Dee's Blog


Tales from a Travelling Herbalist: Part 1

Hi there!

Chanchals Farm Photo

I've recently arrived in British Columbia to visit my sister - also a Medical Herbalist - Chanchal Cabrera. Chanchal lives with her husband, Thierry Vrain, in Courtenay on Vancouver Island where they cultivate vegetables and herbs on 7 acres and are building a healing garden retreat centre.

It's wonderful here and so hot during the middle of the day (unlike dear old Scotland when I left). We're eating all our meals outside - bliss. I was harvesting sour cherries and red currents yesterday - you know, there has to be an invention that is better than a fork to get red currents off the bush!

I thought I'd share some of what they get up to here with you. Chanchal grows Californian Poppies (see pic below) and this herb can be used to aid sleep. A gentle and effective Sleepy Tea can be made with California poppy, lime flowers and chamomile herb. Mix together 50 g of each herb, store in a screw top jar or a brown paper bag, and use three to four teaspoons to a teapot to make a lovely bed time tea.

California Poppy

Poke Root is also grown here (see below). It's a fantastic herb that has a long history of use in skin conditions. I have used it in my clinic for the past 20 yrs to treat psoriasis. Externally in an ointment, Pokeroot combined with Arnica, Comfrey and Marigold, will seal moisture into the skin, encouraging healing and softening the flaking skin.?


This combines well with our Skin tea which we have had on taster this month.

You can visit to find out more about what Chanchal and Thierry do.

I'll be back soon with more news from down on the farm!



Dee Atkinson MNIMH

Dee is one of the UK's top herbalists and owns and runs D. Atkinson Herbalist in Edinburgh - a herbal dispensary and shop which provide a wide range of herbal medicines, vitamins, supplements, herbal skincare as well as a herbal dispensary. Next door is Napiers Clinic.

Dee qualified as a Medical Herbalist in 1988 and took over Napiers the Herbalists in 1990, building it up into one of the UKs most respected and trusted Complementary Medicine Clinics.

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