Workshops & Classes

I offer a number of workshops and seminars throughout the year. Please sign up for my mailing list to be notified of new workshops, ‘Like’ my Facebook page, or check this webpage for future updates.

In addition to the workshops below and my one-on-one sessions as a medical herbalist, I may be available for clinic hours for students of herbal medicine that are requiring clinical hours for professional membership to a herbalist association. Physical examinations, herbal dispensing, case history taking, interviewing skills and supervised patient intakes are covered. Cost: $10 per hour.

Please email or call me if you have any questions or would like to register for any of the below classes!

Upcoming Retreats, Workshops & Seminars

2018 Summer Solstice Herbal Retreat Weekend!!

~June 22nd – 24th, 2018

HEADS UP!!! Matthew Wood is coming again!!!


Location: Here at Otter River Farms, near Port Burwell,  Ontario

To see what last year’s Summer Solstice Herbal Retreat Weekend was like, scroll down to bottom of this page!!

If you want more information or to register for this weekend, please sign up for the newsletter for updates to keep you informed as to when registration opens!!

Contact   Christine by email ( or by phone (519-874-4532).

Alchemical Power Couples Retreat Weekend  – Aug 24th – 26th  2018

Limited Registration so sign up early!!

(Sign up for the newsletter to receive updates!!)

This retreat is for couples that are already deeply committed to each other and are interested in building on their cohesion. This is not a counseling weekend. The depths of our hearts are infinite! So there is ALWAYS deeper to go in any relationship. So we will explore going deeper into the heart of our own relationships.

And NO, this is not about having to talk about and share our emotions with anyone!! It is about having a nice nourishing weekend away with your partner.

There will be herbs, drumming, guided visualization meditations, guest speakers and guest power couples, beer and BBQ nights, and more! It is not meant to be a hokey weekend. It is about relaxing and having fun with each other!! All participation is optional, yet highly encouraged. If at any time you and your partner wish to sit out and go for a break or walk instead, you are safe to do so. And you are invited to interact with other couples as much or as little as you wish, as this is your weekend!

We just suggest that that each couple consider coming with open hearts and open minds, or at least consider doing so at some point during the weekend, and dare to be more open and vulnerable with each other. And you do not need to worry about being vulnerable with the group.  As with everything, safety comes first!! So we can discuss what makes a safe space so that we can trust other selves and our partners to go deeper. This is meant to be a fun weekend!

What does the “Alchemical” part mean?

Alchemy is the ancient practice of transformation, that is, turning “lead into gold”. Now of course this is not about turning actual lead into gold, rather it can be understood as turning something that is lack-luster like lead, into something that is sparkly and shines like gold!  So perhaps adding some shine and sparkle to an already comfortable relationship! Isn’t it fun when we can add a bit more sparkle or shine to our relationship? We can do this by together going deeper into our hearts and the heart of the relationship.

What does the “Power” part mean?

Here we are referring to synergy!!
Synergy is the creation of something new and whole. It is the result of an interaction between two or more things, and when combined, produce a greater effect than would be normally expected. It is 1+1=3!! And the power of the interaction, the synergy, is often unexpected and unpredictable! So what happens when we open to and invite synergy into our  relationships?   What “new” can be created in our relationships and therefore our lives?

The investment in your relationship for the weekend is $550/couple plus tax, and includes Saturday evening entertainment, and all snacks and all meals (Friday evening dinner, Saturday breakfast, lunch and dinner, and Sunday breakfast and lunch.)

Accommodation is optional, yet encouraged, and would be an additional cost – choices vary from $30 – $160 per couple.

For more information Alchemical Power Couple Retreat contact Christine at

Material Medica I ~ Starting February 13th,  2018

Learn the top 30 safe and effective local herbs that everyone used to grow and knew how to use.

Topics in this course include:

  • We will discuss the herbal energetics, uses, preparations, distinctions from other similarly used herbs, cautions and contra indications, when to harvest, the individual plant essences and characteristics
  • First hand experience through organoleptic pharmacology taste testing, and more.

While this seminar series is classroom-based, we will interact with the plants through trying samples of different teas and tinctures, so please know that while this is a very informational class, we will also be working on building our own relationships with the plants.

Notes will be provided each week.

February 13th to April 10th (- excluding March 13th)

Time: Tuesday evenings (8 weeks) – 6:30pm to 9pm

Location: Lynhurst, near west end of St Thomas  Ontario

Cost: $240

If you want more information or to register for this class, contact  Christine by email ( or by phone (519-874-4532).

“How to be your own Herbalist” ~ Starting February 7th,  2018

We are starting at the beginning!!! This is the first of all the herb classes.

For 20+ years now I have been saying that we need to get a herbalist back in every household again. You’ll learn about herbal remedies and how to optimize your health, as well as some more hands-on diagnosis techniques. For example, basal body temperature, pupillary reflexes, blood pressure, etc.

These days we typically hand our health and our kids’ health over to doctors. Yet, we used to know how to do much as every woman was a herbalist—observations of health changes, awareness of herbal remedies, and being acutely attuned to our environment. These classes are NOT meant to take the place of going to your doctor, rather they are simply here to help inform you.

If you’ve ever wanted to learn more about herbal medicine, or improving your own health with natural remedies, this is a comprehensive course designed to help you be able to help yourself and your family – be your own herbalist!

Topics in this course include:
* introductory materia medica (key herbs that are safe and commonly used for each system of the body)
* herbal and tissue energetics (how to best match up the herbs to the signs and symptoms)
* therapeutics (how to use the herbs, and when)
* key patho/physiology (how to better understand what the body is trying to communicate with each sign or symptoms)
* organoleptic pharmacology (increasing our understanding of the medicinal properties of the herbs through tasting)
* essential nutrition, and more.

Another example of an at-home diagnostical tool we’ll be be going through is urine analysis. I recommend that everyone buys urine analysis dipsticks, and we go through and we talk about how to read a urine analysis. Ex., how do I know if I’ve got a bladder infection?  –we can do a urine dipstick. This 10-week course is about making things a little more practical for at home so you are able to remedy yours and your family’s health, and, we also talk about the more serious symptoms, so you know when you need to refer to a doctor to or take your child to a doctor.

While this seminar series is classroom-based, we will interact with the plants through trying samples of different teas and tinctures, so please know that while this is a very informational class, we will also be working on building our own relationships with the plants.

Notes will be provided each week.

February 7 to April 25th (- excluding March 14th and February 14th)

Time: Wednesday evenings (10 weeks) – 6:30pm to 9pm

Location: At the Indigo Lounge in Tillsonburg Ontario

Cost: $350

If you want more information or to register for this class, please contact Kelly by email ( or by phone (519-688-1188), or  Christine by email ( or by phone (519-874-4532).

Workshops Available by Request

The workshops listed below are ‘as you wish’ courses/talks!!

Do you have a small group of people interested in a particular course or a completely different herbal or health topic? Let me know. We can organize a private group talk for you and your friends.

Plant Walks

Tree Medicines of the Carolinian Forests

In this workshop we will actually head out into the woods to learn how to identify trees and study them in all their splendor!! The medicinal and edible wonders of the precious trees will be discussed along with touching on some of the history and folklore reminding us of the importance of these forests. Bring a picnic lunch, hiking boots, dressed for the elements!

Time: 10am to 4 PM – bring a paper bag lunch

Location: my place

Cost: $80 – pre-registration only


A Culinary Celebration of Weeds

Does all good fresh home grown vegetables really have to come with lots of labor, sweat and tears? What if we did not have to buy the seeds, plant them, water them, hoe them and all the babying that our vegetables gardens require? With edible locally abundant weeds, we get the delicious and nutritious without the sweat and tears. Learn to identify our locally abundant edible weeds and how to incorporate them into your daily meals.

Time: 11am to 1pm – includes a weedy green salad lunch!

Location: Otter River Farms, Port Burwell

Cost: $45 – pre-registration only

Health and Herbs Seminars & Workshops

Infectious Diseases Workshop

This informative one-day workshop will cover what herbs and foods one should keep on hand in the event of an infectious disease outbreak in your home. Prevention strategies, herbal therapies, as well as learning the lost art of the extremely effective mustard plasters, poultices, steam inhalations, etc. will be demonstrated.

Cost: $80 – pre-registration only

Location & date: not currently scheduled, please contact Christine if you have a group of people interested in this class


Materia Medica I & Materia Medica II- 2 separate in depth plant study seminar series discussing the most important herbs everyone should know

An old herbalist once said, “Learn 30 herbs, and learn them well, and you will be able to treat most of what crosses your path.” The finer details and specific characteristics of the herbs will be discussed. For example, it will help you to choose from a list of nervines – do you know when you need chamomile and when you turn to lavender? In each of these two seminar series we will discuss 30 different key local herbs.

Start date: not currently scheduled

Cost: $240 and includes monographs for each herb discussed


Seminar series: How To Be Your Own Herbalist

10 two and a half hour sessions, 1 evening per week

Includes introductory materia medica, herbal and tissue energetics, therapeutics, important patho/physiology, organoleptic pharmacology, essential nutrition and more.

Notes provided each week.

Cost: $350

Start date: Early 2018. See details above.


Part II – How To Be Your Family’s Herbalist

8 three-hour evening sessions

Includes intermediate material medical, herbal and tissue/system energetics, therapeutics, patho/physiology, organoleptic pharmacology, case studies, and more.

Notes provided each week.

Cost: $240

Start date: not currently scheduled

Plant Consciousness & Herbal Field Experience Program

***Currently closed. Please join my e-mail list to be notified of when the 2018 class dates are posted.***

Time: One weekend per month from May to October – Saturdays 10 am to 5pm & Sundays 9am to 4 pm.

Cost: $600 paid in full by May 1st (a deposit of $100 is required to hold your place)

Accommodation: on-site free camping (meals and camping gear are not provided)

Program Description:

1 weekend per month intensive for 6 months; learning outcomes will focus on the practical side of herbal medicine. Topics discussed include wild crafting and harvesting herbs, edible wilds, herbal medicine preparations, organoleptic pharmacology, plant identification, personal plant projects, plant consciousness/spirit medicine, group studies, and more!

Although it is a field experience, the course will not only help one to learn about, as well as develop relationships on various levels with the plants in and around their garden and in the wild, but it is also about the real herbal medicine and that is herbs as a vehicle for a personal healing journey inward. It is an exercise of learning to fully trust one’s self. It is a beautiful and transformative process with like minded people.

Autoimmunity and Systemic Inflammation

Looking at root causes, the stages, how to turn down inflammation as well as prevent it. We will look at using diet, supplements, lifestyle aspects and herbs as our tools to do so.

Notes provided each week.

Time: Three evenings, 1 evening a week; 6:30 – 8:30pm

Location: Not currently scheduled

Cost: $100

Medicine-Making Classes

Herbal Medicine Making Workshop – Part 1

In this one day workshop we will learn how to use dried herbs to make a variety of herbal medicines, including tinctures, decoctions, infusions, infused oils and more.
Notes provided

Time: 10am to 4pm – bring a paper bag lunch with you

Cost: $100 – pre-registration only

Location & date: not currently scheduled, please contact Christine if you have a group of people interested in this class


Herbal Medicine Making Workshop – Part 2

In this one day workshop we will learn how to use fresh herbs to make a variety of herbal medicines, including tinctures, infused oils, creams, salves and more. Notes provided

Time: 10am to 4pm – bring a paper bag lunch with you

Cost: $100 – pre-registration only

Location & date: not currently scheduled, please contact Christine if you have a group of people interested in this class

Herbal Alchemy Classes

Alchemy and Herbs – Part 1

Come and explore the secrets of this ancient study of transmutation. For centuries alchemy has been studied by many great scientists and leaders in their time, such as Paracelsus, Avicenna, Goethe, Newton, St Thomas Aquinas and Jung. Why so much interest? The Magnum opus – Greater Works as well as the Lesser Works, referred to as Plant Alchemy will be studied.

Length: Six evening classes 2 1/2 hrs long – Notes provided each week.

Cost: $200

Location & date: not currently scheduled, please contact Christine if you have a group of people interested in this class


Plant Magick and Miracles – Herbal Alchemy Part 2 – NEW

In Part 1 of the Herbal Alchemy, we looked at ways to clear our mind and body returning us back to our original nature. In Part 2 we will take what we learned in Part 1 and more deeply explore the magick in God’s creation. We will look at ways that we can bring that magick in our lives to help us manifest, thus make magick, and bring miracles in our lives.

Notes provided each week. Part 1 is a prerequisite for Part 2

8 evenings, 2 ½ hours each evening

Cost: $240

Location & date: not currently scheduled, please contact Christine if you have a group of people interested in this class

Retreats for 2018

Summer Solstice Herbal Retreat Weekend (June 22-24th 2018) at Otter River Farms

MATTHEW WOOD is coming back again for this retreat weekend!!!!

Watch for updates! Or sign up for the newsletter for updates!!


Herb Lore: Meta Narratives of Plant Spirits– With Stephen Hotchkiss
From Achilles and Demeter to Tulsi and Lakshmi we will embark on a cross-cultural ethnobotanical survey of plant-centric folklore through history to discover and examine the poetic ties that foster and sustain deep pyschospiritual connections to the plant realm.

Home Care for Cancer Patients – With John Redden
More and more the treatment of serious conditions are really dependent upon the home care program.  Patients with cancer may show up at hospitals for chemo therapy or radiation and when the treatment is over all they get is the next appointment date.  The ravages of therapy are to be bourn with stoic acceptance. Not anymore. We now know that diet, supplements, herbs and a few therapies can truly determine the quality of life and even quantity.  For cancer patients, proper diets can be the most important element in the entire program.  In this course we will be introduced to cutting edge understanding of the nature of cancer and how we can at home treat this scourge with confidence and courage.

Herbal Energetics – With Christine Dennis
Energetics is the study of subtle energies. Both mystics and physicists tell us that everything in both the manifest and unmanifest world is energy. The study of energetics then is used to help us describe the activities and configuration of this energy, or also commonly referred to as life force, and has been considered as being the universal language. Herbal energetics then is when we apply this study to the plant world, which is the “green tongue” of this universal language. So it makes sense then that it is through our tongue is one way the plants speak their green tongue language to us. Together we will explore herbal energetics, and see what their green tongue has to say to us..

Herb Walk – With John Redden, Christine Dennis and any others who wish to contribute and share their plant wisdom!

Summer Solstice Gathering by the Fire

Gaia Theory to Gaia Consciousness– With John Redden
In this session we will explore the history and philosophy of the Gaia Movement of the 20th century. We will examine the pursuit of science trying to quantify Gaia phenomena and theologians describing relationships as defined by the Gaian presence. Lastly we will integrate the information into an understanding that can become a part of our living reality.  Short contemplative exercises will accompany the talk so the participant can realize and actualize their
new understanding.

The Alchemy of Fermenting – With Carmen Lynde
The tradition of fermenting foods is worldwide. We’ll discuss traditional recipes of Europe, Tibet, Japan and the Amazon and how fermenting foods improves the quality of the nutrients in our food for healthy digestion. There will be recipes and taste testing!

Lawn Yoga – With Laura Vazquez


Location: Otter River Farms/Christine Dennis’ family farm in southern Ontario near Port Burwell.

Time: Friday evening 7 till 9 pm; Saturday 9 till 5pm, plus evening bonfire; Sunday 9 till 5 pm

Cost: The cost for the entire weekend is $290 and includes taxes and all organic meals (both vegetarian and non vegetarian options; gluten and dairy free options) – Friday evening snacks, Saturday breakfast, lunch and supper & Sunday breakfast and lunch; Beverages (herbal and black tea, coffee, fruit juice and water) and nibbles will also be provided. Fees paid at the time of registration please. Limited registration.


On-site Accommodations for the weekend (Friday night and Saturday night)
All accommodation is first come first serve, so call and book early (many options are already gone)!!! All on-site accommodation has access to Guesthouse bathrooms (2). There is an outdoor “loo” onsite too.

  • Pitch a tent or camper-trailer – $10/person for the weekend
  • Onsite Bunkie #1 (1 twin and 1 double bed; with electricity) – $30 for the weekend
  • Onsite Bunkie #2 (2 twin beds; with electricity) – $30 for the weekend
  • Guesthouse bedroom – $40 for the weekend

Other Otter River Farm Accommodations on the Property ( that is within walking/hiking distance to the Guesthouse where the weekend is being held:

  • “Rustic cabin” in the forest – pull out bed and a sofa couch; (15 min walk) – $75/night
  • Train station cabin -double bed; (3 min walk) – $75/night
  • “Beaver Lodge Cabin” forest -1 double and two single beds; (20 min walk) – $100/night
  • Straw bale cabin -king size bed in loaf, pull out bed down stairs; (5 min walk) – $100/night
  • Private wilderness campsites – with kybo, water and firewood; (10 min walk) – $30/night

Offsite Accommodation:

  • 7 min drive to Port Burwell  – camping at Port Burwell Provincial Park – 519-874-4691 or bed and breakfast – Grey Gables – 519-874-4644
  • Tillsonburg is a 25 min drive away and has a few motels, inns or hotels –

To Register – contact me for registration form and payment to:

Christine Dennis
53793 McQuiggan Line, RR # 1 Port Burwell, Ontario  N0J 1T0
PH – 519.874.4532

For information on the property and accommodations and photos:


Contact Us

Have questions or want to book an appointment? E-mail me here.

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