Student Heather Baker

I was born and raised in the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada. I’ve always been grateful to live in this beautiful, diverse and unique area. I am surrounded by two Great Lakes (Erie and Ontario), the Welland Canal, the Niagara Escarpment, Niagara Falls, lush farmland with juicy peaches and many, many vineyards! There is no shortage of hiking trails in this area as well. I live in the city with my 14 year-old son Lucan and my dog Freya, and we escape frequently to the country to hike.

My passion for herbology began about 20 years ago. It was in 1994 that I picked up a copy of The Way of Herbs by Michael Tierra. It was my very first herb book. I was working in a pharmacy, as a pharmacist’s assistant at the time. I became dismayed by the massive amount of prescriptions that folks were taking. It was a stressful job, very busy and the customers were sick and tired and angry. I made a decision to stay as healthy as possible and avoid the drug dependency. A co-worker’s wife worked at my favourite health food store and told me they were hiring. I’ve been there 18 years now. I’ve learned a lot about the field, but found myself especially drawn to the over 50 bulk herbs we sold. I acquired more books and wanted to devour every bit of info I could.

In 2002, I received a diploma from Dominion Herbal College as a Chartered Herbalist. I knew it was just the beginning! I really enjoy herbal education and especially passing on the wisdom to others. I’ve given talks to groups of moms on herbs for healthy kids and hosted seminars at my store on “Backyard Pharmacy.” I am most passionate about teaching folks how accessible herbalism is! I’ve been known to walk customers out of the store to a grassy patch to point out plantain and teach them how to use it. Other aspects of herbalism I love are medicine-making and wild-crafting. I make a calendula ointment that is a top seller at the health food store! I’ll add to my line (currently called Heather Eden Herbals) when I finish this course. I’m also planning to host my first herb walk this spring.
In the future I will have a clinic, a large herb garden, a product line and a teaching schedule. I am very grateful to have found this course. It has truly deepened my understanding and commitment to plant medicine. I realize that herbalists never stop being students.
Joseph Campbell says “follow your bliss” and that is what I’m doing and what I will continue to do.


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