On-going: Living Earth School of Herbalism - Herbal Field Studies Introductory Class

This online intruductory class is the prerequisite for Herbal Field Studies - a series of seven full-day outdoor workshops running monthly from April to October.


The Introductory Class establishes the theoretical foundation for the field workshops and provides an excellent overview of wild plant identification and ethical wild-harvesting. It is useful to any herbal student or herb enthusiast who wants to develop a more intimate knowledge of wild herbs.


Once you complete the introductory class, you will be able to attend any or all of the field workshops lead by Michael Vertolli in which you will learn how to identify, harvest and use many wild herbs that grow in Ontario or in similar ecosystems. At each field workshop you will also make an herbal preparation using herbs harvested during the workshop.


There is no prerequisite necessary to take this class and it is open to anyone with an interest in wild herb identification whether or not you continue on with the field workshops.  

Cost: $65.

For more information or to register, please click here.


June 8, July 6, 27, August 17, October 5: Herbal Field Studies with Michael Vertolli

 This is a series of seven full-day workshops running monthly from April to October. You will learn how to identify, harvest and use many wild herbs that grow in Ontario, many of which are native or naturalized in other regions as well. At each field workshop you will also have the opportunity to make some kind of herbal preparation using herbs that they will harvest during the workshop.

The course begins with an online Introductory Class that establishes the theoretical foundation for the field workshops. The field workshops take place in various wilderness locations outside of the Toronto area. Whenever possible, carpooling will be arranged for participants who do not have vehicles.

For students who enroll in the Traditional Herbalist program that do not live in southern or central Ontario and are unable to attend the regularly scheduled field workshops, the field workshops will be included as an extension to the Level 2, Advanced Workshops.

Topics include: Identifying local herbs through the various stages of their life-cycle; introductory botany and plant anatomy; the ecology of wild harvesting herbs; harvesting instructions for different herb species; drying herbs; making herbal preparations from fresh plants; the medicinal properties and uses of local herbs.

Prerequisite Herbal Field Studies Online Introductory Class.

Required textbooks:  Newcomb's Wildflower Guide (Lawrence Newcomb); Peterson Field Guide to Medicinal Plants of Eastern and Central North America (Steven Foster, James Duke).

Dates: Saturdays 10:30 am to 5 pm: April 20, May 11, June 8, July 6, 27, August 17, October 5. Carpooling can be arranged.

Tuition:  $65 per workshop. For students who attend the first six workshops in the year that they first enroll, the seventh workshop is free.

Instructor:  Michael Vertolli.

Registration: Once you have completed the online introductory lecture, please contact Michael at michael@livingearthschool.ca to sign up for the individual field workshops.


June 15: Tree Spirit Medicine Workshop - Black Walnut

Black Walnut (Juglans nigra) 


“Acceptance makes an incredible fertile soil for the seeds of change.”  Steve Maraboli

In this experiential workshop, participants will connect with and receive the spirit medicine, wisdom, healing and guidance of Black Walnut.

The Tree Spirit Medicine of Black Walnut is about acceptance of what ‘is’. Black Walnut helps us to acknowledge and align with the ‘isness’ without resisting or denying it. When we’re in acceptance of what ‘is’ in the present moment, of all the unclaimed parts of ourselves, of the shadow self that lurks in our subconscious, we enter more fully the flow of life and shift naturally and fluidly into an expanded sense of consciousness, wellbeing, freedom and peace. From this peaceful and expanded place, we move with discernment and healthy boundaries, responding as life flows and moves around us, reaping the harvest of seeds planted in fertile soil. 

Date: Saturday, June 15th, 2019

Time: 9:30 am to 5 pm.  

Location:  Living Earth School in Maple, Ontario. Carpooling can be arranged.

Tuition:  $95.

Instructor:  Monika Ghent.

Registration: To register, please click here.

Questions: If you have any questions about the workshop please contact Monika at monika@livingearthschool.ca


July 19-21: Heartwood Gathering

The 5th Annual Heartwood Gathering will be held July 19th-21st, 2019 at the Ganaraska Forest Center. This is an amazing weekend in celebration of our relationship to plants and all the blessings they bring us. The weekend is filled with plant walks, discussions, lectures and hands-on workshops and has something for everyone whether you have an interest in herbal medicine, stewardship, foraging, gardening, craftsmanship, spiritual connection or simply the enjoyment of observing a wildflower.

The Keynote Speaker this year is Beverley Gray, the author of the national bestselling and international award winning book, The Boreal Herbal: Wild Food and Medicine Plants of the North.

Michael and I will be giving workshops again this year and are excited to spend the weekend with our fellow plant enthusiasts.

Please check out the website www.heartwoodgathering.ca for all the details.

We hope to see you there!




July 27: Dream Journeying to the Plant People 

In this workshop you will learn an easy and effective method to awaken your innate ability to communicate with the spirits of plants and directly access their teachings and medicine.

Plants are fully aware beings that have intelligence and spirit, as well as a great deal of wisdom that they are willing to share with us.

The way the plant people speak to us is predominantly through dreams. Dream journeying is the process of dreaming in an intentional way while still awake. This way of dream learning with the plants is available to everybody. You do not have to have any special training or calling; all it takes is a very minimum of guidance and instruction and an attitude of respect.

The plant people have been waiting a long time for us to open ourselves to their wisdom. If we listen in the presence of the plants in a respectful way, we will hear them speaking to us of their teachings and medicine.

Date: Saturday, July 13, 2019

Time: 10:00am - 5:00pm

Location: Living Earth School of Herbalism, Maple, Ontario. Carpooling can be arranged.

Tuition: $95

Instructor: Monika Ghent

Registration: This workshop will be open for registration in early May. To register for this workshop, please click here

For more information about the workshop or to be put on the notification list when this workshop will be open for registration, please contact Monika at monika@livingearthschool.ca