Dried bunches of flowers/herbs hanging from the roof, mortar/pestle, cheesecloth, knife and cutting board, butcher's block table, water barrel, shelves with glass jars filled with seeds/ground roots/ground metals/oils/pods/bark/fungi/honeycomb/etc, bubbling pot over the fire, stone fireplace, firewood bin, wood stack outside, high rafters, cloak hooks, spoons, tongs, rags, buckets, baskets, pouches, labelled jars, creams, strainers, liquids, powders, poultices, bins to hold larger roots, leaves drying on cloth at the window, labelled medicinal tea blends, books, recipe ledger, inventory ledger, stool, a woman wearing an apron, her sleeves rolled as she crushes and blends ingredients, colorful flower petals and leaves, fresh herbs in pots (sage, basil, rosemary, thyme), garlic braid hanging from the wall, a broom, a counter for meeting with customers, small adjoining gated garden with Lavender, Fever few, Heather, Foxglove, Marigold, Mint, dandelions, etc) trees in the yard or nearby forest (Willow, Pine, Alder, Oak, Rowan, Hawthorne), sign above the door depicting herbs or a mortar/pestle
Scissors snipping, the papery rasp of herbs in the mortar and pestle, the tearing of bark being peeled from a limb, bubbling pots on the stove, a dry leafy rustle as a breeze bumps bunches of herbs and flowers drying from the rafters, steam hissing, remedies spilling over the pot and sizzling against the hot embers, the scratch of a bristle-broom against a dirt or wood floor, the scrape of a stool, the flip of the page as the herbalist searches for a recipe, the dry crackle of crushing a dry seed pod or leaf between fingers, the dry brush of the hands to dislodge herb fragments, scraping of a spoon in a bowl, tapping a spoon against the side of a pot, water dripping as potions are strained, water pouring into a mug, the whistle of a water kettle, a knock at the door, voices calling out, the murmur of a consultation, the crushing snap of dried plants being broken down, the chop of a knife, the patter of dried plant bits dropping into a put or bowl
Herbs (sage, thyme, basil, rosemary), mint, licorice root, musty roots and barks, sweet/fragrant flowers (lavender, heather) a moldy dark odor of fungus, sweat, dirt, woodsmoke, the gamy smell of illness and infection (if a patient is present)
Bitter teas, tinctures and tonics, water, mint leaves to settle stomach upsets, lemon, flower petals, lavender
Crushing dried herbs in the palm, sorting through bunches of flowers to select an ingredient, peeling bark, the silky feel of flower petals, wiping hands with apron or cloth, rubbing a hand against a sweaty forehead, back strain from attending a remedy simmering on the fire, stirring and monitoring its color and scent, the patterned strokes of sweeping, opening the door to receive a customer, holding sachets of herbs to the nose to check for potency, the rolling twist of the wrist to grind medicines with a pestle, Stringing new flower bunches up to dry, bending to collect new ingredients from the garden, tying cloth bundles and packages, packing baskets for customers, lifting a heavy cast iron pot or kettle from the stove, stoking the fire, starting a fire with grass and broken down wood chips, applying a poultice to a wound with gentle hands, binding bandages
--The words you choose can convey atmosphere and mood.
I swept the straw bristles across the dusty floor, scraping purple petal bits and birch bark curls into a pile. Scents, pungent and sweet, tingled my nose and brought a secret smile to my lips. Mama thought sending me to help Nan was a punishment, but I loved coming here. Surrounded by bundles of craggy roots, leaves and strange plants, grey-haired Nan would grind and peel and crush, talking all the while about what each seed, leaf or petal could be used for.
Rhoda spread the foul-smelling poultice over the burn on the young man's arm, not bothering to be gentle about it. His buddies assured her that the chair he'd sat on gave way, spilling him into the hearth at home but by the fumes of liquor wafting off them, Rhoda had her doubts. The pounding at her door in the middle of the night had not put her in a generous mood either, so she'd left out the ochre root which would have helped numb the pain. Maybe her omission would cure the man's stupidity for the next time, saving her some valuable hours of sleep.
--Similes and metaphors create strong imagery when used sparingly.
Example 1: (Simile)
Hanging over the hot coals, the blackened lid jittered against the boiling pot like chattering teeth.
Example 2: (Metaphor)
The old woman in the rain-filled doorway did not speak, only stared down at the floor, her stick-like arms dangling at her sides. From the state of her filthy clothes she could not afford a remedy, but clearly desperation had brought her here. A yoke of pain pressed on her shoulders, nearly bending her in two. I dropped the bundle of heather and hurried over, and then led her to a stool close to the fire.