Season 2 Episode 6:
New England Aster with 
Dana O'Driscoll


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Episode Summary

New England Aster (Symphyotrichum Novae-angliae) has so many gifts to offer! 

As a trophorestorative herb, we can work with it to strengthen lung health. In concert with other herbs, it can also help to soothe seasonal allergies. Our hearts sing to behold the brilliant splashes of purple and fuchsia with which New England Aster paints the autumn landscape, flowers that also provide a late-season food source to pollinators.

Join me as I discuss New England Aster with artist, permaculture designer, herbalist, and druid, Dana O’Driscoll. You’ll also receive Dana’s recipe for New England Aster Glycerite.

Listen in for:

► Why embodied experience trumps book-learning as we get to know herbs

► The importance of observation and developing reciprocal relationships with plants

► How herbs teach us to think of medicine and healing in a broader sense

It was such a delight to spend time with Dana and I’m excited to share our conversation with you!


The plants work on every level of us… They work on our physical bodies, they work on our hearts, our emotions, they work on our minds, they work on our spirits, they work on our connections with the world and with others. And as soon as we recognize that that is all plant medicine, every part of it, then I feel like we can really start to understand these plants.





What You'll Learn from This Episode

  • [01:08] Introduction
  • [03:40] How chronic asthma led Dana to herbalism
  • [08:12] The importance of embodied experience as we learn how to work with herbs
  • [08:59] How New England Aster (Symphyotrichum Novae-angliae) can strengthen lung health and sooth seasonal allergies
  • [10:54] The value of New England Aster to pollinators
  • [13:14] The importance of observation and developing reciprocal relationships with plants
  • [15:56] Dana shares tips for making New England Aster glycerite
  • [19:59] Glycerties vs. alcohol-based tinctures
  • [20:38] Dana’s recipe for New England Aster glycerite
  • [21:36] The energetics of New England Aster
  • [23:05] Dana’s book, Sacred Actions: Living the Wheel of the Year through Earth-Centered Sustainable Practices
  • [25:53] Dana shares her Plant Spirit Oracle project
  • [26:46] The relationship between creative practices and herbalism
  • [28:04] How herbs talk Dana to think of medicine and healing in a broader sense


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Rosalee is an herbalist and author of the bestselling book Alchemy of Herbs: Transform Everyday Ingredients Into Foods & Remedies That Heal and co-author of the bestselling book Wild Remedies: How to Forage Healing Foods and Craft Your Own Herbal Medicine. She's a registered herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild and has taught thousands of students through her online courses. Read about how Rosalee went from having a terminal illness to being a bestselling author in her full story here.  



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