Susan Betz

» Ecology, Wildlife (35)
» Native Plants (49)
» Organic, Sustainable (72)
» Vegetables, Fruit, Herbs (64)


1477 East Hastings Lake Road Jonesville, Michigan 49250

Susan Betz is an author, teacher, lecturer, conservationist specializing in herbs and native plants. Susan presents a lively hands-on teaching approach to the joy of growing and using herbs for pleasure and purpose in home landscapes and gardens.

w: freshstartherbs.org

e: view email Michiganherbs007@me.com



15 Neighborly Native Herbs for Your Backyard & Beyond

Nature friendly landscapes are people friendly landscapes — encouraging self-discovery, optimism and a sense of wonder about the natural world. Private citizens and organizations are planting native trees, herbs and wildflowers. Wherever they grow, native herbs contribute to the development of sustainable earth friendly communities by attracting beneficial insects, birds and other wildlife.  






Herbs: For Pleasure and Purpose

Pretty and practical plants, herbs are very adept at multi-tasking in and out of the garden. Whether tucked in a pot or planted in a plot, herbs bring a spirit of creativity and comfortable sense of connection to the natural world. Growing herbs contributes to the development of sustainable natural communities by attracting beneficial insects, birds and other wildlife. Easy to grow, they are useful for crafting highly personal landscapes or gardens in keeping with family interests, health needs and hobbies. Their ornamental attributes and fragrant foliage blend artfully with annuals, biennials and perennials to create lovely high performance landscapes. Susan’s presentation will cover the fundamentals of choosing herbs that blend with and complement your lifestyle and home landscape. Choosing the right plant, for the right place and the right person.



Thymely Tips and Sage Advice  

Herbs serve a multitude of household uses. This presentation will focus on drying, freezing and storing your herbal harvest for future use. Learn how to make herb seasonings, vinegars, drinks, fragrant potpourris and natural cleaning products. Samples and recipe handouts will be included in the presentation. 



Magical Moons & Seasonal Circles


Mother Nature keeps a date book, an exciting schedule of mysterious and magical events unfolding daily in our backyards and beyond. She does not want you to wait for an invitation or schedule an appointment; she is ready and willing to entertain and educate on a moment’s notice. Phenology is the study of the timing of natural periodic events in the plant and animal world influenced by the local environment, especially weather, temperature and seasonal change. In pre-colonial America, the cycles of nature guided the American Indians’ daily tasks, economy and celebrations. Their knowledge of “nature's calendar” kept them in harmony with the natural world. Magical Moons and Seasonal Circles follows nature’s annual cycles according to Algonquin full moon names, demonstrating how seasonal weather patterns and climate effect the life cycles and interactions of common native plants, animals and insects living in our backyards and local communities.



Native Treasures: Tales from The Plant Kingdom 

Prairies and savannas are a rare and unique part of Michigan's natural legacy. Up until the 1800s they represented two of the most significant plant communities occupying lower portions of south central Michigan. Today these dynamic and varied communities have nearly vanished (less than 1% remain) along with the numerous species that rely on the habitats they provide. Susan has been working with public and private conservation groups, volunteers and students to restore and preserve the Hastings Lake Fen and Oak Savanna located in Hillsdale County Michigan. Her presentation chronicles the process of restoring a natural landscape. The steps taken to remove invasive species, harvest trees and carry out a  prescribed fire will be presented.  The native plants, insects and wildlife that have developed and co-evolved over centuries within this ecosystem play the starring roles in this exciting tale of restoration, preservation, and celebration. 


Lower Michigan
Northwest Ohio
Northern Indiana

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Audience Reviews

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Thymely Tips and Sage Advice

Maria Rhodea from Adrian, MI - 05/17/2018 09:35:29

Susan was able to come and speak at an event at Adrian College. Her knowledge of herbs and how to use them was inspirational! She made us all want to immediately start planning our garden! She brought many examples so we were able to see, touch and smell so many interesting herbs. After her presentation we were able to use a variety of her dried herbs to make our own organic tea blends. I highly recommend Susan for any gardening program you may have.

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Excellent Presenter!

Matt Willis from Battle Creek, MI 49017 - 04/11/2016 20:31:02

Susan Betz presented GreenBridges at Willard Library in Battle Creek. She was excellent! Very knowledgeable about all things horticultural, but more importantly she was inspiring. She has a passion for native plants and for making life better through gardening. Great to work with, she is friendly and on the ball. Highly recommended!

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Master Gardeners of St. Clair County Spring Sympos

Lisa Damman-Sharrow from China - 04/09/2015 22:08:45

We had Susan speak for our annual symposium this year 2015. She spoke on Mystical Moons and Seasonal Circles. She was such a delight . Her lecture was very engaging. She talked about the cycles in nature and how to become aware of the little things you look past every day. Her book is just wonderful. If you have children or are just crazy about being outside and witnessing natures wonder, you will love this book. In addition to her being such a great speaker she is also a delightful person. Our guests just loved her!!

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