Founded by herbalist Rosemary Gladstar and family in 1987, Sage Mountain Botanical Sanctuary is a conservation education center located on unceded Abenaki territory known as Central Vermont. Stewarding over 600 acres within nearly 80,000 acres of contiguous wilderness, this land has provided a sanctuary for over thirty years to plants, animals, and people.
Sensitive and rare natural communities, from forests to fens, are home to a diverse array of wildlife, including deer, bear, moose, beavers, bobcat, otters, and fox. These same ecosystems also host the diverse flora that make this sanctuary so unique and rich with medicine.
Faced with growing threats due to climate change and development, our mission is to protect and restore these highly biodiverse habitats, advocate for conservation of adjacent wilderness corridor, and curate hands-on, multi-disciplinary educational programs focused on earth stewardship and personal wellness.
Our work centers around the conservation and restoration of large ecosystem habitats that support keystone wildlife species alongside rare and medicinal plant species. We collaborate with state and federal agencies and fellow nonprofit organizations, contributing to conservation research and wilderness advocacy to maximize the impact of our efforts. We support the continuing education of our neighbors and students around the world through onsite and online classes, a research library and digital archive, and a botanical garden and herbarium of rare plant species.
Thousands of students have touched and have been touched by this land. Multiple generations of herbalists and earth stewards have found their path by walking these trails. They return home from Sage Mountain illuminated by the wisdom of nature, carrying tools for personal and planetary healing to communities all around the world.
As our human communities grieve the global modern illnesses of species loss, habitat destruction, systemic injustice and now viral pandemic, we look to nature for healing. To heal ourselves, physically and emotionally, we must heal the earth that supports us. To heal the earth, we must heal ourselves. In the divine dance of coexistence, we learn from the wisdom of nature to develop the personal and community resiliency that is necessary to grow and thrive through these intense and changing times – inspired by and in honor of the legacy of Rosemary Gladstar’s teachings, rooted so deeply into the rich soils of this wild mountain.
The Sage Mountain Botanical Sanctuary was recently incorporated into a 501c3 non-profit organization to carry the legacy forward into the next era of service to plants, wildlife and people through research, conservation, advocacy, outreach and education programs. (Read more from Rosemary on that transition here)
Sage Mountain Botanical Sanctuary is located on unceded Abenaki territory in the colonial state of Vermont. We recognize the occupied land on which we reside, along with the myriad of historical and current traditions alive on these lands from which we borrow our knowledge of plant medicine. Vermont is a melting pot of traditions whose people have sought refuge on these granite hills for generations, through the trade of enslaved people and the oppression of colonization. We believe mere acknowledgment is not enough to right the historical wrongs of our culture and of herbalism in particular, and work actively with local communities, individual healers, and organizations to support reparations, rematriation of land, and protection of indigenous cultures and their way of life.