The Arctos School is Missy Rohs, Gradey Proctor, and a wide, wild community of alumni and friends in and around the Pacific Northwest.
Gradey and Missy met in 2005 while volunteering for Bark, an organization dedicated to protecting the Mt. Hood National Forest. We quickly realized that we share a intensely nerdy love of plants, with complimentary perspectives: that of a botanist/ecologist and an herbalist/healer. It didn’t take long for us to realize that we both enjoy teaching, too: At that point, Gradey was already moonlighting as a botany instructor, while Missy had been leading radical first aid and civil rights trainings for years.
By the following year, Portland plant medicine classes were few and far between. Local herbal community leaders like Cascade Anderson Geller, Colette Gardiner, and Krista Olson were on hiatus, in retirement, or had moved out of town. We decided to step up to fill that gap, offering plant walks and herbal hikes. The community response made our hearts sing! By the time 2007 rolled around, the Arctos School was in full swing.
Since that first year of offering the Herbalism & Ecosystems program, the Portland herb school scene has shifted dramatically. We’re pleased to see a groundswell of plant medicine enthusiasm in all forms – herb shops, study groups, conferences, and, yes, herbalism schools abound! We’re thrilled to be contributing to this local and nation-wide renaissance of plant wisdom, natural healing, and do-it-ourselves culture.