Herbs are powerful plants that can be used in multiple ways. Each one has its own unique properties and works within the human body in a special way.
Anyone can add these wonderful plants to their life, but it does take knowledge and wisdom to truly tap into their full potential.
If you are just stepping into the world of medicinal herbs-- or even if you've been here a while-- one of the best ways to understand how to choose and use herbs is to learn from the experts who have been studying and working with these plants for years.
Fortunately, there are many modern day herbalists willing to share their experience and knowledge of herbs with budding herbalists all over the world.
Here are seven of the top herbal experts you should know about if you want to go deeper into the rewarding world of herbalism.
Top Herbalists to Learn From
Rosemary Gladstar is one of the most familiar herbalists in the U.S. and around the world.
She first learned about wild medicinal plants and herbs from her grandmother, which led to a lifetime of making herbal remedies, teaching others how to use herbs, and working to protect the plants that we depend on.
Gladstar has written several herbal books with the two most popular being Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner's Guide and Herbal Recipes for Vibrant Health.
She has also worked tirelessly in conservation efforts to protect wild medicinal and edible plants that are in danger of being wiped out in their native habitat. This has included founding the organization United Plant Savers.
You can learn more about Rosemary Gladstar and look into her online courses and books at her website: The Science & Art of Herbalism.
Dr. Aviva Romm
Aviva Romm is a Yale-trained medical doctor who has also been a midwife and herbalist for over 25 years. She has a unique and in-depth understanding of both conventional medicine and herbalism, making a "bridge" possible between the two.
Dr. Romm is especially focused on women's hormonal health and has published several important books, including Botanical Medicine for Women's Health and Hormone Intelligence.
Her work focuses on how to use herbs and holistic lifestyle changes to bring hormones back in balance, addressing issues like: PCOS, low libido, fertility, PMS/PMDD, menopause, and more.
Dr. Romm is particularly passionate about helping women reclaim their own health. You can learn more from her at her website: AvivaRomm.com.
James Green is a founding member of both the American Herbalists Guild and United Plant Savers. He is also the founder of Simplers Botanical Company and was the owner and director of the California School of Herbal Studies for 10 years.
Green has conducted workshops for years on herbal medicine and herbs for men's health. He also wrote the book The Male Herbal, which gives tons of insight on the often overlooked topic of a natural approach to men's health.
You won't find James Green online (no website), but you can learn a lot from him through one of his other books, The Herbal Medicine-Maker's Handbook: A Home Manual.
This is one of the best books for beginner herbalists and will walk you through how to grow and harvest herbs as well as how to turn them into a wide range of remedies.
David Winston is an ethnobotanist and herbalist who has been studying herbs for over 50 years and has been in clinical practice for about 46 years. He teaches and practices Chinese, Western/Eclectic, and Southeastern American herbal traditions.
Winston regularly teaches and consults in the U.S., Canada, and the UK. He is especially known for his outstanding 2-year training program for clinical herbal medicine.
A founding member of the American Herbalists Guild, Winston's main philosophy in his clinical practice and training program is: "Good herbalists treat people, not diseases."
You can learn more about him and find an herbal usage guide at DavidWinston.org.
If you are interested in clinical herbal medicine, check out his training program at HerbalStudies.net.
Dr. Tieraona Low Dog
Tieraona Low Dog is a medical doctor who has also studied and practiced natural medicine, massage therapy, midwifery, and herbal medicine for much of her life. She leans into her Native American heritage as well as modern science in her practice.
Dr. Low Dog is the founder of Medicine Lodge Ranch, which is a natural medicine school that offers both in-house workshops and online courses. (It's located in the Santa Fe National Forest of New Mexico.)
A leading force in integrative medicine, Dr. Low Dog's work often focuses on women's health and is centered on the belief that "medicine belongs to the people".
Rosalee de la Foret
Rosalee de la Foret may just have the best herbal story out of all the experts listed in this post. Her interest in natural remedies suddenly became all important when she was diagnosed with a terminal autoimmune disease at age 23.
Through a team of acupuncturists, massage therapists, naturopaths, herbalists, and more, Rosalee was able to get healthy and has lived symptom-free for more than 15 years.
Naturally, this experience inspired an intense interest in natural health, and she went on to train in various aspects of herbalism for over 10 years. Rosalee has now been an herbal teacher for 15 years and shares her knowledge through online courses and books like Alchemy of Herbs.
Learn more about Rosalee or look into her online courses on her Herbs with Rosalee website.
Dr. JJ Pursell
JJ Pursell is a board certified naturopathic physician and acupuncturist. She studied biochemistry in college and went on earn a Masters in Chinese Medicine and a Doctorate in Naturopathic Medicine.
A lifelong belief in the power of plants has really been the driving force behind Dr. Pursell's accomplishments, and she owned her own small herb shops from 2011-2018.
Dr. Pursell has published several books, including The Herbal Apothecary: 100 Medicinal Herbs and How to Use Them. Lately, she has been focused on research into psychedelic medicine and herbs like Psilocybin.
You can learn more about Dr. JJ Pursell, her books, and other resources on her website: DrJJPursell.com.
A Wealth of Herbal Knowledge
Of course, this is not an exhaustive list of expert herbalists you can learn from. There are many more outstanding herbal teachers out there that aren't mentioned here, but this top seven gives you a place to start.
Explore their websites, free resources, videos, books, and courses to see if anything in particular speaks to you and will help you on your herbal journey. You might even find some more herbalists to learn from along the way!
Disclaimer: This post is for informational purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice and should not be substituted for medical advice. Please consult your health care provider, herbalist, midwife, or naturopathic physician before taking herbs, supplements, etc. Here's the link to our full disclaimer.