Herbal Education


At Farmacy Herbs, our herbal programs are rooted in the fundamental belief that each of us possesses the potential to foster healing within ourselves, our families, and our communities using natural methods, given the knowledge, self-assurance, and guidance. We provide a range of programs designed to accommodate those who seek to gain basic herbal and health insights, as well as those aspiring to become clinical herbalists.

The Level 1: Herbal Foundations Certificate Program caters to both novice and intermediate herbal enthusiasts. This comprehensive course covers essential topics such as Western herbalism terminology, herb cultivation, harvesting, product crafting, plant identification, and the art of herbal medicine preparation, encompassing tinctures, syrups, salves, and more.

  • The in-person program takes place one Saturday per month for six months. We run a summer session from May to October, and a winter session from November to April every year.
  • We offer this program as a retreat on our farm during the summer months
  • The Online version of this class Herbal Foundations ONLINE  is open for registration all year round.

Our LEVEL 2 FARM Retreat offers the opportunity to learn about herbs and herbalism in-person at Farmacy Herbs’ farm in West Greenwich, Rhode Island. Level 1 program, plant walks, FUN, and community. Building upon the foundational Level 1 Program, this in person retreat is tailored for intermediate herbal learners. This advanced program incorporates insights from local holistic health specialists and regional herbal authorities, delving into in-depth subjects like body systems, contraindications, cultural herbal customs, and the principles of health justice.

Our Herbal Internship Programs are hands-on programs giving participants exposure to herbal work in our farm, herb shop, and production kitchen. Our farm internship takes place at our farm in West Greenwich from April-November on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, and provides herbal students with experiential learning in plant ID and medicinal plant uses, organic farming methods, herb harvesting, and wildcrafting and processing of dried herbs. Our apothecary internship take place from October- April in our herbal production kitchen in Providence.

Our Youth Programs offers children and teens hiking, swimming, garden and health workshops, and theatre and art summer programming on our farm in West Greenwich.

Our COMMUNITY CLASSES are free and take place 1 Sunday per month from May- October at our shop in Providence.


Inclusivity & Accessibility Policy

We are committed to establishing a space that is inclusive, welcoming, and accessible to all who wish to explore the world of herbalism. We kindly ask that both instructors and participants interact with one another in a manner that demonstrates respect and inclusivity, irrespective of gender, class, race/culture, sexual orientation, religion, immigration status, political beliefs, age, ability, or appearance.

Throughout all Farmacy programs, we recognize and actively strive to dismantle systemic oppression, with the goal of addressing and rectifying the deeply rooted inequalities and injustices that endure in our society.

Cancellation & Missed Class Policies

  • Hardship Cancellation: we will refund tuition for programs if the cancellation is related to a death in the family, job loss or terminal illness. Please email us at farmacyherbinfo@gmail.com or call us at 401-270-5223
  • Consultations: When you reserve space for a consultation, you are committing to showing up on time with all required information. Please give us at least 24 hours notice of a cancellation. If you need to cancel, please email us at farmacyherbinfo@gmail.com AND call us at 401-270-5223. Thank you!
  • Classes/ Programs:
    Cancellation within 2 months before event/class/internship : full refund.
    Cancellation within 1 month before event/class/internship: 50% refund.
    Cancellation within 2 weeks before event/class/internship: 25 % refund.
    Cancellation within 2 weeks of event date OR after event/class/ internship has started: 0% refund
  • Missed Classes:
    Students have access to classes they sign up for. Students will need to request a “hardship notification form” to be eligible to make up a missed class during the next session. We allow for only ONE make up class for folks who have requested the hardship form: they have had a death in the family, had a serious disease diagnosis, have tested positive for COVID the day before class, etc.


How do I sign up for the Herbal Foundations Certificate Program?
Fill out the registration form linked to this page, with a $500.00 deposit to hold your space. Due to the popularity of the program, we can’t hold a space if you do not put a deposit down.

How can I make up a class if I miss one?
Due to limited space in our classroom, and the popularity of the program, students only have access to the class during the session that they sign up for.

What does  “certification” mean in the Herbal Foundations Certificate Program? 
Our program awards students who complete the program with a “certificate of completion”. THIS DOES NOT MAKE YOU A “CERTIFIED” HERBALIST. This is a level 1 program, and earning a certification of completion from our program allows you to confidently move forward in the world as a beginner herbalist. There are no government regulations regarding certification for herbalists, and there is currently no standard of herbal education amongst herbalists  in the US. The certificate of completion with Farmacy Herbs and Mary Blue carries the reputation of this 15 year old herbal program in New England and beyond.

To receive a certificate, students must:

  1. Attend all in person classes
  2. Complete all homework assignments
  3. Complete the final project.

How do I apply for a scholarship? 
We will have our scholarship applications available in February & March for the following years programs. Click here to check out if we are accepting applications.

Where are the classes held? 
90% of the summer session is held at our classroom/ shop in Providence (we have a 1 class on the farm).  100% of the winter session is held at our classroom/shop space in Providence. 28 Cemetery St. Providence, RI. Retreats and camps are held at the farm in West Greenwich.

How long are your classes, and how often do they meet?
Level One in person Herbal Foundations program meets one Saturday a month from 10:00AM to 4:00 PM from May to October in the summer and November to April in the winter. Specific dates are listed above. Students are welcome to shadow in our production kitchen 1x per month. Herbal Foundations Online releases an hour of videos, notes and quizzes every Monday for 6 months.

Do you have a payment plan?
Yes we do. You need to put $500.00 down to save a space and payments need to be paid in full by the first class of the program.

How does the sliding scale work?
See our Scholarships page for a full description.
We do not require any proof of income. It is on the honor system.
If you are a student and your parents pay your expenses, then you fall under their income level.

What is your refund policy?
Cancellation 2 weeks before class: full refund
Cancellation 1 week before class: 75% refund
Cancellation 1 day before class: 50% refund
Cancellation day of class/ through the first week of class: 25% refund
After one week of class: 0% refund

Can I do work trade?
Work trade needs to be completed before the hours can be used as payment. This requires pre-planning and starting your work trade 6-8 months before the program begins. Work trade for level 1 is only  available  between the months of April – November.  Therefore, you need to start your work trade in April to apply them to the November-April winter program. Work traders need to go through an interview, have references and have their own transportation.

How do I know if the program is full?
We usually keep a note on the top of this page if the program is full. If the registration link is available on this page, there is space. There are sometimes last minute cancellations and we will have a waiting list form posted if there are cancellations.

Can someone answer my specific questions?
Yes! Give us a call at 401-270-5223 or email us at farmacyherbinfo@gmail.com. Come by the shop, see our classroom! All of the folks working here have been through the programs here and are happy to answer questions.


Paul Mercier-Summer 2014
“Learning about herbs, face to face, with Mary has been an invaluable experience for me!  Knowing the importance of quality plants and herbs to support your body has been life changing.  Studying the herbal actions and contraindications has given me the confidence to make herbal tinctures, teas, infusions and salves.  Although I must say Mary has all that in her store and it’s local!  Her wealth of herbal knowledge and her willingness to answer any question I might have about a specific herb has been a valuable resource I trust for me and my family.  Did I mention she is also available for herbal consultations?  Keep up the great work Mary!”

Jenn Baumstein Winter 2009
“I participated in the HEAT program in the Winter of 2009 – 2010, as a work-trade participant (which was SUPER helpful at the time). I learned the basics of making plant medicine, but beyond that, truly began my journey of learning how to listen to and heal my body as well as supporting others. I was welcomed in to the rockin’ radical plant lover community with open arms and have continued to grow relationships with people who care deeply about the earth. I have since moved a few hundred miles away, but a part of Farmacy is with me at all times…partially because I always have a few tictures in my bag, and partially because the lessons learned are deep within me.”

Khym Carmichael-Winter 2013
“Wow. Where can I begin? Mary Blue has changed my life for the better. I took HEAT levels 1 and 2. Level 1 was spent with 8 other herb enthusiasts in Farmacy Herbs Providence headquarters by a wood stove through the winter. We developed a lovely community bond through Mary’s curriculum. We learned so much with each other and practiced on each other to learn how to do consultations. My health is better than it has been in years and I feel empowered by the education I received from Farmacy to address my own conditions and act accordingly. I am thankful for such a rewarding experience and feel blessed that I can buy the herbs that I need right here in providence. I know they are grown and harvested with love and sourced with our best health intentions in mind. Thank you Mary for all your hard work. You rock!”

Carmen Mendoza-King-Winter 2010
“Coming across Farmacy Herbs and getting to take the Herbal Education And Training (HEAT) class largely impacted my sense of what’s possible for herbalism in an urban context; it was inspiring to see how Farmacy is a self-sustaining project with community support. Since having moved to Providence just to be part of the HEAT class four years ago, I am continuously inspired by witnessing the growth of Farmacy Herbs. The impact of the short yet fulfilling experience as a student and through the work-trade continues to resonate within my life. What I learned from Mary, from the interns, and from the other students at Farmacy created a solid foundation in better understanding herbal medicines/plant allies and how to integrate herbs into my daily life for self and community healing. One of the things that I respect and admire most about Farmacy and Mary Blue’s approach to herbalism is that it is grounded in principles of social justice, or the idea that health and wellness education/services are not a privilege–that they should be available to all, especially people from communities who have faced systemic oppression & may be of limited resources. The work-trade model allowed it for me to be possible to take the HEAT class at Farmacy, and I am grateful that this option exists so that anyone who is interested in classes through Farmacy can have access to them.”

Susan Friendson- Winter 2013
“My classes at Farmacy Herbs have always been both relaxed and highly informative. Since studying with Mary, I have gained a stronger awareness of the plants that grow around me and about the way these plants can help people live in a more healthy way.  Something people often overlook when describing their learning experience is how much the tone Mary sets influences the participants in her classes. I’ve never studied with a more congenial and supportive group.”
Sarah Grimm-Summer 2013
“The Farmacy Herbs HEAT training revolutionized the way that I think about my health and empowered me to take my wellness into my own hands. Not only is Mary Blue is super knowledgeable about how to support our bodies with herbs, she’s great at sharing that information with others! I’m so grateful for all that I learned and the community that I became a part of as a result of the course.”
Aja Blanc-Summer 2011
“My time spent studying at Farmacy Herbs was invaluable. Not only do I have a solid foundation from which I now keep myself and my family healthy with herbal medicine, I also offer herbal health consultations in my community and write about herbal health for various outlets. I learned not only how to incorporate herbal and nutritional health into my personal life, but also how to share this information with others in a safe and effective way. I learned the full range of ways to engage with herbal medicine on the plant side – from growing and harvesting, to plant identification to preparing medicines and the chemical constituents of the plants themselves. I also feel that we engaged in an in depth exploration of the systems within the body, potential imbalances and the way herbal medicine supports balance and wellness in the body. I think one of the great gifts of the advanced level program is how it broadened my perspective on herbal medicine and community health, opening my eyes to how herbal medicine can support social justice issues our community faces.
In addition to the joy that comes from studying a topic you are passionate about with others who are as deeply invested, I feel that I learned so much more in the presence of other students than had I studied individually only.
Mary Blue is a wonderful teacher –  authentic, exceptionally clear and concise with the deep amount of information she provides, knowledgable and totally experienced. She is the kind of teachers that suits a wide range of students because she herself is so open minded and accepting. She also has a really wacky sense of humor that is awesome.”