Archive for the ‘Seasons’ Category

Dear Radicles,
Well, your trusty herbalist is full of surprises. My husband and I just got word that his four year medical residency will carried out in Portland, OR. This means that Radicle will be changing locations as of June 1, 2013.  I am shocked, and a little heartbroken to be leaving, but I’m recovering.

You must have questions- here is a handy Q&A to set your mind at ease.

Q. What? You are MOVING!!?
A. I know. I just found out also. I thought we were staying.

Q. How will I get my Adrenal Tonic or my favorite tea!? I’m freaking out!
A. You will still be able to purchase your teas and tonics (even custom blends)- I will just pop them in the mail to you. Email me or call to place an order.

Q. I want to learn about herbs. Can I still take herbal classes?
A. I will still be teaching in Spokane occasionally, stay tuned on FB and the Radicle Review for details.

Q. I am interested in coming in for a consultation about my health, and this move of yours ruins my plans.
A. I will still be offering phone consultations and custom herbal formulas. Or you can make an appointment to come and see me in Spokane before May 8th.

Q.What will become of The Radicle Review, my favorite plog? (plant log)
A. The Radicle Review will remain an excellent source of cutting edge herbal information and innocent internet diversion. And thank you, faithful reader.

Here are my whereabouts for the next month- I encourage you sign up early for the Plant Walks, as I expect they will fill quickly. And please come visit me at the South Perry Market and stock up on herbs so I don’t have to move so many heavy bottles and bulky teas!
Spring 2013 Class Schedule
To accommodate our late spring, I’ve configured the two classes I will be teaching this spring on one weekend, though you don’t need to take both unless you want to. (It’s just because we are likely to see better looking plants later in May.)

Saturday May 18th, Plant Walk at the Finch Arboretum 12-2pm
Sunday May 19th, Plant Walk at Manito Park 12-2pm

The cost is $15 per class. Please email me at radicletea@gmail.com to RSVP.
Spokane Farmers Markets
The South Perry Market
May 2nd, 9th (indoors at the South Perry Yoga studio- 915 S Perry) from 3-6pm
May 16th, 23rd (outdoors at The Shop- 924 S Perry) from 3-7pm

On a personal note, though I am sad to leave this community, I am excited to see herbalism blossom in Spokane. I’ve dispensed a lot of herbs, brewed gallon after gallon of herbal iced tea, and taught a lot of eager plant lovers that can carry the torch. It has been truly wonderful.  Now in addition to missing all of the flora and fauna of my native place, I will miss all of you.

Here are some parting words from the brilliant poet, Gary Snyder:

For the Children

The rising hills, the slopes,
of statistics
lie before us. Learn the flowers
the steep climb
of everything, going up,
up, as we all
go down.

In the next century
or the one beyond that,
they say,
are valleys, pastures,
we can meet there in peace
if we make it.

To climb these coming crests
one word to you, to
you and your children:

stay together
learn the flowers
go light

Thanks for everything.  Yours truly, Sarah P.


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Dear Readers,
The days are growing slightly longer and the plants of Seattle are beginning to awaken. I thought it fitting that the Radicle Review should also come out of hibernation, to chronicle the first signs of spring. I promise not to gloat to all of you that are still icebound- just try to vicariously experience spring through this plog*, spring will come to you as well.
This weekend I am planning a foraging trip to hunt for the last deep winter roots of the season, those of the ubiquitous Oregon Grape. I use these bright yellow roots in my Tri-Wizard Tincture.  Tri-Wiz is Radicle’s top selling remedy for the common cold, a powerful combination of Oregon grape root (Mahonia nervosa), Yerba mansa (Anemopsis californica), and Red root (Ceonothus sp.). Yes, this tincture’s name is a Harry Potter reference, and yes, it works like magic. More on that later.  Stay tuned for next weeks instructional post- “How To Gather Oregon Grape Roots- a pictorial guide.”

p.s I missed you guys.

Hellebore, the proverbial early bloomer.

*Plant Log

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Here in Seattle, Spring comes early.

I am always surprised that when all is still frozen stiff and dormant on the Eastern side of the state (my other haunt), the plants here are waking up to birdsong in January, of all months.  Currently the bulbs in my yard are sprouting enthusiastically, prompted by the 3 or 4 dim rays of sunlight that fell on them last week.

Every spring  I start to worry about Nature. Although in every other way, I exalt it’s perfect sense of timing,  (in fact, I study it to learn timing) for some reason when the first buds appear in spring I fear that it might be a tad confused. As I look out upon my Japanese cherry tree that stands shivering in the icy rain, a few delicate small pink blossoms clinging bravely to its’ branches, I can’t help but urge caution.  I speak in worried tones to the delicate baby leaves sprouting under the dead stalks of last years Lemonbalm.

In truth, I can’t wait for the arrival of Spring. And my concern is blasphemous, condescending, in a way.  This is Nature’s strategy, this mix of devil may care risk-taking and perfect punctuality.  Many will not survive, they will bloom too early and die in the next frost before setting seed. But to the intrepid few that venture out first and get a break, go the spoils. More nutrients, more sunlight, a longer growing season and a leg up on the competition. The early bee is fattened on virginal pollen and nectar from eager young blossoms. Or it dies tragically out in the cold. Nature will unsentimentally exploit any advantage and innovation is rewarded, though not always on the individual level. The species that end up on top stand on the corpses of all of their daring ancestors.

It is heartening to see the innate yearning of Life, absolutely hell bent on survival. Nature expresses this through every channel, every living thing pulses with this desire. Each species will risk individual lives for the continuation of the whole, it will evolve and morph, change tactics, try new things.  We can all see the bravery of Spring. It is in us, it is what we are made of, this is our strategy as well. We can feel the urgency to Live! quickening in ourselves as the Sun and plants appear again. Another year to advance the common cause of Life on Earth.

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