four seasons of herbal learning

The Phytofarm Apprenticeship offers a thorough instruction in the growing, harvesting, processing and manufacture of a wide range of herbal products. Students in the programme are encouraged to develop and explore personal areas of special interest and build confidence with medicinal plants that grow easily.

our unique approach to herbal education

Phytofarm  has been developed over the last ten years by herbalist and naturopath Valmai Becker as a repository of plants and learning centre. The gardens, manufacturing and drying sheds have been purpose built to provide a practical learning experience in herbal medicine. The four seasons are celebrated with the students from discovering culinary herbal delights of the spring garden, to exploring the abundance of the summer garden and blending quality products from the drying room during the autumn and winter seasons.

Hands-on learning

The apprenticeship is open to anyone who has an interest and passion for learning about medicinal plants. This is a practical learning experience and will include out door activities in the garden and time managing plant material in the drying room. There will be 168 hours of instruction, 24 days, with 6 days for each season and 80 hours of home study, 20 hours to be completed at the end of each season. On successful completion of the apprenticeship the participants will be awarded a Phytofarm Certificate in Herbal Apprenticeship.


Valmai Becker has had many years of experience in graduating students into the healing profession, gardening projects, and has been successful in the management of four businesses that reflect her enthusiasm and love all things natural.

Feedback from students

”With an interest in herbs and herbal medicine a year on your Apprenticeship Programme turned that into a passion and possibly even taking me in a new direction in life!“  HELEN DODSON

”Loved the hands-on learning in a small group.“  KIMBERLEY EDDY

”Enjoyed realizing the amazing value of the plants we have around us.“  MARTINA MURRAY


Attendance: 4 Weekends, each season – Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday

Hour: 10am – 4pm
Total Attendance Hours: 96

Home Work: 10, Hours each season: 40
Total Hours: 136

Spring 2020: November 27, 28, 29 & 30.
Summer 2021: January 22, 23, 24 & 25.
Autumn 2021: March 26, 27, 28 & 29.
Winter 2021: June 4, 5, 6 & 7.

Student Information

  • Applications completed by 1 November 2020
  • All applications advised in writing by 10 November 2020
  • Apprenticeship Fees due by 1 November 2020
  • Fees paid in advance for the full year $4,000
  • Seasonal Payment $1,100

Download the information PDF here:
PHYTOFARM 2020-21prospectus

Download the application form here:

PHYTOFARM 2020-21 application