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This 9 day course will be an introductory journey into building a natural home. Participants will receive a basic theoretical and practical training in all aspects of siting and design, foundations, wall systems, roofs and finish plastering. You will learn simple joints and framing techniques to erect a roundwood timber frame post and beam structure. We will use our own timber (larch) straw, hemp and lime render for the build. Most timber rounds will be debarked but there will be enough to get some practice on during the course.

This building will be used for our herbal medicine clinical practice and dispensary. Adjoining this space a larger roundhouse is being created as a teaching space. The building is placed by our woodland, next to the river and nearby the ancient Hazel grove.

In 2020 we are creating a new teaching space at Ivywood. As part of the build we are facilitating a course for those who wish to learn more about natural building. Our courses in herbal medicine, growing medicinal plants and medicine making will begin again in 2021 after we have completed the new teaching space. If you would like to be kept informed about upcoming courses at Ivywood please subscribe to our courses newsletter. 

The best way to really understand the true power and potential of what nature offers is to study and spend time with these amazing plants. Through our courses we aim to empower people to use and grow these plants in the hope of seeing this ancient form of natural healing passed onto another generation.

A half day certificate course with Herbalist and Grower Ross Hennessy from Ivywood Botanicals at the East Clare co-op.


This course is aimed at the organic farmer or wildcrafter who wishes to grow/harvest medicinal crops and sell them for processing into Herbal medicines. GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) standards must be implemented for the processing of medicinal plants and GACP is an excellent set of guidelines used during the growing,harvesting and transportation of these plants. GACP insures full trace-ability back to the seed source for each medicinal product. Following GACP standards insures that only the highest quality plants are grown but are also harvested at their optimal times. The course content is compiled from years of crop trials that Ross has carried out and up to date European guidelines.


We will cover the following topics on the day:

About Ivywood

Herbalists Ross Hennessy and Marina Kesso have moved their businesses and family to a new piece of land in Co Clare. They are busy creating new spaces on the land to reestablish their clinical practice and medicinal herb nursery. Formerly Bareroot Botanicals and Iona Herbal they have now renamed the woodland and business Ivywood.