The Wild Path

wild food spread

Learn the Art of Wildcrafting from Forest to Table

Explore the abundance of the wild with Jess Starwood, forager and author, in this six month immersive program (course I in the spring and course II in the fall), held both in-person and virtually. In the spring we discover the abundance of the “ephemeral edibles”, wild mushrooms, fruits and berries. In the fall, the advanced course takes a deeper dive into food as medicine, health, and integrating the wild into a functional and renewable cuisine and establishing personal vitality.

New for 2022-2023! Now introducing the intensive “Short Courses” are now available to hone your foraging skills with mushrooms, the Pacific Northwest or the Sonoran Desert. View All Short Courses here.

Current Programs

The Wild Path

Spring Wild Foods

From plants to fungi, we learn about the wild foods from many different regions—your own backyard, urban areas, mountains, coastal and desert. Learn introductory botany and mycology, plus techniques and recipes for harvesting, preparing, and preserving your harvest with ethical and sustainable practices.

Course Information & Registration

Fall Wild Foods

The advanced course takes a deeper dive into food as medicine, health, and integrating the wild into a functional and renewable cuisine and establishing personal vitality.

An advanced course for continuing students, focusing on expanding culinary techniques, creative plating for a visual feast, recipe development, wildcrafted herbalism, and developing a deeper relationship with the natural world. Wild Foods 1 is recommended as a prerequisite, but not required.

Course Information & Registration

for 2023

Are you interested in a specific bio-region in the West not covered in the main foraging course? Short courses are six weeks with 5 live virtual meetings and one immersive weekend. Explore in depth the Pacific Northwest, Sonoran Desert or Mushrooms of Western North America.

See all the available courses here

Your Instructor

Jess Starwood

Jess Starwood is a forager, plant-based chef, and herbalist with a Masters of Science degree in Herbal Medicine (American College of Healthcare Sciences). She teaches wild food and herbalism classes in the greater Los Angeles area for adults as well as children in public school and homeschool groups. She hosts monthly wild food tasting events featuring her latest culinary creations. She has worked as a wild food consultant for several Michelin starred restaurants in Los Angeles.

Jess’ first book, Mushroom Wanderland: A Forager’s Guide to Finding, Identifying, and Using 25 Wild Fungi, is available from all major booksellers.

In December 2019, Jess was recognized as one of the most creative chefs in Ventura County by Edible Ojai & Ventura County Magazine.

Member of the Culinary Committee of the North American Mycological Association. Writer for Plant Healer magazine, Edible Ojai & Ventura County magazine, and Mycophile newsletter.


Masters of Science degree in Herbal Medicine, founder of SunRaven Apothecary


Award-winning creative and innovative plant-based chef


Wild foods consultant and forager for well-known Michelin-starred restaurants and chefs in Los Angeles.

Learn the Art of Wildcrafting

This immersive program offers unique learning opportunities with small groups throughout 3 month sessions.

  • Full-day Bio-Regional Field Trips
  • Online LIVE & Interactive Lectures
  • Beautifully designed PDF recipe books to educate and inspire
  • Supportive class communities
  • Active Student Message Board
  • Class recordings for those who cannot attend live, or to review content
  • Celebratory Class Foraged Feast

What Students Are Saying…

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“This has been an incredible experience. Jess Starwood curated not only a visually beautiful course (as expected), but an incredibly supportive, educational, fun, and delicious experience for all of us.”

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“This course would be appropriate for the complete novice or the experienced botanist, forager, chef, or herbalist. I’m so grateful for not only the knowledge I gained, but the friends I made, and the incredible inspiration to love, appreciate, & engage ethically with plants and the earth.”

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“I highly recommend this course as a wonderful investment in yourself, your family, and also the natural world.”