About Us

Julie, under her favourite beech tree, Avebury stone circle, Wiltshire (photo: Matthew Seal)

Julie Bruton-Seal

Julie is a qualified naturopathic herbalist, craniosacral practitioner, iridologist and natural healer. She graduated from the Selfheal School, under Dr Jill Davies and Christopher Hobbs, in 2000, and is a Fellow of the Association of Master Herbalists (AMH). She was editor of the quarterly magazine, Nature’s Path, now The Herbalist, and was also one of the founding organisers of HerbFest, an annual gathering celebrating healing plants and herbal medicine.

Julie is also an artist, photographer, film-maker, graphic designer, writer and silver jeweller. She co-authored the vegetarian cookbook Vegetarian Masterpieces. Her photographs have been widely published in books and magazines, including National Geographic, and she has worked as a wildlife illustrator and artist, holding a number of exhibitions. She illustrated the children’s book When Elephant Was King.

Julie is the daughter of renowned wildlife film-makers Des and Jen Bartlett, with whom she won an Emmy in 1993 for Survivors of the Skeleton Coast. She settled in Norfolk in the 1990s. Julie and Matthew were married in 1999.

Matthew, enjoying the limestone, Malham Cove, Yorkshire (photo: Julie Bruton-Seal)

Matthew Seal

Matthew Seal’s first recorded proper words (according to his mother, who wouldn’t exaggerate on such a matter) were ‘meadowsweet’, uttered on a nature walk in the River Trent marshes when he was nearly 3. Matthew grew up in a family of gardeners and botanists and, while not following his kinfolk into professional gardening or horticulture, has never forgotten this early ‘greening’.

Matthew has a history degree from the University of Sussex, and since the 1970s has worked as an editor and writer in books, magazines and newspapers, in both the UK and South Africa. He was founder of the Professional Editors' Guild in South Africa in 1993. He is author of Survive and Thrive in the New South Africa (2000). He continues to be a freelance book editor, and is an advanced professional member of the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading (CIEP). He was for three years revise subeditor of Business Report, the largest-selling business daily in South Africa, and was publications director of the Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP), the predecessor to the CIEP, 2004–08.

Julie and Matthew, at home with their copy of John Parkinson's Theatrum Botanicum (photo: Tara Ridgewell)

Julie and Matthew

Julie and Matthew have written six books together, all published by Merlin Unwin Books: Hedgerow Medicine (2008), Kitchen Medicine (2010), Make Your Own Aphrodisiacs (2012), The Herbalist’s Bible (2014), Wayside Medicine (2017) and Eat your Weeds! (2022). All have been published in North America (sometimes under different titles).

Julie and Matthew have written six books together, all published in North America by Skyhorse Publishing: Backyard Medicine (2008), Home Remedies (2010), Aphrodisia (2012), The Herbalist's Bible (2014), Backyard Medicine For All (2017) and The Forager's Cookbook (2022). All have been published in the UK (sometimes under different titles).

Julie and Matthew live in the Norfolk village of Ashwellthorpe, near Wymondham, and their Tudor cottage is the venue for teaching herbal courses and conducting herb walks and other herb-related gatherings, including medicine-making. They have been vegetarians and now (almost) vegans for many years, and wish they had more time to spend in their over-exuberant and very organic forest garden!