The Herb Walk Podcast: Interview with Allison Poklemba and Jessica Shepherd of the Dandelion Herbal Center

Happy Spring Equinox! This has been one of my favorite days of the year since I was a kid. Knowing that the days are getting longer and the weather warmer, has always brought me joy! As a farmer and herbalist, I get even more excited knowing it’s time for me to get my hands in the dirt. For those of you in the Southern Hemisphere, Happy Autumnal Equinox!

Way back in my first Season of The Herb Walk Podcast, I interviewed Jane Bothwell, the original proprietress of The Dandelion Herbal Center (DHC). Jane was my first herb teacher and opened my eyes (and heart) to our herbal allies. Here I am over two decades later and I am even more in love with what the plants teach us. Thank you Jane for bringing so many of us into the world of herbalism. I love you!

Last year Jane passed the Dandelion torch to two incredible women, Allison Poklemba and Jessica Shepherd. Allison and Jessica met in Jane’s Beginning with Herbs series way back in 1999. You will hear in our conversation just how much love, respect, and gratitude they have towards Jane and the herb school they have been entrusted with. Allison and Jessica are bringing a lot of enthusiasm and knowledge to DHC. I can’t wait to see how the school will evolve over the years. Many good things ahead (like their podcast, The Dandelion Diaries!)

Jessica Shepherd and I have been dear friends since we worked together at Humboldt Herbals many, many moons ago. We have both studied aromatherapy extensively and have traveled to many symposia together. Jessica is a community herbalist, masterful distiller and skillful creator. Her hydrosols and body creams are the best I’ve ever had (seriously!) and she won best product at The International Herbal Symposium a few years ago for her unique and delicious Fire Cider Fairy Dust. She has a talent for creating the most exquisite aromatic blends. I am so proud to call her my best friend.

Allison Poklemba and I have gotten to know each other more since we spent time together at the Northern California Women’s Herbal Symposium last year. Allison is a woman of many talents. She is one of the most knowledgable people on the various seaweeds of the Pacific coast. She holds seaweed classes in Petrolia, California and currently has a 2-part class on the Dandelion Herbal Center website. Along with being a teacher, Allison is a botanist, herbalist, environmental educator, and owns a small business, Backcountry Press. Humboldt County is lucky to have these women rooted in the community.

We had such a good time sharing our love of herbs and shouting out to our favorite teachers. You can feel the love permeating throughout our conversation.

As always before listening, make a cup of tea, sit back, and enjoy Episode 1 of Season Six of The Herb Walk Podcast!

With love,


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