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Alethea Kenney and her husband David Bainbridge live on a 200 acre farm in northern Minnesota where they raise Icelandic sheep and assorted other animals. They are in the process of converting to renewable energy and use photo voltaic and wind energy for part of their energy needs.

Alethea grows and sustainably gathers medicinal plants from the woods and fields around her.

For more information about us, please see Reedbird Farm or Boreal Balance, LLC or e-mail

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Boreal Ecosystem

The boreal forest is a fragile ecosystem that spans the northern part of the globe and is characterized by long, cold winters and short summers. The plant and animal species in the boreal forest have adapted to this extreme environment, surviving and thriving in an ecosystem punctuated by change. Winter is a time of cold and rest for some animals and many plants, day length is short and nights can be clear and bitterly cold. Summer is warmer (although still cool compared to many places around the globe) with longer days and short nights. Animals and plants spend this fleeting time gathering food and energy, reproducing and preparing for the long winter again.

There are a plethora of different species of plants, trees, animals, lichens and fungi in a boreal ecosystem, all working together and interdependent on each other for survival and renewal. Many of the plant, tree, lichen and fungi species have medicinal uses but should be harvested sustainably and conscientiously.

For a list of species and more information about boreal forests, check this website and related resources.

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Human and animal health is similar to the boreal ecosystem in its cyclical nature and interconnectedness of the body's systems and the health of the environment in which it lives. Interdependence of all systems, working together to support health and growth is the key component to true health in humans, animals and plants. That is what a traditional naturopath focuses on when assessing imbalance in the system and recommending lifestyle changes, herbs, essential oils, homeopathic remedies, flower essences or other therapies to help restore balance and health to the person or animal.