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Judith Sumner

Judith Sumner grew up just outside of Boston and not only lived near meadows, fields, and ponds, but also had some expert local gardeners for neighbors who were never too busy to talk to a curious child. They were eager to impart their wisdom of the good earth. "In the relatively recent past, all humans had to be skilled practical botanists in order to survive; we had to know which vegetables would hold up during winter storage, which herbs to use for specific illnesses, how to prepare plant fibers for weaving, and how to select the right woods for construction or cooking fires. We now forget many of the daily interactions with plants that were taken for granted during the past three centuries."

Judith is a frequent and popular lecturer for botanical and horticultural organizations, ranging from various garden clubs to the New York Botanical Garden, and the Plimoth Plantation. She was also a speaker at the 11th Annual Maine Garden Day. She served as the visiting lecturer at the week-long Star Island Natural History Conference, and she was a guest on Martha Stewart Living.

Judith has presented a First Friday lecture at the Boston Museum of Science and was a featured lecturer at the Herb Society of America's annual meeting. Her column "The Gardener's Kitchen" (under the pseudonym Laura Craig) appeared in Horticulture magazine for several years.

Judith Sumner teaches medicinal botany at the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University and at the Garden in the Woods, the botanic garden of the New England Wild Flower Society in Framingham, Massachusetts. Her lectures are highly sought after by inquisitive students of all ages, and she has been honored with awards for excellence in teaching. She is the author of The Natural History of Medicinal Plants as well as numerous scientific publications.

Books by Judith Sumner