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The Biophilic Garden

A Unique NZ Herbal Medicine Book

The Biophilic Garden Connecting People, Plants and Inscape

By Isla Burgess, Director ICOHM

Author Isla Burgess is an expert NZ Herbal Medicine Practitioner with over 40 years of experience in clinical practice, education and research. This particular book is a great read as well as being a useful reference text. It is beautifully presented and would make a wonderful gift. 

The formatting is delicate and beautiful, there is a lightness on the pages that translates to the reader a feeling to tread carefully and lightly with the Earth.

The book includes 13 local plants the author knows intimately – Kanuka, St John’s Wort, Burdock, Centaury, Herb Robert, Dog Rose, Central Otago Thyme, Californian Poppy, Horehound, Motherwort, Mullein, Hawthorn and the Mother Elder. These are explored using a 'Jungian Mandala' template based on the work of C.G. Jung’s four ways of knowing – thinking, feeling, sensing, intuiting. It also contains reflections on local knowledge and experience and the best ways to prepare each herb. The book is well indexed and at the back of the book are helpful notes and appendixes which cover key points in preparations and dosing as well as notes to give further background on topics in the book.

The author also writes about connection to some of the lands where she has spent time, and particularly the land where she now resides. As I read her stories, I develop an understanding of the word ‘inscape’ and how it expands the mind into a different way of perceiving.

This book explores the connections between people, plants and inscape. It offers a different way of seeing that bridges worlds and gives glimpses into other ways of being, or should I say, other being’s ways. There are concepts in here that may challenge you, that may cause you to question your view of the world; yes this book is beautiful, but it is also direct, honest and compelling, with a fascinating blend of ritual, mystery, science, experience, understanding and compassion that enriches the mind of the reader. I think with this book Isla has entered the sacred realms of the storyteller who crosses worlds and brings back treasures to share.

Mary Allan

Price: $30.00 (plus P & P)