Part-Time Classes

At the Blue Otter School of Herbal Medicine I was able to truly step into the worlds of plants. Time no longer mattered, communication with all life forms was honored. We were trained in how to be humble humans and listen to what the plants had to offer. As I walk forward in life I will always carry these amazing lessons and wonderful teachers with me.

— De’va Robinson, Full Time Program 2009


How To Walk and Work With An Open Heart and Resilience

This class will explore the practice of how to keep going when life throws us down and the art of keeping an open heart. We will discuss how herbs, exercises, and special practices can make us stronger in the world, each with a Native American perspective. For further details and registration go to Arborvitae.

Instructor: Karyn Sanders

Date: January 26, 2017

Location: Arborvitae in NYC


Working with Trauma

In this class we will explore how stress and trauma impact a person physically, emotionally and spiritually. What are some short and long term issues?  How do we identify and unwind these patterns? Treatment approaches and herbs for addressing these issues will be covered. For further details and registration go to Five Flavors.

Instructor: Sarah Holmes

Date: offered twice; February 23rd and February 26th, 2017.

Location: Five Flavors Herbs, Oakland, CA


Loving Fiercely in Times of Turmoil

In this experiential class we will explore strategies for living in difficult times. We will cover  working with emotions, staying resilient and keeping hope through the support of several tools including visualizations and plants. Contact Alembique Apothecary to register.

Instructor: Sarah Holmes

Date: February 25, 2017; 3-5pm

Location: Alembique Apothecary in Berkeley, CA


Beginning Energetic Herbalism

Explore the nature of plants; their energy and emotional, spiritual and physical uses. This course will also include; medicine making, plant meditations, and how to incorporate the plants into your life.  Application may be downloaded below.

Schedule: Saturday and Sunday 10-4 (with one hour lunch break) one weekend per month for five months. We will not be offering this course in 2017. We are only able to offer this class in the rare years that we do not offer our Full-Time Course.

Instructors: Karyn Sanders and Sarah Holmes

Location: Blue Otter School of Herbal Medicine


Herbal Backpacking Trips

Spend a weekend backpacking in the mountains and learning about herbs. In addition tobackpacking in a beautiful setting we will be identifying plants, learning about medicinal uses of plants, discussing a minimal impact on our environment and doing plant meditations.

A registration form must be submitted with your deposit and may be downloaded backpack.registration or requested below. Each trip is limited to 6 people.

Schedule Friday morning through Sunday afternoon; at this time we don’t have a trip scheduled for 2017.

Instructor: Sarah Holmes

Location: Marble Mountain Wilderness, California

herb school




giant lobeliaEnergetic Herbalism Intensive

Come learn about Native American energetic herbalism during this week long intensive. Here is a chance to immerse yourself in another perspective toward herbal healing. This class is for herbal practitioners. The week will include plant meditations, indigenous perspectives on health and healing, relating to the plants and nature, working with people and working their cases from an energetic perspective. Class time will include:

  • plant meditations and sitting with the plants
  • practicing energy techniques
  • finding the root of an imbalance
  • how to be/work with clients energetically
  • putting a formula together
  • case studies; bring your cases to work energetically

Instructor: Karyn Sanders, primary instructor assisted by Sarah Holmes

Schedule: Not offered in 2017;  9 – 4 daily (This class is for herbal practitioners only.)

We may go longer some days if we are in a flow and we will have a one hour lunch break.

You may download a registration form here: registration.intensive.2014


Advanced Energetic Herbalism
Our part-time advanced program is by teacher approval only, and is only open to students who have successfully completed our four month, full-time program. This course is offered to allow our graduates an opportunity to advance and deepen their skills; and serves as a mentor-ship as our students begin their practices as herbalists. We will be focusing on working with energy, chronic and serious illness,  advanced formulation,  interview skills, plant cultivation/gardening, deepening work with self and practitioner skills.

Instructors: Karyn Sanders and Sarah Holmes

Schedule: this class meets for four days, four times per year


Gourmet Herbal Vegetarian Cookingholistic health
This class will focus on basic gourmet cooking techniques such as: cutting skills, reductions, flashing, how to create recipes, cooking and creating herbal foods. Come learn how to incorporate your medicine into amazing looking and tasting meals!

A registration form must be submitted with your deposit and may be downloaded here or requested below.

Schedule:  10-4 with one hour lunch break. Bring your own lunch. Students will get to taste all food made, but full meals are not provided. This course is not scheduled at this time.
Tuition: tba
Instructor: Karyn Sanders


Plant Meditation Weekend

Spend a weekend immersed in nature and the healing energy of plants. We will spend time sitting in meditation with plants, observing our own energy and feeling the energy of different plants moving through us. We will spend much time outdoors as well, as weather permits. No prior herbal or meditation experience is required.

Instructors: Karyn Sanders and Sarah Holmes

Schedule: not currently on our calendar for 2017; Saturday and Sunday 10 – 4