Well, the season went fast, the plants grew and so did my baby. Not much teaching or private gardening happened but a lot of baby tending and watching the flowers bloom and butterflies fly through the garden…… and it was wonderful! I’m working on next years class calendar-virtual and in person- plant sale and other exciting things. In the meantime be sure to send a message through the contact page to be added to the mailing list to know all about it, or check out my instagram @ofthespirit. I am happy to do garden consults through the winter if you want to start creative visioning now, so be in touch!
News & Happenings
Please join us SUNDAY May 23rd 8-2pm at
Lincoln Street Center’s back parking lot in Rockland
(24 Lincoln street, Rockland) for a plant sale
Lots of tomatoes! Veggies, Herbs and Dye plants….
You can see an *incomplete* list on the flyer below
There also will be a yard sale with a bunch of folks selling stuff and
people to see and say hi to!
Spring clean up in the garden
Spring clean up has begun (even though there are whispers of snow this weekend) and if you need someone to rake leaves off your flower beds, cut back last years growth and maybe even move some plants around or think about what other plants would flourish at your place….. be in touch! With years of experience with perennial plants I am happy to help. I love seeing and working in new gardens.
Do you also need some help weeding your soon-to-be vegetable garden or pruning future tomatoes? Reach out at any point in the season! We all know how things that feel like a chore can get away from us in the summer when we want to be spending time swimming and with friends.
My hands-on garden range is the midcoast area. Be in touch and we can set up a time to talk about what your garden needs and visions are and how I can support them. Happy Spring!
Summer 2021 classes
The following classes are part Tuesday Talks – $5 talks for the public and free to members- at Merryspring Nature Center in Camden, ME . 12pm in person.
June 8th – Herbs of Antiquity
July 13th- Dye plants growing In Merryspring’s Garden
August 24th – Annual Herb Garden Tour
September 24th -TBD
Private herb garden tours are available, email me through the contact page for more info.
Check out my new zine How to Learn Plants – practices for botanically curious city dwellers
More 2021 Classes
In the next few weeks I will post more classes I will be teaching in person. You can also contact me for a garden consult or for private classes. But today I’m announcing an online class I am excited to share – Seeding Self Care – a series to learn how to grow your own apothecary. It’s based on in-person classes I have taught at Merryspring Nature Center the past five years.
In these three sessions we will go over the foundations of what you need to know to start growing your own herbs for stocking your medicine cabinet.
Thursdays – 6:30-7:30/8pm EST
Week 1 – Foundations of the garden – In this class we explore our intentions for growing our own apothecary and how we can support ourselves and our communities with the plants we grow. We talk abut the reciprocal relationships we engage in within the garden. We will cover the basics of starting a garden, from observation and assessment of your space to soil, water, sun and layout design.
Week 2 – Welcoming the plants – In this class we delve into a long list of medicinal plant allies and what is needed for each plant’s healthy growth. I’ll give an overview of starting medicinal seeds and give individual tips for growing medicinal plants and how to collect and harvest them when the time is right.
Week 3 – Tending to the Gardener – In this herbal first aid class we address common ailments and issues that arise working outside in the garden. Easy and practical herbal applications will be offered for things like bug bites to ankle sprains. We will talk about seasonal rhythms and how we can stay in sync with the needs of the garden as well as our own.
Questions about your own gardens are encouraged! If you miss the live class you can ask questions via email.
You can sign up here.
More spring and summer classes will be posted soon.
2021 Merryspring Nature Center Garden Internship
Seven Wednesdays April 28th- June 9th 10am-2:00pm
Join me for 7 Wednesdays this spring at Merryspring Nature Center for the 2021 Garden Internship*. We will follow the flow and weekly needs of the garden through conversation, observational garden walks and hands on work, covering the themes of Garden Design and Layout, Welcoming The Plants, Reconsidering Invasive Plants and Weeds, Tending to the Gardener, Native and Endangered Plants, Medicine- Beauty-Food, and more. Each week a handout and/or reading resources will be provided.
This hands on opportunity is designed for the total garden novice or for someone who wants to spend some early season hours helping out at their local non-profit nature center, from students 16 and up to seasoned gardeners in their elder years looking for community. Covid-19 safety protocols will be followed and the program may be adapted for any safety needs. After the internship is over interns can apply to be kept on as an intern-worker for the duration of the season with an hourly stipend. For more information and a brief application please email email@example.com. Applications are accepted until April 14th or all spots are filled.
*This opportunity is offered free of charge funded with a generous donation through Merryspring Nature Center
End of 2020 Season Notes
So this year went in ways many of us never could have expected, and it’s not over yet! I am so grateful for spending time in the garden and being nourished by all my plant allies to get me through it. We postponed the garden internship at Merryspring Nature Center this year to next spring and other events I am involved in like The Maine Herbal Gathering also were put on pause (though we will be printing a zine to keep the herbal community connected, check out the website for more info.)
I miss connecting with folks by working together in the garden but have enjoyed talking to people who are NEW gardeners this year, finding more time and space to start their own, planting seeds and then harvesting and drinking tea from even just a few pots of herbs. Looking towards 2021 I am offering more personal herb garden mentorships that extend further than just one time garden consults. These can be done virtually or on the phone, and having grown medicinal plants in a variety of zones I can really tailor them to wherever people may be. Send me a message and we can talk more about it if you are interested. We can even get started on your planning this fall and winter. We can cover everything from picking the right seeds to how and when to harvest your herbs and then how to dry or prepare them for use.
Classes and updates for next gardening season will be posted in early March but check my instagram for my most up to date offerings.
Merryspring Nature Center Garden Internship – Seven Wednesdays May/June (postponed due to covid)
This hands on opportunity is designed for the total garden novice or for someone who wants to spend some early season hours helping out at their local non-profit nature center, from home school students 16 and up to seasoned gardeners in their elder years looking for community. In our time together we will follow the flow and weekly needs of the garden as well as work through the following topics: Garden Design and Layout, Welcoming The Plants, Reconsidering Invasive Plants and Weeds, Tending to the Gardener, Native and Endangered Plants, Medicine- Beauty-Food, and more. After the internship is over interns can apply to be kept on as an intern-worker for the duration of the season with an hourly stipend for 6 hrs per week. For more information and a brief application please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 2, July 28, August 18 – Backyard Herbalism – Merryspring Nature Center $5 or free for members, see Merryspring website for info – Tree Medicine, Creating Herbal Incense, Herb Garden Plant Walk
November 5th, 2020 – Poisonous Plant Medicine – Garden Club of Wiscasset
More info on other events to come soon including classes through the local Adult Education, send your email address through the contact page to be on the email list or contact me for private personal or group plant walks or talks.
Most updated info on instagram @ofthespirit.
This year’s Backyard Herbalism schedule at Merryspring Nature Center in Camden:
April 23 – Common Poisonous Plants Found in Merryspring’s Garden
June 11th – Plants for “Perfect” Skin
August 6th – Growing Chinese Medicinals in Maine
August 27th – Plant Walk, Beyond the Garden
September 10th – Herbal Protocols for Lyme
Garden Internship – Mid-May – Mid-June
End of 2018 Season Notes
It has been a full season of tending plants around the Midcoast and connecting with people around these green friends at classes, consults, in the woods and fields, and at the amazing Maine Herbalist Gathering to cap it all off. As the days get shorter, and gardens are being put to bed, I have more time to reflect and new ideas for next season are already bubbling up! The best way to stay in touch and up to date is on my Instagram page, but keep checking back here too.
I’ve begun planning for a small garden 6-week internship program at Merryspring Nature Center for spring 2019 that’s outlined below, open to a diverse age group of anyone 16 and up. You can email me through the Connect page here to stay in the loop about it, learn how to apply, and the dates. We are still ironing out some final details… Thanks for your interest and being in touch!
2019 Merryspring Nature Center Garden Internship
In our time together in the garden we will begin with the questions below as a jumping off point to explore the days theme. We will do this through conversation, an observational garden walk and then hands on work including, but not limited to, weeding, planting, pruning, digging, wheelbarrowing and tending. Each week a handout and/or reading resource will be provided. The day is from 10am-3:30pm, BYO lunch (we will break for a half hour to eat), water bottle, weather appropriate clothing, and personal garden tools if you’d like.
Week 1. Garden Design and Layout
What elements should be considered when designing and planning a garden? How are these various components considered in a public garden or nature center setting? What makes a space inclusive to not only humans but insects and animals as well?
Week 2. Welcoming The Plants
As perennial plants are emerging in the spring what can we do to support their healthy growth? What needs to be pruned, tended to, or relocated? How do we best care for annual seedlings and when do we begin to transition them from the greenhouse to the garden?
Week 3. Reconsidering Invasive Plants and Weeds
What are these plants trying to tell us about the soil, the environment they are growing in and what can we learn from them? Do they have uses as food or medicine? How many invasives or weeds can we identify on site?
Week 4. Tending to the Gardener
How can we tend to our health alongside our gardens? What are some remedies that support garden first aid scenarios and overall strength and stamina to work outside in a variety of weather? What does mutual care look like?
Week 5. Native and Endangered Plants
In what ways can we support the continued growth of native plant populations that are at risk for endangerment? What are some of these plants and their ideal growing conditions? Are there potential risk factors for plants becoming endangered in our area?
Week 6. Medicine, Beauty, Food
What plants in the garden offer themselves to these different categories? What signals do we look for to know when or if we can collect or harvest a plant? How would we go about collecting or harvesting these plants if we were to use them for these potentials?