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Community Medicine Gardens

The aims of Sensory Solutions Herbal Evolution are to connect people to their local plant medicine. Through various community growing projects that we have managed, we realised just how important and transformational growing medicine together can be. Through each of our sensory medicine garden projects we provide education about the medicinal power of plants through the growing and harvesting of simple plant remedies.

We have recently planted a medicinal Herb Garden at Monkton Wyld Centre for Sustainable Living which is the teaching garden for our Apprenticeship Course where one of the tasks over the 3 years is to develop a sensory medicine garden within each individuals’ community, each garden will have information available to the general public about the plants growing there.

A massive THANK YOU is extended to the wonderful Earth Pathways Diary Seed Fund for the funding towards the gardens at Monkton Wyld which shall be accessible to the local school groups, nursery group and all other visitors to the centre.

We love the Earth Pathways Diary, who have always been extremely supportive of our work. Look them up for more info about their incredible project

We shall be having regular volunteer work parties at our Sensory medicine garden in Monkton Wyld.

Meanwhile, we have just seen the pioneering group of Sensory Graduates and their medicine gardens each of whom presented their work on our final weekend.

1. Mary is developing an idea with Teddington Sports Ground as part of a huge community project that is still in the planning stages.

2. Bear and Mynx have transformed an area of their privately-owned woods into a medicine garden with Druid symbology. This will serve to educate those who come for events and gatherings to the land.

3. Katy is part of a Jewish Community Farm Project where they are connecting to their faith through interacting with nature. She has already set upon Medicine Garden at Skeet Hill House now run and managed by the Jewish Farmers Network. They now have much more space so are looking to wild craft and expand the herbal influence across the site.

4. Kate has been taking medicines made from her garden to the local community market and spreading the herbal word.

5. Laura carefully planned and created a herb garden at her new home which will open as part of the Village Open Garden event. She will use this as a way of enticing her community to learn more about herbs of medicinal value that can be grown in the garden.

6. Belle set up a community medicine garden on an allotment in Bristol and ran a workshop about how to grow medicinal herbs.

7. Sophie and Emma developed their Eco Club at the local first school into a wonderful medicinal herb bed at the front of the school where parents and carers see when they pick up the children. The children designed the garden and are making signs for it. A wonderful and informative project.

8. Katie Shellard is having a journey with Potter Bar Council who gave her some beds in a local park. She has some wonderful designs for groups of herbs reflecting issues within the body.

9. Dawn decided to run a retreat day at the local large estate and had since developed this idea and is offering longer residential retreats with herbal education at its heart.

10. Bea has designed and been given permission to plant in the local park flower beds. The idea was that she involves the local community to take over the maintenance and the running of the gardens. She has decided to do this with a local school.

11. Chris transformed the entrance area of her local spiritual education centre into an array of lovely pots filled with medicine.

We are profiling these gardens and plotting the trials and tribulations experienced in each of the individual circumstances so that we can develop a ‘How to’ pack for implementing a community medicine garden from the smallest of ideas, a welly boot or Planta outside the local library to a huge garden project on council rented land.

Some of the main issues experienced so far are, how to get the support of volunteers to put the garden in in the first place, securing funding for such projects, getting council support and then of course a major consideration is that of who maintains the garden and signage once its put in place.

We hope to be able to offer support for some of these issues with ideas for how to get around them.

It has been so inspiring to see how each Sensory Herb Apprenticeship Graduate is using their knowledge and experience to introduce people from their local community to the plants that grow around them.

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