During this year, you'll become best friends with your herbal ally. The goal by the end of this year is to know your ally intimately, know what his uses are, how he makes you feel, what he looks like in all seasons of growth and how he tastes, smells and feels.
During the winter it can be hard to sit with your herb daily outside if you live in the Northern hemisphere. Since we are starting in January, we will have to start with dried versions of our herb. We'll get to that in a minute. First though, I'd like to discuss some tools that you will want to have a long on your journey.
First of all, I highly recommend a journal for this journey. It can be whatever you are comfortable working with, from a lined notebook to a moleskin to a sketchpad or watercolor pad. I've chosen a spiral bound mix media pad by canson that is 7 x 10 because of the flexibility. I'll be able to sketch in it, watercolor in it, write in it and more.
Next, a good drawing pencil, eraser and some waterproof markers with various sized tips are nice such as these:
Also, if you'd like to color your drawings, you'll need pencils, paints or pastels. I prefer watercolor pencils because I can control the color but still get the effect of watercolors. And, thanks to water brushes, they are extremely portable and unmessy. I have 3 different sizes, small, medium and large brush.
Also, a magnifying glass is handy to have so you can get up close and personal with your ally. Tweezers can be handy too.
A pair of clippers and a hori knife may be handy too. I use these a lot.
Now that you've assembled your Herbal Ally Learning Kit, it's time for your first assignment!