Celebrate the Winter Solstice Sunday 18th December 3.00pm – 8.00pm

From the earliest times, our ancestors have welcomed the rebirth of the sun at the darkest point of the year. In this same spirit, we gather at first to mourn the death of the sun, and to let go of that which is fading and dying.

We will then symbolically enact the turning of the year from darkness to light, in celebration that life will ever spring up in a new dawn.

This gathering is facilitated by members of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids.

For information and to register your interest please email celticspiritualitygroup@yahoogroups.com

While the event is free, please consider making a donation to Dilston physic garden, which is a small, local charity. Registered Charity 1120141

Samhain Ceremony in the Physic Garden: Sunday 30th October 3.00pm – 7.00pm

Samhain (summer’s end) is a festival of remembrance and honouring of our ancestors. It is said that at Samhain the veil that separates the worlds is at its thinnest. So our world, and that of the dead, blend as one. On this night of wonder and magic, the spirits of the otherworld are invited to join us in a sacred feast, and we may meet (if we so wish) those friends and family members who have passed over.

As the cold of winter begins to strip the leaves from the trees, a meditation on what is passing and what, in our lives, we need to let go of, is an important preparation for this deep ceremony.

Facilitated by local members of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids, our festival will celebrate the mystery and miracle of transformation.
For information and to register your interest please email celticspiritualitygroup@yahoogroups.com

Commission: Eavesdropping on Medicinal Plants

Physic Garden Commission: Eavesdropping on Medicinal Plants

The Person

We are looking for someone with electronic, electrical and musical expertise – and loads of enthusiasm and initiative.

The Project

Creating an electrical machine that will record changing electrical potentials on parts of plants in the Physic Garden.

Requirements: attachment leads, instrument conversion to readout as visual waves and audible response (could be converted to musical notes). Needs to be waterproof, portable, powered by mains and with rechargeable batteries .

Further info on machines that listen to plants is readily available online e.g. goo.gl/efPCiz

The Parameters

Completion by the spring of 2017

Funding – approx £2,000, dependent on provision of a warranty and follow up support

Contact: Elaine.perry@ncl.ac.uk

 

Dilston Dispensary of Herbal Medicines at Dilston Physic Garden

Bottles | Dilston Physic Garden | May 2016

Bottles | Dilston Physic Garden | May 2016

Dilston Dispensary of Herbal Medicines at Dilston Physic Garden

This is your herbal pharmacy, the first UK herbal dispensary situated in a medicinal herb garden, led by registered medical herbalists Ross Menzies and Davina Hopkinson. Both have many years of clinical experience prescribing effective remedies to patients.

This is a place where you can discuss a minor ailment, receive the best professional recommendations and have your tailor made remedy mixed in front of you. For more complex ailments, Ross or Davina can arrange an in depth consultation with you.

No need to make an appointment, just come along to the Dilston Dispensary of Herbal Medicines situated in The Physic Shop between 2pm and 4pm every Saturday* this summer.

“For many health issues, you’d normally visit a high street chemist. Now, it’s possible to consult a qualified medical herbalist and obtain an individually blended natural alternative” Ross Menzies, registered UK medical herbalist

Also in The Physic Shop we stock organic or wild crafted teas, tinctures, creams and many other herbal formulations.
* Dilston Dispensary of Herbal Medicines runs every Saturday this summer.  Don’t forget to enjoy the Physic Garden while you’re there – please note Physic Garden admission charges do not apply if you’re just visiting the dispensary.  If you’d like to visit the Physic Garden too, entrance is just £4 and our Season Pass only £10.

Midsummer Celebration in the Garden

Sunday 26 June   2pm – 6pm
The Summer Solstice marks the time when the sun is at the height of its power – and nature’s response is an awesome display of colour and fragrance. This time is known in contemporary Druidry as ‘Alban Hefin’ – ‘Light of the Summer Shore’.
Midsummer is the time when the light is at its strongest – the time when the Solar God is crowned by the Goddess as the King of Summer. This event, though, is also tinged with some sadness – from now on the Sun’s strength will begin to ebb as we enter the waning year.
Facilitated by local members of the Order of Bards, Ovates and Druids, this Midsummer event will celebrate – in symbolic form – the power of light and love in our lives.
Free event, but donations to the Garden and contributions of food to share are welcome.

Any questions? Please email the organisers: celticspiritualitygroup@yahoo.co.uk

Beltane Gathering

You’re invited to join us on Sunday 8th May 6.00 pm – 9.00 pm in the Physic Garden for an early summer celebration.
Beltane is a festival which marks our entry into the bright half of the year – a festival of creativity and abundance, when the “bel-fire” is lit in honour of the sun god Belinus on the occasion of his marriage to the Flower Maiden.
This event is independently facilitated by local members of Bards, Ovates and Druids to celebrate the flowering of creativity in our lives.
The celebration has been created in response to visitor requests. It is free, but donations are most welcome.
To register your interest, or for further information, please email celticspiritualitygroup@yahoogroups.com

The image of primroses has been provided by David Taylor Photography.  www.davidtaylorphotography.co.uk

Primrose – science

Clinically proven in a placebo controlled trial to treat symptoms of bronchitis.

Primrose – folklore
If a rock is touched by the flowers, it allows you to see fairies.

Foundation in Plant Medicine

The physic garden’s 10 Day Foundation in Plant Medicine is a unique, hands on course which demonstrates how plants can maintain and boost your health. You’ll also discover how to make your own, safe plant remedies.
Running over 5 seasonal weekends in 2016, this is your time to immerse yourself in the tranquil Physic Garden setting. This innovative Foundation Course series has been a huge success during its first five years, and is led by registered, professional medical herbalists Ross Menzies, Jill Schnabel & Sarah Hughes.
Course dates 2016:
6th – 8th May
15th – 17th July
24th – 25th September
12th – 13th November
  • Explore  the remarkable health giving & medicinal power of plants around us
  • Learn to use medicinal plants to treat minor ailments & everyday health issues
  • Uncover fascinating facts behind botanical medicine, its science & folklore
  • Informative, friendly & fun; no previous knowledge needed

Botanist in Residence

We are honoured to welcome Dr. Anne Pickering as our Botanist in Residence.

Anne is one of the Friends of the Garden, and her extensive skills are very much in tune with its ethos – a researcher, artist, tutor, hen house builder and motorcycle mechanic, we can call on Anne in almost any eventuality!

Anne studied Botany at Manchester, Horticulture at Bath and went on to present her Ph.D thesis on ‘The value of Botanic Gardens in Conservation and Recreation’ at The University of Newcastle. Anne was Director of Moor Bank Botanic garden for 20 years. During that time, she was a member of the Medicinal Plant Research Group,  undertaking collaborative research on the use of plants to improve memory. A number of her peer-reviewed articles on the antioxidant properties of plants has been published.

Anne’s botanical researches have taken her to Nigeria, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Pemba, Jamaica and Zambia, where she has served in a professional capacity for a variety of organisations, from governmental to the third sector. Closer to home, Anne enjoyed her time as research botanist for the Distillers Company based in Clackmannanshire.

In her personal life, Anne is an accomplished artist, illustrator and photographer, having exhibited in a number of galleries and holding three successful exhibitions of landscape art and plant watercolours. Her website can be visited here http://www.annepickeringart.co.uk

dilston_physic_garden_TWDA-9556-Edit

 

Following a successful Imbolc gathering, the Northumbrian Grove of Bards, Ovates and Druids invite you to join them in their Spring Equinox ceremony in the Physic Garden on Sunday 10th March 10:30am – 1:30pm.
At the Spring Equinox, day and night are once again equal and balanced. The sun rises due east, symbolising renewal.
As we greet the rising sun on the first morning of Spring, we will celebrate the mystery and miracle of birth and rebirth.
The event is free, but donations are welcome to cover costs.
Please bring an edible contribution for a shared vegetarian lunch.

Schedule – 10:30am Meet & Greet. 11:00am Discussion & Preparation. 12 noon Ceremony. 1pm Bring and share vegetarian buffet lunch. 1:30pm Farewell and merry part (until our next gathering!)
For information, and to register your interest, email celticspiritualitygroup@yahoogroups.com or phone 07792 606273
This event is independently facilitated by the Northumbrian Grove of Druids, Bards and Ovates. For more info, please click here

RESIDENCY: Plant Historian & Folklorist in Residence

Aconitum © Rachel Singleton

Aconitum © Rachel Singleton

History, Uses and Beliefs of Plants grown at Dilston Physic Garden.

Between April and September 2016, we are delighted to welcome Dr Marie Addyman, plant and garden historian. Marie will be working at the Physic Garden to explore the beliefs, uses, history, nomenclature and folklore of selected plants grown at Dilston.  These will include plants both familiar and unfamiliar, both wild and cultivated.  Marie will ask when certain plants came into cultivation in this country, how they acquired the names they have and why certain beliefs have accrued around them.

Marie’s residency will focus on identifying folkloric and magical information, examining the extent to which old ideas were sometimes different from, and sometimes consistent with, a plant’s modern use.  For example, St John’s Wort was believed to be an exorciser of demons, which we might want to read as a metaphor for depression; it is now used to help treat this condition. The information Marie gathers will be incorporated onto the Physic Garden information signboards and used in any Physic Garden associated publications; for example, see our Kindle ‘Herbal High’ Book In Pursuit of Herbal Happiness http://www.amazon.co.uk/TALES-FROM-PSYCHIC-GARDEN-HAPPINESS-ebook/dp/B00OABYVQE)

Many plants are particularly associated with specific festivals and times of the year, so Marie is running 4 seasonal workshops (Easter, Midsummer, Harvest Time and Christmas), providing the opportunity for us to learn more about this fascinating subject as we make discoveries with her during this residency.

Dr Marie Addyman is a plant historian and folklorist who has worked for many years on the history, names, beliefs and uses of some of our wild and garden plants. She specializes particularly in the late mediaeval period and also on Tudor England, and is an authority on the writings of William Turner, the Morpeth-born Tudor physician.

Workshops on the History, Uses, Beliefs & Folklore of Seasonal Plants Grown at Dilston Physic Garden

with Dr Marie Addyman.

These workshops will explore how many plants from the fields, the hedgerows and the garden were associated with specific seasons and festivals.

Saturday 23rd April: ‘Lenten is come with love to town’: the sap rises at Easter and in the Spring.

Wednesday 29th June: the dangerous and magical spirits of Midsummer.

Wednesday September 7th: Harvest home: gathering the products of  field and wood.

Saturday December 3rd: the midwinter spirits: Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe.

Sessions are held at Dilston Physic Garden between 2 – 4pm.

£7.50 each.  Tea/ coffee provided.

To book, please email Marie cangrande14@btinternet.com