Monday, February 10, 2014

Talking Plants/Talking Justice: Plant Medicine and Social Justice Interview with Dana Woodruff of Dandelioness Herbals

I was recently interviewed by Ann Armbrecht, co-creator of Numen: The Nature of Plants!  You can check out the full interview here: Plant Medicine and Social Justice with Dana Woodruff. Ann Armbrecht also interviewed folk herbalist and food activist Sandra Lory of Mandala Botanicals here.  Thank you, Ann, for supporting grassroots community herbalism!

Plant Medicine And Social Justice With Dana Woodruff

From the first time I met Dana, I have been so impressed with both her knowledge of and dedication to the plants and herbal medicine and her willingness to talk about topics that herbalists don’t tend to talk about: healthy sexuality, gender identity, social justice and power, and more (you can read about some of those on her blog!). I have especially been interested in her work in prisons and with migrant farm workers, teaching them about herbs, learning from them, and helping them get rights they are often denied. Like Sandra Lory’s work (with whom Dana often teaches workshops), Dana is doing incredibly important work educating about self care and building community health and making sure that this knowledge is accessible to whoever wants it. I was thrilled to finally be able to hear about Dana’s work. Dana’s blog, Dandelioness Herbals is an incredible resource with recipes, resources, reflections and more. Dana also sells her herbal remedies at her Etsy shop. Check them out!

Ann: To start, I’d love to hear how you first got interested in herbal medicine, a bit about the training that you’ve had, and the focus of your work with plants.

Dana: Like so many raised in the US, much of my ancestral lineage has been lost by the process of assimilation.  My childhood in Central Maine wasn’t infused with the plant medicine traditions of my ancestors from Ireland, Scotland, and England. Living rurally, though, I was surrounded by plants.  My mom took us out on wildflower walks, in the spring Grammy and Pop-Pop took me to harvest Dandelion greens. We’d eat fiddleheads and we’d eat out of the gardens in the summer. I grew up in a family with a history of being healthworkers, crafters, and farmers.

Click here to read the entire interview...

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