• March 16, 2019 - March 17, 2019
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm

Our Family Herbalist program empowers students to care for the everyday health imbalances they face as a family caretaker, through a comprehensive herbal curriculum.  It is an excellent program for those wishing to serve as their family’s primary care provider, to prevent illness and help alleviate acute and chronic conditions through holistic and sustainable approaches.


Providing students with a comprehensive and hands-on herbal education, the curriculum covers over 150 individual herbs, as well as herb cultivation, anatomy and physiology, plant chemistry and botany, nutrition, detoxification, medicinal formulation, and a wide spectrum of herbal preparations.   This dynamic tapestry of teachings weaves together ancient culture and modern science to prepare students for a practice of sustainable health within our modern times. This course follows our Roots of Herbalism program in building on a foundation of self-care to branch out towards our care of others.

The class is offered in two different formats to meet unique schedule needs.  Our Weekend Series meets one weekend per month.  Students gather on Saturday morning and the session concludes on Sunday at dinnertime.  We offer our Weekend-Series twice each year, once in the Spring and once in the Fall.  We also offer this program as a Weeklong Intensive, covering the full curriculum in a condensed immersion held once each Spring.

The complete program includes over 80 classroom contact hours and the study of over 150 herbs through hands-on, sensory experience. This course may be the greatest investment you will ever make in the long-term health of you and your family.

Students who graduate from this program leave with the experience and knowledge to care for themselves and the health of their families’ most common illnesses. It is our philosophy that to care for the health of others, we must first learn self-care. Thus, we have structured our program to provide you personal tools and experience which form a strong foundation on which to center your personal practice of caring for those you love with herbal applications, and on which to continue your education to build a future professional practice.  Successful completion of this course is prerequisite to enrollment in our Community Herbalist program.

Core Modules

Core modules focus on practical applications and philosophies within family herbalism


Bioregional Herbalism

Botany for Herbalists

Chemical and Nutritional Constituents

Detoxification and Purification

Diagnostics for Herbalists

Flower Essences

Herb Gardening 101

Harvesting, Drying, and Storing

History of Herbalism

Home Remedies and First Aid

Medicine Walk

Medicinal Formulation

Nutritional Preparations

Personal Wellness I and II

Topical Preparations

Herbal Therapeutics Modules

Herbal Therapeutics are a series of modules that focus on the anatomy and physiology of body, along with Materia Medica corresponding to each system.


Children’s Care


Elder Care


Immune, Lymphatic, and Prevention


Men’s Health



Nourishing & Restorative Tonics



Women’s Health

Successful completion of our Roots of Herbalism class is a prerequisite to enrolling in our Family Herbalist program.  This course may be completed at our Orlando campus, or through our Home Study course.  Students who have completed Roots of Herbalism prior to 2013 should contact our office to learn how your previous coursework applies within our new program format.  Students with previous herbal education from other herbalists may submit an application for an override of this requirement through the transfer of other educational experience.  Please contact our office for more information.

Our 2019 Spring Weekend Series begins the weekend of March 16-17, 2019, and continues with additional weekend sessions on April 6th & 7th, May 4th & 5th and June 1st & 2nd.

A detailed schedule of class sessions for each weekend will be emailed to all students prior to the start of class.

Please note, these dates are subject to change – refer to the detailed schedule you will receive prior to the start of class.

This course offers 48 Continuing Education Units to Florida Massage Therapists, Acupuncturists, Dietitians, Nurses, and Midwives for an additional $15 processing fee.

Herbal materials and handouts are included with each module. Course tuition is $1500 paid in advance, or if you need to set up an installment payment plan, the tuition is $1650.   A $200 deposit is required to reserve your space and is non-refundable.  If a payment plan is needed, that must be set up prior to the start of class.  Space is intentionally limited, and these classes do fill up quickly. We encourage you to register early to hold your space.


Please review this link for our school’s tuition and cancellation policies.


Instructors: Emily Ruff, Maggie O’Halloran and guests


Emily Ruff, Executive Director of the Florida School of Holistic Living and co-founder of the Florida Herbal Conference, is a community herbalist who has practiced the art and science of plant healing for over a decade. Her studies have taken her around three continents where she has studied under healers of many traditions. Her background in gardening and botany came in childhood while wandering the wilderness and digging in the sandy soils of Florida with her grandfather, a tobacco farmer turned urban gardener, and her father, a botany and astronomy professor. Her journey into herbalism continued through apprenticeships in Guatemala under the tutelage of local healers on the southern coast of Lake Atitlan, in the mountains of Vermont at the feet of Rosemary Gladstar, and in the Central Florida apothecary Leaves & Roots with herbalists Carolyn Whitford and George D’Arcy. Emily’s academic studies include Ethnobotany, Philosophy, and Women’s Studies at the University of Central Florida and Curanderismo with the University of New Mexico. She is a Bach Flower Registered Practitioner.

Emily’s dedication to preserving bioregional medicinal plant traditions and ecosystems led her to become active in the organization United Plant Savers. Inspired by a need for greater connection among her regional community, she founded the Florida Herbal Conference event in 2012, an event which continues to sell out annually. In past years, she served multiple terms as president of the Herb Society of Central Florida and as co-founder of Homegrown Local Food Cooperative. Most recently, in response to the tragic shooting at Pulse Nightclub, Emily founded the Orlando Grief Care Project. From the community relationships cultivated through the national response to this tragedy, Emily has formed the Herbal Action Networkto continue weaving the web of compassionate herbalism into community engagement. Her most recent work has taken her to Cannonball, North Dakota where she served with the Standing Rock Medic & Healer Council.

Emily’s classes have been described as “heart-filled,” “enriching,” and “empowering,” creating a bridge between the teachings of our ancestors and the technologies of our modern world. Emily can be found in her cooking, writing, photographing flora, creating music with family and friends, and digging her fingers in the dirt. The plants continue to be her greatest teachers.



Maggie is an herbalist and educator in Central Florida. She comes from a large family where chaos was the norm. She always found peace outside watching things grow or climbing magnolia trees. One of her older brothers was considered hyperactive and had a hard time staying in school. Because of the impact food had on his behavior they had no sugar in the house, including ketchup! She learned in her mother’s kitchen that the things you put in your mouth impact your mind and your body.

In the early 90’s she first found her own inspiration to view health from a holistic perspective while working as a teacher assistant at a mental health hospital for children. From that experience, she decided that there had to be a better way to help kids beyond medicating them to a zombie state with pharmaceuticals. She started college studying education and psychology and ultimately received a bachelor’s degree in Human Development.

In 1999 she took her love of plants to Oakland, California where she worked with inner city elementary students and teachers, learning and teaching about violence prevention and anger management through physical education and body awareness. She explored working with food, exercise, breathing, and communication skills. She continued to study plants and their medicine by sharing with friends.

In 2006 she moved to Florida to find a slower pace in life. Though her love of teaching hasn’t waned, she took the opportunity to focus on deepening her plant knowledge in a more intentional way with herb walks with Emily Ruff. Since then she has found inspiration from teachers like Phyllis Light, Rosemary Gladstar, David Winston to name a few and mostly Emily Ruff. Finishing the community herbalist program in May of 2015. She continues her passion for helping people find peace by sharing her knowledge with whomever will listen. She enjoys working with friends, family, and strangers seeking a more holistic way to be healthy.

These days she can be found hiking on trails, tending her garden, creating something good for you in her kitchen, teaching in her community about plant medicine, and learning from her six-year-old herbalist and his friends.

  • March 16, 2019 - March 17, 2019
    10:00 am - 6:00 pm


Venue Phone: 407-595-3731

Venue Website:

7213 Sandscove Court, Suite #9, Winter Park, Florida, 32792, United States


Welcome to our Winter Park Classroom we are in Suite #9


Venue Phone: 407-595-3731

Venue Website:

7213 Sandscove Court, Suite #9, Winter Park, Florida, 32792, United States


Welcome to our Winter Park Classroom we are in Suite #9

Event is Over