Natural remedies draw additional interest during pandemic

Herbally Grounded owners Emma Harris and Jon Estrada pose for a photo, Monday, Sept. 21, 2020.

Walk into Herbally Grounded and you’ll feel a sense of serenity.

Salt lamps emit a peaceful pink glow. Shelves of herbal supplements and natural remedies promise better health and well-being. A library of books holds ancient wisdom about the properties of plants. Candles, crystals, jewelry and incense complement the vibe. In the back, a treasure trove of dried herbs are sold in bulk. Most importantly, highly trained employees help demystify the experience for shoppers.

Herbally Grounded

Herbally Grounded owners Emma Harris and Jon Estrada pose for a photo, Monday, Sept. 21, 2020. Launch slideshow »

Herbally Grounded is part grocery store, part herbal emporium, part wellness shop and part community center.

“I just wanted to do something that made a difference and helps people,” co-owner Jon Estrada says.

Herbally Grounded, which has locations in Las Vegas and Henderson, sells more than 300 bulk herbs and 50 locally made formulas. “Our mission statement is that we provide hope through herbs,” Estrada says. “We’re just a place where people can come in if they’re feeling hopeless, and hopefully find their way.”

Like many natural stores, Herbally Grounded carries vitamins, all-natural supplements, CBD products and all-natural drinks and snacks, along with home goods like soaps, cleaners and cosmetics. There’s a focus on carrying local brands.

Estrada says the Herbally Grounded’s highest sales have been for its own products, like its proprietary Amazing Greens powder, featuring alfalfa leaf, young barley grass, chlorella, bee pollen rose hips and more. He recommends the supplement to anyone feeling rundown and not their best.

During the initial COVID-19 shutdown, Herbally Grounded remained open as an essential business. Estrada says the store drew many customers seeking out natural ways to boost their immune systems. To support the body’s defenses, the store sells its popular Herbal Fighter, a blend of goldenseal root, echinacea, yarrow flower and ginger. Another option is Angel Teas, a restorative mix containing burdock root, sheep sorrel, slippery elm bark and more.

Herbally Grounded began as a family endeavor. As a mother with health troubles and tight finances, Angela Harris opted to follow in her mother and grandmother’s footsteps. The fifth-generation herbalist and Las Vegas local tapped into herbalism as a more natural and economical alternative to mainstream medicine. After decades of study and the birth of nine children, Harris—by then a “Master Herbalist”—had created many formulas for a multitude of purposes.

Deeply religious, Harris sees her work in herbalism as part of a “health ministry” and service to the community. “This concept of allowing our bodies to heal by adding pure, simple nutrients to our diet, has somehow been lost over the years,” Harris wrote in an article on “Big business has taken over and crushed what I believe is God’s simple plan of nourishment and letting the body heal. … I believe the nutrients in herbs are the best way to feed our bodies the life-giving substances we need.”

Harris began lecturing around the country, and in 2004, opened Herbally Grounded with her husband, Curt. The couple went on to launch the educational platform, with the mission of “teaching the lost art of herbalogy by sharing our love of these magnificent plants.”

In 2017, with Angela and Curt Harris focused on HerbU, it was time for Herbally Grounded to pass to the next generation. The couple’s daughter, Emma Harris, and her husband, Estrada, took over the store. The younger couple purchased a distribution center and in 2019 opened a Henderson location two doors down from Trader Joe’s on Eastern Avenue. They plan to open a third location by early 2022. As social distancing permits, they will continue offering classes on herbs, wildcrafting and more.

In an effort to continue Angela’s practices, Herbally Grounded works to keep its products accessible. “We try super hard to have things available at all price points,” Estrada says. In fact, he says, the store hasn’t raised many of its prices in more than 15 years. “Our bulk section takes up a quarter of our retail space. The markups [there] aren’t as good, but it doesn’t matter to us because there’s people at all levels that need herbs.”


This story appeared in Las Vegas Weekly.