One Simple Way to Save the World

Do you sometimes feel helpless when you watch the news?


Global warming, habitat destruction, frankenfoods, and a deadlocked congress that can’t agree on anything.

All of us have an urge to do something… but sometimes it’s hard to know what that something is.

I am a huge fan of simple, do-able solutions (otherwise we spend all our energy thinking about what to do instead of actually doing it!). So I thought I’d share a small spring ritual that helps protect plant species and keep botanical medicines available.

Ready? It’s really simple:

Plant an endangered species.

Habitat destruction has put a number of medicinal species on the endangered list, our woodland plants especially, as their ecosystems are destroyed for roads and developments.

Many of these woodland botanicals will grow happily in your backyard. If your yard is super-sunny, create a screen for them. I build a little pile of rocks on the south side of shade-loving plants to protect them from the sun’s strongest rays.

Some of my garden favorites:

  • black cohosh
  • blue cohosh
  • goldenseal
  • trillium
  • butterfly weed (pleurisy root)
  • may apple
  • and, while I haven’t grown it myself, many friends have reported success with White Sage which is now on the watch list.

Where to get these little charmers? Strictly Medicinal Seed or Companion Plants will ship to your doorstep. Local plant sales and farmer’s markets provide plants specific to your region and growing conditions.

No room for planting? Then use the money you would have spent on plants to make a donation to United Plant Savers. Their botanical sanctuaries are a necessary part of saving our diverse flora and fauna.


On Herbiary owner Maia Toll's Blog: