Foundational Herbology (Level 1)

The plants provide us an entry point for deeper connection with all of Nature’s gifts. They teach us universal truths, like how the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, how the microcosm mirrors the macrocosm (and vice versa), how humans and plants are mutually beneficial to one another, and how to live in harmony with ourselves, the Earth and one another. Together we will discover how the study & practice of herbalism can support deep healing, self-understanding and evolutionary growth.

This program offers a comprehensive foundation in the practice and art of herbal medicine, grounded in the practical skills and sciences of the herbal path, with a generous sprinkling of magick and ancient cosmology.

You will learn the botanical names, traditional uses, and various methods of preparing plants to support our bodies. We will welcome the plants as our ambassadors into the holographic Nature of the world and bring healing deeper into our bodies, minds and souls.


We will meet in person each month March 18- Nov 19. Classes will primarily be held at Tonic Herb Shop in historical Shepherdstown, WV with regular field trips to local farms. Every class will provide opportunities to touch, taste, smell and prepare different plants. This experiential approach is overlaid with teachings from botany, Permaculture, traditional medical philosophies, and modern science. There will be ample space for self-study, and each participant will pick one plant to connect with throughout the seasons, culminating in a presentation to share your insights with the rest of the group.

Completion of this foundational training is acknowledged by a Certificate of Completion at the end of the 9 months (90% attendance required to receive the certificate). Students who have completed the Foundations course will be eligible to enroll in the next level of clinical training the following year.

2024 Schedule

Saturdays 10-6 + Sundays 9-4

  • March 16 & 17
  • April 20 & 21
  • May 18 & 19
  • June 22 & 23*
  • July 20 & 21
  • Aug 17 & 18
  • Sept 21 & 22
  • Oct 19 & 20
  • Nov 16 & 17

* Note: We usually meet the third weekend of each month, but June is an exception to this rule. To avoid conflicts with Father’s Day, we will be meeting the fourth weekend of June instead. 


What You’ll Learn:

108+ hours of the following topics:

  • Herbal Actions- the languge of of plant therapeutics
  • The 5 Elements & their Corresponding Energetics- how these influence our bodies and how they manifest in the plants
  • Materia Medica of over 100 plants- discover the uniqueness of a wide variety of herbs
  • Introductions to Ayurveda, Traditional Chinese Medicine & the Western Vitalist Traditions- all of which offer truly wholistic approaches to wellness
  • Constitutional theory- where your own strengths & weaknesses are according to your elemental make-up
  • Basic botany & plant identification- understanding plant patterns. This is an essential skill for wild-crafting!
  • Growing Basics- cultivation techniques, harvesting methods
  • Ethical wild-crafting & plant conservation- how to honor the wild
  • Hands-On Medicine Making- take home your own tinctures, teas, spice blends, vinegars, honeys, oxymels, salves, liqueurs, baths, steams and more.
  • Overview of major body systems- introduction to physiology and common ailments within each organ system.
  • Herbal treatments for specific imbalances- focused classes on first aid, metabolic syndrome, seasonal allergies, leaky gut, thyroid health, cholesterol & adrenal fatigue.
  • Basic clinical skills- introduction to the arts of intake, tongue reading, and formulation.
  • Fermentation basics- because gut health is foundational to overall health.
  • Plant spirit medicine- practice direct engagement with a plant’s intelligence.
  • Wheel of the year- attunement with the solar & lunar cycles for deeper connection with Nature’s rhythms.

Preview the Syllabus Below

<<<Roots and Vines Syllabus-2024>>>


  • Buds & Blossoms (Intermediate Clinical Training) Weekly Classes, September 2024 – May 2025
  • Seeds & Spirals (Advanced Clinical Practicum) Two 12-week sessions each Fall & Spring. Each Session meets weekly for 12 weeks.

Tuition Agreement:

Click Here to preview this year’s tuition agreement for you to review. A signed tuition agreement and a $250 deposit are required to hold your spot. While registration for next year doesn’t open until December, you can read through the tuition agreement in the meantime and let me know if you have any questions.


  • Regular tuition – $2475
  • Discounts
    • Early Bird Registration: $175 discount before Feb 1
    • $200 discount for referring a friend (be sure to let me know who referred you to make sure that they get credit)
    • $175 discount for paying in full by March 1
    • Additional 5% discount for cash payments
  • Monthly Payment plan available
    • $250 deposit is required to save your spot
    • 9 monthly Installments due at each Saturday of class.
    • Deposit is non-refundable and non-transferable.

Tuition includes all materials as well as herbal teas throughout the weekend. Please plan to bring a packed lunch or enjoy one of Shepherdstown’s restaurants for lunch.

For those requiring overnight accommodations, please see the Our Area page.

Tuition Assistance:

I am pleased to announce that we have a scholarship fund available for this year (Thank you Zoe Broadway for making this possible!). This is a need-based scholarship available for 1 full tuition or 2 partial tuitions with a work trade option for the second half. If you want to join us for this class but are finding the cost to be a barrier, please reach out to Ashley at [email protected]

Milk Thistle

Ready to begin your journey?

Enrollment for 2024 is now closed.

If you are interested in joining us for next year, email Ashley at [email protected] to get added to the waitlist.