All posts tagged: global garden

Ethics at work

This week I’ve been seeing new ways that Weleda lives up to their motto – ‘In harmony with nature and the human being.’ As I leave the Weleda France team in Huningue, I can’t help but reflect on my journey over the last two months. One thing that I see time and time again in each country is new ways that Weleda shows their commitment to treating humans and nature in a responsible and caring way. This week wasn’t all production and garden tours, I also visited two very special places at Weleda that I’d love to share with you. Weleda Crèche – ‘The Heart of Kids’ The human family is the center of Weleda, it comes naturally to them to want to meet the needs of parents and offer them a childcare option that adapted to their needs. Weleda decided to create its own nursery, not just for plants but for children too, near its headquarters in Huningue, in the Haut-Rhin. The crèche name means ‘heart of Kids’ and is designed in the shape …

Living life in ‘Lagom’ – Swedish for ‘Just the right amount’

Lagom is a Swedish word for ‘just the right amount’ – not too much, not too little, just right’ It’s the Swedish art of living a healthy balanced life. I’m halfway through my trip and I feel like I’m the Goldilocks of Global Garden – I finally feel like I’ve found my ‘just right’ – my balance. Sweden has been teaching me a lot this week about the importance of equality. And equilibrium. At the start of my journey my balance was way off… I’m the type of person who doesn’t want to miss a moment, especially on the trip of a lifetime. Or to not share all the new and exciting things I was learning with you guys either – I promised to be your eyes, your ears, your hands on this trip, I didn’t want you missing a moment either. I was writing to crazy hours of the morning and getting up soon after. But now I feel like I’m starting to hit my stride, my moderation, my balance. The Swedish art of …

Freedom to roam

Sweden believes its ‘Everyman’s right’ to enjoy nature. The ‘freedom to roam’ is the principle, protected by the law, that gives all people the right enjoy their natural environment. The north is mostly wilderness, foaming rivers, high alpine peaks and plains, while the south is rolling countryside and never-ending beaches. East lies Stockholm with its wondrous archipelago and the west is rocky coastline, islands and giant lakes. No wonder Swedes spend as much time as possible outdoors – most having rustic country cottages to helps them leave the week behind and escape into nature. Sweden – The land of the free Sweden is a country built on freedom and openness – the foundation for creating an equal society. Everyone has the right to take part in demonstrations, freedom of speech, free press, the right to challenge those in power as well as the openness to enjoy all areas of nature regardless of ownership. These healthy-living locals can have a cookout in the quiet forest, sleep on mountaintops, take a dip in the pristine the lakes, …

100 minutes of natural bliss

Sit back and relax. Settle in for 100 minutes of skin therapy at Zoetermeer, Netherlands. I don’t think I will be getting much sympathy when I tell you that my Weleda ‘work’ for today involved experiencing the unique 100-minute skin retreat. It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it! But, I’m your tour guide whilst we wander the world of Weleda, so it’s my role to bring you here with me. We’re in this together remember. Let nature work its magic  Step 1: Settle in, choose your scent and let that guide your body balancing therapy. (20 minutes) Step 2: Pure intentions only – the in-depth cleansing has begun. (25 minutes) Step 3: Submit to the experience – a cream mask and lead plant a massage will let you drift away (35 minutes) Step 4: Slowly come down from Cloud 9 – the final stages awakens the body bringing you body back to your senses. Total length of treatment = 100 minutes of natural bliss. Welkom bij Weleda Walk with me up the …

Busy hands. Big conversations.

Harvesting Primula with Jan Graafland, Garden Manager in Zoetermeer, NL. The European chapter of Global Garden has begun and the Netherlands has put on such a great show. It wasn’t meant to be a harvest day today but when nature calls, Jan the ‘Nature Manager’ of Weleda Zoetermeer and I came running. When the bees are buzzing around the small yellow Primula flowers it means it prime to get picking. Things run on nature’s calendar here. Here the bees are the boss. Busy hands made for big conversations as together Jan and I picked the 700 grams the in-house pharmacists needed to turn the flowers into natural medicines for the heart. There is a Dutch saying, that goes along the lines : ‘Talking and knitting go hand and hand, but one mustn’t forget about the knitting.’ That might have been a gentle reminder that I was getting too enthralled in the conversation and I needed up the pace on my picking. The harvesting to processing happened in Zoetermeer with-in an hour and a half… that’s fast …

The best of Brazil

Today, I am leaving the vibrant country of Brazil. A place as warm as the people themselves. A s I wait at the airport I can’t help but reflect on the week that was, and want to share the experiences that it brought me. Here’s my best of Brazil. Monte Azul – A favela built with opportunity The experience that will stay with me forever is seeing power of community working together to build the São Paulo favela of Monte Azul. I’m not just talking about bricks and mortar… they did that too. But the more important thing that they have built is a community that wants to make sure that all its inhabitants can overcome the odds. I spent the day wandering where it all began with Hully, a volunteer now full-time employee of Monte Azul. She explained to me that a high proportion of the Monte Azul population was unemployed, so the community put them to use, to build natural birthing clinics, woodwork centers, medical centers, libraries, recycling plants, gardens and nature reserves, …

The ‘Care Crops’ of Chacara Garden

There’s ‘Cash Crops’ and then there is ‘Care Crops’. W hen you see Moacyr Copani, Gardener at Chacara Garden, Weleda Brazil tending his gardens of over 40 of medicinal plants it’s easy to spot the difference. This level of care doesn’t stem from greed… but something much deeper and personal than that. This garden is his life – from the very moment he was born, in the simple brick house on the property. Moacyr tends to the land with his brother Paulo with as much care as their father – the first gardener who planted these very gardens himself. Even though Moacyr Snr is now in this 80’s, the three men still harvest together, it’s tradition. How it all began. As you know, I love ‘meaningful coincidences’. This garden has another great story that will give you goose-bumps for sure. Weleda Brazil was founded in 1959 by Dr. Gudrun Burkard and her husband Pedro Schmidt. They moved to the now famous wine region on San Roque, São Paulo and laid down their roots with a …

The beauty of nature – with cosmetologist Maria Ester

Eco-Luxe DIY facial tips. Weleda cosmetologist Maria Ester’s skin glows with health. From my first glance at this beautiful lady I knew what she knows was talking about. Whatever her skin was having, mine wanted it too. Maria shared Weleda’s vision of beauty with me. Weleda strives to create a world where the health and beauty of human beings is continually growing – through nurture and nature. Beauty to Weleda isn’t about winding back the clock, it’s about supporting the body and the skin through our life stages. You won’t see a magic wand of a Photoshop brush in their brochures telling you about a miracle remedy – it’s science and the power of lead medicinal plants in their products that supports our skin as we pass through various stages of life – preserving and supporting. Not hiding or erasing. I’m thirty-six years of age. I’m not scared of aging. But that being said, I do want to help nature keep my skin as vital as possible, for as long as possible. Maria and her …

New things. New Zealand.

This week I jumped over the side fence to hang out with the Weleda team in New Zealand. Whilst Aussies and Kiwi’s are neighbours, the Weleda experiences couldn’t have been more different. My week in Havelock North, Napier saw me getting my hands dirty in the Weleda biodynamic gardens. The same gardens where 80% of the active ingredients in their anthroposophical medicines are sourced. I also got hands-on in the lab seeing how the vitality of the garden produce gets potentized into tinctures then into the Weleda products themselves. Since I have started on the Global Garden journey my head hasn’t stopped spinning – so many exciting things are happening and I don’t want to miss a moment. After this week I’m feeling much more grounded, maybe having my hands in the soil has helped bring me back to earth. Here’s some of the ways I got my hands dirty The Global Garden sisterhood reunion has started. Simone Anderson, New Zealand’s inspirational finalist came to visit me in Hawke’s Bay. We had the honour of …

Nature’s pharmacy

Weleda are pioneers in natural anthroposophical care, laying down their biodynamic roots in Havelock North, New Zealand. The first week of the Global Garden journey was amazing. There’s was so many thought provoking experiences that I didn’t wasn’t to miss a moment. So much to see, so much to share. I couldn’t sleep I was so excited. But I learnt a very valuable lesson from Rudolf Steiner – we must keep things in balance. It was the perfect moment to begin the next chapter of the Global Garden journey in Havelock. It’s no wonder Weleda chose to plant their gardens in Havelock North, in the Hawke’s Bay region. But it wasn’t just the view that made it the perfect choice, the numerous orchards and vineyards also call it home because of the fertile soils. The resident pharmacist quickly sorted me out with the Anthroposophical medicine for my ‘busy brain’ – Sleep and Relax Drops. Just one of over 2000 natural medicines in the Weleda pharmacy – the first Anthroposophical Pharmacy in New Zealand. The first …