Irene Orkin is a wild crafter (harvester) and experienced herbalist who wild harvests from Earth Haven Farm and in the far northern regions of Ontario. Irene is very particular of where she harvests so that the ingredients in her medicinal teas are from areas that are free of pesticides, herbicides and other contaminations. We are proud to offer these teas. We have many reapeat customers that swear by the medicinal attributes of these teas to their families health and well-being.
Irene Orkin: “The essence of all beings is earth, the essence of earth is water, the essence of water is plants, the essence of plants is the human being.” Chandogya, from the Upanishads. As a tea wright, I am inspired by the incredible diversity of edible plants found in Ontario’s bio-regions. I believe through crafting teas I honour the knowledge and wisdom of our ancestors. I offer a selection of bio-regional artisanal teas, handcrafted primarily from edible, indigenous plants I forage myself from the urban wilderness, the Canadian Shield and the boreal forests of Temagami. Other herbs/ plants are personally sourced from local organic farmers. Carefully dried and processed using traditional methods, I custom blend my teas to accentuate the restorative properties of the plants used. Hand packed in loose leaf form in bio-degradable containers helps preserve the plants nutritional, curative properties and reduces waste. Each tea is designed specifically to assist body, mind and spirit in restoring our natural state of well-being, imbuing one with what our ancestors referred to as ‘First Medicine.’
I have been given permission to share my knowledge by Dr. Dan Longboat, Roronhiakewen (He Clears the Sky), Director of the Indigenous Environmental Studies and Science program at Trent University. Elder David Jock, Wenhiniseri:io, Wisdom Keeper and Traditional Medicine Person, Tyendinaga. Grandmothers Stella Blackbird, Red Eagle Woman, Elder, Medicine Teacher and Traditional Healer, Keeseekoowenin Ojibway First Nation, co-founder of Medicine Eagle Healing and Retreat Place. And Audrey Bone, Anishnaabe, Keeseekoowenin Ojibwa First Nation, co-founder of Medicine Eagle Healing and Retreat. Both women are featured in the National Screen Institute’s ‘Makwa Mee Nuun’ and Wisdom Keeper Vivian Recollet, Anishnaabe, Toronto.
“Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the whole world revolves – slowly, evenly, without rushing towards the future. Live the actual moment. Only this moment is life.” Thich Nhat Hahn.
Top photo: Harvest Hastings board member, Jenny Cook of Knuckle Down Farm, along with Stone Soup coordinator Michele Vindum of Plainfield Heritage