Indigenous Healing and Herbalism Fall Series

 Fall Intensive Series 1 Weekend Per Month



Darien Fernandez & Margaret Garcia September 2-3rd

Darien Fernandez: September 2nd 10am-3pm

Topic: Medicinal Mushrooms and Plant Walk

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Margaret Garcia: September 3rd 10am-3pm

Topic: Medicinal Plant walk and Medicine Making.  Margaret will lead us on a trail and show students how to harvest and prepare native medicines on site.  Plant walk is likely to take place in Pilar or Penasco.

Margaret Garcia, B.S.  is a mother, wife, a local hierbera, and food scientist.  She was raised in the mountains of Northern New Mexico where her family has lived for 12 generations.  Her family taught her to identify local herbs and how to use herbs and food as medicines.  Margaret is passionate about the maintenance of traditional land-based knowledge and culture, especially food and herbs.  She and her husband, Miguel Santistevan, live in Taos, NM with their two daughters. They maintain a conservation farm, called Sol Feliz Farm, where many visitors have participated in educational presentations, tours and hands-on workshops.


Emigdio Ballon

August 22-23

Friday 6 pm, Saturday 10am-3pm


  • Traditional Quechua Ceremony known as Ofrecimiento or Despacho,
  • The uses of Coca leaf for medicine and divination in the Andes
  • Medicinal plant walk to discuss energetics and physical healing with local  plants 

Emigdio Ballon is Quechua, from Bolivia, a decendent of the Inca people. He employs traditional Quechua techniques and rituals when he works with food and herbs as medicine.  He is the director of the Institute of Natural and Traditional Knowledge and the Agricultural Director of the Pueblo of Tesuque, and Board President of Four Bridges Traveling Permaculture Institute.

He earned his Bachelors degree in agriculture at Major Bolivian University of Saint Simon in Cochabamba, Bolivia and his Masters degree in plant genetics in Colombia. He studied for his Doctorate at Colorado State University. As a plant geneticist he has specialized in research on quinoa and amaranth grains and has published many articles about them in both South and North America.

Emigdio has served as an organic certification inspector in the United States and has made many presentations at major conferences on agriculture. He has studied principles of bio-dynamic farming at the Josephine Porter Institute of Applied Bio-Dynamics and continues to study and make presentations at various seminars.

In his little free time, Emigdio pursues research into germination techniques for a wide variety of crops, including traditional Chinese and Ayurvedic herbs and herbs indigenous to Northern New Mexico. His other interests include seed saving and sharing, bio-dynamic and organic farming and sustainable agricultural practices. He is also involved with Native American organizations which stress the importance of seed saving and promote the revival and continuation of traditional crops, both nutritional and medicinal. He employs traditional Quechua techniques and rituals which he learned at his grandfather’s side as a boy in Bolivia.

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Tonita Gonzales

November 11-12th

Topic: Curanderismo, Meso American Medicine and Ceremony

Tonita Gonzales Traditional Healer, Curandera, Sobadora, Yerbera, Temazcalera and teacher on Curanderismo at the University of New Mexico Albuquerque.



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