Age Old Wisdom for a New You

With the holiday’s behind us and life returning to its normal rhythm, many people are dismayed to find themselves falling back into their old unhealthy habits.  Even though nearly 40 percent of Americans made a New Year’s resolution to be healthier, fewer than eight percent will stick it out past February.  If you are one of those struggling to stay with a health plan or maybe you are frustrated with a lack of results, perhaps it’s time for a new approach. American’s have become captivated by quick fix solutions that rarely deliver results, but there is another way to change your health.  Instead of buying into the latest diet or detox fad, resolve to invest in learning skills and principles that you can use for a lifetime.  Find a mentor that will walk through the ups and downs and support you and your family.  This is the way health used to be taught when the word doctor still meant “to teach.”  Such is the tradition that Will’s wealth of knowledge was cultivated through.  The time-honored tradition of learning one-on-one, and through direct experience.  He is so passionate about gifting the community with the opportunity to learn these priceless teachings that he has created a series of classes and an apprenticeship program. Step away from the notion of a virtual “get healthy overnight” program and into a wellness journey you will never forget.  There are no shortcuts to health and learning, but there is something out there much more satisfying to be experienced.  Each class is packed with herbal information.  Will is covering a variety of topics including the Eno River through the Wild Herb Walk and the brand new Family Foraging classes for kids and parents. Classes are listed below. Be sure to reserve your spot as we’re filling up fast. 


Eno Riverwalk Plant Walks 2/3, 3/3, 3/31, 4/28

Spring Greens and Tonic Class Series 3/13-5/15 no class 3/27, 4/3

Calamus Intensive 3/25-3/29

Slippery Elm Intensive 4/1-4/5

Family Foraging 2/16, 3/16, 4/13

All class dates subject to change

Beyond Elderberry: Herbal Allies for Cold and Flu Season

Winter is in full swing as we experience the years longest, dampest, darkest nights.  These shifts in the natural cycle of seasons make us increasingly susceptible to contracting common colds and the flu.  Thankfully nature ha provided us with a number of options to help ease our symptoms and hasten recovery. Each has its own unique healing virtues.  For the best results, be sure to research which would be most suited to your constitution.

For those wanting additional support, Will offers in depth and confidential herbal consultations. Getting guidance in choosing a wellness program for you and your family is truly priceless and will give clarity on which herbs to use and how to effectively apply them. 

In this article we wanted to give you some ideas for herbs commonly utilized at this time of year. Consider trying each of these herbs on their own to get a feel for their properties and how they affect you.  You can then experiment with blending them for a full spectrum of healing benefits.

Echinacea Flowering Tops & Roots-  Not long ago, Echinacea was once the most popular remedy for colds, flu, and respiratory ailments.  Although Elderberry is now enjoying the herbal spotlight, Echinacea’s success still prevails.  Using Echinacea as a first line of defense comes from time-honored traditions and is worth investigating.  Many studies have shown it contains immune modulating activity and may be effective at cleansing lymph tissue and the blood. Also known as Purple Coneflower, Echinacea is easy to identify and safe to use in most populations making it a good option for those just beginning their herbal exploration. While we no longer produce Echinacea due to it’s local scarcity, we recommend Herb Pharm’s fluid medicinal extract as their products are one of the highest quality, sustainably sourced ways to buy herbs today.

Yarrow Flowers- Yarrow or the “battle field herb” does more than help arrest bleeding and assist with wounds.  This cooling, diaphoretic herb can be added to open the pores and encourage sweating as a means of easing fever.  It is often blended with other cooling herbs such as Catnip and Mint. 

Jamaican Ginger Root-  Ginger’s healing potential is often overlooked as it has been dismissed for its culinary uses.  Ginger is a mainstay in Traditional Chinese Medicine and can assist with many of the most nagging symptoms associated with seasonal discomfort.   Ginger’s warm, spicy nature makes it stimulating as well as a potent mucus buster. Ginger is often featured in formulas to ease stomach issues and increase the synergy of the other herbs.

Boneset- Boneset has not enjoyed the publicity that Elderberry has but not so long ago it was the remedy of choice for colds and flus.  Native American tribes used Boneset extensively for feverish conditions accompanied by aching bone pain that notoriously accompany flu-like illness.  The American settlers quickly picked up on it as an invaluable remedy.  Boneset likes to grow in damp areas and provides relief to wet, hot conditions such as fever and stagnation. 

Help Wanted!

Wanted! - Office Assistant

We're growing!  If this is your first time here on my website, then welcome! My name is Will Endres, and I have been a herbalist and wildcrafter for the last 42 years.  With the help of my family and Apprentices, I handcraft a variety of sustainable wild herbal products and lead classes and workshops throughout the Piedmont, North Carolina, and The South.  The business is run out of my (dog-friendly) home in the historic district of Hillsborough, NC.  My ideal office assistant is someone who is willing to help me with both work, and personal tasks.  You should be able to work as part of a team or independently, be a good typist, enjoy variety, and have useful creative input and problem-solving skills.
 

Your Responsibilities:

  • Communicate with customers independently, and with me at your side.  This can include anything from emails to phone calls to making the rounds to posting flyers for classes

  • Create and renew product ads and postings on social media and craigslist

  • Basic marketing and ecommerce responsibilities including Shipping orders and Copy + Print + Order promotional materials and fliers

The Perks:

  • Part time hours (5+ hours on Thursday)

  • Pay starts at $13/hr with opportunities to increase to $15/hr in just a few months

  • Learning opportunities including unlimited access to select classes and workshops

    • Gain exposure to the traditional Appalachian and Native American approach to plants and medicine

    • Work-trade for additional teaching time available

  • Discounts on my full range of medicinal fluid extracts, incenses, potpourri, tea, and other products

  • High energy work environment

Your Qualifications:

  • Be tech-savvy (and patient). I am a baby-boomer. Computers are not my strong suit, but I have to use them for my business

  • Excellent communicator

  • Reliable

  • Detail oriented

  • Familiarity with or interest in the herb business is preferable

  • Familiarity with Squarespace a big plus!

  • Reliable personal transportation a must

  • Sales or customer service experience preferable
     

How to apply:
Send an email with your background, complete contact info, and why you would be perfect for this job to info@willswildherbs.org

Slippery Elm

Originally posted on July 7th 2015

Harvesting Slippery Elm

The harvesting of Slippery Elm (Ulmas rubra) is a process that few in modern times have ever experienced.  It is a communal effort, akin to the village coming together for the buffalo hunt.  Though it requires many days of physical labor, and requires the death of the tree, no part goes to waste.  Once the tree has sensed it is dying, the seeds mature, are harvested, and then are planted in the surrounding area and other places, ensuring further growth of the species.

Once the tree has been felled, the inner root bark, and inner tree bark is peeled, and dried to make a demulcent chew. The wood of Slippery elm is comprised of dense interlocking fibers which, once dried, makes it an extremely effective fire starting material for use in bow-drills, as well as an excellent bow wood.  The interlocking nature of the grain also contributes to shock resistance, making it desirable for use in wagon wheels, as well as more notably, as the the yoke of the Liberty Bell. 

Medicinally speaking, Slippery Elm, in addition to being an excellent demulcent,  moisturizes the whole body inside and out, and can help smooth out wrinkles.*  It also functions as an expectorant, eliminating toxins.*

Slippery Elm Tree and Root Bark is currently available from Will via front porch pick up, or at the Farmers markets

Mimosa

Originally posted on June 21st 2015

In late April, as the sap flow reached it's peak, we traveled to my good friend Snuffy's wild yard in Pittsboro with the CCCCollege Class, and harvested it's bark.  In the coming weeks, we will go again, and gather the sweet, feathery, and fragant flowers as they reach their peak of bloom.  While they produce very different tastes, the flowers being much milder and sweeter, the extracts of both flowers, and bark have the same effect.  It is known to be effective against both mild, and severe depression.*  One of it's best qualities is the ability to use it alongside traditional, allopathic antidepressants, which helps some people considerably when transitioning to more natural alternatives.   Opportunely, all types of Mimosa extract function wonderfully, even if you are not suffering from depression.*  If you are just having a normal day, and want to brighten it up, Mimosa will certainly do the trick.  Please be sure you do not attempt to use Mimosa alone for Bi-polar, Manic Depression, or Schizophrenia.*  If you are dealing with any of these disorders, make sure you contact me via phone, or on the website, willswildherbs.org, in order to schedule a Private Medicinal Consultation.*
$13/ fl oz Mimosa Fluid Extract