About Us


Plant Balms was started in Portland Oregon in 2014 by Jennifer Williamson (now Jennifer McMaster), as an outlet for her budding interest in healing with plants.  Working full time at the Bonneville Power Administration, Jennifer was able to meet wonderful people and participate in the annual BPA Associates Craft Fair in 2017 and 2018.

In 2019, Jennifer retired and with her husband Don McMaster  moved to a 17 acre farm in Olympia WA.  Visit FiveHeartsFarm.com for a photo tour of their organic farm.  

The quality of Plant Balms handcrafted products  keeps getting better and better as we begin to grow more of our own materials, such as calendula and arnica.

Thank you for joining us in this journey to increase people’s understanding and awareness of the beauty and simplicity of products from nature that really work!

Jennifer and Don McMaster

Plant Balms (plantbalms.com)


Five Hearts Farm (fiveheartsfarm.com)


I deeply enjoy helping people, and I appreciate your willingness to share your personal stories with me. I want you to understand what my background is – what I can and can’t do.

I am learning to become a “community herbalist,” which is essentially the person in one’s community and family who understands and shares how to use traditional healing methods using plants.  For example, eating steamed Nettles for nutrition, and chewing up the leaf of a weed in your yard called “plantain” to apply directly to a bee sting, or using an oil made with the flower Calendula to soothe irritated skin.

I want people to feel free to ask me for help or information, and at times I come across information I think particular people would want to hear, but I do not want people to feel imposed upon or pressured. 

With that in mind, please feel free to be open and honest with me about whether you want more or less communication. 

My training includes the following:

  1. A comprehensive program called “Foundations in Herbal Medicine” taught by Tieraona Low Dog.  She is a physician (M.D.), as well as a national expert on nutrition and herbal medicine.  
    1.  “Tieraona Low Dog, MD is an internationally recognized expert in dietary supplements and integrative medicine. In addition to her many years as a clinician and educator, she has been involved in national health policy and regulatory issues, serving on advisory panels for the White House and the National Institutes of Health and chairing two committees on dietary supplements for the U.S. Pharmacopoeia. She is the author of Fortify Your Life, Healthy at Home, Life is Your Best Medicine, and Guide to Medicinal Herbs.”
  2. I will complete my coursework (approximately 500 hours of medical and herbal classes) by September 2020, and will attend an intensive training on “clinical case studies” which covers how to understand all of what is going on with a person and their health issues, and how to make the right recommendations for healing.
  3. I attend many webinars, conferences and do extensive reading of teachers such as Paul Bergner at the North American Institute of Herbal Medicine, and  Rosalee de la Forêt of Learning Herbs.
  4. Learning from my own and family members’ experience with Naturopaths. They are primary care physicians who are more aware of causes, natural remedies, and nutrition than regular MDs are.

I am very respectful of the need for people to see their doctors and follow doctors’ orders.  In many cases, I have been able to help people understand their condition, and work with their doctor constructively.  They have avoided bad side-effects from their course of treatment, and in some cases have avoided harsh treatments that didn’t end up being necessary.  And best of all they get through it all with hope and a sense of well-being.

“For thousands of years … long before there were supplement and pharmaceutical companies, billions of people depended on the medicinal properties of locally resourced plants for healing and maintaining the quality of their lives. Whether that knowledge was passed down by family elders or appointed natural healers, people knew that given the right food and herbs, their body could heal. In addition, everyone had knowledge of which plants were used for common ailments and first aid situations. When humans lost our connections to nature, we lost that knowledge and power to heal our families and communities with nature’s original medicine.
(Text from https://learningherbs.com/about/
Copyright © 2020 LearningHerbs.)

Thank you for your interest and support.  I wish you ever increasing health!  

Jennifer McMaster


3 Replies to “About Us”

  1. I bought the Ginger Turmeric and the Tonic tea bags at a Craft fair in Portland recently, and I forgot to ask – what’s the caffeine content? I have to be careful of the timing if I want to sleep! The Ginger tea is wonderful!

    1. Hi Sue,

      Thank you for writing! I’m very happy to hear that you love the tea.

      There is no caffeine at all in the Anti-inflammatory Ginger Turmeric tea, or the NW Tonic tea.

      It is possible that they could help your sleep. My teacher explained recently that when we think of things that can help sleep, it’s not just teas or activities for calming or sedating, but also herbs that help our digestion or add to our nutrition. I like that way of looking at it. NW Tonic has herbs that have good vitamins and minerals, and the Anti-inflammatory Ginger Turmeric tea has things that help digestion, among other things.

      But of course, you will have to see how they impact you. Some people feel a good kind of energy, and some pain relief, after drinking NW Tonic, and don’t call it stimulating, but it is something you can watch for yourself.

      Take care, and keep in touch!


  2. Hi Jennifer

    I bought your anti inflammatory tea as well and loved it ! I also bought the Balm of Gilead oil and find it helpful with my feet.. I will be placing and order for more of these items and want you to know I appreciate your product !!

    Thank you Patty

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