The 3rd Annual Chesapeake Herb Gathering

Hello Readers!

This last weekend I participated in the 3rd annual Chesapeake Herb Gathering at the Mellwood Recreation Center. It was a wonderful weekend of herbal workshops, a bonfire, camping & art put on by local herbal farm Centro Ashe and Molly Meehan.

It all started on Saturday morning as a group of Ecohermanas meet at founder Angela Adrar’s house and all road the hour trip it took from her house. Then when we got there we unloaded our stuff and then fellow Ecohermana Lia Totty & I went and helped with registration with one of the participants there named Dallas. Lia & I did registration for about an hour & a half and once we were finished the opening blessing with Natali Procter and her daughter Cryz Procter from the Piscataway First Nation tribe the only federally recognized tribe in Maryland as well as a panel featuring Angela, Molly and local herbalist Ayo Ngozi. During this time my mom Rabiah Nur made a beautiful alter with collaborations from different participants. Then once that was over the first round of workshops started. Most of Ecohermanas that came took the plant walk with Eric Joseph Lewis who is the bomb plant expert and was actually in my Permaculture Design Course that I took at the Accokee Foundation in Southern Maryland with Mr. Wane Wismen. This was a super informative plant walk learning about elder berry, sassafras and other amazing plants. Once the plant walk was over I took a little snack brake and checked out the cool venders here this year. The one I thought was the coolest was the queer herbalism stand that I meant to get back too.

IMG_2889 IMG_2890 IMG_2891 IMG_2892 IMG_2893 IMG_2894 IMG_2895 IMG_2896 IMG_2897 IMG_2898 IMG_2899 IMG_2900 IMG_2901 IMG_2902 IMG_2903 IMG_2904 IMG_2905 IMG_2906 IMG_2907 IMG_2908 IMG_2909 IMG_2910 IMG_2911 IMG_2912 IMG_2913 IMG_2914 IMG_2915 IMG_2916 IMG_2917 IMG_2918 IMG_2919 IMG_2920 IMG_2921 IMG_2922 IMG_2925 IMG_2926 IMG_2927 IMG_2928 IMG_2929 IMG_2930 IMG_2931

After that the second workshops started then it was dinner time which was provided by Tarrance who helps at the Accokee Foundation as their chef. He made a really amazing meal of mash potatoes, vinacen and flower salad. Once dinner was over and everyone had eaten we all went to the bonfire and started dancing and playing drums and other instruments and then we started telling stories started by my mom Rabiah Nur. It started as some funny or heartfelt personal stories and then turned into a one person starts a story and then the next person continues it. It end up a story about a group of women who go to do ritual every year at the same place under the full moon and while they are doing their ritual their nephew is trying to climb to the moon and ends where the ladies end up in Mexico drinking many drinks and having a really great time and then they tell their nephew to get a group of friends together to help him by drinking many drinks and having a great time and by the time they are done they will reach the moon. It was very fun story. After the bonfire Caryl Henry Alexander the artist of Ecohermanas, my mom, myself and few other participants came and did some late night painting. It was a lot of fun. After that we all went to sleep in our cabins.

IMG_2935 IMG_2936 IMG_2937 IMG_2938 IMG_2939 IMG_2940 IMG_2941 IMG_2942 IMG_2943 IMG_2944 IMG_2945 IMG_2946 IMG_2947 IMG_2948 IMG_2949 IMG_2950 IMG_2951 IMG_2952 IMG_2953 IMG_2954 IMG_2955 IMG_2956

In the morning breakfast was served Oatmeal and then the third workshop happened. Caryl, my mom and I went to Cryz’s workshop on Living the Native American Experience. I learned a whole lot about the Piscataway tribe like how they are the only tribe left out of the Piscataway Confederacy as that to them a small dog was a delicacy back in ancient times. Also their tribe knew the importance of taking care of the land and not over working the land. The best part of her workshop was learning the Robin dance where you walk in a circle while someone is playing a Native Drum and then when they stop you duck down or when they go a little faster you turn around and go the opposite way. After that workshop was the last workshop and I did the one on basic garding and what to plant. I learned 5 plants to grow for medicine: holy basil, nettles, calenda & mint. As well as 5 veggies to plant: leafy greens, garlic, tomatoes, cucumber/watermelon & beats. Once that workshop was over the met up with Angela and our friend Sarah Damian who went to the class Sarah was teaching where she took different herbs and music and made dances to them. I hear it was a big hit with the kids but was fun for the adults too. It was now time to clean up and pack up everything and get going. After our two days learning and having fun the Ecohermanas crew went out to lunch at Sliver Dinner before going home. Over all this was a really fun, knowledgeable weekend.

IMG_2957 IMG_2958 IMG_2959 IMG_2960 IMG_2961 IMG_2962 IMG_2963 IMG_2964

Till Next Time…


Leave a Reply