Tuesday, October 25, 2005
Medicine Bow, where I took the Plant ID course last weekend, is "A primitive school of Earthlore in the North Georgia mountains...that specializes in Native American survival skills (primitive skills) and nature classes. Besides a year round schedule of courses at the school, Medicine Bow carries programs to you on all aspects of Indian lore; such as: using wild plants for food and medicine, tracking, archery, history, canoeing, sign language and other facets of environmental education."
We learned about identifying plants Saturday morning and then spent the rest of the weekend traipsing around the beautiful Appalachian ecosystem looking at plants and learning about their gifts. We harvested tubers and nuts and Sunday afternoon we cooked them up and sampled them. I found out I loved Solomon Seal. We have lots of acorns on our property so I was interested in preparing them as well. We even learned how to make rope. Saturday night he offered an introduction to Native American sign language.
Mark Warren, the owner and our guide had a wonderful presence informed by the Cherokee world view. We learned to respect the "Standing People" (as the Cherokee call the trees and plants) and appreciate what they have to offer us. It was a very nurturing way to address survival issues.
If you live out in this neck of the woods, I highly recommend it.