It takes time to become an herbalist, but it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg.
If your goal is to be able to keep your family healthy through home remedies using kitchen and medicinal herbs, you can teach yourself most of what you need to know, if you are a researcher who loves to learn. If you’re not, herbalism probably isn’t for you anyway.
Most of what you need to know you can learn for free or on the cheap.
*Keep reading for gobs of links to free training and information*
The thing about herbalists is that most are very warm, caring, generous and giving people. They became herbalists in order to help others be well. That’s why there is so much wonderful information on the world wide web. We are givers.
That doesn’t mean there isn’t some wacky stuff out there or that you won’t come across some remedies that come with spells or incantations. Tread lightly with some stuff and run the other way sometimes. Then soak in what sits well with you and is anchored in good common sense.
Just be sure that you check and double check what you find. Don’t just assume because it’s on the internet it’s fact. I’ve found a few things that don’t jive or feel right in my spirit. You know, a gut feeling.
Intuition plays a huge role in herbalism. Not in a woo-woo way, though there are those out there too. You’ll develop “a knowing”. You’ll learn to know what herb, tincture or tea is best for little Suzy, that is not necessarily what Uncle Joe needs.
Herbalism takes the Holistic approach.
The dictionary says the definition of Holistic Medicine is characterized by the treatment of the whole person, taking into account mental and social factors, rather than just the symptoms of a disease.
There’s no one size fits all like there is in modern western medicine where everyone with the same symptoms gets the same little blue pill.
Wikipedia is flawed, so be sure you compare and prove what you find with more than 2 sources. Just like I do in Bible scripture, I have to be able to find it elsewhere in the bible to know that it’s true.
There are a ton of great books you can borrow from the library. Barnes and Noble is a fantastic place to do research. You can use and test drive lots of books before you buy. Just hang out, do a little research and have a coffee. I love that place!
I’ll be honest, I want my own books. I need to be able to mark in them, use a highlighter, write in the margins and fold down corners. Maybe that’s just me?
I could make do with much less if I didn’t have the money, that’s for sure. I tend to dive in head first, LOL. If you want to ease into learning about herbs there are certainly ways to do it.
For example use your local library to check out herbal books. You could use a copier to save the pages you find most important, or take good notes or even scan the good stuff onto your computer.
In the beginning that may suffice, but I do suggest eventually you purchase a few reference books that you can grab when you need them.
You can get started with these free ones and really learned the basics. This is how I started, then moved on to a paid course. These courses will really give you a good foundation to get started with.
Before you dig in and get overwhelmed like I did in the beginning, let me make a couple of suggestions…
Print out these free Materia Medica Journal pages to create your own medicinal herb journal. This will give you a starting point for keeping track of and organizing the herbs you are learning about.
And you’ll find printable notebook size recipe cards that you can fill out with your own herbal recipes here.
Now to get started…
Pick one herb, just one and learn everything you can about it before you move on to another one. Watch every video you can find about this one herb on YouTube, Google it several different ways.
Let’s use Comfrey as an example. Look up Comfrey in Wikipedia, do Google searches in several different terms like: blog posts about comfrey, articles about comfrey, videos about comfrey, remedies with comfrey, etc. Camp on it a while. Take lots of notes. Once you decide if you are going to use this in your herbal medicine cabinet or not, then figure out how you will use it and find some recipes for its use.
Then move on to another herb. Chances are you will discover other herbs you want to dig into while learning about the first one. Jot them down and keep a running list.
But learn all you can rather than a little about this and that. It all becomes very cluttered and confusing when you drift from one thing to another. I hope that helps give you some direction.
There a loads of downloadable and printable guides and recipes online. Here are a couple, but just Google it to find tons of amazing stuff.
Here are a few YouTube playlists and videos I’ve saved with oodles of great herbalist videos.
Rosemary Gladstar is my herbalist hero:
Wild Harvesting is a little hippie dippy, but super-great information. One of the first I search out to learn about an herb.
She Is Of The Woods is a little different, but she is really knowledgeable. I always see what she has to say about an herb as well.
Basic Herbal Energetics: https://youtu.be/E6G9sfIyl0o
Learning Herbs Playlist:
Herb Mentor Channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/HerbMentor
There are so many more, these are just ones I’ve saved for my own research.
Other handy resources:
Huge Database of herbs and uses https://pfaf.org/user/Default.aspx
So there you have it. There is so much info out there that if you are really serious about becoming an herbalist, there’s just no reason not to get started.
I encourage you to sign up for the 2 free courses I linked to earlier in this post. They are both really good ones and a great place to get your barrings.
Please let me know in the comments if you’ve been encouraged by this post. Share it with others who may want to become herbalists and ask questions. I cant wait to hear from you and discuss my favorite topic.
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