The Magickal Poplar Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram: @iseabail_witchwriter

POPULUS ALBA woodlandtrust org uk
Populus alba ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

Poplar trees, or Populus – the genus, has about twenty-five to thirty-five species, and is native to much of the Northern Hemisphere. The name Populus refers to the fact that the trees were often planted around public meeting places in Roman times. They grow rather tall, 15 to 50 metres [49 to 164 ft] and have trunk diameters of up to 2.5 metres or 8 feet 2 inches.  Different species have names other than Poplar, such as Aspen or Cottonwood.  It all depends upon where you live, I suppose. According to Wikipedia, in the September 2006 issue of Science Magazine, the Joint Genome Institute announced that the western balsam poplar [P. trichocarpa] was the first tree whose full DNA code had been determined by DNA sequencing.  Pretty impressive, that.

POPULUS NIGRA woodlandtrust org uk
Populus nigra ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

Loosely speaking, the Poplar is divided into three groups, as mentioned above – Balsam Poplar, Aspen, and Cottonwood, in the United States. As far as I can understand, the only “like” or comparable Poplars which are found in both the US and the UK are the Aspen, Black Poplar, and White Poplar.  Of course, I have already written about the Aspen.  I did find some pretty impressive information concerning a trial which took place in the 1990’s where new hybrids of Poplar were being experimentally planted in the lowlands of England to see if they would be viable as trees to investigate the interaction on profitability….to test whether growing these hybrids would be worth the doing.  I imagine this investigation is on-going as the first seven years will be their baseline for all future events from this experiment…and I have found no ending conclusion of it in my research.

So, as we have nothing quite the same in the UK as all the species of Poplar which reside in the US… apart from the Aspen, which you can read about here, and White Poplar and Black Poplar, I shall write about the White Poplar and the Black Poplar, which both grow in both the US and in the UK, their respective genus’s and species being Populus Alba and Populas Nigra. The White and Black Poplar’s are both naturalised to the UK, having been brought from the US in times past. The genus Populus Alba leads me to think that the White Poplar may have been first discovered in Scotland. Why? Because “Alba” is the word for Scotland in Scottish Gaidhlig, or, Gaelic as you would recognise it.

Magickal

Being of Saturn and the zodiac of Capricorn, any part of Poplar is best used on Saturdays during the planetary hour of Saturn. The best spell work is achieved during this time for  anything to do with safety, power, success, intellect, travelling, communication [especially into other realms]; spells to help you get through difficult times, as well as when you just need a boost in a specific area of your life.

For change and success, the Poplar wood is best ground fine and used as one of the ingredients of your loose incense created for just these purposes.  You may also use it in talismans which you create for these purposes at your altar during ritual.

For creating a protection charm/amulet, you will do well to create your amulet in ritual as in a witch bottle, sachet, or poppet of yourself or the person you’re wanting protection for.

Creating a talisman featuring Poplar wood is also found to attract money and wealth; again, may be used in poppets, sachets, and witch bottles. And, of course, in your ritual loose incense for this purpose.

The leaves of the Poplar are particularly good for use in ‘flying ointments’ for those involved in astral travel and/or hedge witchery, and necromancy – to help walk the hedge and to contact ancestors. The Spirit of the Poplar is a guide during divinations. A perfect divination pendulum can be fashioned from Poplar wood which we are now selling in our shop.

POPULUS ogham Ead

In the Celtic Birth Tree ‘astrology’ [which really needs another designation as it has nothing to do with astrology apart from the lunar months], Poplar is a tree of growth, strength, and visualisation. Its Ogham alphabet is Ead [pronounced hadh] for the English alphabetic equation of the letter E.

Healing

POPULUS ALBA catkins woodlandtrust org uk
White Poplar catkins ~ woodlandtrust.co.uk

I must turn to Nicholas Culpeper for he so kindly wrote about both the White Poplar and the Black Poplar.  You can be assured that much of what he writes is still in practise today.

White Poplar:  ‘White Poplar, saith Galen, is of a cleansing property: The weight is of an ounce in power, of the bark, thereof, being drank, saith Dioscorides, is a remedy for those that are troubled with the sciatica or the stranguary,  The juice of the leaves dropped warm into the ears, eases the pains in them,  The young clammy buds, or eyes, before they break out into leaves, bruised, and a little honey put to them, is a good medicine for a dull sight.’

POPULUS NIGRA catkins woodlandtrust org uk
Black Poplar catkins ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

Black Poplar:  ‘The Black Poplar is held to be more cooling than the White, and therefore the leaves bruised with vinegar and applied, help the gout. The seed drank in vinegar is held good against the falling-sickness.  The water that drops from the hollow places of this tree takes away warts, pushes, wheals, and other like breakings-out of the body.  The young Black Poplar buds, saith Matthiolus, are much used by women to beautify their hair, bruising them with fresh butter, straining them after they have been kept for some time in the sun.  The ointment call Populneon, which is made of this Poplar, is singularly good for all heat and inflammations in any part of the body, and tempers the heat of wounds,  it is much used to dry up the milk of women’s breasts when they have weaned their children.’

POPULUS NIGRA buds woodlandtrust org uk
Black Poplar buds ~ woodlandtrust.org.uk

Black Poplar is a good remedy for urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and cystitis. It has anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and diuretic properties well suited to alleviating pain and infection. The Poplar’s buds have all the help you need!  Add two teaspoons of the dried bud from the Black Poplar to one litre of water and infuse for 10 minutes.  You can drink two to three cups of the tea per day to stave off stones and to treat your urinary tract infection or cystitis.  For rheumatism, use Black Poplar bark in a decoction of half a teaspoon of dry bark to a cup of water, infused for 10 minutes.  Drink two cups per day to alleviate pain and inflammation.  Poplar has gallic acid, and salicin, both painkillers.  You may use the recipe above with Poplar buds instead if preferred. This recipe also is good for the gout and bronchitis and is very helpful with the common cold.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Saturn

Gender:  White Poplar, Masculine; Black Poplar, Feminine

Zodiac:  Capricorn

Element[s]:  Air

Powers:  Hope, Rebirth, Divination, Astral Projection, Courage, Ancestry, Protection, Healing

Deity:  Hecate, Morrigan, Tyr, Apollo, Zeus

Many thanks for reading my blog and warmest blessings upon all whom this way wander x

Sources

The Complete Herbal and English Physician, by Nicholas Culpeper

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

What’s Your Birth Tree is the New What’s Your Star Sign, by Isabella

Wikipedia

Druidry.org

Magickal Hawthorn Tree: The Mayflower Tree – Revisited [again!] for Beltane

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

This blog was published in 2018, including part of my 2017 Beltane blog…I like reusing things, so why not the reuse of a blog? Especially if it touches on some very good points! Besides, it does aide me in getting more of the blogs from the old site over to this one…win! So, here in 2022 with much water under the bridge between here and 2018, I wish everyone a very happy and safe Beltane. May everyone be blessed with good health, prosperity and protection.

hawthorn alone
lone Hawthorn tree, courtesy of Google images

Happy Beltane, everyone! Or, if you are in The Land Down Under, Happy Samhain! I thought it appropriate to re-visit our Hawthorn tree blog today as it is traditionally used as the “May Pole” being today is also May Day.  And then I get thinking “what more can I say about the wonderful Hawthorn?”.  I really couldn’t think of  a thing, however, as I sat researching a herb I plan on writing about by reading in Nicholas Culpeper’s herbal, The English Physician, I ran across his passage on Hawthorn! What better way to begin my re-blog than to quote the words of the foremost herbalist of his day and still popular in our time? So, forgive the misspellings, for the English language had not quite been tamed yet, or, the authors of many of the olde worldy books just could not spell! Without further hesitation, I give you Nicholas Culpeper’s take on Hawthorn:

HAWTHOEN.

It is not my intention to trouble you with a description of this tree, which is so well known that it needs none.  It is ordinarily but a hedge bush, although being pruned and dressed, it grows to be a tree of reasonable height.

As for the Hawthorn Tree at Glastonbury, which is said to flower yearly on Christmas-day, it rather shews the superstition of those that observe it for the time of its flowering, than any great wonder, since the like may be found in divers other places of this land; as in Whey-street in Romney March, and near unto Nantwich in Cheshire, by a place called White Green, where it flowers about Christmas and May.  If the weather be frosty, it flowers not until January, or that the hard weather be over.

Government and virtues.]  It is a tree of Mars.  The seeds in the berries beaten to powder being drank in wine, are held singularly good against the [kidney] stone, and they are good for the dropsy.  The distilled water of the flowers stays the lask.  The seed cleared from the down, bruised and boiled in wine, and drank is good for inward tormenting pains.  If cloths and sponges be wet in the distilled water, and applied to any place wherein thorns and splinters, or the like, do abide in the flesh, it will notably draw them forth.

And thus you see the thorn gives a medicine for his own pricking and so doth almost everything else.” ~ Nicholas Culpeper, The English Physician and Complete Herbal, 16th century

Culpeper’s way was to assign a planet to every tree, flower, and wort and every part of the human body was assigned a planet as well. If a wort or tree was ruled by Mars you only need to use it for healing the part of the body also ruled by Mars.  This was not something you took lightly in those days.  He spent most of his life researching by astrology, biology, and the science of making people well again. On the top of it all, he was quite a prolific writing.  Although centuries have passed since  this writing, we have found all to be true the things Culpeper learned in his research.  Many times when I am writing about a herb I consult The English Physician to see what Culpeper made of the herb back in his time and I find that we are still, for instance, using Angelica to help with stomach ailments or Cherry to cure a sore throat or chest congestion.  It goes to prove they did get it right in those days and we owe Culpeper and many others a huge debt of gratitude for what they learned and left with us.

Today is May Day and the first day of Beltane.  And in many places a tall post of Hawthorn may be being used today for a May Pole.  But I do hope in preparing the Hawthorn for its celebratory ritual that people remembered to use all of the Hawthorn and not to waste it…keeping leaves, bark, and so forth for healing potions or protections.

So, please enjoy the rest of the blog, if you have never read it before, and if you have, I hope you have enjoyed the re-visit with new information. Happy May Day and Beltane to all!

From August, 2017:

Hawthorn Ogham Pendant
Hawthorn Huath Ogham Pendant ~ photo by i.macy

The Hawthorn tree represents the sixth month of the Celtic Tree calendar, 13 May – 9 June, and this period is represented by the Ogham for this tree, which is also the 6th letter of the ogham alphabet, Huath (Huathe, Uath). The Hawthorn Tree, or Mayflower tree, is sacred to Roman Goddess Flora, Celtic Goddesses Aine and Brigid, along with the Manx – Celtic God Manannàn Mac Leirr. This Ogham symbol is used in Celtic Reiki and its essence represents the energy of cleansing and preparation. It clears the mind of negative thoughts and mental confusion, offering clarity: it gives patience and offers stillness. The Hawthorn tree is masculine and usually, but not always, grows in hedges, but a lone Hawthorn tree, growing on a hill is a portal to the world of faery and is also considered one of the three trees of the Faery Triad, including Oak and Ash. We offer a Hawthorn Ogham pendant in our Etsy shop for those born in the lovely month of May, or in fact, to anyone who loves Hawthorn. Not available as of this writing.

Oak Ash and Thorn
The Faery Triad Talisman: Oak, Ash, and Thorn ~ photo by i.macy

Hawthorn Faery
Along with Oak and Ash, Hawthorn forms the “faery triad” that is especially inviting to the fae. Hawthorn is, in some ways, the faery tree, forming a portal to the faery realm and holding strong magick. The Hawthorn faery offers access to the Other-World, but also protects the unwary, so it is important to be patient with this spirit. She can enchant your life, bringing growth and fertility to all areas, and when the Hawthorn flowers in spring, it represents the bridal gown of the young Goddess. Hawthorn is sacred to the Welsh sun goddess Olwen, the “white lady of the day.” Where she trod she left white footprints on hawthorn, and her father, Yspaddaden Pencawr, was “Giant Hawthorn.” Thirteen tasks were demanded of her suitor, Culhwych, before he could marry her and overcome the power of the giant. Thirteen is a number associated with the moon, for the moon makes 13 circuits of the zodiac to one of the sun. Thus, the Hawthorn suggests union of sun and moon, male and female. The Hawthorn faery promises cleansing, fulfilment, guardianship, and fertility. Keeping grounded and practical is the best way to access her and use her gifts.” ~ The Faery Bible by Teresa Moorey

In Ireland, Hawthorns have always been highly respected as faery trees. They were often referred to as ‘gentle bushes’ after the custom of not naming faeries directly out of respect. Solitary thorns were known as the faeries’ Trysting Trees, and frequently grew on barrows and tumps or at crossroads, thought to be a favourite location of pagan altars.

Folklore: Much of the folklore attached to it seems to come from the fact that the tree is covered in long branches of early, white blossom around the time of Beltane – the First of May. In England, the Hawthorn is known as the Mayflower tree in honour of the month during which it blooms. Symbolising hope, it was the name the Pilgrims took for their famous ship, The Mayflower.

Hawthorn flowers
Hawthorn flowers ~ Courtesy of Google Images

If 1st of May seems early and the blossom is not ready – remember that the British calendar was changed and went forward 12 / 13 days in 1752 – trees have long memories and so work to the ancient dates! This is evident as well in Hawthorn’s place in the Ogham Tree Calendar – beginning now on 13th May – it would once have started on May 1st. Hawthorn is still prevalent in May Day celebrations, whatever the case.

Maypole_1500-56a6e0953df78cf77290a7cf
A Pagan Maypole celebration, led by the Green Man, photo courtesy of Google images

But whilst Hawthorn was a propitious tree at May-time, in other circumstances it was considered unlucky. Witches were supposed to make their brooms from it, and in some parts, it was equated with the abhorred Elder, as in the rhyme:

Hawthorn bloom and elder-flowers Will fill a house with evil powers.

In magick, Hawthorn is known as a psychic shield that can lift the spirits, and a little charm of the wood is a thoughtful gift for a friend going through a time of vulnerability or depression. It is also especially effective against malevolent spirits.

Protection Spell:
Carefully gather a few thorns from the tree.
“On a piece of paper, write the name of the person or situation from which you seek protection, and then wrap it around the thorns. Bury this in the ground – if possible near the tree from which the thorns were collected.” ~ Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

Correspondences:
Planet: Mars and Venus
Symbolism: Purification, sacred marriage
and male-female unity

Crystals: Lapis Lazuli, Blue Calcite
Birds: Blackbird, Owl, Purple Martin
Colour: Midnight Blue, Purple
Deity: Olwen, Blodeuwedd, Gardea,
Hymen, Hera, Virgin Mary
Sabbat: Beltane, May Day
Folk names: May bush, May tree, quickset,
thorn-apple tree, white thorn.

“A hundred years I slept beneath a thorn Until the tree was root and branches of my thought, Until white petals blossomed in my crown.” From The Traveller ~ by Kathleen Raine

I hope you have enjoyed the re-visit. Many thanks for reading and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources:
Druidry.org

thoughtco.com

thegoddesstree.com

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Fairy Bible, by Teresa Mooney

The English Physician and Complete Herbal, by Nicholas Culpeper

Experience

The Magickal Cherry Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Prunus avium ~ Evening Standard

Do you ever think you know it all?  Some of us older types do that sometimes.  So, there I was, thinking the Cherry tree came from Asian countries such as Japan and I find the UK has a native, yes native, Cherry tree all along! The Prunus avium, or Wild Cherry, is a native of the UK, no ties to Asiatic countries.  Well…knock me down with a feather!  Never too old to learn, I say.

The most important  Cherry tree in my life was from a child, when visiting my Nana’s farm and helping her pick cherries to put on a Victoria Sponge or to make tarts with. I was never much help as I ate more than I collected.  Still, she never failed to make a special tart just for me with the cherries I picked….I’m surprised that could have amounted to much, ha ha…she most likely added some of her own to my pitiful lot, as a good Nana will do.

In the Victorian Language of Flowers, white flowers from the Cherry tree meant deception.

Magickal

In Highland folklore, Wild Cherry trees had mysterious qualities, and to encounter one was considered auspicious and fateful.  In fact, in the Highlands it was once taboo to use Cherry wood, as Cherry trees, were regarded as being so magickal in Highland culture.  They were also a bit rarer in the Scottish Highlands as the Cherry tree grows best in the more southerly regions of the UK.

When using Cherry wood or any part of the Cherry tree for spells, please note it is best to do these rituals on the day of Venus [Friday] during the hour of Venus for best results.

Cherry stones have been used as talismans to attract love. According to Tess Whitehurst, authoress of such books as You are Magical and The Magic of Trees, Cherry blossoms are for divine love, forgiveness, gentleness, remembering one’s primal innocence, romance, and weight loss, although from my research the only one I find matching would be love.  Still, many witches do find new reasons for certain things working for them that no one else has done.

Any part of the Cherry tree can be used for spell work and for incense making [bark], oils, sachets, witch bottles, poppets, and the branches are well-suited to becoming magic wands.  The Cherry wood wand is best for healing and love spells / rituals.

Healing

Cherries rentacherrytree dot co dot uk
Cherries! ~ rentacherrytree.co.uk

Regarding the Cherry tree, Nicholas Culpeper wrote:  “The gum of the Cherry-Tree, dissolved in wine is good for a cold, cough, and hoarseness of the throat”.  The gum, I would presume came from within the bark of the Cherry tree, as most cold and cough remedies even to this day, use the bark of Cherry trees to silence coughs due to cold and to help expel phlegm.  Not only was the bark of the Cherry tree used in England and surrounding countries during this time but across the pond, Native Americans also used the bark of Cherry trees in the same way.  And, I am quite sure they did not consult Mr Culpeper’s writings, although it may be possible that returning Englishmen from North American travels may have passed round the knowledge about Cherry trees and we in turn began using this information for ourselves.

Other attributes of the Cherry tree’s fruit, by Mr Culpeper are the ability to “provoke urine” and also “mends colour in the face, sharpens the eyesight, provokes appetite, and to expel gravel and wind”… do I want to know what he means by ‘expel gravel’? Probably not… it is enough for me to know cherries will most likely make you fart.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Venus

Gender:  Feminine

Element[s]:  Fire, Water

Zodiac:  Aquarius, Aries

Powers:  Love, Wisdom, Money, Luck, Inner Peace, Healing, Divination,

Deity:  Morrigan, Artemis, Persephone, Herne, Mars, Pan, Thor, Vertumnus, Yaya Zurkurai

As always, I thank everyone for kindly reading my blog.  Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources

The Complete Herbal and English Physician, by Nicholas Culpeper, c1702

The Magic of Trees, by Tess Whitehurst

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

Woodland Trust

What Wood is Best for Making a Wand, Part Two

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Wands Collage 2a
wands collage by i.macy

As discussed yesterday in What Wood is Best for Making a Wand – Part One, here is a short explanation of which woods make the best wands for certain situations.  Again, I don’t hold strict adherence to any of them for everyone, apart from two as you will read.  I do realise that which wood for a wand is entirely the preference of the sorcerer.  Still, there are many only starting out who may be interested in a guideline of what might work best for them.  Not to mention, it could be helpful in any kind of wood research. 

LaurelMasculine energy. Air/Fire.  Laurel trees are most closely associated with Greek mythology [Daphne and Apollo]. Laurel is a symbol of resurrection because of the plant’s ability to be revived after a drought. A sprig of Laurel was worn in England for protection.  Its powers therefore are mainly about strength, protection, rebirth, and prophesy. It is a strong wood in its abilities and should not be used without due care, still, it is a good tree from which to make wands from beginners to seasoned sorcerers.

LindenFeminine energy. Air.  Linden is a dream to carve.  She is a gentle beauty whose strengths are attracting love, balancing energy, and neutralising negativity.  Linden is wonderful for any spell work to do with breaking hexes and clearing negativity from your life or someone else’s. Linden is a protective wood as well, and very protective of her sorcerer.  I would highly recommend this as a first wand. And, any sorcerer would do well to have a Linden wand in their repertoire, no matter how established.

Magnolia Witches Stang
Magnolia witches stang ~ photo by i.macy

MagnoliaFeminine energy. Water.  Magnolia is a tree which has its beginnings in the southern United States but since has been naturalised in the UK and possibly other parts of Europe.  The Magnolia was also cultivated in China for the flower buds from which tea is made. Magnolia’s bark has a healing and calming effect on people.  It is a good wood to use for a healing wand.  It is also a marvellous wood for using in divination and doing ancestral work or seeking past lives.  As a matter of fact, I have created a Magnolia witches stang for “walking the hedge”.  Magnolia’s strengths also include love, protection, self-awareness, and truth.  She is so gentle, yet so strong that I recommend Magnolia to beginners and seasoned sorcerers alike.

MapleMasculine energy. Earth/Air.  Another tree naturalised into the UK, most of what we find about Maple is information more directed to those in the US. Still, we can use the magickal information interchangeably to a degree, depending upon the kind of Maple. Maple is excellent for work to do with longevity, abundance/wealth, divination, and love and we have made many a Maple wand for different “levels” of “experience” sorcerers.  It works well for all experience levels.

OakMasculine energy.  Air/Fire.  Oak is a wood I have much experience with. Not only do I have an Oak wand – amongst the many I use – but I have created many Oak wands over the years and find it to be hard to carve but the results are always worth it.  It is a wood that speaks to me freely as I create the wand; It directs my design.  Oak has many powers which make it a good wand for many.  Amongst those are work in ancestry, healing, longevity, luck, wealth, strength, and success.  The Celts saw the Oak as a tree of divinity and Druids would not meet without an Oak tree present. Yuletide is when the Oak King takes over from the Holly King and Oak is the traditional Yule log.  No one can go wrong with an Oak wand and I highly recommend this wood to any sorcerer.

OliveMasculine energy.  Air/Water/Earth/Fire.  If you are fortunate enough to live where Olive trees are readily available to you, don’t hesitate.  It is said that picking an Olive branch brings prosperity and happiness, therefore, you may cut an Olive branch without fear of bad things happening.  Be sure to thank the Olive tree, however.  Olive is a wood of abundance, balance, healing, longevity, prosperity, rebirth, and success.  It’s not a wood I have had the pleasure of working with, still, I recommend it to any sorcerer who wishes to use it.

RowanFeminine energy.  Earth/Fire.  Rowan is a tree loved by many, me included. It is, after all, a tree honoured by the Goddess Brighid whom  is well-loved by many and used by the Celts when reciting magickal incantations.  Rowan is notably most associated with protection but is also healing, lucky, and a wood of blessings. Rowan is one of the Nine Sacred Woods. Rowan is most suitable for protection in any ritual and most notably during astral travel/hedge riding.  It is a fabulous wood for healing spells and contacting the Elementals.  My opinion of Rowan is that if you will only have one wand in your possession, make it a Rowan wand.  It is most suitable for any sorcerer.

SycamoreFeminine energy. Air/Water. My first wand. Sadly, I no longer have it but that has been well over forty years ago.  Sycamore associations include abundance, immortality, love, protection, rebirth. It is a wood to use when in need of comfort from the world. Can be used in ancestry spells, money spells, protection spells.  It is a very strong wood and would be an asset to any witches’ wand collection.

Willow: Feminine energy. Fire/Water.  Willow is a lovely lady.  She is known for healing, knowledge, protection, wishes, birth, and intuition.  Willow is also one of the Nine Sacred Woods. Willow is a generous tree/wood to its sorcerer.  Willow wands are best used in love rituals, raising moon energy, contacting faeries, and trusting your intuition. A wand wood for all sorcerers.

handle of my wand
My Yew wand and crow fetish ~ photo by i.macy

YewFeminine and Masculine energy. Air/Fire/Water. Another wood from which I have a wand. Its attributes include ancestry, change, communication with the dead, divinity, immortality, longevity, rebirth, and strength.  Yew is the wood associated with the crone.  It has been said Druids used/use Yew for their wands. Yew is very poisonous so take every precaution in making a Yew wand – gloves, respiratory mask, long sleeves and trousers, as well as safety glasses.  Most particularly when sanding the wood, it is important not to breathe in the sanding particles.  And when you are finished, put all tools [cleaned] away and be sure to clean up any bits left on your workshop floor.  Do not under any circumstance create your Yew wand inside your home and especially if you have pets for, they will succumb to the poison as well.  I cannot put too fine a point on the safety of your work with Yew.  That said, as a hedge witch, I use my Yew wand when riding the hedge/communicating with my ancestors and particularly on All Hallows Eve as one of my protections and for its ability to help me connect with the dead.  This is not a wand wood that I recommend lightly nor, will I recommend it to anyone whom is not very advanced in sorcery.  It will, I can vouchsafe, be a reliable and loyal wand in the right hands.

This concludes my analysis of the best woods to use for wands at any level.  These are only for guidance, but I must plead with you to take my advice to heart on Blackthorn and most particularly, Yew.  I will never claim to know everything, for that is impossible, however, I have both woods as wands and I know them as well as the back of my hand. I only make this plea with your safety and well-being at heart.  And, of the two, if you must, choose Blackthorn over Yew until you are firmly established in your path.

Many thanks for reading and I hope it gave you some proper insights to help you choose – whether it is your first wand or your tenth.  If you missed it, here is Part One from yesterday.  Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources:

Experience

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Magickal Walnut Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

When I chose to write about the Walnut tree, I immediately thought of the stocking fillers we had for Christmas as a child.  There was always an orange.  And of course, the obligatory stick of Rock. Then some assorted sweets wrapped in crinkly cellophane.  And Walnuts! And that was our lot in those days.  To a child growing up in the sixties’ it was a veritable cornucopia of goodies! I know nowadays it is much different, but I started my own five out on “nuts and fruits and sweeties” ‘til they cottoned on to the fact that their friends got chocolate bars and mini-gifts wrapped up in paper inside their stockings…oh the good old days!  Of course, things got much more expensive then!

Walnut tree Woodland Trust
Walnut Tree ~ photo by Woodlandtrust.org.uk

The Walnut [nut proper] was said to be introduced into England from its native Iran by the Romans.  Juglans regia, the Persian Walnut, English Walnut, Circassian Walnut, or especially in Great Britain, common Walnut, is an Old-World Walnut tree species native to the region stretching from the Balkans eastward to the Himalayas and southwest China.  Archaeologists have found that black Walnuts were a popular food with Roman people.  Another name for the Walnut is Juglans which is thought to mean Jove’s/Jupiter’s acorn, however, “Juglans” comes from its Latin name, Juglans nigra  i.e. Black Walnut, which is an American Walnut tree and Black Walnut being native to eastern north America was introduced to Europe in 1629.  For our purposes they both are used in the same way magickally and in healing.

Magickal

Money and Prosperity:  Always keep a bowl of **Walnuts on your table. Replace when eaten. The Walnuts radiate the power of Jupiter all over your home, bringing new opportunities, fertility, and wealth.

A spell to bring forth what you desire:  Crack open a walnut. Break the nutmeat in half. Put the one half back in the walnut. Write on a piece of paper what you desire “I attract more money” or  “every day I become more beautiful”.  Fold the piece of paper and put it in the walnut.  Close the walnut and wrap it with red cord. Seal it with red wax. **Eat the other half of the nutmeat while you inscribe outside of the walnut “to grow”. Taste the magick of the walnut and its power. Your wish becomes one with you. You can bury the walnut or carry it with you.

You can use Walnuts and Walnut wood and bark in rituals and meditations that deal with life transitions, rituals of initiation, manifesting intention into the physical realm, and weather magic.

The Romans once buried coins underneath Walnut trees as an offering to the Roman Goddess of fruit trees.

Because of its resistance to decay, Walnut wood is fabulous for wands, however, it is not a wood I find lying about very often so it could be some time before that happens! The young Walnut tree can be devastated by the grey squirrel. It also susceptible to Walnut leaf blotch.

** WARNING:  If  you or anybody in your home has a nut allergy, DO NOT attempt this spell. I am sure I don’t need to tell you; however, I feel honour-bound to do so anyway.

Healing

Western science has shown that the fruit husks of the black Walnut contain juglone – a compound that inhibits bacterial and fungal growth, and may be valuable in controlling dermal, mucous, and oral infections in humans. It is also being tested for its anticancer properties.

Walnuts Inside
Walnut fruit ~ Google Images

I have, in my readings, come across media saying that whatever body part a fruit or vegetable looks like is what it is useful in healing.  When you lay the fruit of the Walnut out side by side it looks like a pair of lungs or, if you put the fruits together, a brain.  “The Walnut tree and its wood help us with our mental gifts. Even the Walnuts themselves resemble little brains! Intelligence, wisdom and inspiration all come under its realm. It has also been said that Black Walnut contains medicinal properties. Walnut holds the powers of the breath and inspiration. Symbolic of confidence and mental wisdom.  Black Walnut wood has medicinal properties that are useful in the prevention and treatment of disease. Walnut teaches us clarity and focus, using our mental gifts wisely and how to best use our intelligence.” ~ Dr Kyle D Christensen

Black walnut has been used by native people for thousands of years. Native American ethnobotany has revealed many medicinal uses for the bark, leaves, husks, and nuts of black walnut, including its utility as a mosquito repellent, a dermatological aid, an anti-diarrhoeal, a laxative, and an anthelminthic. In one form or another, this species has been used to relieve the symptoms of fever, kidney ailments, gastrointestinal disturbances, ulcers, toothache, syphilis, and snake bite, among others.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Jupiter, Sun

Zodiac:  Gemini, Leo, Virgo

Element[s]:  Air, Fire

Powers:  Change, Fertility, Healing, Inspiration, Intentions, Protection, Wealth

Gender:  Masculine

Deity:  Aphrodite, Artemis, Astarte, Carmenta, Carya, Diana, Pomona, Rhiannon, Apollo, Zeus, Jupiter, Thor, Vishnu

Other Names:  White Walnut [butternut], Ball Nut, Ban Nut

As always, I thank you kindly for reading my blog.  Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources

Witchipedia

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Magic of Trees: A Guide to Their Sacred Wisdom & Metaphysical Properties, by Tess Whitehurst

Woodlands Trust

Experience

The Magickal Chestnut Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

sweet-chestnut-habit-woodland trust
Sweet Chestnut tree ~ woodlandstrust,co.uk

The Sweet Chestnut [Castanea sativa] tree lives to be about 700 years old and interestingly, does not bear fruit until around its 25th year of life.  It is native to Europe, western Asia and north Africa, and is thought to have been introduced to the British Isles by the Romans; today it can be found commonly throughout Britain in woods and copses, especially in parts of southern England, where it is still managed to form large areas of copping. If you remember my last writing about a nut-bearing tree, The Magickal Walnut Tree, it was believed that the Romans brought those to Britain as well.  Would we have had no nuts if not for the Romans?  Apparently not, as it is beginning to seem!

It’s a wonderful tree to grow if you have the room for the flowers provide an important source of nectar and pollen to bees and other insects, and red squirrels eat the nuts.

Horse Chestnuts [Aesculus hippocastanum] are easily mistaken for Sweet Chestnuts.  Horse Chestnut trees originated in the Balkans and were introduced to the UK in the 1600’s as an ornamental tree.

Horse Chestnuts are one of the first trees to come into leaf each year.  The leaves are made up of 5 to 7 leaflets.  These trees look at their best in springtime, when they are covered with clusters of either pink or white flowers, known as ‘candles’.  The flowers are normally pollinated by the early flying bumble bees.

horsechestnut uk safari
Conkers ~ photo by C. Bradley, 2004 uksafari.co.uk

Shortly after pollination the seeds of the tree appear encased in a prickly green shell about 1cm in diameter.  Through the summer they grow to about 5cm in diameter and then in September the prickly casing splits open to release the shiny brown seed, known as a ‘conker’, which is something any child in Britain can spot miles away.

The sweet chestnut is the delicious, edible chestnut that most people are familiar with around the holidays.  An edible chestnut is easiest to spot if it is still in its husk, which is spiny and needle-sharp. The toxic, inedible chestnut, the horse chestnut, has a husk that is much smoother, with only a few ‘warts’. Horse chestnuts are the ones commonly found in forests.  If you are a wild-gatherer of foods and herbs in the forests or roadside lay-by’s, please take care in gathering the correct Chestnuts.

Magickal

Chestnut trees and its respective parts are often used in purging,  banishing rituals spellwork, however, I have not used them in any of these kinds of spells, so I have no knowledge to offer here.

For blessing a new home to attract abundance and prosperity place a bowlful of Sweet Chestnuts in each room of the new home. Keeping a bowl of Chestnuts close to you is also good for peace of mind.  You can carry a couple or handful in your pockets for the same effect.

Chestnuts can be eaten to encourage fertility and desire and may be carried as a charm by women who wish to conceive. Keeping chestnuts around the house (and eating them) encourages abundance. **

Staves made from chestnut wood are said to encourage longevity, increase energy, enhance intuition, and help with grounding and centring of energy. Chestnut wood can also be used to make talismans for justice, success, to gain the sympathy of your audience and to encourage your mind to take in information.

Druids often made staffs from Chestnut wood, because the physical connection to the wood allowed the user to draw longevity and invigoration from the wood.

Sitting under a Chestnut tree will help ground and clarify the mind during periods of meditation.

Place a Chestnut piece of wood or carving under a troubled couple’s bed to ease disputes and relationship problems.

** Warning:  As always, take care not to eat of use any kind of nut in your home if you or anyone has nut allergies.

Healing

Native Americans may have used a tisane of chestnut leaves to treat severe coughs and heart disease, a poultice of the leaves for sores and a decoction of the bark to treat worms.

Horse chestnut  is a traditional remedy for leg vein health. It tones and protects blood vessels and may be helpful in ankle oedema related to poor venous return. It is used extensively throughout Europe as an anti-inflammatory agent for a variety of conditions, in addition to being used for vascular problems. The plant is taken in small doses internally for the treatment of a wide range of venous diseases, including hardening of the arteries, varicose veins, phlebitis, leg ulcers, haemorrhoids and frostbite.

Horse chestnut is an astringent, anti-inflammatory herb that helps to tone the vein walls which, when slack or distended, may become varicose, haemorrhoidal or otherwise problematic. The plant reduces fluid retention by increasing the permeability of the capillaries and allowing the re-absorption of excess fluid back into the circulatory system.

The seeds are the source of a saponin known as aesc in, which is the compound that has been shown to promote normal tone in the walls of the veins, thereby improving circulation through the veins and promoting the return of blood to the heart.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Jupiter, Sun

Zodiac:  Cancer, Gemini, Sagittarius, Virgo

Element[s]:  Air, Fire, Water

Gender:  Masculine

Powers:  Healing, Love, Prosperity, Abundance, Attracting Animals, Relieving Worry, Transforming Karma

Deity:  Artemis, Diana, Boann

Other Names:  Sweet Chestnut, Candle Tree

As always, I thank you kindly for reading my blog and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources

Witchipedia

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Magic of Trees: A Guide to Their Sacred Wisdom & Metaphysical Properties, by Tess Whitehurst

Woodlands Trust

Experience

The Magickal Olive Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

OliveTree druidswood co uk
Ancient Olive tree ~ druidswood.co.uk

The tree of peace.  Extend the Olive branch to your enemy in good will and peace-making.  The dove with the Olive branch in its beak [Old Testament, Ark].  Irena, the Goddess of peace, daughter of Zeus and Themed, was always depicted with an Olive branch in her hand. Later, in periods of war, the couriers of peace were sent holding a symbolic olive branch in their hand.  But that is where it ends, it is merely a symbol of peace, not a magickal power of the Olive tree.  However, Olive is so much more, and we shall explore what it can do for us.  Still, it will never hurt to hang an Olive branch above your doorway so that all whom enter will know your home is a place of peace and good will.

The Olive tree is the tree of the Autumnal Equinox. It is a tree of logic, reason, and rationalisation. I would believe that anybody born on that day would possess those qualities.  The olive tree was the tree of balance by the Celts. For this reason,  they devoted the day of **23rd of September to it as that date is the day which has the same duration as the night.

**23 September is Autumn Equinox; 21 September is beginning of Mabon

Magickal

Olive branches, as well as being a symbol of peace, can be hung over the door to protect the household from evil, or upon the chimney to keep the house from being struck by lightning. When carried, the leaves bring good fortune. They also bring prosperity and security in love and business.

Dreaming of an Olive tree means you will have great happiness.  Dreaming of planting one indicates an upcoming marriage.  To dream of eating Olives means a happy domestic life.

The tree of Athena, mighty goddess of Wisdom is a symbol of prosperity and abundance. Use the leaf of Olive tree to bring balance between you and the earth. Also, you can use it in healing spells.

You can always use the leaves in leaf magick. Use it for one of its correspondences such as protection or wealth in a leaf spell or you can always use them in poppets and sachets.

Healing

Olive oil is a traditional anointing oil to aid in healing, and it was used in ancient times as fuel for temple lamps.  When eaten, olives are said to induce fertility and sexual potency in males, and lust in both men and women.  Remember what I said in another blog about fruits and veg shaped like body parts are helpful to keeping those body parts in good health? I should think I need say no more.

Scott Cunningham wrote:  On an olive leaf, write Athena’s name. Press this against the head or wear on the body and it will cure a headache.

The value of Olive oil to the health is widely known for centuries. Thus, the olive tree symbolises power and health. Moreover, this symbolism is entirely accurate since olive trees lead quite long lives.

Olive oil bolsters the immune system and helps to protect against viruses. Olive oil has also been found to be effective in fighting against diseases such as: cancer, heart disease, oxidative stress, diabetes, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, and osteoporosis.

Olive is antiseptic, astringent and is known to lower blood pressure and fevers.

The Romans, of course, used Olive oil to cleanse their skin as part of their bathing ritual.

Mediterranean women with their glorious glossy hair have known for centuries the value of applying warm Olive oil to revive dry lifeless hair.

A little anecdote about Olive leaves:  Kew’s Herbarium, Kew Gardens in London, contains a wreath of folded olive leaves, which was found in the sarcophagus of King Tutankamen, and is over 3,300 years old.

Correspondences

Planetary:  Mercury, Moon, Sun

Zodiac:  Aquarius, Aries, Leo

Gender:  Masculine

Element:  Air, Earth, Fire, Water

Powers:  Healing, Fertility, Potency, Fidelity, Protection, Immortality, Prosperity, Success

Deity:  Amaterasu, Athena, Apollo, Minerva, Ra, Pele, Zeus, Horus, Hercules

Folk Names:  Olivier, Itm, Mitan

Sources

Encyclopaedia of Magical Herbs (2nd Ed.), Scott Cunningham, Llewellyn, 1984

Life Among the Olives – The Magic of Olive Trees, by Dr Vera Sengeeva

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Magickal Linden Tree, or Lime Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

Linden Trees
photo by majestictrees.co.uk

Tilia is a genus of about thirty species of trees, or bushes, native throughout most of the temperate Northern Hemisphere.  In the British Isles they are commonly called lime trees, or lime bushes, although they are not closely related to the tree that produces the lime fruit. So, when you see the “Lime” tree listed in an ogham birth tree list it is referring to the Linden tree [Tilia europaca] in Britain but if you are in America [Tilia Americana], they refer to it as Basswood.

Now that you are adequately confused….

Be sure to use the botanical name when ordering seeds or trees.  Common names vary by nation, culture, and region, and sometimes the same common name is applied to different plants.

The Linden/Lime tree flowers are a favourite of bees wherever you live so if you are ardent about  helping to save the bee population, plant a lovely Linden/Basswood tree wherever you live.  Honey from the flowers is considered the best flavoured in the world.

Linden became popular after the fourteenth century on the Continent and in England for carving and other work that did not require strength.  Many of the carvings in St Paul’s Cathedral [London] and Windsor Castle are of Linden wood.  The tree’s fibrous bark has been used for rope, mats, baskets, and clothing.

Magickal

Linden flowers are often used in love spells/mixtures and protection spells and incenses. Mix equal parts Linden flowers and Lavender flowers then place in a sachet under your pillow to relieve insomnia. Keep Linden flowers on a table to release the energies needed to keep the spirit alive and healthy.

Lime Oil, as it is called, from the Linden tree, is used for purification and protection, promoting calmness and tranquillity, and strengthening love.

Dreaming of a Linden tree means good news is coming.  Dreaming of cutting down a Linden tree means your love life is in danger.

Linden is also used in longevity spell work and used in prophecy.

Medical

Linden tree’s flowers are a calming and soothing herbal tea not unlike Chamomile, but I think is more flavourful than Chamomile.  The French call Linden flower tea, Tilleul. It’s good to have before bedtime for a good night’s sleep to not only relax your body but your mind, as well.

Historically, Linden has been used to soothe nerves and treat health problems associated with anxiety.  Its calming nervine, antispasmodic, and helpful circulatory properties are used to help to ease spasms and cramps that contribute to headaches, tight muscles, and migraines as well as menstrual cramps.

Linden Tree Flowers
photo by gardenerstips.co.uk

I have read that whatever body part a fruit or leaf resembles is what that fruit or leaf is good for medically.  The heart-shaped leaf of the Linden tree gives a good idea of what it is good for both medically and magickally.   It can lift us up or “gladden the heart” emotionally and in love as well as benefitting the physical heart as well, which is evidenced in its long use for assisting with conditions such as atherosclerosis, angina, and heart palpitations especially when there is nervous tension or stress involved.  Linden is exceptional at reducing fever and fighting infection.  It even has a profound effect on loosening chest congestion and sinuses.  With the colds and flu season quickly approaching it would do you well to stock up on Linden flower tea unless you’re fortunate enough to have a Linden tree growing in your garden!

There are no contraindications to using Linden flowers that I can find.  Still, only use as needed.

Correspondences:

Planetary:  Jupiter, Sun

Zodiac:  Gemini, Sagittarius

Element:  Air

Gender:  Feminine

Rune Character:  Asa/Letter A

Powers:  Attracting Love, Balancing Energy, Neutralising Negativity, Heart Healing, Protection, Sleep, Stress Relief

Deity:  Arianrhod, Aphrodite, Eostre, Freya, Frigg, Lada, Nehalennia, Philyra, Venus, Zemyna, Odin, Tyr

Other Names:  Bee Tree, Lime Tree, Basswood, Lime Blossoms, Linden Flowers, Tilia

Many thanks for reading my blog and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources:

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

Wikipedia.org

Experience

The Magickal Fig Tree

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Instagram:  @thewandcarver

fresh figs
Fresh Figs ~ photo courtesy of Eric Hunt, his original work

According to the most recent figures I have found, there are between 750 and 850 Fig tree species.  One of the most popular Fig tree species is Ficus benjamina, or just “Ficus” which many of us grow inside our homes.  But the one I’ll be writing about today is the Ficus carica, or “Common Fig” which produces the lovely Figs which songs have been written about.

There is evidence that figs, specifically the Common fig [Ficus carica] and Sycamore fig [Ficus sycomorus], were among the first – if not the very first – plant species that were deliberately bred for agriculture in the Middle East, starting more than 11, 000 years ago.

Ficus carica is an Asian species of flowering plant in the mulberry family, known as the Common Fig [or just “the fig”].  It is the source of the fruit also called the fig and as such is an important crop in those areas where it is grown commercially.  Native to the Middle East and western Asia, it has been sought out and cultivated since ancient times and is now widely grown throughout the world, both for its fruit and as an ornamental plant.  The species has become naturalised in scattered locations in Asia and North America.

Unlike other fig species, Ficus carica does not always require pollination by a wasp or from another tree, but can be pollinated by the fig wasp, Blastophaga psenes to produce seeds. Fig wasps are not present to pollinate in colder countries like the United Kingdom as they need warmer climates to live and breed. The Fig tree is androgynous, with the fruit representing the feminine and the triple lobed leaves representing the masculine.

The Fig is listed by the Druids [Druidry.org] as a “birth tree” for Jun 14-23 and Dec 12-20 which I have listed in an older blog, but to this day I have not had time to settle in and learn why they have a much different list of birth trees and dates than the one for the Celtic Birth Tree Calendar.  I do plan on sorting this out eventually!

Magickal

In Greek mythology it is believed that Demeter gave a Fig to Dionysus as a gift, hence the link to love and fertility. The Greeks revered Figs so much that they made it illegal to transport excellent quality Figs. The Romans held Figs sacred as well, and it was believed that the wolf who raised Romulus and Remus rested under a Fig tree. The Buddhists viewed the Fig tree as a symbol of enlightenment, as it is believed the Buddha reached his enlightenment under a Fig tree [the Pipal, Ficus religiosa]. Ashoka the Great bestowed kingship on the branch from the very tree and planted it in a thick-rimmed solid gold vase.

Figs are linked to male potency. Men can eat fresh Fig to increase their potency and virility, as it increases the mobility of male sperm.  As the copious amount of seeds within the fruit suggests, Figs can help with fertility magick. Women have carried Fig carved into phallic images to raise their chances of conceiving.  When travelling, leave a fig tree outside of the door. This will ensure you return safe and happy. Grow Fig in the kitchen to make sure that your family never goes hungry.  To get an answer to a question, you can write the question on a Fig leaf; if the leaf takes a long time to dry, the answer is yes, and if it dries quickly than the answer is no.  Growing a Fig tree in the home can bring the household good luck. Fig trees grown in the bedroom can help with restful sleep.

The wood and bark from Ficus/Fig trees can be used in poppets and loose incenses for purposes of fertility, and good luck, as well.  We once offered this in our shop.

Health

An ointment made of the juice and hog’s grease, is an excellent remedy for the biting of mad dogs, or other venomous beasts, as most are.  A syrup made of the leaves, or green fruit, is excellent good for coughs, hoarseness, or shortness of breath, and all diseases of the breast and lungs; it is also excellently good for the dropsy and falling sickness.  They say that the Fig Tree, as well as the Bay tree, is never hurt by lightning; as also if you tie a bull, be he ever so mad, to a Fig Tree, he will quickly become tame and gentle.  As for such figs as come from beyond sea, I have little to say because I write not of exoticks” – Nicholas Culpeper, 17th century excerpt from The English Physician and Complete Herbal.

ficus carica rhs co uk
Ficus carica, Fig trees ~ courtesy of rhs.co.uk

Plant parts and extracts of the Fig tree have traditionally been used for internal, as well as external, application. For example, poultices from fresh or dried Figs, Fig leaves, or Fig wines; lye from Fig tree bark; or latex from stems and leaves have been used to aid in many conditions. Latex has been used as expectorant, diuretic, and anthelmintic, or to ameliorate anaemia. Leaves are known for their antidiabetic and vermifuge effect. However, they also cause contact dermatitis in humans and phototoxicity in animals. Seeds are processed to edible oil or lubricants. Sporadic cases of fig allergy after ingestion of fig fruit have been reported, especially in patients whom are allergic to Ficus benjamina. Also, Phyto photodermatitis caused by contact with various parts of Ficus carica has been reported and linked to furanocoumarins in latex.  If you have an allergy to latex I would suggest not using those parts of the Fig/Ficus in your healing practise.

Correspondences

Gender: Masculine

Planet: Jupiter

Element: Fire

Deities: Aphrodite, Demeter, Hathor, Juno

Powers: Divination, Prosperity, Fertility, Love, Luck

Folk Names: Common Fig, Fico, Mhawa, Chagareltin

Many thanks for reading my blog and warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources

BBC

Wikipedia

The English Physician and Complete Herbal, by Nicholas Culpeper

Druidry.org

Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes

The Magick of Elm

By Isabella @TheWandCarver
Instagram: @thewandcarver

With the blooming of new daffs and bluebells trying valiantly to peek through patches of snow in some parts; Ostara having just brought us the hope of Spring and sunnier days, it makes me wonder why I would want to write about Elm. Because Elm’s and Yew’s mythology are twinly bound to Death and the Underworld…Elm has been used for many years to build coffins and Yew is a staple tree in most graveyards. It was found in the Underworld and at the crossroads leading to the faery world. Elm is very popular with the Elves. So, why would I bring such a downer into the Spring forecast? Well…

Magickal

Elm at Blackness by MJ Richardson
Elm at Blackness ~ photo by MJ Richardson

Elm is carried to bring love. Isn’t Spring about love? Right you are! Elm energises and balances the mind and heart. It not only attracts love, but it also protects love and all. Elm is also used in fertility spells and rebirth. You can use the wood and flowers in love spells. The wood is best-used ground up finely and used in your loose incense for love. The flowers are used in poppets or sachets.

A wood of femininity, Elm draws from the element of earth and is a strong, neutral wood that can be used for protection or hexes. It seeks a companion of strength and is excellent for destructive spells, protection, and defensive magick.

“Because of its rich foliage and sap, the Elm is sacred to Saturn, Roman god of agriculture. Representing fertility, it foretells that your wish will meet with success. Its other meaning is their need to give way and let nature run its course, to sacrifice what you have for what could be. Elm wood is flexible and durable and does not rot when wet. You probably know in your heart that your wish will be granted. A hopeful sign is that Elm twigs are used as divining rods. The Elm tree stands at the entrance to the underworld as a living connection between the living and the dead. What comes to you is blessed by heaven. It may be that all you need do is wait and have faith in nature.” By Gillian Kemp, Tree Magick

Other spell work to use Elm: Dark Moon and initiation rituals, grounding after ritual, seeking comfort.

Healing

Elm’s legendary associations are of death and the Underworld, but funnily enough, people looked to Elm for medicinal cures. The inner bark was particularly effective when chewed or boiled into a syrupy liquor to treat colds and sore throats, coughs, diarrhoea, internal bleeding, and fever whilst the boiled bark was also used to treat burns. Can be applied to external wounds for healing or drink to ease menstrual problems.

A medical manuscript from 1509 [in the library of the Royal Irish Academy, Dublin] mentions cures that included hitting an afflicted person with a rod marked with the Ogham. It was believed that this action would release the illness from the person’s body. The type of wood depended on the cure needed, for example, Elm for impotence. The Ogham inscription on the rod consisted of the person’s name or, according to sources, a spell.

Here is where I might mention that Elm is a secondary Ogham tree, associated with the Ogham “ailm” and Fir is the first and mainly used. I suppose if you can’t have Fir, Elm will suit. It is not a Celtic Birth Tree.

Correspondences
Gender: Feminine
Planet
: Mercury, Saturn
Zodiac
: Capricorn
Element: Air, Water, Earth
Powers: Compassion, Empathy, Intuition, and Love
Symbolism: Communication and Relationships
Colour: Turquoise
Gemstone: Moss Agate
Birds: Lapwing, Ruffled Grouse
Deity: Dionysus, Odin, Loki, Hecate, Cerridwen, Danu, Gaia, Hel / Holle, Ran
Folk Names: Sweet Elm, Elven, English Elm, European Elm

Many thanks for reading this offering. I hope you have enjoyed reading about Elm and have taken away some useful knowledge. Warmest blessings to all whom this way wander x

Sources
Tree Magick, by Gillian Kemp
Whispers from the Woods, by Sandra Kynes