These pages with all their information are meant to lead people to the historical usages of the particular herbs listed, and are not intended as, or intended to replace seeking qualified Holistic medical treatment. This is an important concept to understand.
updated on 01/31/05
Welcome to Desert Bloom Herbs. My name is Richard McDonald. I am a trained and well-experienced Clinical Herbalist. I have nearly 15 years of experience in this wide-ranging, fascinating field.
I have spent most of my herbal career owning and operating an herb store, (Desert Bloom Herbs). Since my herbal training, with Michael Moore (the wise herbalist, not the movie-maker)... at the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine, in 1991. I have made all of the medicines sold in the store and through the website for the past decade.
During my career as an herbalist, I constantly research these herbs, and have used most of them on myself at one time or another, or with clients, who were carefully observed and who gave me a great deal of feedback about their experiences using various single herbs and herbal combinations. The herbs were used (both internally and externally). And so through the constant use of herbs in ones own life, ones own knowledge about their uses grows rapidly and becomes more "fleshed out". The specific knowledge of the many ways they may be used becomes clearer over time.
The herbs contained within these pages have a huge body of documentation which attests to their effectiveness over a period of thousands of years' use by humans throughout the globe.
" 80 % of all Earths human inhabitants use herbs as their primary form of medical treatment. " .... World Health Organization.
This Information is provided in the spirit of sharing and accuracy, so that you can obtain real and accurate information about medicinal herbs, when deciding for yourself which of them may be of use to you.
Researched information about many herbs is presented throughout the site, and I hope that this growing body of reference information will guide everyone towards the ways in which their medicinal properties may be safely utilized by anyone. Specific information is presented in the lower section of each plant description. This herbal monograph section contains plant descriptions, outines of uses, preparation, dosages and contraindications. There are also links to "THE HERBSHED" (master index of herbs & extracts).
"More to come"
For those of you who are unfamiliar with different ways of making medicinal teas or other types of herbal preparations, I have constructed sections on how to prepare teas, and on herbal terminology and definitions, which continue to grow.
The glossary section is a list of commonly-used terms in herbal medicine. It also includes some basic terms, used in various techniques of medicine-making. There are several reasonably good books available, which have great "how to" information, on our recommended booklist page.
I encourage taking a look at the Schedule of Classes area to see which classes are being presented and to obtain more information about them. If you discover that you are interested in one or more of the class offerings, you can send me an e-mail to ask any questions. Or, you can get a bunch of friends together and bug me to put on a class for you. :-)Desert Bloom Herbs
Many of these herbs are safe to use in quite liberal quantities, while others are somewhat toxic and must be used only with a great deal of caution. Knowing the subtleties of each herbs function and use is EXACTLY where the role of the clinical herbalist is important, since many allopathic medical physicians (M.D.s) may tell you (based on their medical experiences), that "herbs don't work", or something similar to that. It has been my observation that much of this information which may be offered about herbs is not very accurate, for it is beyond the scope of their personal experience... therefore, herbs need their own advocates, which come in many forms, and have a wide array of knowledge, much of which is peculiar to their own region. However because of the advanced state of herbalism these days, and easy shipment of herbal material rapidly, the dedicated and inquisitive Clinical Herbalist usually has a range of knowledge about plants far outside his or her previously normal range.
One of the main functions of the clinical herbalist is to lead the consumer toward an herb or list of herbs, for which there is historical usage in regards to a particular ailment or symptom. This is done without diagnosing a particular illness, or prescribing any herb. It is based entirely upon historical documentation, recent scientific information, information from any clinical trials that have been undertaken, and especially on my own observations during my career as a professional herbalist. It is advisable to consult with a qualified holistic practitioner for a reliable diagnosis before deciding whether or not to use herbs.
These pages will be updated as new material becomes available. If you are a clinical herbalist or folkloric herbalist or an alternative practitioner with additional information about an herb you see here, and would like to contribute to this body of knowledge by bringing our attention to new uses of an herb or by giving us information regarding an herb which is: (1) widely available commercially, and :(2) has adequate documentation about it which we can independently access and confirm, we would love to hear from you, either by phone, letter, or e-mail. Desert Bloom Herbs. If you are another herbalist with an herb business, we'd be happy to list you as a local resource on our links page.
We do not encourge the use of endangered plants by using them in our products. If we use herbs in our products which are known to be under stress in the wild, we either grow them ourselves, or get them from other organic herb growers.
We encourage practicing Ethical Wildcrafting Principles when gathering plants for medicines, and highly encourage "growing all your own medicines", as well as making time to become familiar with the herbs specific to your own locality, so you may transplant plants, re-seed them, or divide their roots, as necessary to promote healthy stands of medicinal plants in your own local or regional areas. As I see it, if the plants are kind enough to give their lives to promoteour human health, then the very least we all can do is to wholeheartedly keep them as healthy and prolific as possible, and work diligently in their behalf (and our own), to protect their habitats.
The information here is free to all, and includes sources for bulk herbs and the addresses of other internet sites Links Page , which may have additional information on these subjects.
I nearly always encourage people to try herbal remedies. I know that depending on herbs for health, rather than drug medications (which are largely ineffective), serves to increase our feelings of respect and inter-connectedness to our source, the Earth. Through their use, we begin to understand the need to protect their natural habitats, and the environment in general. One can begin to realize the interconnectedness of all living things through the simple processes of growing, processing and using their own plant medicines. Allowing oneself to depend upon herbs for not only health, but vitality also reduces the money required to maintain optimum health during the course or our live, since most of even the simpler herbs are rich in mineral and vitamin complexes which have been known to be associated with good health.
"If everyone would spend just a little time gardening, The whole world would be abundant. We now glimpse only the barest shadow of the world that could be." Richard McDonald, C.H. "96
"May All Beings Be Happy."... Buddha e-mail Desert Bloom Herbs