The Vital Role of Empathy in First Aid  

One of the greatest gifts that herbal healing offers is the frame that we’re treating the whole person and not just their symptoms.  But how does that work with the urgency of a first aid situation? How do you treat the whole person when you really need to focus on stopping the bleeding?

The Heart of the Matter

An exploration of case, therapies and discoveries, based on 30+ years of clinical practice. An affirmation of why we are herbalists and what it means on a personal, a community and a global level.

Blood and Chi

Traditional Chinese Pathology and Physiology for the herbalist. Supported by strategies, critical thinking and formulating.

Ethical Aromatherapy: Essential Oil Sustainability and Safe Usage

Essential oils are the highly concentrated distillates of certain herbs, woods, barks, flowers and resins and hence demand our respect when we use them for healing. Within this workshop you will discover how to engage with essential oils in a healthy, safe and ethical way that acknowledges the associated ecological footprint that this extraction of whole plant medicine carries. This critical thinking discovery will empower individuals to make educated and intelligent decisions when utilizing this type of plant medicine extraction.

We will explore:

  • How essential oils are extracted from whole plant medicine.
  • How essential oils differ from whole plant medicine.
  • What is the associated ecological footprint of this form of plant medicine?
  • How to safely purchase essential oils.
  • What is organoleptic testing?
  • How chemical analysis of essential oils can deter and distract from energetic analysis
  • Safe routes of administration and general dilution ratio recommendations

During the conclusion of this workshop we will have time to discover and explore certain essential oils and evaluate these through learned organoleptic testing techniques. This is a workshop for both the seasoned and educated herbalist or aromatherapist alongside the user of this type of plant medicine for their own wellness.

Herbal Medicine for Children: Crafting Delicious and Effective Medicine for Kids

Herbal Medicine is a wonderful way to bring health and wellness to our children. Having them comply with taking their medicine is often challenging. Through a series of simple to complete steps learn how to craft delicious and effective herbal medicine that is both economical and delicious.

We will explore:

  • Simple syrup and maceration techniques
  • Herbal Tea blending for children
  • Tablet and Electuary crafting
  • Child Friendly Materia Medica
  • Dosage recommendations for Children

During this hands-on class we will prepare several herbal recipes and learn about the herb allies to have on hand for the little ones in our lives. This class is for those who wish to be more autonomous with their herbal medicine making in relation to children as well as practitioners who see children in practice.

Men’s Health with Herbs

Common men’s health problems

Learning objectives :

  • Using herbs and behaviour modification to remedy common and unusual men’s health problems

Gender Diversity and Inclusivity in Clinical Practice

Thinking beyond the Binary

Are you curious to learn more about how to create a more inclusive and accessible herbal practice? As our culture shifts toward become safer for a diversity of genders and expressions, many health care practitioners and herbal enthusiasts are searching for resources to learn more about gender diversity and learn ways to best serve these groups, not only in an herbal therapeutic sense, but also in the ways in which our clinical practices are set up. This workshop will provide an overview of concepts and terminology, strategies to improve accessibility and inclusivity, and employ practical exercises and group discussion to practice new skills. This workshop will focus mainly on the foundations of creating an inclusive practice, but will touch on herbal therapeutics to support a gender diverse clientele. Join us for a journey into thinking beyond the binary!

Learning objectives and outcomes:

  • Overview of concepts and terminology
  • Strategies to improve accessibility and inclusivity
  • Practice using new skills

Plant Spirit Meditation – early morning mindfulness practice

Deepening connection with nature, plant spirit, and intuition

Join Medical Herbalist Amber Fox for a heart-centred meditative journey into plant spirit medicine. An experiential session meant to awaken your intuition and strengthen deep connections with nature through meditating with individual medicinal plants. Guided heart-centred meditation and interaction with each plant ally will be followed by stories of the mythology and medicinal/spiritual uses of each plant.

Note: please bring warm clothing, something you feel comfortable to sit on, a notebook, and anything else you need to feel comfortable sitting on the ground.

Learning objectives and outcomes:

  • awaken trust in intuitive knowings,
  • develop direct communication and respectful relationship with plant spirit,
  • deepen connection to nature

Medicines for the Spirit

Navigating entheogenic medicines (plants/fungi)

The role of the herbalist in the changing landscape of psychedelics

Learning objectives and outcomes

  • Learn about power plants and their legal status in Canada and around the globe
  • Defining differences between indigenous use vs modern use and why it matters
  • What role does the herbalist play (if any?)

Finding your food

The journey to discover what food works for you

Eating to control blood sugar and inflammation by removing problematic foods and allergens (supporting with herbs)

Learning objectives and outcomes

  • Learn how some ‘superfoods’ and ‘health’ foods may be negatively affecting you/patients
  • Understanding individual uniqueness around nutrition
  • How food ideologies militarize eating habits and serve to divide us

Decolonizing Herbal Practices

Traditional Indigenous Medicine: Plant Respect, Land Recognition and Harvesting Traditions

There are many efforts to bring about more awareness of our plant allies, sustainability and guidelines for cultivation & wild harvesting, but what do we know about our relationship to the first peoples of the land that we inhabit and their relationship to those plants? Indigenous peoples from Turtle Island have a deep cultural connection to the plants for ceremony, food, medicines, clothing & other life necessities, but many of our traditional plants are being harvested before indigenous communities can get to them. The knowledge that we have passed down to one another of locations, the rhythms of these plants and the sacred stories that go along with it are being affected by the plants disappearance in those traditional areas. It’s undeniable that wildcrafted vs cultivated brings with it a specialness in terms of connection to place and plant connection when we are the ones harvesting, but how is this related to a feeling of entitlement to our environment and that of colonialism affecting Indigenous communities and the future generations of medicine people. How can we help with preservation of traditions through responsible plant and herbal cultivation? Join in a traditional sharing and open hearted discussion on entitlement, privilege, and colonialism in plant medicine & harvesting.

Learning outcomes:

  • developing awareness of traditional lands around us
  • developing an understanding of the importance of traditional cultures & Indigenous plants to the environment and for indigenous cultural purposes
  • gathering and harvesting with consideration & awareness of first peoples
  • Learn the importance of certain plants to traditional peoples of this region and how we can do our part to protect them

Herbal Energetics: How flavour informs the therapeutic affect of herbs

Materia Medica & Plant Energetics

Flavours have more than an influence on how a plant preparation tastes, they have specific actions and therapeutic indications that influence where, how and what the plant influences. In this talk we will explore the main flavours that are present in medicinal herbs and how that gives us a strong indication as to the areas of the body in which it will have the most influence. We will discuss the movements of the flavours, combinations, and how knowing the plant energetics can help with informing more accurate recommendations for our clients.

Learning outcomes:

  • Learn the main flavours present in herbs
  • Learn their direction of flow, meridian & organ influences
  • We will explore many different commonly used plants and discuss their energetics

Key Issues In Quality Assurance For Herb Growers, Collectors and Processors

We all have the same goal- to end up with a finished product that does what we intend it to do, is what we intend it to be and is healthy and has got their ethically and environmentally responsible.

Can you be sure what you are doing meet this? This session will help you look at your practices differently to ensure you end up with the product you intended.

Wild Carrot and Contraception

Wild Carrot Seed (Daucas carota) has been used for centuries by women to prevent pregnancy. Working with this traditional method of contraception offers modern women not only an alternative birth control option, but also an opportunity to connect more deeply with the cycles of their bodies. This class covers:

  • signs of fertility and charting your cycle for working with wild carrot
  • ways that wild carrot has been used successfully for contraception, as well cases where it has not been effective
  • how wild carrot works in preventing pregnancy
  • considerations for appropriate use, side effects and contraindications
  • sourcing, harvesting and additional medicinal uses of this plant

Kristy shares from several years experience successfully working with wild carrot for contraception and from the work of her teacher Robin Rose Bennett, who has compiled a wealth of empirical wisdom over the past 30 years from women and herbalists working with this plant and has written in depth on this subject.

Herbs of the Bible

Review of verses and parables about herbs and healing; practical applications of traditional medicines; history of herbal practice and comparison with current uses.

The Healing Power of Bitters

Regarded as a folk cure-all in legend and lore, bitters have a long tradition of being used to aid digestive processes and promote optimal health.

In this class we will:

  • demystify and taste various bitters formulas
  • learn properties of bitter herbs
  • learn the effects of bitters on different systems of the body
  • craft an herbal bitters formula together