Hi Everyone, Happy Belated New Year to all from Holt Wood Herbs, and here is our round-up of news about Holt Wood and the Medicinal Forest Garden Trust. Do pass on information, and let people know that they can sign up for our occasional newsletters on our website. Best wishes to all, Anne and Kay

Oxford Real Farming Conference (ORFC)

Oxford Real Farming Conference plenary session

Off to a fantastic start with ORFC 2018 – Holt Wood Herbs was involved in organising a session on herbal cultivation, with speakers about opportunities and challenges in growing the herbal market. Thanks to the Medicinal Forest Garden Trust for support towards the costs of getting to Oxford for some of the herbalists involved. There was lots of discussion about the kinds of herbs wanted by organisations like Organic Herb Trading Co and Lush Cosmetics, and issues such as how to develop herb dryers suitable for the UK climate. You can hear the full one-hour recording (sound quality varies a bit) and get in touch if you would like to know more about links for herbal growers.


Holt Wood Herbs over the festive season.

Making Cherry Bark Syrup

Festive wreath of Douglas Fir and Yew

Anne has been experimenting with making Cherry Bark Syrup for a persistent cough. And we have also been busy making more Rose Gentle Oil which has proved to be a star present this year. It is meant to be for dry or mature skin, face or body, but Anne likes to chuck a few teaspoons in a hot bath for a luxurious soak! We really enjoyed our door wreath made from prunings of Douglas fir and Yew this year, with some cake decorations added in. It was a reminder of our discovery of the sensory delights of Douglas Fir a year ago – see Anne’s blog post in January 2017.


Instagram news

It is hard to say it but we have been rather technologically challenged until recently. However, things have changed in 2018! We are now on Instagram, since last December, and you can follow us at ‘holtwoodherbs‘. Holt Wood is incredibly photogenic so we are looking forward to having plenty of pictures to add to the Instagram site. Already we have over 60 followers!

Holt Wood Herbs Instagram site

Green House, Crediton

Witch Hazel Distilled is now available at the Green House in Crediton, Devon. You could order online but why not call in to the fabulous Green House and see what they have to offer. Also available there are our longstanding products of Eau de Cologne Splash (made to a historic pharmacy cologne recipe of 1878) and the above-mentioned Rose Gentle Oil (our touch of luxury).

Smiley log

Upcoming courses at Holt Wood

Two day courses with Anne Stobart on the Medicinal Forest Garden are planned at Holt Wood on 24 May and 7 June 2018. The first day will focus on designing and establishing a medicinal forest garden so participants will come away with lots of ideas for starting or adapting a project to include medicinal trees and shrubs. The second day will focus on harvesting and using medicinal trees and shrubs so participants will learn about making preparations for health and bodycare from the medicinal forest garden. Both of these days are filling up fast, you can see more detail on the Holt Wood Herbs website.

Spring events 2018

14-15 April 2018 at RHS Rosemoor Garden near Great Torrington in Devon, Holt Wood Herbs will be at the Wilderness Weekend, come and see how we make our Juniper Insect Repellent.

27-28 April 2018 at Powderham Castle, near Exeter, Holt Wood Herbs will be at Toby Buckland’s Garden Festival – helpers welcome to join us!

Next Holt Wood Working Day

Saturday 7 April 2018, 10-4 pm

Please note a change of date for our next Holt Wood Working Day due to a clash with the spring event at RHS Rosemoor Garden. We have regular open afternoons and wood working days to enable people to see our project or get involved with Holt Wood. Free, but book in advance as places are limited.

Do get in touch at info@holtwoodherbs.com if you want to book in for a Wood Working day or help out some other way.