HerbDay is observed next on Saturday, May 4th, 2024 (63 days from today).
Herb Day is an international celebration of herbs and herbal products on the first Saturday of May.
Herb Day was created and organized by a group of five non-profit organizations to encourage people to learn the importance of herbs. Holidays create awareness among people for widespread use of herbs. The holiday brings together herbal product manufacturers, gardeners, home cooks, herbalists, Cubans and the public. Herb Day is a great source to spread the knowledge and benefits of herbal medicines, pharmaceuticals and other herbal cosmetic products. Growing herbs in your home garden and tending to them can be a source of relaxation therapy.
History of Herb Day
Plants in general and herbs in particular play an important role to all cultures and civilizations long before recorded history. Tribal cultures have used wild and cultivated herbs for medicine and food for thousands of years. The oldest list of medicinal herbs is Shen Nung's Pen Ts'ao or Shennong Ben Cao Jing (circa 3000 BC). Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim or Paracelsus (1493-1541) is the one. In spite of his professed unbelief of traditional herbalism, Paracelsus had revived the "theory of signatures" in the first century. According to the theory, every type of herbs owns a particular "signature". An Englishman named Nicholas Culpeper (1616-1654) had created this ideology to connect herbs with different zodiac signs. They treat specific ailments by determining which sign and planet rules the part of the body that needs care and then prescribing an herb with the same astrological sign. Both Francis Bacon (1561-1626) and William Harvey (1578-1657) paid attention on biology and medicine since they formed an experimental taxonomic process that shaped the science of botany.
The Ebers Papyrus is an Egyptian book listing plants used medicinally, dating from around 1550 BC provides evidence that the spice trade existed more than 3,500 years ago. This trade route began around 950 BC as Arab traders traveled through India, China and Southeast Asia to bring spices to the Greeks. After the first century AD, Rome established direct trade with India across the Red Sea, effectively breaking the Arab monopoly on the spice trade. The Romans then introduced the spices throughout Europe, where they became very popular. Trade between Europe and East Asia almost disappeared for 400 years after the fall of Rome in 476, but was then revived in part by the publication of Marco Polo's memoirs in the late 13th century. In his memoirs, Polo described his travels to the Orient where there are a lot of the spices grown. The Europeans then began to search for waterways to the Orient. In the 14th century, ocean exploration was advanced and sea routes from Europe to East Asia were discovered. In 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered another new world while finding a shorter water route for black pepper and cinnamon. Between 1519 and 1522, Spain discovered a waterway to the Spice Islands (Moluccas, near Indonesia), which produced cloves, nutmeg, mace, and pepper. By the early 1800s, spice plantations had been established in other locations around the world putting an end to the spice trade. The United States started to put a foot in the spice trade, as it now exists, in the late 1800s and is the largest spice importer and consumer in the world.
Some interesting truths about Herb Day
- All spices are not all spices. It is actually a dried berry from parts of North Latin America and the Caribbean. British explorers named it allspice because its aroma features sensual notes of cinnamon, cloves and other recognizable spices.
- Ants become confused by the mint. The communicating way of ants is to leave chemical traces for other. However, sprinkling some chopped, crushed mint (or essential oil) near ant trails can remove traces of the chemical. Mint also helps to eliminate bloating and stomachache. Moreover, it helps us relax and take rest.
- Catnip isn't just for cats. For cats, catnip offers a highly mellow or comforting scent. Used by humans as a tea, catnip helps relieve headaches, anxiety, and insomnia.
- Many people have missed the best part of garlic! Before your garlic is even ready to be harvested, you can pluck off their pointed and curly flower spikes for a concentrated garlic flavor. Garlic is also good for the heart, helping to fight infections, kill bacteria and eliminate toxins in the body.
- Unpleasant insects hate beautiful bouquets of herbs. Can you make a bouquet from herb including hibiscus, pine, basil, lemongrass, mint, and/or lavender to repel flies and decor-hating mosquitoes?
- Basil has a ceremonial use. Soul cleansing, home purification rituals that were get rid of a person or place of bad energy.
- Marjoram can stand against the devil on its own. That's right, the devil with all his companions: witches, vampires, ghosts and trolls.
- Oregano is a potent substance in folklore from around the world. Sleeping with oregano on its head was once thought to trigger psychic dreams. The ancient Greeks asserted that it was an antidote to many poisons; Shakespeare's colleagues believe it can prevent drug overdoses. Oregano also helps to prevent us from viruses and bacteria like antibiotics.
- Rosemary has long been used to boost memory and energy.
- Turmeric that has originated from India is considered as an anti-inflammatory. In religious ceremonies, it is said that turmeric is a sacred plant. Before getting married, a necklace with a golden color from the turmeric plant will be worn by some Hindu women. Its powerful coloring agent has also been used for dyeing for many years.
- Cinnamon kills viruses
- Cloves help relieve toothache
- Ginger helps relieve stomachache and nausea
- Lavender helps you relax, helps you sleep easily
- In France, see the Lascaux cave paintings, which depict herbs. Carbon can help to date by the drawings from 13,000 to 25,000 BC.
- The ancient Romans and Greeks crowned their leaders with cumin and laurel. Moreover, dill is used to purify the air by them.
- In the 5th century BC, Hippocrates, a famous Greek physician, listed about 400 commonly used herbs.
- Between 1990 and 1994, an average of £530 million worth $372 million was imported into the United States.
How to celebrate Herb Day
- In order to use more and more herbs in our daily life, we should spend time on getting more knowledge about herbs, their uses as well as health benefits.
- Herbs are easy to grow; each gardener should have a different type of herb.
- It is better to encourage children to learn more about herbs and plants.
- Some educational organization including schools, colleges, universities and educational institutes should celebrate some meetings to share more about Herb Day.
- Research is a great way to spread the health benefits and unique facts about herbs.
- At academies, they should celebrate Herb Day by organizing planting activities such as herbs… and they should encourage students to participate in these activities.
- In addition, let spread Herb Day through the social media because in modern life, people often get more information from it.
ObservedHerbDay has been observed the first Saturday in May.
Saturday, May 7th, 2022
Saturday, May 6th, 2023
Saturday, May 4th, 2024
Saturday, May 3rd, 2025
Saturday, May 2nd, 2026