9-Month Herbal Training


Cecemmana/Planting Seeds

Year One: Fundamentals of Herbal Medicine 2023

Ancestral Apothecary school is in transition to new stewardship. We hope to launch the next cycle of Cecemmana in early 2023. Please fill out our Cecemmana interest form to receive an application when it’s available.

“I have learned so much about myself, the world at large, and the plants that hold us all down through my experiences as a Cecemmana student. Getting to deepen our skills, knowledges, and perspectives as plant people in a container like this is a gift. I feel grounded by the rigorous work that was asked of us, and know that I have grown so much as a whole human.” – mika (they + she)

“my favorite part is how much this class has help ground me in a very caring, safe, inclusive, and supportive way. it has allowed me to deepen connection with the plants, the land, myself, my spirit, spirituality, and cultivate more resources to support my well being in a way that de-centers and de-prioritizes capitalism and other oppressive systems we’re surrounded/impacted by everyday. it was wonderful to journey through that together instead of feel so isolated from the world. it gave me to push and the courage I needed to excavate many parts of my family’s ancestral history that has been lost or taken from us. it was beautiful to learn about so many others’ ancestral healing ways as well.” – A

“This class definitely had me deepen the relationship I had with myself and the plants.  As a person of color I enjoyed learning how the indigenous people of this planet worked with the plants and how intertwined they were with nature. I loved learning how to intentionally make medicine and how even the energy you put in to making the medicine can make a difference. The teachers were also so amazing, knowledgeable and supportive in the process. They did their best to make sure everyone was heard and seen. I absolutely loved that. The students as well had so much knowledge and I enjoyed learning from them too. This class also showed me that it was ok to show my vulnerability and everyone will support you. I would totally recommend this class to anyone that is interested in plant medicine. ” – Kayata 

“I chose Cecemmana because as a queer person of color, it was important for me that my foundational studies in herbal/plant medicine be reflective of me and the world I want to live in and secure for future generations.  A whole new world has opened up for me, as if it had been waiting for me all along.”  – Pua

“Cecemmana is a brave space. This space has taught me the strength to know when to step back and when to have a voice. It’s taught me care in the form of community and in turn to care for myself. It’s taught me to be still. To cringe. To be okay not knowing. This is a space of magic, reverence, and power. I recommend this course to everyone.”-LG

“I can confidently say that joining Cecemmana was one of the best decisions of my life.  My life has been changed by the course and connections I’ve made with the plants, students, teachers and my ancestors.”  – Grethel

“Cecemmana was the highlight of my year. The Cecemmana program is a unique offering in the world of herbal medicine. I am so glad I participated in this program. When I was searching for herbal programs I knew I wanted something that would center the voices and knowledge of BIPOC and Ancestral Apothecary is dedicated to this. The teaching staff is knowledgeable and caring. Not only did I become more connected to plants and their medicine but I created important relationships with my own ancestral medicine and fellow plant people. ” – Asia

Cecemmana 2023

Year One: Fundamentals of Plant Medicine (Hybrid Program)

Cecemmana is a Nahuatl word that means to sprinkle and plant seeds on the earth. This program is dedicated to planting seeds in our diverse communities for future herbalists. This 250-hour training will provide students a solid foundation in the art, science & spirituality of herbal medicine from a BIPOC & QTBIPOC-centered perspective.

The focus of Cecemmana is to help students build a strong relationship with the plants; and to also support them to develop an intimate and healing relationship with their own bodies. We will cover the physical, emotional and spiritual aspects of herbalism and healing. Class time will include lecture, class discussions, and medicine making. In-person time for Bay Area students will include herbal gardening, herb walks, medicine making and small group apprenticeship. Class projects include an herbal first aid kit and researching and presenting a project on ancestral medicine.

Cecemmana will give our students the skills to work with herbal medicine for themselves and their families (chosen/given). This is not a clinical herbalist training program. The American Herbalist Guild requires 1600 hours of training to become a registered professional herbalist. In this way, what we are offering is a first step for those who wish to achieve that. Our curriculum will provide a solid foundation for those who wish to continue their herbal education and train to be a clinical herbalist.

16 Comments on “9-Month Herbal Training

  1. Hello, Born and raised in Oakland ca, I am a tradition Mexican medicine practitioner in morgan hill ca. I am familiar with and use plants from traditionally used in Mexico, and would like to learn more about local medicinal plant. I have been studying under a curandera in Mexico for the past 4 years and travel there 2 times a year. I would like to know what kind of flexibility there is in your learning programs for an abcence as well as what class might be appropriate. My personal interest is in learning so that I might teach. Thank you, teresa


    • Hi Teresa,
      Sorry for the delay in getting back to you, I was away for much of December! We have several classes that cover herbal medicine. Either the Curandera’s Toolkit or Herbal Allies is a good start. The Toolkit is taught from a perspective of how plants are used in Curanderismo and Herbal Allies is more general. We also have a nine-month herbal training program that is called Cecemmana that begins in February. In all these classes we do teach about local plants as well as many other medicinal herbs.
      For Cecemmana, we ask that students attend 80% of the classes to get their certificates. For the other classes we encourage as much attendance as possible, but know that it is common for students to miss a few classes.
      We are having an Open House on Friday January 6th from 7-8:30, so please come by to learn more!
      Take care, Atava

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Love this. Can you please refer me to any similar training programs in the Los Angeles area? I would really love to gain the knowledge to heal and reconnect with my heritage. Thank you.


    • I’m sorry, I’m not familiar with what is available in LA. You might want to check out the list of herbal schools on the American Herbalist Guild website. (www.americanherbalistguild.com)


  3. Good Day Sir/Ma
    What is your prerequisite for someone from.Nigeria to attend your herbal school and graduate?
    Looking forward to hearing from you.



    • Hi Tony — thanks for your interest! We don’t have prerequisites for our year 1 Cecemmana program but we do have an application process. We’ll be offering the 9 month training again is 2020. If you have additional questions, you can email us at school@ancestralapothecary.com


  4. I would love to do the 9 month program, do you ever plan to offer it evening hours for those of us who cannot make it during the day.


    • We’re still working on the schedule for Cecemmana 2020 and we’re not sure if it’s going to be offered during the day or evenings. Email us at ancestralapothecaryassistant@gmail.com if you’d like to be on the list of interested folks for Cecemmana 2020 so you’ll be the first to know when we have the details settled.


  5. Can the cost be covered in installments or does it have to be paid all at once?


    • We don’t offer payment plans but we do offer scholarships for students of color. If you’re interested in being added to the list of folks interested, which we’ll send an email to when we have the details finalized, email ancestralapothecaryassistant@gmail.com.


      • Is this an online class…if not where is it located…Ames I’m interested in the scholarship as well for students of african or other ancestry


      • Thanks for your interest! It’s an in person class at our school located at 3798 Grand Ave. Oakland, CA. You can apply to the program at the link on this page. We’ve had an overwhelming amount of applicants for the 2020 program and, after receiving your application, we’ll reach out to you for an interview if there is space in the program. The scholarship application will be available to folks accepted into the program. You can email ancestralapothecaryassistant@gmail.com with any additional questions.


    • Thanks for reaching out! We have waitlists for both the Tuesday evening and Monday daytime class and registration is closed. You can email us at ancestralapothecaryassistant@gmail.com if you’d like to be on the list of folks interested in future Cecemmana classes.


    • We will be launching another Cecemmana program next year. I would recommend filling out the interest form so that you receive an application when we have it available.


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