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About Us

About Friends of the Trees Botanicals

We are based on the Olympic Peninsula and offer a large variety of botanicals that we personally cultivate and wildcraft. Over 150 species!  Our wildcrafted botanicals are sustainably gathered to maintain healthy plant populations.  Our 1/2 acre herb farm is located at Finnriver Farm & Cidery in Chimacum, WA.  It is a complex agroforestry system, which includes a wide diversity of medicinal herbs, trees, shrubs, hedgerows, berries, vegetables and culinary herbs. We even use the "weeds" as crops! Dandelion, anyone?  We apply permaculture and restorative land practices.  Our goal is healthy plants, a healthy ecosystem and good yields.  We have a 25+ year reputation for delivering the highest quality fresh and dried botanicals.

UPDATE!  As of July 28th, 2022 we are officially certified organic for all of our cultivated herbs moving forward!

Click Here to Download OTCO Organic Certificate 

  • Hand Screened Herbs

The Crew

  • Michael "Skeeter" Pilarski

    Is a life-long student of plants and earth repair. His farming career started in 2nd grade and his organic farming career began in 1972 at age 25. Michael founded Friends of the Trees Society in 1978 and took his first permaculture design course in 1982. Since 1988 he has taught 36 permaculture design courses in the US and abroad. His specialties include earth repair, agriculture, seed collecting, nursery sales, tree planting, fruit picking, permaculture, agroforestry, forestry, ethnobotany, medicinal herb growing, hoeing and wildcrafting. He has hands-on experience with over 1000 species of plants. He is a prolific gathering organizer and likes group singing.

  • Anna Pallotta

    Anna has been working under Skeeters wing and with Friends of the Trees since Spring 2017.  She helps juggle many parts of the herb business, as well as behind the scenes for event organizing. She is passionate about wildcrafting, growing herbs and food, and exploring the backcountry. Thanks to her herbal mentors over the years, she's started a small wildcrafting business called
    Ramble Botanicals.

    In a nutshell.. She loves plants and puns. (Help! How did she get stuck in this nutshell?!)

  • Ashley Kehl & Forest

    Ashley Kehl was raised on a permaculture homestead, playing in the dirt and loving the wild around him. As luck would have it, he still enjoys these same things, spending much of his time on the farm or out wildcrafting. These past three years have seen him working to improve our systems on the farm and administration. His greatest joys include employing regenerative farming practices to grow ever healthier herbs, soils and sharing his knowledge with apprentices and in workshops. 

  • Jennimae Bee

    Jennimae has a deep love of plants and a fascination for the way they interact with humans. She brings 23 years of gardening and landscaping experience to the team, with a bit of kitchen witchery and a hand in event organizing. Jennimae delights in being of service to the web of life, helping to get plants into the hands of those who will appreciate and grow with them.

  • Roy Fuller

    Roy joined our team in the summer of 2020. He has helped with many aspects, especially with processing many of our dried herbs by hand screening! A very tedious process and he rocks it. He is also a yoga teacher and massage therapist.

  • Mahala Frye

    Mahala has been a great help over the years and always happy to jump in when we are short handed. Mahala’s passion for healing the Earth led her to the Perelandra methods of land healing and clearing, and she now has over 30 years of experience with this work. Her studies in Peruvian Shamanism and her dedication to the Goddess have also blended beautifully with the Perelandra work, and these three lineages give Mahala powerful and effective means of Earth Healing.

  • Kurt Schaller

    Kurt was born in San Antonio, Texas and raised in Europe. A teacher by vocation, he has long fostered an interest in permaculture and all things sustainable in order to foment more responsible and regenerative practices at a local level. After leaving all other pursuits to focus on furthering his skills, he will now live in Granada, Spain where he will apply all that he has learned in farming, helping to bring awareness and the knowledge necessary to restore the damaged ecosystems to the people of Spain.

  • Emily Joy

    I pursued Friends of the Trees as an apprentice in 2022 because I have always wanted to get my bare feet and bare hands involved with farming modalities to regenerate the soil, by means of plant diversity and spirituality. As an apprentice and tree lover, I was drawn to agroforestry, hugel gardening, stepping away from monoculture farming, learning about native plants and indigenous perspective, and recognizing plant spirits, fairies, and song, as a necessary part of farming. 


    I was given the opportunity to work in the soil without shoes on. Not many workplaces allow this freedom, this right! Consequently, Anna, encouraged me to share my "Happy Feet, Happy Body Workshop" at the NW Herbal Fair, and by this experience, my passion and skill for teaching about feet grew. As a result, I am presently pursuing shoe making with roadkill deer hides, and I am continuing my journey sharing about foot health, by encouraging barefoot connection to earth and minimalist footwear.

    I am grateful for the growth, inspiration, and friendships that carried me through my year as an apprentice with Friends of the Trees!

    Emily was our 2022 Berry Manager and inspired our "Super Berry Blend"! Check out our frozen berries here 

A big thanks to all of the many helping hands over the years.

  • Kris Dubenic

    Kris worked closely with Michael Pilarski both on the West and East side of the Cascades, farming and wildcrafting. He was a delight to work with and was very dedicated. He also took on the role of work-trade coordinator for both the NW Herb Fair and the Drylands Permaculture Course. Now he is traveling in the SW with his partner, hope your having an amazing trip Kris!

  • Anna Wark

    Anna Wark worked closely with Ashley Kehl on the west side of the Cascades, farming and wildcrafting. She was an indispensable part of the team, creating a beautiful and abundant Farm year! She also spent a lot of time working in our nursery growing our seedlings for transplanting as well as potted herbs, shrubs and trees for sale at Chimacum Corner Farmstand. She was lots of fun to work with and her knowledge of herbs was greatly appreciated! See you around Anna.

  • Hillary Rose

    Hillary worked closely with Ashley Kehl on the west side of the Cascades, farming, drying and processing herbs. She has an amazing set of skills including a great knowledge of plants and permaculture inspired landscaping, also she is an extraordinary tracker and animal behavior scientist. Blessings on her journey, returning to the east coast to go back to graduate school and pursue her dreams!

Finnriver Medicinal Agroforestry Farm Video