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Planting the Seeds of Mindfulness: United Plant Savers 2014 Community Grants cycle closes having supported a spectacular season of projects.

JULY 31, 2014 (RUTLAND, OH)

Planting the Seeds of Mindfulness: United Plant Savers 2014 Community Grants cycle closes having supported a spectacular season of projects.

This was a popular year for United Plant Savers Community Grants program. This program, only available to our membership, is designed to support community-based projects that include the replanting of medicinal plants native to the United States and Canada. A total of three projects were funded this year including the successful proposals from Vermont Center for Integrated Herbalism (VCIH) of Montpelier, Vermont, Turtle Mountain Herbs of Rockford, Tennessee, and Northwest Middle School of Northwest Local Schools in Canal Fulton, Ohio.

 

United Plant Savers is honored to support the ‘Planting the Seeds of Mindfulness’ project at Northwest Middle School of Northwest Local School District of Canal Fulton, Ohio . Through this project, 15 Northwest Middle School students, will have the opportunity to create and plant a medicinal nature trail. These students will be working with Sandra Engle, School Psychologist and United Plant Savers member, planting Bloodroot, American Ginseng, Blue Cohosh, Black Cohosh, Ramps, Goldenseal, Wild Yam, Lobelia Inflata, Slippery Elm and Virginia Snakeroot. The Students will also be starting Echinacea and Arnica seeds and tending to their growth indoors through the winter and transplanting them to the front of the school grounds in spring.

Northwest Middle School is located in Canal Fulton, Ohio and is a school district known for its high academic standards. At the beginning of each school day each Middle School Student receives an academic intervention that is uniquely beneficial for them. Some students receive remedial help in a certain academic areas, while others participate in enriched activities. Due to the rising number of students who struggle with focusing/attention span, these Northwest Middle School students will take part in this project, which School Psychologist and United Plant Savers Member, Sandra Engle is calling ‘a Nature/Art-Based Mindfulness Intervention’. These students will be practicing mindfulness through the creation and planting of this nature trail, the process of which is meant to help them learn relaxation and focus.

While outside, students will be developing their observational skills by studying how plants grow, and by smelling, tasting, and touching, various wild plants. The students will also learn about biomimicry, which is the science of studying nature to help solve problems that mankind has created. This project will not only enhance the beauty of the school, but will also give students the opportunity to more deeply connect with the natural world. To learn more about this project and Northwest Local School District, visit them online at www.northwestsparcc.org

VCIH’s project is focusing on Vermont natives, including many plants on the United Plant Savers “at*-risk” and “to*-watch” list and consists of two twenty-five-foot by six-foot garden beds. Shade-loving species such as blue cohosh, trillium, wild ginger, maidenhair fern, partridge berry, mayapple and Oregon grape will be included. VCIH aims to increase community awareness of at-*risk plants and provide an educational tool for the conservation curriculum already in place at VCIH. For more information about VCIH and their Community Grant project, please visit:Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism

Turtle Mountain Herb Farm's roots are firmly entrenched in the mountains of Appalachia in Rockford, Tennessee. It has always been their dream to create a garden that showcases Appalachian ethnobotany. The grant award from United Plant Savers has provided plant material for their forest garden and trail where people of all ages can explore the plants and their Appalachian cultural significance. Turtle Mountain Herbs is not only dedicated to the conservation of the medicinal plants themselves, but also the human culture that surrounds them, and as a member of our Botanical Sanctuary Network they have shown courage and dedication to their conservation ethics. To learn more about Turtle Mountain Herbs please visit them online: Turtle Mountain Herbs

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