Herbal Books: Practical Herbs

by Henriette Kress
I really like this book...concise, clearly written in a narrative style, using non techincal language with some lovely splashes of humour mixed in.  Plentiful in personal tips and reccomendations reflecting many years professional and practical experience. 

The harvesting advice is brilliant, good consideration is given to the ethical aspect of wild crafting and handy hints are most valuable.  The medicine making chapter is thorough and comprehensive with some suggestions that the author hasn't tried herself but has included in the spirit of experimentation.  Well illustrated with trouble shooting tips alongside the excellent instructions.

It is very user friendly, with the plant profiles addressing some often overlooked issues like common mistaken identities of plants.  This includes look-a-like descriptions and images.  And whilst we're on the subject the photos are beautiful, clear and detailed, in fact higher quality than some plant ident guides.  I belive they were all taken by Henriette herself.

In addition, the plant profiles include a generous selection of recipes, both medicinal and food wise.  Some have a cultural / craft use too, interesting tidbits, which is always good to see, adding a deeper dimension to our relationship with the plants.  Dotted throughout are sections on plant families, which I have to say as a herbalist has never been one of my special interests but in fact a good knowledge of which is quite important, not only for identification purposes, but how it extends our discovery of the plants medicines and gestures.

I particularly liked the 'Quick help for small troubles' boxes, like a foragers first aid...good barefoot herbalism.  This book is a gem for folk herbalists and medical /master herbalists alike.  A superb choice for an introductory herbalism workshop or course, and my only request is that a glossary of terms be added to make this the ideal practical text book.  I hope Henriette is planning more volumes...

*** Henriette has very generously donated a PDF e-book for our first herbal giveaway. For a chance to win please Like our Facebook page or join this Blog.  Name will be drawn from a tophat on Easter Saturday (April 7th) and the winner announced the same day. Thank you for your support ***

The printed book edition is also available here.