Joan Tylecki Greeley uses herbs and nutrition to create personalized care for clients as an alternative or complement to standard medical treatment. “If you have symptoms that don’t have a direct diagnosis, and you’re told, ‘That’s just the way it is,’ if that doesn't work for you, if you wonder what else is possible, if you're truly ready to change, I invite you to come see me,” Greeley said.
With a master of science in herbal medicine from Maryland University of Integrative Health, Greeley provides one-on-one herbal consultations, holistic nutritional counseling and community wellness education services. Plant Wisdom Within is a clinical practice, apothecary, and teaching garden in Lewes.
When a client first comes to her for help, Greeley said, she sets up an intensive consultation. Her intake method is very complete; she looks at the whole person, including lifestyle and how a person interacts with the world. Instead of applying a diagnosis, which is one piece of the puzzle, she looks at why imbalances may be occurring. She then explains how herbs can cause a shift, from the inside out. “Rather than prescribe life changes or suggest changes in your habits, we co-create ideas so that the changes are long-lasting,” Greeley said.
As a certified nutritionist, she can help clients discover the dynamics around food that might affect how their body reacts. It can take a lot of work to shift behaviors and patterns, she said. “A slow process of redesigning habits and resetting body chemistry creates a more lasting process,” Greeley said. Her goal in her business is to create access to herbally inspired wellness for everybody, she said.
By teaching clients what plants are useful in certain scenarios, Greeley helps create a lasting relationship with plants. Instead of waiting for a disease to explode, she helps a client create a healthy platform for well-being. Recommendations for tinctures and teas made from plants or supplements are used to reset a client’s system, she said.
Greeley writes for many magazines, recently contributing an intensive article on lymph physiology to the Journal of the American Herbalist Guild, a recognized authority on herbalism.
Her healing garden is a work in progress, but at any stage, it allows a multisensory experience with plants. She is not growing plants on site to stock her apothecary, but she said she uses high-quality, fresh, organic herbs, and she knows her supplier. “As herbs age they lose their potency. My supply is different from what you can find in the store,” she said.
Greeley also partners with local healing communities to offer workshops. A class discussing probiotics and fermented foods will be scheduled and the popular Safe and Effective Practices to Detox workshop will be offered again. Greeley collaborates with Green Man Juice Bar and Bistro to create an event called Aphrodite’s Table, where clients learn about health while enjoying delicious food and cocktails. There will be more held in the future.
For more information about plants, recipes, or for inspiration, Greeley offers a subscription-based service through the website Patreon which offers several levels of access. There are hundreds of pages of information in the archives on her Herbalist Kitchen page. “It’s a great way to learn about plant medicine,” she said. For a set amount of the client’s choice every month, from a $1 contribution to more than $1,000, clients can choose the amount of information they want to receive. To become a patron of her work, go to www.patreon.com/HerbalistKitchen.
For more information or to order a service or herbal products, such as salve, deodorant, lip balm, creams, oils, teas and pleasure cordials, contact Greeley by email joan@plantwisdomwithin, or call 302-245-0691 or go to plantwisdomwithin.com. Products can also be found locally at Mandie’s Magical Marketplace, 818 Kings Highway, Lewes; 302-313-5950 and through Hattie’s Garden off-season delivery service, go to hattiesgarden.com.