The Terra Sylva School of Botanical Medicine is located in Marshall, North Carolina, a twenty minute drive from Asheville. This picturesque little town is the seat of Madison County, a wild and rugged place famous for its Appalachian ballad singers and banjo pickers. The town sits right on the banks of the French Broad River, one of the oldest rivers in the world. In the summer, one can sit and watch great blue herons fish in its clear, cold water.

Our field campus, the 40 acres that Janet and Dave call home in Madison County, is part of an Appalachian hardwood cove forest. This land borders Pisgah National Forest and is a short walk from the Appalachian trail. An astounding variety of wild plants grow in these woods.


Students will also have the opportunity to learn in Dave and Janet’s medicinal and native plant nursery as well as their extensive gardens of herbs, food, flowers, and other useful plants. The site includes a dedicated herb apothecary and medicine-making workshop as well as an extensive research library.


The ecologies of the Southern Appalachian Mountains are among the richest and most diverse on the continent, where our unique flora is joined by plants from the South as well as those that usually grow further north.

Here, our students have the opportunity to meet medicinal plants many herbalists have only seen in books. Countless places to experience Nature at its fullest are only a short trip from the school. We will take our lessons to the forests, balds and fields of the Blue Ridge.

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This landscape is transformative; one cannot leave this place untouched.