneficial effects when stress is sporadic and short term.… Continue >>>

10 Month “Foundations of Herbal Medicine” Course for 2019

10 Month “Foundations of Herbal Medicine” Course for 2019

Our 10 month Foundations of Herbal Medicine program is full and registration is closed until registration for the 2020 session opens in August, 2019. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Many people begin using herbs in small steps – something for sleep, a cold or maybe a headache. As one continues on the herbal path of independent study, information is… Continue >>>

How to Make Pine Resin Salve

How to Make Pine Resin Salve

Salve made from the resin of our native pinon pine tree (Pinus edulis) has an exquisite aroma and is useful as a topical anti-microbial. While the final product is popular these days, the processing of tree resin into a finished product is a bit different than the standard salve making process. It seems like each… Continue >>>

Plant Metabolites & Herbal Medicine

Plant Metabolites & Herbal Medicine

A recurring question when studying herbal medicine is how and why plants have a beneficial affect on people’s health. The answer to this question varies by the cultural filter through which the plant world is viewed. One view that has helped my understanding of herbal medicine is the subject of Plant Metabolites. Nature does not… Continue >>>

Websites for Herb Research

Websites for Herb Research

These sites are some of the best on the internet for researching medicinal uses of specific plants. These sources are used for the final project in the Foundations of Herbal Medicine program at our school. They are also helpful for anyone doing independent study in the field of herbal medicine. http://oneearthherbs.squarespace.com/important-herbs-world/ http://www.herbcraft.org/articleindex.html http://animacenter.org/allies.html http://www.herbcraft.org/hoffmann.html http://www.ryandrum.com/index.htm#articles… Continue >>>

Formulas for Diffusing Essential Oils

Essential oils can be used in a variety of ways. One of the most effective methods is by diffusing a mist in the air. This mist is a combination of the essential oils and water. There are many possible therapeutic affects for any given oil formula. These obviously depend on the specific oils used and… Continue >>>

Latest Courses

Colorado Herbal Medicine Field Study

Colorado Herbal Medicine Field Study

This is the itinerary for the optional field study trip offered to students enrolled in the Foundations of Herbal Medicine program for 2019. More details will be shared at the first class meeting in February. Students are responsible for food, lodging (camping or hotel) and transportation. The dates for the 2019 program are July 22-25.… Continue >>>

10 Month “Foundations of Herbal Medicine” Course for 2019

10 Month “Foundations of Herbal Medicine” Course for 2019

Our 10 month Foundations of Herbal Medicine program is full and registration is closed until registration for the 2020 session opens in August, 2019. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Many people begin using herbs in small steps – something for sleep, a cold or maybe a headache. As one continues on the herbal path of independent study, information is… Continue >>>

Educational Resources

Resources for Therapeutic Mushrooms

Resources for Therapeutic Mushrooms

There are many mushrooms used therapeutically in the herb community with Reishi (Ganoderma spp.) being the the best known. One of the challenges to effectively using these gifts from the fungal world is knowing how to process them. While plants have cellulose, mushrooms have chitin. This substance is extremely hard and makes extraction difficult. The… Continue >>>

Diet Strategies for Reducing Chronic & Systemic Inflammation

Diet Strategies for Reducing Chronic & Systemic Inflammation

Included below are the notes used during the Diet, Nutrition and Inflammation portions of our curriculum. It is a succinct look at how the foods we eat affect our internal inflammatory state. While the actual classes go into more detail, the foods listed here are good places to begin improving one’s health in this area.… Continue >>>

Plant Profile: Usnea

Plant Profile: Usnea

Botany: Usnea spp. (Parmeliaceae) Usnea is a lichen, not a plant. Looking closely at its structure, one sees the internal core to be a white thread which is a fungus while the bluish-green outer surface is algae. The algae of its outer skin enables it to utilize sunlight and carbon dioxide for food production. The… Continue >>>

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