my problem with most herbs is the destruction of habitats and of many native plants in the efforts to produce a global demand for these herbs.
True Monsieur Vole .... and yet we haven't seen destruction of habitat due to the distribution of lemon balm, for instasnce .... maybe because the demand for lemon balm hasn't been global yet? But as for the destruction of habitats .... look to our cultural insistence and demand for cow meat. They are both instances from the same page. Korea for instance, doesn't have the land capacity for farming beef, so they import it now from places like the US.
This is especially bad for things from Chinese traditional medicine due to the rapidly rising population of enthusiasts of these things around the world.
I think you mean bits and pieces from animals which are said to heal impotence? Like tiger's penises or rhino's horns? But I think yu also mean plant substances which have become important to people because of their health claims.
As for things on that list that I can grow myself... that is another matter altogether. I love bell peppers and garlic and my parents tried (successfully) to grow ginger here in Canada and it is the natural habitat for American Ginseng and Echinacea so I might be able to grow those myself too. Gingko Biloba is grown in cities around the world but it is a bit too cold for them here in Canada (I saw an attempt in Calgary... half the trees died the first winter and the rest were dead by 4 years later). Turmeric needs hot damp conditions but is a small plant I might be able to grow in a greenhouse. It was grown across Europe to replace the harder-to-grow Saffron so it might be easy. Note that turmeric is also good for digestive problems related to swelling of the intestinal cilia (such as irritable bowel syndrome and many people's inability to absorb nutrients).
Noted indeed. Turmeric is also an anti-inflammatory which aids in preventing alzheimers. There have been studies done on Indian subjects .... a population who do not seem to suffer from dementia in the same way as North Americans do .... and it is seen that Indian spices prevent brain deteriosation. We don't use herbs and spices in the same way that other cultures do.
Edit: this is one people are destroying rainforests for... saw a documentary on the exploited people who were displaced by industrial farming of this and other plants: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncaria_tomentosa
Hebs and the spices derived from them are simply laden with goodness .... and in our fast food culture, we have forgotten them. Well, at least in the corporate-food world ..... not in our individual kitchens.