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About Friends

An array of voices from around Mountain Rose Herbs and beyond share their wisdoms, inspirations, and exciting stories from the herbal world.

In Gratitude for Plants

Fall is my favorite time of year. We find more time to spend with family and friends, indulge in lovingly-prepared meals that feature the abundance of the harvest, and light the first warm, cozy fires of the season. For me, the focus on the harvest extends beyond food and crops: we also gather community, stories of summer, projects, and hopes for the coming year. As an herbalist, I collect the moments of connection I’ve had with plants since they re-awakened in spring — walks in the deep forest, the unexpected ally in an unfamiliar land, new friends made, nuanced experiences of flavor, and the shifts along the way. Perhaps this is why I love this time so much. It is an opportunity to reaffirm connection, […]
  • Zero waste tips for buying less & celebrating more!

Zero waste tips for buying less & celebrating more!

The holidays are the most giving and generous time of the year. They are also the most wasteful. Between Thanksgiving and New Years, Americans throw out about 25 million tons more trash than normal — a 25 percent increase over the rest of the year. We can change that! Here’s a list of suggestions to help you celebrate the holidays, or any special occasion, while making the planet happy: Make a gift using upcycled material. This one is near and dear to our hearts. You knew that, right? Not as crafty as you’d like to be? Bake a treat or invite your friends over for a lovely home-cooked meal. They can return the favor by making it a potluck party. Donate in someone’s honor. Your loved ones are as […]
  • Pumpkin Spice Old Fashioned

Pumpkin Spice Old Fashioned

With the start of Autumn comes vibrant red maple leaves, cooler temperatures, and the ubiquitous pumpkin pie spiced…everything! Did you know that at Mountain Rose Herbs we offer an organic Pumpkin Pie Spice blend that makes it easy to craft your own pumpkin pie inspired creations at home? While this spice blend is delicious on top of lattes and cappuccinos, it also makes a delectable addition to a classic Old Fashioned cocktail. We’ve made our recipe extra special by swapping out the traditional sugar with a simple syrup infused with our Love Tea and a homemade bitters. Ingredients: 1 tsp. Love Tea simple syrup (recipe below) 2 oz. bourbon 4 droppers of orange cardamom bitters (recipe below) 2-4 dashes of organic Pumpkin Pie Spice blend 1 organic navel orange 1 organic cinnamon […]

Create Your Own Broth Mix Recipes

Soups are one of my all-time favorite things to cook. There is a meditation for me in the chopping, measuring and stirring that goes into making a wonderful pot of soup. Alas, like many, I don’t always have the time to make soup from scratch. I’ve also chatted with many folks who are intimidated by making soups and broths—they have a hard time getting the seasoning right so the soup doesn’t taste like bland dishwater. I stumbled upon the idea of making broth mixes when I passed by some packaged mixes at the store. Why couldn’t I create my own and have on hand to use in soups, for a basic broth, or even mixed in to pasta or ramen noodles? With a bit of […]

Traditions in Western Herbalism Conference: Sky-Island Gathering

  The path of herbalism is in many ways a journey, endless and winding, each turn on the way a chance for discovery for even the most experienced traveler. For many of us, it feels not like a hobby or business so much as a calling, beckoned forward by a sense of purpose, by the possibilities of healing, by the entreaties of plants whose voices and abilities we could give a lifetime to understanding.  This journey is often challenging, but also playful, as rhythmic as a dance, as sensual as a flower’s scent and lover’s touch. We choose which turns to take, deciding what form our herbal studies and practice will assume, saving the adventure of the healing journey as new vistas continuously rise up before us.     The path […]
  • Herb Stories: Protecting Our Trilliums

Herb Stories: How We Protect Trillium

We are so excited to share this post from our upcoming Free Herbalism Project speaker Susan Leopold, PhD.! Susan is an ethnobotanist and passionate defender of biodiversity. Over the past 20 years, Susan has worked extensively with indigenous peoples in Peru and Costa Rica. She is the Executive Director of United Plant Savers and Director of the Sacred Seeds Project. Prior to working at United Plant Savers, she worked as a librarian at the Oak Spring Garden Library, specializing in digitizing rare herbals and botanical travel manuscripts. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for Botanical Dimensions and the Center for Sustainable Economy. She is an advisory board member of American Botanical Council. She is a proud member of the Patawomeck Indian Tribe of […]
  • Timber’s Cover-Up

Timber’s Cover-Up

  If you are a customer of Mountain Rose Herbs, you’ll be proud of their new wood products policy.  Growing numbers of sustainable businesses are trying to source locally, but Mountain Rose Herbs may be the first to commit to buying wood products solely from forests that are managed for native plant bio-diversity, wildlife habitat, pesticide-free, and clean streams. Mountain Rose Herbs partners with Beyond Toxics to advocate for Resilient Forestry practices in laws and business guidelines. To help folks learn more about Resilient Forestry, Beyond Toxics is releasing a new short film using aerial photography to look far above and deep within industrial forests.  Mountain Rose Herbs has been a supporter of the film from the start. Timber’s Cover-Up has sobering, shocking images of how forest ecosystems are […]

Is Your Garden Pesticide-Free?

  The shocking death of 50,000 bumblebees in a Wilsonville, Oregon shopping center back in 2013 catalyzed a worldwide conversation about bee health and pesticides. The incident happened after the bees visited trees treated by a private arborist company with neonicotinoid pesticides. Photos of bees littering the asphalt were featured on the cover of Time magazine, in the LA Times, and covered in The Huffington Post to mention a few, and brought the previously arcane topic of neonicotinoids into millions of American households. Two years later, making lemonade out of lemons, The Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides recognizes that this notorious incident uniquely positions the City of Wilsonville and committed partners to exercise national leadership in demonstrating achievable ways to assist pollinators within urban environments. During this National Pollinator […]
  • The Home Medicine Cabinet: First Aid Liniment

DIY First Aid Liniment

  Liniments are one of the easiest preparations for the home herbalist to make. Using a basic recipe to get started, you can change up the herbs and essential oils to create various types of remedies. Along with homemade salve, liniment is a must-have topical formula for any first aid kit. To make this spray, herbs are soaked in a solvent to infuse it with the helpful properties found in so many roots, leaves, barks, and flowers. Liniments can be sprayed and rubbed into the skin when and where needed. Traditionally, basic rubbing alcohol has been used as the base for topical liniments, but witch hazel, vinegar, and vodka can also be used with good results. All of these options make it possible for the herbal properties to easily penetrate the skin.    Basic First Aid Liniment Ingredients 1 part organic comfrey root […]
  • Eco-Projects: Tree Planting

Let’s Plant More Urban Trees

  Excitement was in the air as volunteers joined Friends of Trees staff in the first Eugene Neighborhood Trees planting of the 2015-2016 season! The planting, generously sponsored by Mountain Rose Herbs, brought together 70+ volunteers to plant nearly 50 street and yard trees in South Eugene, Oregon. During morning registration, volunteers warmed their hearts and bodies while sipping on delicious Love Tea donated by Mountain Rose and filled their bellies with breakfast treats. Eight planting teams, each led by a trained crew leader, set out on their route to plant 6-8 trees at different houses. Homeowners worked with Friends of Trees staff to select appropriate street trees based on a comprehensive inspection process. This planting included: Oregon Myrtle, Oregon White Oak, Bigleaf Maple, Madrone, Black Tupelo, Lavelle […]
  • Herbal Basics: Double Extraction Method for Medicinal Mushroom

DIY: Double Extraction Method for Mushrooms

  Mushrooms have become very popular over the last few years. From shiitake and reishi, to chaga and maitake, more and more folks are feeling drawn to these fascinating and useful beings. When I’m at events, I get a lot of questions about how to prepare and consume them for their benefits. Making a decoction is a good way to go, but I prefer making what’s called a “double extraction” since mushrooms contain some constituents that are water-soluble, called beta-glucans, and some that are alcohol-soluble, called triterpenes. A double extraction effectively pulls out these constituents with the added benefit of being shelf-stable! For information and research on the benefits of various mushrooms, I recommend checking out the works of Christopher Hobbs and Paul Stamets. Rosalee de la Forêt offers this […]
  • DailyProvisionsTeaRecipe

The Sunday Steep!

  When I'm working on a project that begs for minimal interruption, it is nice to make a pot of tea instead of just one cup. It's also nice to have recipes for full pots of tea to share with loved ones or company at tea time! This recipe is made up of some of my favorite nutritive herbs. I like these plants when I don't need any caffiene, but I want to stay alert, focused, and bright-eyed. The additional squirt or two of rhodiola extract gives an extra burst of adaptogen properties to make this the perfect tea for a project or a stimulating chat…     Daily Provisions Tea–by the Pot 1 Tablespoon organic Borage 1 Tablespoon organic Chickweed 1 Tablespoon organic Nettle leaf 1 Tablespoon organic Lemon peel 1 Tablespoon organic […]