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Extended Courses

2023 Pacific Northwest Herbal Field Studies Course


This is an in-person field studies course focusing on identifying, harvesting, stewarding, using and growing medicinal plants in the Pacific Northwest. We will focus on the most common and abundant plants of our bioregion, and also learn to identify many more as we encounter a variety of ecosystems and habitats. We will visit parks, farms, forests, mountainsides, and gardens, using the great outdoors as our classroom. 



All studies in this class will be in the field in various locations. We will learn medicine making in the field (and at the Duvall Herb Farm), and there will be homework assignments that involve making herbal medicines. Classes will involve handouts, some lecture-based learning, some small group work, and a lot of hands-on learning. I often send optional articles and videos about the plants we will encounter in the next class.

The basis of the curriculum:

  • How to identify 40+ local wild plants (and some edible ones too)

  • How to harvest and process about 20 local plants

  • Discussions about stewardship and respect of wild plants and wild places

  • The basics of using herbal remedies (safety, dosage, applications), with a focus on the plants we harvest (Note that this will not be as in depth as a clinically focused program would be). This will be framed from western herbalism, with some influence from Chinese medicine.

  • How to make basic herbal preparations: (infusions, decoctions, tinctures, syrups, infused vinegar, infused oil, salve)

Plants we will learn about and work with in the course:  (subject to change)

  • Hawthorn

  • Mugwort

  • Goldenrod

  • Plantain leaf 

  • Nettle leaf and seed

  • Rose

  • Oregon grape

  • Elderberry (red, black and blue)

  • Horsetail

  • California poppy

  • Willow

  • Wild carrot

  • Douglas fir

  • Pacific silver fir

  • Chickweed

  • Dandelion 

  • Cramp bark

  • Yarrow

  • Bleeding heart

  • St John’s Wort


Because of the field nature of this program, there is some driving involved. A few meetings will be in Seattle. Some will be along the I-90 corridor in places like Cougar Mountain and Snoqualmie pass, and a few will be on the eastside of the cascades near Cle Elum, WA. We will also visit The Duvall Herb Farm in Duvall. When we meet at locations further afield, I will often have everyone meet at 9am at a given location (usually the PCC in Issaquah), and we will carpool in a few cars from there.



Classes will be taught by me, Natalie Hammerquist. I have been teaching about medicinal plants in the field since 2016, and studying herbalism since 2009. I do this because I absolutely love being outdoors and facilitating deep connection between people and the green world. My students have gone on to be healers, medicine makers, shop owners, community herbalists and hobbyists, and I support them in their endeavors as I can. The people who end  up studying with me are often drawn to me because of my infectious enthusiasm for plants, and my playful and engaging teaching style. I love holding space for a learning community to develop, and many of my students make lifelong friends in class. Another important part of what I teach is gentle stewardship and respect of our wild spaces, and I am very proud of the care that I see my students practicing after they take my program. 


We may have a guest teacher or two join us throughout the program, TBA.



A copy of my recent book “A Visual Guide to Medicinal Plants in the Pacific Northwest” is required. It is available on Amazon until March 1, or I will have extra copies on hand for those who need it.


Dates and Timing:

We will meet two Wednesdays a month from April to October totaling 14 classes. Below are the exact dates.


  • April 5, 19

  • May 3, 17

  • June 7, 21

  • July 12, 26

  • August 9, 23 (One day at the Duvall Herb farm?)

  • September 6, 20

  • October 11, 25


Class will typically be from 10am-4pm, with some ending at 3pm. Some days we will meet at 9am in order to carpool to a farther destination, and return around 5pm.



You will be allowed two absences from the program. Please do not enroll in the program if you are not confident about your ability to show up to class consistently. There are drop in classes for those who prefer that format.


Required Equipment:

  • Garden clippers, leather gloves, thin garden gloves, scissors, a folding pocket knife

  • Notebook and pen

  • jars and other medicine making supplies as projects require.



$1750 per person ($300 deposit required to accept your spot.)


Payment options:

  • Payment in full on first day of program.

  • Payment in two installments ($875 on or by the first day of the program, $875 by July 1st.

  • ask about small scholarships for QTBIPOC folks.

Work Trade:

  • I will select one applicant for a work trade position. That person will pay half tuition, and help me out in class. Please let me know if you are interested.

Max Enrollment:


Min Enrollment:


Application information: (Deadline extended to April 1st))

Please note that it is possible I will receive more applications for this program than spots.

  • Step one: Fill out the application using the link below. You will not get a confirmation email, but feel free to email me if you aren't sure I got it.

  • Step two: Natalie review applications and reaches out for interview.

  • Step three: Schedule your interview with Natalie on zoom.

  • Step four: If you are accepted, you will pay the $300 deposit asap to secure your spot in the program!


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