Best Herbal Thingies 2006
... here are my choices for the best herbal thingies of 2006.
Best New Herb Blog
Kathy Abascal takes the top spot. A few of her exceptional blog posts are:
- The "natural" GSE (grapefruit seed extract) explained in detail.
- flu vaccines.
- meds that don't work.
- beta blockers and dementia.
(Other dementia-inducing meds are statins and possibly other cholesterol-lowering meds. The pharmaceutical giants have much to answer for.)
Lovely work, Kathy.
Paul Bergner has put the full text of the early years of his journal "Medical Herbalism" online, as .html files. You can either search the lot or browse through them. That rocks. Thanks Paul!
Best Botany Sites
Three sites take the cake:
1) Kew's World checklist of selected plant families.
They don't list all that many families, but those they do have they cover exhaustively. This is the site I check first if there's any doubt about the current botany for any given plant. If they don't list the family in question I go on to the next site:
1) USDA's ARS GRIN (*) Taxonomy.
They cover a lot of useful plants, and John Wiersema answers questions about taxonomy very promptly. Excellent work!
1) The Plants database of USDA.
If you're looking for a plant growing wild somewhere in the US, this is the place to go.
I could do a "Best Herbal Soundfiles", but of all the offerings currently available I only have a few podcasts, Michael Moore's Materia Medica set and two sets of the NAIMH distance course, so that wouldn't cover all that much.
Michael Moore's .mp3s are entertaining and very informative, and you get over 100 hours for about 100 $. Go buy them, is what I'm saying.
About the NAIMH distance offerings: they're CDs, which I immediately ripped to .mp3s.
The "Actions and Formulations" CDs are very good. There's a small blemish: they refer rather often to "we talked about this last week". Umm, no, not if you only have those CDs ...
The Materia Medica Intensive, then. Unfortunately, Matthew Becker does a good part of it, and he comes across as a show-off and a bore. Perhaps he's a nice human being in person, but those CDs sure don't give that picture of him; he's so irritating that I've given up on "his" CDs and listen to the rest instead. Either teach him how to teach, or don't let him do any more CDs. At all at all.
I could also do a "Best Herb Book", but the heap of unread herb books (bought or otherwise received) hasn't shrunk at all -- I was insanely busy throughout 2006. I should have more time this year; we'll see. Anyway, I don't know which the best book in my unread heap is, so sorry. There's gems in there, like "Natural Remedies of Arabia", and "Herbs for Influenza", but alas. Later.
(*) Snigger. For those who don't have a clue about UK spelling: that's the equivalent of calling yourself "Ass Grin" in US:ian English. And that grin must be sideways ... just add two dots : )