In and of itself the United Plant Savers (UpS) Botanical Sanctuary is a refuge for most of the At-Risk native medicinal plants in this region. Without human interaction, the plants would carry on and their populations would ebb and flow with the natural cycles of the forest. We are fortunate, however, to be stewards of this land where we welcome UpS members and interested others to observe, spend time with, and learn more about these At-Risk plants. The Sanctuary is the centerpiece of UpS educational outreach.
This spring, summer, and fall have been a whirlwind of activity between our normal programming, internship programs, artists in residence, tours, day hikers, overnight guests, and the construction of the United Plant Savers Center for the Conservation of Medicinal Plants.
UpS was a stop in the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association farm tour. In September we hosted nearly 50 guests who learned about UpS and Rural Actions role in the region, hiked the Medicine Trail, and observed a ginseng planting demonstration.
The UpS Botanical Sanctuary hosts many herbal friends throughout the year. Schools come here so that their students can observe large populations of medicinal plants in native habitat and connect with the plants.
Herb school who visited this summer include: The Appalachian Ohio School of Herbal Medicine, Boline Apothecary, Mockingbird Meadows, Maryland University of Integrative Health, Magnolia School, Meigs Homeschool, & Molly Jo Stanley’s Yoga Retreat. Would you like to visit? Join our Partners in Education, schools are highlighted in our Annual Journal, on our website and students get a discounted membership!
Meeting folks in person and sharing the work of United Plant Savers is critical to our grassroots mission. This past summer we tabled at the following conferences and events: Rural Action forest farming conference, Mid-South Women’s Herbal Conference, Shenandoah Valley Herbal Gathering, WV Solar Fest, Grow Appalachia Listening Sessions, Midwest Plant Society, Appalachian Forest Farming Community, LOCKN’ Festival, New England Women’s Herbal Conference, and the Ohio Pawpaw Festival.
United Plant Savers depends on membership dollars and donations for about 50% of the budget. Outreach at events is a necessary and critical part of funding medicinal plant conservation.
Art Fellowship highlights
UpS’ Artists in Residence Fellowship Program participants for this summer included Jesse Lovasco, Audra Phillips, and Sara Haley. Katherine Ziff, a fellow from last year exhibited her experience at the public library. Check out highlights from our summer 2018 fellows.
We were super excited this summer to have MaLisa Spring, working for the Ohio Dragonfly Survey along with Jim McCormac, of ODNR take note of the biodiversity of the sanctuary. Holden Arboretum also came down with their staff to tour our sanctuary and learn about forest farming educational opportunities that they could incorporate into the arboretum. Collaborating and working with the conservation community in our region we are constantly reminded of the uniqueness of our UpS Sanctuary. Thank you to all our members who make it all possible.