Ginkgo biloba, also called the maidenhair tree, is branded as a “living fossil”, as it is the only surviving member of the Ginkgo genus. Traditionally, G. biloba was used to treat asthma and senility. More commonly, the nut is used for culinary practices and is often used as an addition to a meal as a side dish or garnish for a dessert
As a city dweller, taking a walk through the rich biosphere of an old growth forest can feel like being transported to another world. The abundance of life in these ecosystems are evident. The embrace of mother nature seems to cancel out the noise and demands of modern life, recharging us from everyday stressors. Through these experiences it becomes apparent that ecosystems rich in biodiversity are invaluable to not only the health of the planet, but also to our wellbeing....
Bodhi beads were used by Buddhists as a prayer tool for counting the number of prayers chanted while reciting mantras. Nowadays, buyers in China use Bodhi beads as ornaments, collectibles or high-grade gifts. As a result of the market hype, the price of Bodhi beads has risen quite quickly, especially for beads that have been traditionally collected by people for many years.
Plant tissue culture is a technique used to grow plants under sterile and controlled environmental conditions. Using this technology, sustainable mass production of high quality medicinal plants can be achieved, which in turn can reduce pressures created by wild harvesting.
Serving as trail director, Philip Gosling was instrumental in building the Bruce Trail (the oldest and longest marked hiking trail in Canada) in the early 1960’s. Here he discusses how one trip into the woods led to a life long commitment to protect the environment.
Over the last 20 odd years, interest towards the medicinal and spiritual properties of ayahuasca has grown immensely outside its area of origin, leading to increased consumption of raw materials which in turn has raised concerns that B. caapi and its admixtures are not being harvested sustainably.
Jessie McFadden shares her experience learning about indigenous uses of plants while visiting the Blue Sky Community Healing Centre (Thunder Bay, Ontario).
Spiritual Botany is an interdisciplinary, on-line, open access magazine that was created to envision, explore, and appreciate the role plants and plant-based practices play in connecting us to our environment, health, consciousness, and spirituality.
In honour of our first issue, we have asked experts from fields related to spiritual botany to send us their thoughts on how botany (the science of plants) is connected to spirituality, consciousness, and human health”.