Farm News  |   November 10, 2023

Grass Roots Remedies Co-op at Lauriston Farm

Grass Roots Remedies are settling in to their plot on the farm. Here they introduce themselves and explain more about their plans…

Two farmers in woolly jumpers wearing ear defenders while working in a field

Hallo all, from Grass Roots Remedies Co-operative. For those who don’t know us yet, we are a workers’ co-op of community herbalists and we are delighted and privileged to be the first Guest Enterprise on Lauriston Farm!

Our new home from home is down in the Market Garden, where we look after around ⅓ of an acre. Over time we will be developing it into a productive yet relaxing space for growing beautiful medicinal plants. We’d love to tell you a little bit more about ourselves and hope to meet you in person around the farm too…

A large dog lies calmly on a work-in-progress seed bed in a large field, with rolls of cut turf down one side. The Market Garden polytunnels are visible at the end of the bed.

Clinics, Remedies, Workshops and Courses

We were founded in 2015 with the mission of making herbal medicine as accessible as possible to people all-too-often excluded from the costs of this ‘private healthcare’ option, but which was once known as ‘folk medicine’ – medicine of the people. So we are working to bring back Folk Medicine for All Folk. We do this by running a low cost community clinic in Wester Hailes, where we also run free community workshops alongside to teach people how to grow, harvest and make their own remedies. We also sell herbal products in our newly reopened online shop. 100% of the profits from those go into our Wester Hailes clinic. Keep an eye out for our North Edinburgh community clinic which is hoping to return in the next few months too!

Outside of that, we run two popular longer courses to share our love of herbal medicine: the Wild Things Course – an 8 month exploration into local and abundant British herbs – and the two-year Plant Medicine School Community Apprenticeship in collaboration with the Plant Medicine School in Ireland.

Local Organic Plants

We are really passionate about working ecologically and aim to use local and Organic plants as far as possible in our clinics and workshops. We love to seek out alternatives to at-risk and endangered medicinal plants, and grow them when we can make it work in our climate. Our garden on the farm is such an exciting springboard for us to take this so much further than we already have. We are going to be working towards nurseries of endangered/at-risk species; self-sufficiency with herbs used in our clinics and workshops, saving medicinal seeds and; propagating baby herbs to share; and eventually, we hope, providing fully Organic locally grown products for sale to support community herbalism.

Progress So Far

Two farmers stand inside a portacabin looking out at a field

So far this year we have made small steps into land stewardship, mainly siting an office and workshop container, and doing much pondering over paths and bed arrangements. This autumn we will start officially planting our medicinal hedges and mulching our first growing beds ready for spring.

If you see us on the farm, probably looking a bit confused next to some power tools, then do come say hi!

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