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Have More Success with Herbal Remedies!

The Deep Perspective - Herbal Wisdom in Constitutional Assessment

About This Course

Three 3-day weekends constituting a complete course on holistic evaluation skills for herbalists, developed and taught by the foremost people in the field, including the best of what Matthew Wood has to offer on Constitutional Assessment including: 

- Animal Medicines -

- Pulse and Tongue (hands-on teaching and learning) -

- Facial Assessment -

and other herbal evaluation skills. 

Also includes: 

- herb walks -

 We will have many herbal tinctures on-hand to enhance the learning experience!



 Co-Authors with Matthew on the book "Traditional Western Herbalism and Pulse Evaluation," will be joining forces with Matthew again to teach this epic class! Francis Bonaldo will join us in July and Phyllis Light in August.   

Location: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum AND Online live broadcast. All purchase options include access to recordings. 

Dates: July 26, 27 & 28, August 23, 24, 25 and October 18, 19, 20. 


The “animal medicines” are the most profound teachings about materia medica.  They are included, partly because this is an advanced class and partly because they offer a constitutional basis for practice.   

We will be learning the pulse, tongue, facial, and other forms of evaluation on each other during the class.  In addition, we will have a total of nine live sessions with volunteer clients; one on the second day and two on the third day of each weekend.  We prefer people from outside the class in order to increase the number of pulses, faces, tongues, etc., available for examination.  If you would like to be a volunteer client please contact us at hello (at) wood herbs (dot) com

First Weekend

Matthew Wood comments: 

“Francis Bonaldo is one of the most competent practitioners that I have ever met in the herbal world and is a beloved practitioner both in his native Montreal and the Twin Cities.  He is a licensed acupuncturist and a very experienced herbalist.  He was taught by both myself and Lise Wolff, of Minneapolis, and often exceeds his teachers.” 


This class will emphasize the pulse, since Francis was a major contributor to our Pulse Evaluation book (required for this class).  With the pulse we emphasize the skin, its heat or lack, oiliness or dampness, and the overall condition of the thermoregulatory system, which shows forth through the skin.  

"Both Francis and I try to ‘follow the blood,’ understanding from the pulse where the blood is going, i.e., the circulation.  We will be introducing evaluation from the circulation.  This theme will continue with Phyllis Light’s teachings on Southern Folk Medicine in the next section.”  

Matthew will introduce the doctrine of animal medicines and the reason for their importance in developing our vital, animal, energy, etheric, or light body --- however phrased. This also introduces us to our animal self, the basis of accurate dreaming.  

Francis will contribute his own insights on herbal remedies.


Both teachers will give specific pulse and tongue indications for specific remedies.  

Francis describes his own areas of expertise: 

"My two areas of study in recent years have been Culpeper's English Herbal (the classic of Western herbalism) and the Yellow Emperor's Classic of Medicine (the Bible of Chinese Medicine, 2000 years old).  In addition to pulses, the old doctors knew how to just "look at a person" to diagnose (this includes observation of face, neck, forearms, lower leg and more to assess overall quality of blood flow), so I want to share some insights regarding observational diagnosis in old Chinese Medicine which are essentially absent from the modern practice."   

Second Weekend

Matthew Wood writes, 

“Phyllis Light is one of the most accomplished herbalists in North America, firmly grounded in her regional Southern folk medicine, as well as Creek medicine.  With her we will be expanding our understanding of the circulation as a basis for evaluation, but we will also be introducing evaluation from the gastrointestinal tract, liver, and lymphatics.  Southern evaluation from the blood is one of most profound methods for reading slow changes of stress and aging.”  

Phyllis and Matthew have long collaborated on their knowledge of endocrine and reproductive evaluation and healing.  We will be emphasizing this in both our teachings on evaluation and animal medicines.  

Third Weekend

This third weekend we will take the time to further explore the animal medicines touched on in the first weekend. We will also practice and hone Pulse, Tongue and Facial Assessment skills taught in previous classes with fellow students, volunteer clients and one or more online volunteer clients. With Dawn of Dawn's Enchanted Garden!

"I have known Dawn Gates for over twenty years.  Her insights always surprise me because of their uniqueness against the great canopy of herbalism.  She does not come from the circle of teaching that I come from – William LeSassier (dec’d), Margi Flint, and myself – but largely from her own experience.  As a nurse she had been looking at people inside the medical world, and as an herbalist she is experienced with holistic evaluation and treatment.  She brings to us more than 30 years of experience.  Thank you, Dawn, for accepting our invitation.  I look forward to learning along with our students.  When the teachers learn, the students learn even more." - Matthew Wood

Location - Dates - Time


Class will be held at the beautiful Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Admission is included with purchase.

3675 Arboretum Dr, Chaska, MN 55318


July 26th, 27th & 28th with Matthew and Francis

August 23rd, 24th & 25th with Matthew and Phyllis

October 18th, 19th & 20th with Matthew and Dawn


9:00 am - 5:00 or 6:00 pm 

Lunch 12:30 - 1:45 pm

Friday - Sunday

 More details for attending students are in the welcome section below.

In-Person with Online Option or Online Only

Clarification on Options

All options include 2 year access to online recordings of the event. This time-period begins the date that the final recording is posted (not from initial registration date). This is a great reason to buy now - you have the option to attend the remaining classes live, online and will have extra time to access the material than if you purchase when the course is complete! Includes access to the Intermediate/Advanced Facebook group is also open for all students of this course. More details are in the Welcome section.

In-Person with Online Option

All In-Person purchases include the option to attend online. This is helpful in the case of illness, work schedule, travel conditions, etc. With the In-Person with Online Option you are reserving your seat in the class. Seats are very limited due to this being such a hands-on, intensive class for teachers. We highly recommend attending this class in-person if at all possible. It is best to signup and reserve your spot ASAP. When the class fills we will start a waiting list. THIS CLASS IS FULL. ONLINE ATTENDANCE AVAILABLE ONLY AT THIS POINT!

Online Only

Options for online only classes are just that - for online attendance only. Attending live, online gives you the ability to ask questions real-time. You have access to recordings within 2 days from a webinar on-demand replay and edited video within 3 weeks of the recording. Handout materials are posted as soon as they are provided by instructors. Sometimes there are side conversations that are not good enough audio quality for recording or appropriate for posting publicly, but as a live online student you may be privy to these experiences. This is the second best option to attending in-person as you can ask questions for clarification and participate in real-time. The online class is run very similarly to the monthly, online classes. Very detailed instructions are given in the Welcome section. Previous students have had great success with this system. United Plant Savers members can save 50% off this class through 2019! Inquire with UpS or send us your proof of current membership to receive the coupon code.

"How do you convey pulse over video?" 

Our instructors are experienced at teaching this content and are working ever more creatively on how to more clearly describe the sensation of pulses for in-person AND online students ex. through sound, other sensations, visuals, etc. 

We will also have extra cameras and sound equipment to catch extra footage for in-person and online students to reference for review.

Long distance learning of Pulse Evaluation - NEW AND IMPROVED!

The best way to study pulse taking is to feel it in your fingers.  To facilitate this kind of experience, the Matthew Wood Institute of Herbalism is introducing a new way to study pulses online.  

We are encouraging people to form small groups, two or more, to follow the lectures online and then work with each other simultaneously.

The teachers will field and answer questions from the online followers as well as from in house students.

How it works: Select a host student who will purchase the "online seat”. This person will organize and host other students at their house on the day of class. This enables students to divide the costs of the course and allows for students to have "practice buddies" to work with.

The host is responsible for dividing the cost of the "online seat" as they see fit. We highly discourage hosts from giving out their login information for the Matthew Wood Institute of Herbalism as anyone given access would have the ability to purchase courses - the Institute will not be responsible for such mishaps. We do however, encourage students to gather with the host to view, review and practice!

Non-host students can earn a certificate by paying a $35 fee to the Institute (contact us here) to have access to online testing for this course and certificate processing and administration.  

Single Payment

for Online Only


Note, this is the price that the Course will be after all content is posted. This course will be a 2-year rental for $900. The price will not go down in the near future.

Travel, Accomodations and Food

Travel, Accommodations and Food ARE NOT included in the the class. We are providing some information to help you with your plans. We are not affiliated with any of the following venues.

The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum (3675 Arboretum Dr, Chaska, MN 55318)  is about 25 miles from the MSP Airport. Map Car rental is of course an option. Alternatively you might use the Uber and Lyft services - their maps show they service to Chanhassen/Chaska.

The nearest hotels are Holiday Inn Express (new - near the highway) and Oak Ridge Conference Center and Hotel (older - in a beautiful nature setting). Both hotels are less than a 5 minute drive from the MN Landscape Arboretum - see map.  Air B&B is also an option that students of previous classes have utilized. To be closest you'll want to stay on the North side of Chaska, the West side of Chanhassen, the East side of Victoria or the South side of Excelsior. 

The Discussion section in the Welcome section under "Curriculum" below is available for you to use to help communicate with other students to arrange travel to/from airport and class. Your inquiries and subsequent answers help others who may ask the same questions - saving us from answering the same question multiple times - so we really appreciate your participation in the Discussion section!

Local food options are in the welcome section: bring your own, on-site cafe and nearby co-op and farm-to-table options.

While the MN Landscape Arboretum is a bit of a drive from the airport, it is a great location for these classes - we hope you think so too! We also hope that this information will help you greatly as you arrange your travels. If there are travel questions that are too private or not applicable to the Discussion section feel free to contact Tara at hello (at) woodherbs (dot)com for assistance.

If you have any questions that are not addressed here or in the HELP please do not hesitate to contact Tara at hello (at) wood herbs (dot)com or via the envelope image/link at the bottom right of this page.

Refund Policy

Purchases made 8-15-19 or later qualify for our usual 30-day Satisfaction Guarantee (see HELP page). There is one exception. This 30-day policy ends once a student has registered for the live, online class in October. Please contact us if you have any questions.



"Traditional Western Herbalism and Pulse Evaluation: A Conversation" by Matthew Wood, Francis Bonaldo L.Ac. and Phyllis D. Light M.A. is required reading. Purchase the book here.

We encourage students to study the following to get the most out of the upcoming course:

The 2017 Tongue and Pulse Evaluation course is a preliminary version of this epic course being offered in 2019. It offers 10 hours of content with brave volunteers who offer closeups of their tongues and helpful feedback.

Shamanic Herbalism is a fascinating topic. Gain a solid understanding from one of our earliest courses recorded for the Institute. 

These courses are in our Library. Learn more HERE.

Special and rarely offered coupon!

50% off first payment (whether it’s off of full payment or payment plan) of: 

Library - with courses mentioned above

Intermediate Course

Pulse, Tongue, Facial Assessment 2019 course - online option only

Not valid on previous purchases

Valid until… 12/31/19

Coupon code available from UpS or send us your 2019 UpS member receipt to receive the code.

Current Payment Options

Online access includes live, online attendance for remaining classes plus access to recordings and documents.

Francis Bonaldo, LAc

Francis Bonaldo has been a practicing herbalist for 14 years.  He served as a member of faculty in the acupuncture department of Rosemont College (Montreal, Canada) from 2011 to 2015. He specializes in pulse evaluation and is co-author of “Traditional Western Herbalism and Pulse Evaluation-a conversation” with Matthew Wood and Phyllis Light. Francis wildcrafts over one hundred plants from the northeastern forests and prairies of the continent for use in his clinical practice and also commonly teaches beginning and intermediate classes in herbal medicine and pulse evaluation. 

Francis holds a Master of Science degree in acupuncture and oriental Medicine from AAAOM (Minnesota).  He has also completed an apprenticeship with Lise Wolff, M. Sc. (herbalist) as well as advanced studies with Matthew Wood M. Sc. (herbalist).  

Lise Wolff, RH (AHG), MSc

Since 1991, Lise has studied with leading herbalists throughout the United States and has practiced professionally since completing an apprenticeship with Matthew Wood in 1995. Lise is one of only 200 herbalists nationwide to have been approved as a Registered Herbalist, denoting professional level membership in the American Herbalist Guild. The Guild, which assures a standard of excellence for practitioners through a peer review membership process, is the largest professional botanical medicine organization in the United States.

Lise holds a Bachelors Degree from Macalaster College and in 2008 graduated from the Scottish School of Herbal Medicine in Herbalism, the highest level of academic training available in the profession.

In her practice, Lise focuses on the nutritional and healing powers of local plants which she gathers and prepares to supply her apothecary. Lise maintains her practice in south Minneapolis and is available for private consultations.

Since 1995, she has offered beginning and advanced herb classes. Upon invitation, Lise has also offered courses sponsored by institutions such as Bakken Museum, Carleton College, the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum, the University of Minnesota Compleat Scholar Program and LearningLife non credit program.

Fall 2010 Lise was appointed to the academic faculty of St. Catherine University. As adjunct professor, she taught the Herbology course for the Master of Arts Holistic Health Studies until 2016.

Since 2010, Lise has been co-teaching a course a the University of Minnesota through the Center of Spirituality and Healing as part of the School of Nursing curriculum for the Doctorate of Nursing Practice.

Dawn and Dawn's Enchanted Garden

Dawn is an RN, Medicine Woman, Master Herbalist, and aromatherapist. She has been studying natural healing for over 25 years and has been treating people with herbs and essential oils for over 20 of them. She has had the opportunity to learn from some of the world's best healers, In South Korea she learned from Sun Jung about Ginseng and traditional Korean medicine, in Minnesota she learned from Dottie Running Horse a Dakota Medicine Woman/Shaman who taught her how to use the medicines of her people, she also learned from many other healers including Mathew Wood, David WInston, Phyllis Light, Susun Weed, David Hoffman, and more. She started teaching because people wanted to learn about natural therapies from multiple traditions and how to use them to heal and create medicine. She teaches all over the country and has been asked to be a speaker at several large herb conferences like the Eastern Holistic Nursing Conference, American Herbalists Guild conference, South East Wise Woman Herbal Conference,  North Country Herb Conference, Florida Herbal Conference, International Society of Natural Healers to name a few.

One of Dawn's favorite things to do is to make herbal medicine and personal care products with organic and wildcrafted herbs and oils. A product line was created when local herb stores asked if they could carry some of her unique blends. Everything Dawn makes is made in a GMP compliant kitchen but she makes her products in small batches and takes the time to lovingly create each one. This is evident in the quality and freshness of her herbal medicines and aromatherapy products.

Dawn does natural healing consults as well and specializes in helping those with cardiac disease, diabetes, cystic fibrosis and immune issues. Her knowledge of how to blend both natural and modern medicines to optimize dis-ease management makes her customized treatments work well. Dawn also does consulting with large companies who are looking to make natural products, she has consulted with companies making everything from energy drinks to make-up products. 

Dawn's website

Matthew Wood (RH) AHG

Matthew Wood has been a practicing herbalist since 1982. In a period when many authors and lecturers are merely "arm chair herbalists" who offer theories and opinions based on book learning, and others have turned to the exotic traditions of India or China, he has been an active practitioner of traditional Western herbalism. He has helped tens of thousands of clients over the years, with many difficult health problems. While Matthew believes in the virtue of many other healing modalities, he has always been inspired to learn, preserve, and practice the tradition of herbal medicine descending to us from our European, Anglo-American, and Native American heritage. He is a member of the American Herbalists Guild (registered herbalist) and has earned his Masters of Science degree from the Scottish School of Herbal Medicine (accredited by the University of Wales).

The Deep Perspective

Herbal Wisdom in Constitutional Assessment