About Foundations of Holistic Herbalism

Establish a strong foundation on your path to learning herbal medicine with our Foundations of Holistic Course. This five-class sequence offers an excellent introduction to herbal medicine by combining of hands-on learning, lecture, projects and getting out in the field to harvest and create a variety of herbal medicines We will cover a wide array of Pennsylvania-based medicinal herbs, how to make a variety of herbal medicines (tinctures, salves, liniments, herbal vinegars, bitters, and teas), and how herbs apply to basic systems of the body. We will also present an integrated philosophy for understanding herbs by their common herbal actions, drawing upon holistic herbalism and traditional Western herbal foundations.  By the end of this course, you will feel confident in how to make your own herbal medicines and integrate their use into your daily life.  Note: This course serves as the foundation for our Holistic Herbalism Certificate.

Dates: June 30, July 28, August 25, Sept 29, and October 27th 2024, 9:30 – 2:30pm. (Can’t make all the dates? Make up and asynchronous options available for single classes for those signing up for the whole course!). (Please note, there is only ONE spot left in this course as of May 14th.)

Location: Our “Home” location will be Rhoneymeade (177 Rimmey Rd, Centre Hall, PA 16828, 15 minutes outside of State College – Centre County).

Classes run on select Sundays from 10am-2:30pm (tea/social time starting at 9:30am). You can sign up for the 25 hour certificate course/all 5 sessions. All materials are provided as well as herbal tea and light snacks.

If you are interested in the certificate program but can not make all of the dates, lecture portions of class will be video recorded and available for a limited time after each session. If preferred, private makeup sessions will be available at an additional cost.


Full Course and Materials: Sliding Scale $360-$540. Payment plans available at no additional cost! Must email to make arrangements for those.

Payment for the class can be made via Venmo, PayPal, Cash or Check – you will find details on how to make payments here. and is due at the time of registration. Register here for this and other classes. To complete registration for this course you must submit a payment or deposit after the registration form.

Apprenticeship positions for this course are FULL for 2024. Students who take this program and are interested in mentorship will be first to be considered for 2025 and Winter mentorships with Briel. (Note, Dana is still accepting apprenticeships at her homestead in Indiana, PA please reach out if interested

More details about the Class Sessions

Daily Class Schedule:

930-10am Arrival, Socialization and Tea (provided)

10-12:30 Class

12:30-1pm Lunch Break

1-2:30pm Class

Optional after hours till 4pm

Please dress appropriately, bring you own thermos/mug for tea (a new blend provided each month), something to write with and your class binder (provided on first class). Handouts and any project materials will be provided.

In addition to class days, there will be some opportunities to come work on Briel’s homestead in the garden and/or at the Rhoneymeade CommuniTea garden and learn/spend time with the plants/make medicines/etc for those interested. These will be weather dependent and announced the week prior. These are optional offerings!

Class is 20 in class hours but 25 credit hours to account for take home projects. You will receive a Foundations of Holistic Herbalism 25 hour certificate for your completion of this course. In addition to the regular class hours you will see “After Hours” written on the syllabus, these are not required hours but are additional opportunities for you to have hand on herbal learning, these hours/events are also open to the community. If you participate in any of the “After hours” activities you can count those towards your 100 hour certificate through the Pennsylvania School of Herbalism. This course grants you 25 hours towards that certificate.

If you need to miss a class make up classes can be scheduled in person or via zoom for those not local (there is an additional fee for make up classes, or work trade can be organized if needed/preferred), We will also be providing videos/class information from each class on our class Facebook group to help you keep up if you need to miss class. 

Please note all classes will be held at Rhoneymeade (177 Rimmey Rd, Centre Hall, PA 16828). This schedule is subject to change. 

Class 1: June 30th

930-10 Arrival Tea Time/Socialization

10-1030 Introductions to each other and the course

1030-1130 Herbal Actions in Action (a hands on class to introduce you to herbal actions as well as an introduction to some of the herbs we will be learning about in detail in this class) 

1130-1230: Constitutional and Plant Energetics Introduction

12:30-1pm Lunch (bring your own)

1-120: Botany/plant families/identification introduction, Harvest for Tincture Making

120-220 The importance of Menstrums, Tincture and Liniment Making 101

2:20-2:30 Daily Wrap up and Introduction to take home projects/homework: Plant Family Project, Herbal Actions and Energetics Dive

“After Hours” 245-345 Rhoneymeade Medicinal Herb Gardening hour, weather permitting.

Class 2: July 28th

930-10 Arrival Tea Time/Socialization

10-1030 Check in. Go over botany questions/plant family explorations and Herbal Actions in Action

1030-11 – Tissue States

11-12 – Immune System and Relevant Materia Medica

12-1230 – Harvesting/“Garbeling” – various techniques on harvesting and drying herbs

12:30-1pm Lunch (bring your own)

1-145 Nervous System and Relevant Materia Medica 

145-225 Herbal tea making

225-230 Daily Wrap up, “Nervine” dive (pick one “Nervine” to study more in depth, other actions/uses/etc., between now and next class), Your Herb for the class project is due today!

“After Hours” 245-345 Rhoneymeade Grounds Medicinal Plant walk, weather permitting

Class 3: August 25th

930-10 Arrival Tea Time/Socialization

10-1030 Check in. “Nervine” Dive discoveries

1030-1130 – The Holistic View/Asking Good Questions

1130-1230 – Digestive System and Relevant Materia Medica 

12:30-1pm Lunch (bring your own)

1-1:30 Incorporating Herbs into our daily lives through food

130-220 Bitters Making and Vinegar making

220-230 Daily Wrap up, Herbal food project next class Lunch, Plant families exploration Asters

“After Hours” 3-4pm Plant Walk at Coyer Lake (10 minutes from Rhoneymeade), weather permitting

Class 4: September 29th

930-10 Arrival Tea Time/Socialization

10-1030 Check in. Asters, Food incorporation. 

1030-1130 – Constitutional Energetics

1130-1230 – Lymphatic and Integumentary System and Relevant Materia Medica 

12:30-1pm Lunch Potluck, bring your herbal infused dish to Share. (In addition Bring your own Plate and fork!)

1-2 Oil and Salve making 101

2-230 Foraging Ethics/Stewardship

220-230 Daily Wrap up

“After Hours” TBD, hoping for a “field” trip for us

Class 5: October 27th 

930-10 Arrival Tea Time/Socialization

10-1030 Check in.

1030-1130 – The Herbal Apothecary and Herbal Formulation 

1130-12 – Partner Formulation/Consultation Practice

12:30-2pm Lunch and course project sharing

2-230 Ceremonial Course Wrap up and Certificate Presentation

230-330 “After Hours” Celebration – Herbal Treats provided by Briel, you are welcome to invite someone to come join us!

Optional Books for this course: Will add to this list

Botany in a Day by Thomas Elpel

Newcombs Wildflower Guide by Lawrence Newcomb 

Medicine Makers Handbook by James Green

Course Project:

Develop a Materia Medica Sheet for an Herb not listed on the course list (to be provided at the first class. For format, you can reference the materia medica sheets you have been given throughout the course or through research/reference books. In addition to the Materia Medica Sheet make an herbal item you can share with the group (a food, a tincture or other preparation) when you present your project (5-7 minute presentation) during our 5th and final class. The plant you will be covering is due by class 3, before class 4 everyone will have a chance to check in with Briel in an individual meeting about the project.