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March 2020 HerbWalks &
OjaiHerbal Newsletter

Spring is a dazzling time of year to visit the Taft Gardens and Nature Preserve. Their staff and I have a great morning planned for you on Saturday, March 21. See the article below and please register soon as these Taft events always fill up and I hate to turn away my faithful subscribers. Photo: Godfred Tong
It's an honor to have Christopher Nyerges visit Ojai again on Saturday, March 28. He can rightly be called a "living legend" in the world of foraging and survival skills. See the article below for more information and a link to register for his workshop.

The Supermoon Sunset Herb Walk on Tuesday, April 7, is already full but don't let that stop you from signing up at that link or by clicking on the photo. With a month to go, the odds are in your favor that someone will need to change their plans.  Ojai moonrise photo: Joe P. Powers (

Herb Walks March & April Events
Click on the image above to see the segment that aired on Spectrum News 1. It's just 2 minutes and 40 seconds long.

Herb Walks on Spectrum News 1

Nic Cha Kim of Spectrum News 1 joined us on February 17 at Euterpe Farms for the foraging Presidents' Day Herb Walk and Stone Soup Picnic. Nic is an award-winning media journalist and it shows in this excellent segment he filmed and narrated. It aired on Monday, March 2, but you can see it online by clicking here.

Mela Gaskins Butcher of Center for Ayurveda

New online Ayurveda Plant Medicine Course

Join Mela Gaskins Butcher, founder and director of the Center for Ayurveda and 2020 Ojai Herbal Symposium speaker, for this fun and inspiring 12- week online course.
You will learn the names, identification, and preparations of 100 of nature’s most treasured plant medicines. Each week you receive your curricula via emailed voice memos which Mela has written and recorded. You then discuss that week’s curricula in a 30 minute private one-on-one phone session with Mela. 

Call (805) 448-9758 or email    for more information! 
Hi there! Hope to see you soon!
Photo: Godfred Tong

You don't want to miss the Taft Gardens and Nature Preserve on Saturday, March 21!

Now that Mother Nature has had three winters worth of rain with which to recover from the 2017 fire, we’re going back to this amazing property for a private tour of the Taft Gardens & Nature Preserve, operated by the Conservation Endowment Fund (CEF) in the mountains above Lake Casitas west of Ojai.

This rare and special place has no public trails connecting it to the outside world. The land includes plants and features beyond what we usually encounter on my outings, including the world class, Mediterranean-climate, Taft Botanical Garden. We'll see an unparalleled collection of Australian and South African plants. A docent will be present to share some of the rare exotics found in the garden.

Of course, we'll also take a walk on the adjacent Nature Preserve to identify and learn about the diverse edible and medicinal native plants of the area.

Read more and register at this link.

Chinese Jade Screen herbs

How COVID-19 is currently treated in China with TCM

The Chinese government is now recommending the use of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) in the treatment of pneumonia due to infection from the novel Coronavirus. Click here to read the full article. Thank you, Miriam Delosantos, LAc, for sharing the news about this major collaboration between Western and Chinese Medicine.
George Inness. Winter Moonlight (Christmas Eve), 1866.

May Full Moon Herb Walk

The way these walks have gone viral on Facebook, I recommend that you, my loyal readers, reserve now for Wednesday, May 6, at this link. The walk finishes with an optional after-party at Azu Restaurant & Ojai Valley Brewery.
Please visit and "like" the Herb Walks facebook page and follow me on Instagram at ojaiherbal. Thanks!
Christopher will bring some of his books for sale and signing.

Learn from Christopher Nyerges how to forage for wild foods and build a fire with native plant materials

Join me and special guest author/forager/survivalist Christopher Nyerges on Saturday, March 28, in Ojai to learn seasonal foraging and primitive firemaking. Participants will identify and process edible greens, soap sources, and other useful plants, and learn to ignite a fire using only natural plant materials.

The workshop will begin with a foraging walk on the fringes of Euterpe Farms followed by an afternoon workshop under a live oak where Christopher will direct preparation of a wild salad and demonstrate the primitive skill of starting a fire. Everyone will have a chance to practice.

Christopher Nyerges is an author, forager, survivalist and ethnobotanist with a lifelong interest in how native peoples lived off the land. He has been teaching classes and leading field trips since 1974 to over 40,000 students. Nyerges has authored nearly two dozen books, including  Foraging CaliforniaGuide to Wild FoodsHow to Survive Anywhere, and many others.

Read more and register at this link.

Other Local Events

Congratulations to Mary Hardy! 

The American Botanical Council (ABC) recently announced that the 2019 Fredi Kronenberg Excellence in Research and Education in Botanicals for Women’s Health Award will be presented to Mary L. Hardy, MD. Some of you will remember Dr. Hardy as a presenter at the 2018 Ojai Herbal Symposium.

For more than 25 years, in both her practice and research, Dr. Hardy has combined complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) with Western medicine. 
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