Healers and Killers 2019-02-09T16:04:12+00:00

FEBRUARY 1 – MARCH 3, 2019

Escape to Tower Hill, where sub-tropical conservatories adorned with thousands of blooming bulbs and fantastic medicinal plant displays await you. For centuries, people from all over the world have used plants to heal the mind, body, and spirit––but what heals can also be hazardous. Come and discover the mystical and practical powers of plants.


From medieval remedies to accidental poisonings, our stunning floral and apothecary displays will delve into current uses and the history and mythology of medicinal plants.


Apothecary in Bloom
Saturday, February 9, 10am–5pm & Sunday, February 10, 10am–4pm
Gorgeous floral displays filled with healing plants adorn Tower Hill during this special-event weekend. Join in the fun and contribute an arrangement inspired by the apothecaries of yesterday and today. All levels are welcome!

Enjoy floral design demonstrations by top regional experts:
Saturday 11:30am – 12:30pm, Teresa Fung, Mimosa Fresh Floral Design
Sunday 11am – 12pm, Jimmy Guzman, JNG Event Consulting

Camellias in the Apothecary Garden
Saturday, February 16, 10am–5pm & Sunday, February 17, 10am–4pm
Camellias are truly the queens of the winter flowers. Come see them at this year’s Camellia Show, presented by the New England Camellia Society.

Seeds of Sorcery
Monday, February 18 – Sunday, February 24
During February vacation week, witches, wizards, and warlocks are invited to Tower Hill to explore the magic and mystery of plants. Join us for drop-in activities, crafts, classes and more!”


Exhibit: Apothecary Treasures from the Vault
February 1 through 28
Discover treasures from the library vault, including a 16th-century printed compendium covering plants of all kinds.

Hands-On with Tower Hill Treasures
Saturday, February 2; Sunday, February 24; Saturday, March 2, 1:30–2:30pm
Pre-registration recommended.
Get up close with treasures from the library vault! Hear the history of herbals – books about plants and their uses – from Tower Hill’s librarian, and have a chance to handle books from the early days of printing. Class limit: 10 per session.


Stress-Relief Bath Bombs
Sunday, February 3, 1–2:30pm
Member $50, Non-member $64; materials included.
Learn how to blend essential oils to create therapeutic bath bombs. Go home with a set of six and the mold to make more.

Introduction to Essential Oils
Sunday, February 10, 1–2:30pm
Member $20, Non-member $33
Discover the health benefits of essential oils and learn how to make high-quality products safely.

Potpourri: Rotten Pots with a Loving Message
Saturday, February 16, 10:30am–12noon
Member $40, Non-member $54; materials included.
Discover the history of potpourri and the language of flowers through a display of some of the books, old and new, in Tower Hill’s library collection. Next, learn the basics of potpourri-making and create a quart of potpourri to take home and enjoy.

Fire Tonic
Saturday, February 16, 1:30–4:30pm
Member $55, Non-member $64; most materials included.
Try fire tonic, a popular herbal concoction. Learn about its many health benefits and make some to take home.

Natural Facial Salves
Sunday, February 17, 1–3pm
Member $36, Non-member $50; materials included.
Make an all-natural herbal salve blended with essential oils to nourish your skin and brighten your complexion year-round.

American Eden: David Hosack, Botany, and Medicine in the Garden of the Early Republic Talk & Book-Signing
Sunday, February 17, 1:30–2:30pm
Member $10, Non-member$20
A National Book Award for Nonfiction finalist, American Eden tells the story of Hamilton’s – and Burr’s – personal physician, whose passion for botany would lead him to conduct groundbreaking pharmaceutical research and found America’s first botanical garden.

Herbal Tea Blending
Saturday, February 23, 9:30–11:30am
Member $36, Non-member $50; materials included.
Taste samples of delicious herbal teas for health and healing, then blend your own handcrafted tea made from organically grown and sustainably harvested herbs.

Herbal Tinctures
Saturday, February 23, 1–3pm
Member $36, Non-member $50; materials included.
Discover how to extract the most beneficial compounds from herbs, roots, and flowers into an alcohol-based preparation. You will make your own herbal tincture to take home.

A Modern Look at Medieval Remedies
Saturday, February 23, 1:30–2:30pm
Included with Admission
Did you know that modern microbiologists have recently started testing medieval medical recipes? That one made of garlic and onion has tested as highly effective against the MRSA bacteria, long known as treatment-resistant? Did you know that scientists have proven there is truth to the story about soil in Northern Ireland that was believed by early peoples, including Druids, to have medicinal qualities? Learn about these studies in addition to other connections among disability, disease, and natural remedies in the medieval world.

Growing a Home Medicine Garden
Sunday, February 24, 12:30–3:30pm
Member $50, Non-member $64; materials included.
This hands-on workshop will identify some of the most useful medicinal plants and teach you how to grow and use them. Participants will sow medicinal seeds and take them home. Co-sponsored with Herbal Community of Central Mass

Creating Sanctuary: Sacred Garden Spaces, Plant-Based Medicine, and Daily Practices to Achieve Happiness and Well-Being: Talk & Book-Signing
Sunday, March 3, 12:30–1:30pm
Member $10, Non-member $20
Part inspiration, part how-to, this engaging guide includes ideas for designing a healing space, 50 medicinal plant profiles, recipes for herbal remedies and self-care rituals, and loads more.

The Stillroom Garden
Sunday, March 3, 2–4pm
Member $36, Non-member $50; materials included.
In the 16th century, the stillroom was where plants were preserved and preparations were made to assure the health and well-being of a household. This costumed, interactive presentation explores how herbs were used back then and offers participants a chance to make their own herbal elixirs.

Please note that Tower Hill’s parking capacity is limited. Carpooling is always encouraged especially on high volume days. To find out more about our plans to expand our parking, please click here.