Group aims to educate public on herbs

A medicinal garden grows outside the doctor's office in the Western Reserve Village.
CANFIELD -- In the 19th century, herbs were the only medicine.
They were also used for liniments and cooking, teas and fabric dyes.
"People were using herbs before the time of Christ," said Carri Bookwalter of Greenford, a founding member of Holborn Herb Growers Guild, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.
Because herbs were an integral part of pioneer life, Holborn Herb Growers have maintained a variety of herb gardens in the Western Reserve Village since 1983.
A medicinal garden with herbs such as chamomile and peppermint, used to treat stomach ailments, horehound for coughs and aloe for burns, grows outside the doctor's office.
A culinary garden with parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, oregano and basil grows near the general store, and a Shakespeare garden with herbs mentioned in the writer's literary works -- lavender, rue and honeysuckle -- grows near the library.
There are also gardens featuring decorative herbs and herbs used to make dyes.
Who's involved
Kris Yeltonof Canfield, another of the club's founding members, designed the gardens.
"We operate these gardens to educate the public about herbs," Yelton said.
Holborn Herb Growers also operate herb gardens at the historic village in Boardman Park and an herb garden accessible to people who are disabled at Ford Nature Center in Mill Creek Park.
All of the plants are labeled for easy identification, Bookwalter added. In the garden for people who are disabled, plants are also labeled in Braille.
Holborn Herb Growers has about 50 members, including five founders. In addition to donating plants and maintaining the herb gardens, the club has contributed funds to help expand and maintain Western Reserve Village.
In years past members of the herb guild have sold herb breads, soap, cookbooks and plants.
"We've done everything there is to do with herbs," Bookwalter said.
The organization's exhibit is inside the railroad station in Western Reserve Village.
"We think this is the best part of the fair," Yelton said.
Holborn Herb Growers will mark its 20th anniversary with a members tea in October.

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