I borrowed this picture from one of Lyn's website and the caption was that she was photo'd with her PHD.
Sharing an herbalist that loves working with perfumery as well was fitting for this week. Thank you Lyn.
Subject: Lyn E. Ayre, Ph.D.
Marital status: married
Children: three grown children-ages 35, 36, 37; and six grandchildren ages
Do you remember what was going on in your life that lead you to herbs?
I was living in rural British Columbia with my first husband and our two kids.
Self-sufficiency was the necessary life-style in that situation back in 1972. We
had an extensive garden including many culinary and medicinal herbs. I learned a
great deal about the effects of herbs on the body as I added them to some of my
How old were you at that time?
I was 21 years old at that time.
Can you share some of the work that has most influenced you? Such as books,
blogs, video, and lectures.
Until I enrolled in the Heart of Herbs Master Herbalist course, I had no formal
education. I’d just been growing and using the herbs I always had such as:
Rosemary, Sage, Marjoram, Thyme, Basil, Fennel, Bay, Calendula, Chamomile,
Cleavers, Dandelion, Garlic, Ginger, Lemon Balm, Peppermint, Spearmint,
Raspberry leaf, Red Clover, and Yarrow.
I’d also read many books on the subject of herbs and anatomy, as follows, and
all of them helped educated me and made me want to learn more:
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Herbs Jiri Stodola and Jan Volak
The New Healing Herbs Michael Castleman
The Pill Book Guide to Natural Medicines Michael Murry
The Botanical PharmacyHeather Boon
The Complete Guide to Herbal MedicinesCharles Fetrow & Juan Avila
The Healing Spirit of Plants Clare Harvey & Amanda Cochrane
The Herbal Drugstore Linda B. White and Steven Foster
The Naturally Clean Home Karyn Siegel-Maier
Healing Herbal Teas Brigitte Mars
Healing with the Herbs of Life Lesley Tierra
Atlas of Anatomy-Know Your Body Emmett Keffee, MD
Traditional Herbal Remedies Michael Howard
When making plant medicine, are you drawn to any particular method?
When I collect herbs, I chant Om to the Mother plant. I give thanks to Gaia as
she is my earth Mother who takes care of every one of my physical needs
including my medicine. Source looks after my spiritual and energetic needs. Then
I dry the herbs in my food dehydrator and either tincture the material or infuse
it in oil. Of course, it is used in the food recipes I create as well as
medicinal teas, baths, pot pourri, given as gifts, and other ways. When
tincturing, I will use both the measuring system and the Simpler Method.
Do you have a most memorable event, conference, or one on one experience with
any of our herbal foremothers and forefathers or any other key person used in
your path of herbalism? And how has that influenced you today?
I was born and raised in the southwest corner of beautiful British Columbia. In
this beautiful land, we are surrounded by mountains, forests, and many varieties
of wild life. The Fraser River runs through our area only a few blocks away, and
the Pacific Ocean is nearby. This wild beauty has consistently captured my
heart. I’ve always experienced a heart-swell when I look at the plant life
around me. I’ve talked to plants and sang to them my whole life.
My most memorable herbal event to date is the discovery of Calendula in 2002. My
Spiritual Mentor of 26 years passed away in September 2001. As we were leaving
her property for the last time, my husband reached down and took a couple of
handfuls of seeds from one of her plants and stuck them in his pocket. We didn’t
know what it was, we only wanted something of hers to live on with us.
We planted these seeds in early spring. When the flowers bloomed, our neighbour
identified them as Calendula. I did research on this beautiful plant and began
to make Calendula Balm in 2002. I made ten jars and those same first customers
keep coming back for more. Each year, when the plants set seed, I give some away
to whomever is my student at that time. Calendula plants are now growing all
over the world and Louise Campbell Silver lives on. Her affect on my life was
incredibly deep and lasting. I will never forget her.
Where are you located?
Coquitlam, British Columbia, Canada
Do you work with the public and could you describe your work? such as: Do you
I do work with the public and I do teach classes but in Energy Healing and
Natural Perfumery. I don’t teach herbal classes just yet as I want to first
graduate from the Master Level course and another herbal course I’m taking in
person this fall of 2008. In this class, we go out into the bush and do some
wildcrafting and plant identification, bringing back the plants to Langara
College and making medicine.
Do you offer consultations?
It is my plan to do herbal consultation when I graduate. I have been doing them
on an informal basis over the years, doing lots of research for particular
cases. I look forward to broadening my scope of practice.
Do you travel for herbal work?
Not at this time.
How can people contact you to find out more about what you offer, calendar of
events, blogs, weed walks, etc?
I have two web sites and two blogs to do with energy healing and natural
perfumery. They are:
Scent of Nature
Do you have a vision for your work in the future or are you seeing how it
For over thirty years, I have been using herbs, that I have grown myself, for
cleaning products, health and beauty aids, food, first aid, and many other
reasons. I also use several over-the-counter herbs when I have an acute
situation. I have peace of mind when using herbal remedies, as I know what is in
the product and how it will affect my health.
By learning more about herbs, going deeper into the botany, chemistry, wild
crafting, and increasing my knowledge and experience of other certified organic
herbs that I have not grown myself, I hope to be able to help myself even more
so I will be really healthy. Eventually, I want to have a consulting practice
and help people physically as well as energetically.
Some of the personal solutions I am working towards are stabilizing my blood
sugar, eliminating cravings for sweets, coming to my idea weight, better memory,
deeper sleep, and more stamina. I am very confident that I will succeed. I’ve
been amazed by what I have read so far and I’m deep into a learning curve that
will take me to my ultimate goal of having a deeper understanding of the Heart
There are many ‘jobs’ that a I could be suited for: growing and distributing
herbs; teaching about herbs; taking interested folks on herb walks, lecturing
about herbs, writing about herbs; owning/running a herb store; doing herbal
consultations; and working in a herb store. There may be others that I haven’t
thought of yet.
My plan is to do what I always do with that which I learn and that is to write,
teach, and help others via consultations. My husband has come on board with me
and will be expanding our herb garden this year. We have a good-sized order
pending for live plants and organic seeds. We are always interested in seeing
where Spirit will lead us next.
Most of the readers are new to herbs and if there is one word of wisdom or sage
advice you could leave them, what would that be?
I am a writer so it is unlikely I can do this in one word.
What I would like to convey is to be ever-curious; find out all you can about
the herbs you are interested in. Don’t skim over the contra-indications, rather
fully learn those, too. Herbalism is the world of possibilities: to overcome
chronic health situations, for health maintenance, for safe bath and beauty
products, for a clean home environment, and for a nutritious way to eat. The
possibilities are indeed endless.
I am so grateful to have you participating in this project I know you will
inspire others with your deep appreciation, knowledge and love of herbalism.
You are so welcome. Thanks so much for allowing me to share my love of herbs.