Herbaceous Plants lack a woody
stem and die down at the end of the growing season,
or forever if the plant is an annual. However, "Herbalism"
cannot adequately be defined in terms of a specific
botanical group of plants that is used for medicinal
"Herbal" treatments and supplements
may involve the use of a wide range of other sources
(e.g. lichens, fungi, roots, vegetables, etc) which
are outside what may formally be defined as "herbs".
Hence, herbalism is better considered more loosely,
but probably more accurately, in terms of plants
and other naturally occurring growing species that
are useful to man.
At present herbal remedies increasingly available
through conventional channels such as dispensing
chemists (referred to as "pharmacies"
or "drugstores" in the USA). This is part
of a general trend of increasing interest in, and
'respectability' of, "natural" approaches
to health and wellness. Herbal remedies are increasingly
considered to be ecologically friendly and a potential
source of health care that may be free of the undesirable
side-effects associated with chemically-constructed