Herbalist Apprenticeship Program

  • Herbal Apprentices with Kathleen Wildwood 
    I came here with bits of knowledge about herbs and the human body, bits about gardening and this and that, but this apprenticeship gave me a framework to fit it in, and filled in so many of the gaps. I now have tools I can use every day.

Learn to use herbs safely and effectively for yourself, your loved ones or even in a professional setting.

Wildwood Institute offers a comprehensive Apprenticeship at a collegiate level of education. You will receive hands-on training wherein you will: 

  • harvest medicinal herbs
  • enjoy herb walks and outdoor teaching
  • and experience making the medicines that the earth has to offer

This training is an empowering step toward a variety of personal goals. Applicants for whom this course is ideal may be seeking to learn herbalism for personal use, for professional use as an Herbalist, as a health care practitioner broadening their use of holistic healing methods, or to run an herb-related business. 

Our Apprenticeship Program offers flexibility: depending upon the extent of herbal knowledge you are seeking, you may choose to study at Wildwood Institute only one or two years, or complete the three year clinical program. Additionally, our program is part-time, designed for people who have jobs and/or are caregivers for children and elders. Tuition payment plans are available.

In this program, we teach from the Four Directions of Information:

Four Directions of Information


Herbalism is by its nature interdisciplinary, and every piece of it was well put together and balanced in this apprenticeship.

Students laughing in the Garden

When I signed up I was so excited, but I had no idea I was going to learn so much. I would have had to research and study for years on my own in order to obtain this collection of information.

Our program is designed to teach people how to use herbs intelligently, effectively and safely, on personal and professional levels:

    • Personal use includes self-healing and helping your loved ones.
    • Professional use can include:
      • Those who wish to become practicing clinical herbalists (i.e.: working with clients in their own business or in a group practice)
      • Those who are already working in the health care field and who would like to add herbal medicine to their practice
      • Those who want to learn herbalism as a building block for running an herb-related business (e.g. an herb farm, herbal store, or apothecary)


Harvesting herbs in the Wildwood garden

The connections I have made with other apprentices, getting to know others who are also learning about plants and healing and herbs, have touched me deeply. I have benefitted in many ways I never could have imagined.


The program is divided into three levels of study, and each level consists of two six-month semesters:

1st year of study:  Herbalist Apprentice

2nd year of study:  Master Herbalist Apprentice

3rd year of study:  Clinical Herbalist Apprentice

Depending upon the extent of herbal knowledge you are seeking, you may choose to complete the three year program, or take only one or two years. If you would like to work with clients in a professional capacity, you will need to finish the entire three years of study.

Those who successfully complete all the course requirements for each level, including tests, assignments, work-learn and instructor's approval, will receive a certificate of completion for the appropriate level: either Herbalist, Master Herbalist, or Clinical Herbalist.

Each Level includes:

  • Twelve weekends of collegiate level instruction, one weekend per month (Saturday-Sunday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm), with monthly readings, tests, herb reports and assignments

This program was specifically designed for people who have commitments such as jobs and children or elders to care for, with typically 1-3 hours of homework outside of class for each hour of class time.

  • Hands-on experiential learning at every class, including medicine-making, harvesting, plant identification, and more
  • Herb walks and outdoor teaching in the Wildwood Gardens, and occasional treks to wild areas


Herbalist Apprentice (Year I)

  • Fundamentals of Herbalism I  Includes safety, types of preparations, effectiveness, and more
  • Fundamentals of Herbalism II  Herbalism in the context of modern health care, both conventional and alternative
  • Herbal Actions and Vocabulary
  • Herbs and Common Health Problems for the Body Systems  Digestive, circulatory, nervous, etc.
  • Making Herbal Medicines
  • Creating your own Home Apothecary
  • Evaluation of Scientific Studies
  • Fundamentals of Nutrition
  • Plant Identification
  • Practical Skills for the Herbalist
  • Creating your own Materia Medica
  • Self-Healing Project
  • Introduction to Herbal Energetics

Master Herbalist Apprentice (Year II)

  • Common Health Conditions of our Time Inflammatory conditions, Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia, Alzheimer's and Memory, Herbs for Mental Health Conditions, Autism, ADHD, and more
  • Herbal Pharmacology
  • Application of Herbal Principles in Practice
  • Advanced Herbal Energetics
  • Advanced and Expanded Materia Medica
  • Advanced and Expanded Apothecary for Home and/or Professional Use

Clinical Herbalist Apprentice (Year III)

  • Client Assessment and Evaluation Skills
  • Interview Skills
  • Client Recommendations How to decide which herbs, foods and lifestyle choices to recommend
  • Principles of Clinical Practice
  • Herb/Drug interactions
  • Clinical Apothecary
  • Advanced Topics and Current Issues
  • Supervised Clinical Practicum


Tuition is $4,750 per year if paid in full. 

Payment plans available: $371 per month after a $500 down payment.


Having the guidance of an experienced teacher and the support of my fellow students in such a beautiful setting is such a revitalizing experience.





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