Community herbalist, gardener, forager, yogini and mother, Sarah Naciri has been studying medicinal plants and making plant-based herbal medicine for the past fifteen years.
Sarah’s love and interest in the natural world and the interconnectedness of all beings and life forms was present at a very young age. Following a childhood working with her father in his gardens, compost pile, and kitchen, Sarah worked on organic farms in her late teens and early twenties and slowly began to identify and use native medicinal plants and trees.
She attended Smith College studying biology, ethnobotany and sustainable agriculture at Smith, Hampshire College and UMass Amherst. While traveling in India and working on an amla farm in Rajasthan and a small vegetable farm in the Himalayas, Sarah was deeply intrigued by the presence and use of Ayurvedic medicine in modern-day India. Upon her return to Massachusetts, Sarah immersed herself in the study of Western and Native American herbalism—she interned at an apothecary and herb farm, began attending the International Herb Symposium and surrounded herself with plants, books and teachers.
While living in the Pioneer Valley, Sarah created medicinal gardens around a public housing complex and hosted herb walks and a daily community Tea Time, serving medicinal, healing teas and soups to neighbors. Living now in North Truro, Sarah and her three year-old daughter Leela hike, explore and forage together year-round throughout the woodlands, dunes, and beaches.
Breathing in the salt and cedar air, Sarah feels blessed to be surrounded by the wildness and natural beauty of Cape Cod. Weaving together her knowledge of Ayurveda, Traditional Chinese Medicine, and Western Herbalism, Sarah teaches monthly Medicinal Herb Workshops at Wellfleet Library and Truro Library.
Rich teas are served and enjoyed, messy medicine-making happens, and in-depth discussions and lectures focus on local plants and trees, plant energetics, and how to incorporate herbs, seaweeds, and micro-algae into one’s daily rhythms. She sings, "Plants are the People's Medicine."
Sarah feels a joyful and spirited call to inspire people to sip, smell, and dance with the ancient energies that surround us. It is our time to eat the wild foods, to cook and make medicine for our loved ones, to heal and reawaken.
Photos taken by Edward Boches