How to create a home apothecary


Tips on how to create your own home apothecary with natural remedies ( like herbs and essential oils)

Creating our home apothecary has been a fun journey for our family. As we learned more and more about herbs, we wanted to have home remedies available to help any ailment we encountered. We began learning about local herbs and how important they are to Thai cuisine, and we also started stocking up on essential oils and Chinese herbal combinations that we have had help us balance our moods and improve our health.


While our home apothecary is still a work in progress, today I wanted to share with you some tips on how to begin creating your own!


1.) Learn about local plants, herbs, and remedies

We don’t live in North America, so it was integral for us to start learning about herbs native to Thailand. There are some that are universally renowned for their healing properties ( like ginger and holy basil) while others have no latin name ( that I could find) are only found here or in South East Asia. I started by asking friends about the various herbs in their gardens or that grew near my house, and asked how they used them.

You’ll most likely find many medicinal plants growing in your area. Start by researching and asking local herbalist about those that are indigenous to your area and how you can cultivate and preserve them, plus their uses.


2.) Create a list of common treatable ailments 

Does your child suffer from asthma or a food allergy? Do you struggle with falling asleep at night?

Start by making a list of things you’re family are struggling with, both physical and mental issues. Focus on alleviating reoccuring issues as well as minor cuts, scrapes, wounds, etc that can happen to us all.

Related post: 5 basic steps to a healthier home

3.) Allot an area in your home to your apothecary

Our home apothecary is located near the kitchen and is easily accessible. Our daughter has her own stash of kid-safe essential oil blends that she put inside a toy box. She regularly gives guests a tour of our apothecary, and highlights her essential oil area!

Stock up on empty bottles and containers for herbal blends and preparations, and put them in your apothecary section after they’re filled and labeled.


4.) Begin educating yourself on natural remedies 

One of the most important things we can all do in today’s world is to begin learning as much as we can about holistic nutrition and natural health & wellness. This starts by becoming inquisitive and doing research, and talking with local herbalists and holistic health practitioners. But you can also learn much on your own through reading books and enrolling in online or local classes.

Begin by purchasing a few books or ebooks on wellness subjects that interest you and that help you with the current ailments you’re facing. Your local library is a great place to start, and you can also check out the super useful herbalism and essential oils book & course bundle from Ultimate Bundles, which includes discounted courses and totally free essential oils. I’m a proud affiliate of it and have already purchased mine! One of the courses ( from the Herbal Academy of New England) is a total must-have if you’re wanting to create an herbal materia medica so you can start documenting herbs and plants in your area.

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Free Herbal Materia Medica Course From Herbal Academy

The Herbal Academy of New England has created a Free Herbal Materia Medica Course to guide you through the process of studying, researching, and observing plants in order to create an herbal materia medica. Designed for herbalists in the making, seasoned herbalists, and those of you not yet sure if this is the right path for you, this program will walk you through the process of studying one herb at a time, teaching you how to create (or add to) your materia medica.

Your materia medica, which will consist of multiple monographs on the plants that are of interest to you, will serve as one of the foundational resources for you as an herbalist. In it you will compile information from both historical and modern resources, from books and articles to scientific journals and personal accounts. You will rely not only on what you learn in books, but also your own understanding and experience—how you observe a plant in nature and how you experience a plant by spending time with it or taking it into your body—to tell the story of your plant.

The Free Herbal Materia Medica Course by Herbal Academy – You will learn where to look for quality herbal information and how to research. You’ll receive an extensive list of references––from books to online websites and databases––to help get you get started in your journey.


  • You will know how to study a plant, how to find resources to support your studies, how to interact with a plant to gain first-hand experience with some of its characteristics, and how to evaluate scientific research on plants.
  • You will learn how to research a plant’s names, botany, growing conditions, harvesting guidelines, active constituents, actions, uses, taste and energetics, safety, and herb-drug interactions.
  • You will learn what a plant’s history, habitat, and growing requirements are, informing your understanding of what a plant needs and how you can become a caretaker, even if you aren’t growing the plant yourself.
  • You will gain an introduction to integrating a plant into your life to support wellness by learning about its properties and characteristics.
  • You will have a list of many resources—our favorite books and websites—for your further study of plants and development of your materia medica.

You will learn where to look for quality herbal information and how to research. You’ll receive an extensive list of references––from books to online websites and databases––to help get you get started in your journey.

By the end of this course, you will know how to research your plant and create a plant monograph, and will be well on your way to creating your materia medica!

The Herbal Materia Medica Course is free and will include some of the materia medica pages from this journal for printing at home, and you will also have the option to upgrade your registration to include the Materia Medica Journal so you have a beautiful bound book in which to record your studies and enjoy as a lasting treasure.

 This free course is only available during this month ( January) so head on over and enroll now!

We are proud affiliates of the Herbal Academy of New England and I’m also a student of their courses.
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Sale at the Herbal Academy of New England

herbal academy of new england

Image from the Herbal Academy of New England

Looking to become an herbalist, or yearn to DIY your own tinctures? No matter what your herbalism goals are, the Herbal Academy of New England is the place to pursue your studies.

And I’ve got good news for you: for the remainder of this month, you can save 15 percent off of your training!

To get this limited time offer,use code HERBALISTS when enrolling in the training of your choice.

No matter where you are at in your herbal studies, the Herbal Academy has a training program for you!

The Introductory Herbal Course is a good place to start if you are new to herbal medicine. It’s a beginner’s course filled with easy training guides, recipes, downloadable flipping books and charts to get you well on your way to becoming an herbalist. The course begins with the basics of medicine making and wildcrafting, anatomy, introduces you to many many plants, covers common discomforts for adults and children, and discusses the overarching holistic approach of herbalism.

The Intermediate Herbal Course begins with an introductory unit as a review, and then quickly advances into more complex topics. The program dives in deeper, working through each body system and discussing the herbs; their actions and energetics; their safety and side effects; in-depth coverage of anatomy and physiology; and guidance for herbal formulation.

The Entrepreneur Herbal Course is geared towards herbalists who have already studied at the beginner and intermediate levels, who want to make and sell their own herbal products. Lessons on sourcing herbs, Good Manufacturing Practices, labeling requirements, writing a business plan, and creating a brand are some of the many lessons included in this fast track program!

Photo from the Herbal Academy of New England

Photo from the Herbal Academy of New England

The Advanced Herbal Course is an in-depth program geared towards students interested in becoming clinical herbalists. This program picks up on the body systems not fully covered in the Intermediate Course, and covers more complex topics including herbal wisdom traditions, health and wellness of men, women, and elderly, assessment and herbal therapeutics, and steps to becoming a clinical herbalist; as well as regulatory and legal obstacles facing professional herbalists and herbal products businesses.

I’m personally studying in HANE’s intermediate and beginner courses and loving them. The modules are beautifully designed and available both online and as a downloadable PDF. They have video lessons and other downloads ( such as gorgeous labels), as well as a forum to connect with other students. I’m also a proud affiliate of the program.

Remember to use the code HERBALISTS when checking out to get that 15 percent off discount while it lasts.

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