poison herbs

Dangerous Herbs

Listed below are dangerous herbs and herbal combination and explanations as to why they are dangerous. Do not try any of these herbs, orally, on the skin, or in any other way ever (or during pregnancy or nursing, if listed as such).

*Some of the herbs mentioned are safe in small doses are are written as such. Other herbs are toxic in small doses or any amount. This is not a complete list.

Belladonna - Nightshade, bittersweet nightshade is an extremely poisonous herb and is absolutely deadly. It is related to Henbane. Side effects can include dry mouth, enlarged pupils, blurred vision, red dry skin, fever, fast heartbeat, inability to urinate or sweat, hallucinations, spasms, mental problems, convulsions, and coma.

Blue Cohosh - Can cause miscarriages, especially during early pregnancy. This herbs in combination with other herbs has been used as an aborfacient. It works by loosening and relaxing the uterine muscles. This is why it is often suggested as a remedy for pms and menopause.

Black Cohosh -  Can cause miscarriages, especially during early pregnancy. This herbs in combination with other herbs has been used as an aborfacient. It works by loosening and relaxing the uterine muscles. This is why it is often suggested as a remedy for pms and menopause. 

Chaparral - This herb can cause serious liver damage, liver failure, and acute hepatitis. 

Comfrey - Comfrey can be taken in small doses for upset stomach and pms, but using a lot is dangerous. Comfrey contains pyrrolizidine alkaloids, a type of poison that causes liver and kidney failure as well as cancer. They can be absorbed through the skin as well. 

The amount of PAs found in comfrey changes according to the time of harvesting and the age of the plant. The roots have 10 times higher amounts of PAs than the leaves.

Devil’s Claw -  Harpagophytum, means “hook plant” in Greek. Devil’s claw causes additive effects in many medications. It can cause changes in blood pressure as well.

Eucalyptus - Eucalyptus can not be consumed. Taking 3.5 mL of undiluted oil can be fatal. Even applying too much to the skin and absorbing large amounts is dangerous. (Use it very lightly, dilute it, or use a humidifier.) Signs of eucalyptus poisoning might include stomach pain and burning, dizziness, muscle weakness, small eye pupils, feelings of suffocation, and some others. Eucalyptus changes how many medicines break down in the liver.

Foxglove - Poisoning by this herb can cause stomach upset, small eye pupils, blurred vision, strong slow pulse, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, excessive urination, fatigue, muscle weakness and tremors, stupor, confusion, convulsions, abnormal heartbeats, and death. Long-term use of foxglove can lead to symptoms of toxicity, including visual halos, yellow-green vision, and stomach upset.

Golden Seal - This herb is a uterotonic; brain damage (kernicterus) has developed in newborn infants exposed to goldenseal. Do not use goldenseal during pregnancy or breast-feeding.

Hemlock -  Neuromuscular blockage can occur to the point of death if it blocks the respiratory muscles.

Henbane - Side effects include dry mouth, red skin, constipation, overheating, reduced sweating, vision disturbances, increased heart rate, urination problems, drowsiness, restlessness, hallucinations, delirium, manic episodes, and death. Henbane is poisonous and not safe for self-medication.

Kava - In the South Pacific, kava is a popular social drink, similar to alcohol in Western societies. It is used by some to treat anxiety, restlessness, and insomnia, but like many medicines used to treat these types of issues, Kava runs the risk of being too much of a ‘downer - oversedation.’ It can make you unable to operate machinery, fatigued, and worsen depression. Large doses can also effect the liver and cause yellowing of the eyes. Also, some of the dangerous chemicals in kava can pass into breast milk and might hurt a breast-fed infant. Avoid this herb if you have Parkinson’s disease or if you will undergo or have recently undergone anaesthesia as it effects the central nervous system. Alcohol, sedatives, and benzodiazepines interact with downers.

Licorice Root - This tasty herb, when taken in high doses, may cause tiredness, absence of a menstrual period in women, headache, water and sodium retention, and decreased sexual interest and function in men. It may also cause early delivery in pregnant women and miscarriage in early pregnancy. This root has also been seen effecting hormone levels in the body and interacts with oestrogen. It also seems to rid the body or potassium. It can also cause heart failure.

Mistletoe (European) - Can cause chills vomiting, diarrhea, cramping, and other side effects. Short-term, frequent use of European mistletoe might cause liver damage. Lowers blood pressure.

Mugwort - This herb is dangerous in large quantities. Thujone, a ketone and a monoterpene that occurs naturally in two diastereomeric forms:-α-thujone and-β-thujone is present in wormwood Thujones cause a slight high and a feeling of relaxation, which is why it is enjoyed by smokers and drinkers (as a tincture or bitters), can also cause breakdown of muscle, nightmares, seizures, dizziness, confusion, numbness of arms and legs, paralysis, and death. The chemical is also said to be responsible for absinthe’s hallucinogenic effects.

Mugwort might cause a miscarriage because it can start menstruation and also cause the uterus to contract.

Pennyroyal - Pennyroyal has been used as an antificant and can also kill pregnant mothers. Do not use this herb as a method for miscarriage. It can cause irreversible damage to the liver and kidneys, nervous system, brain, and cam cause dizziness, confusion, seizures, and death.

Peony - Peony can cause uterine contractions and is unsafe to use during pregnancy. It also slows blood clotting.

St. John’s Wort - This herb interacts with SSRIs and other types of medications for the treatment of depression. In bipolar, bipolar depression, mania, manic depression, and other related disorders, St. John’s wort can trigger a major upswing or manic episode in patients. This herb also interacts with birth control.

Wormwood - Wormwood one of the main ingredients in the alcoholic beverage, Absinthe. The latin Absinthium comes from the ancient greek word apsínthion, which some claim translates to “Undrinkable”, referencing the herb’s extreme bitter flavor. It is closely related to mugwort, which is toxic in large doses, but wormwood is even more so. The herbs also contained thujones. See Mugwort.

Valerian - This herb, especially the root, can cause oversedation. Alcohol, sedatives, and benzodiazepines interact with downers. Valerian can cause some side effects such as headache, excitability, uneasiness, and even insomnia in some people. A few people feel sluggish in the morning after taking valerian, especially at higher doses. It’s best not to drive or operate dangerous machinery after taking valerian. 

Wintergreen - This type of mint can be dangerous in high doses. Taking wintergreen oil or large amounts of wintergreen leaf can cause ringing in the ears, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, headache, stomach pain, and confusion.

Mugwort Wanderings on Forgotten Paths


It is on these cold days, where the dim light grows ever stronger and the woods seem to sigh in the evening’s early twilight, that I find myself thinking about the edges of the landscape. That subtle form that is just beyond our reach, just outside of our touch. Those moments we linger at the edge of a glade, or near a fallen tree in the bracken. Hearing the silence that is full of noise, a quiet rush of unexpected sounds hiding under the frequencies of our breath, behind the rustle of the leaves, taunting us from the treetops and river’s edge like a youthful lover.

The walks I take are often accompanied by my pipe. Full of some herbs gathered here or there depending on the time of year (and never tobacco). One herb that I find helps me come closer to the landscape’s edge is Mugwort (artemisia vulgaris).

A timeless herb used by men as far back as we have stories to tell, mugwort is mentioned by name in the Nine Herbs Charm as a favorite of Odin. Listed in herbals since the dawn of printing, mugwort is a versatile herb whose uses range from beer flavoring to medical treatment. But I find that a pipeful of mugwort is a perfect harmonizer with the natural landscape. It has a mild calming effect that syncs ones thoughts to the rustle of the trees, the conversations of the birds and the yawning decay of the forest floor.


“Remember, Mugwort, what you have revealed,
What you set out in mighty revelation,
‘The First’ you are called, oldest of herbs,
You have might against three and against thirty,
You have might against venom and elf-shot,
You have might against the darkness that fares over the land.”

- 'The Nine Herbs Charm’, from the Lacnunga

The entheogenic uses of mugwort are reported as early as Pliny, and throughout Europe its fame as a curative, spirit ward, and tonic are well known. It is in its chemical similarity to its cousin, wormwood (artemisia absinthium), that we find its power. Thujone, an active ingredient that affects the cannibinoid receptors in humans is the culprit responsible for much of the activity reported in absinthe, as well as in mugwort. Little surprise that absinthe was marketed under the title “the Green Fairy”.

There is quite a conscious connection between the shifted paradigm of thujone and the folklore of that land of the sidhe. Mugwort is not strong as far as contemporary entheogens go, but its understated effect is belied by its ability to tune one’s thoughts directly to that shimmering field of energy we stumble upon in forest and seashore. It is a key, able to open the doors in the landscape, for those who seek to walk on the other side of the mirror, so to speak.

After a pipe of mugwort on a winter’s day the landscape opens up, reveals itself like a crack in the world. The birds and trees telling a story, the ferns and fungi preparing a path on which to explore that vast terrain of myth. The sky itself seems to laugh as you glide along, footsteps a drum rhythm beating the skin of the world. A brightness in the air, followed by a listless energy and a desire to explore.

It fades, as all things must, after a short while. We find ourselves once again on this side of the hedge, the sounds of the world familiar again and full of nonsense and pomp. The whispers of the woods having moved on, seeking others who stumble on its forgotten paths.


A division can be made between those
Witches and other Pagans who speak of
plant “allies,” “spirits,” or “faeries” and
those for whom, as one herbalist put it,
“the plant spirit issue isn’t much considered;
much more commonly there is a formulaic
attitude towards the plants. For
example, ‘Mandrake is good for x, y, and
z’; ‘Myrrh is a purifier’; ‘Mugwort is for
visions,’ and so on and so forth.” Both
this writer (Robert Brown) and “Jack
Prairiewolf ” suggest that urban Pagan
herbalists are more likely not to
encounter the plants that they use as
living beings throughout their life cycles,
and consequently more likely to regard
them as processed products “used for
________,” the very attitude taken by
Cunningham and Beyerl, mentioned
above.
Based on these and other interviews, I
suggest that contemporary Pagan
entheogen users prefer a “shamanic”
model to a “clerical” model for their place
in the community, and, as Robert Brown
comments, describe themselves as more
oriented to “wildness” rather than to
human society.27 This group is perhaps
more likely to read ethnographic and
anthropological literature than the fantasy
novels and historic reconstructions
that seem to inform much of North
American Neopaganism.
These contempoary Pagans using traditional
entheogens are cautious about
discussing them. Too many of these substances
have been publicized as “legal
highs”, and in a society which is accustomed
to seeing “drugs” as neat little pills
and capsules, the dangerous and “edgy”
use of traditional entheogens with their
occasionally messy side effects may not
appeal even to self-described Witches.
Thus, for all the claims made of connections
with the victims of the “Burning
Times,” the majority of contemporary
Witches and other Pagans have chosen to
turn their backs on what may indeed be
the one connection with an earlier era of
shamanic practice—traditional Eurasian
entheogens.
— 

Chas S. Clifton

anonymous asked:

Hi Richtor! Can you please put links to sites or post to gems (quartz,crystals,stones),essential oils, and herbs's meanings? Please i need them but I want trustworthy info!😆 have a good day!

Remember to always fact check your sources - compare them to two or three others, and information that repeats can be assumed to be “correct.” Remember, also, that personal correspondences are very important. Go with what feels right to you.

Crystals and Gems

Crystal Safety and PSAs

Other Crystal Information

Essential Oils / Aromatherapy

Essential Oil Safety and PSAs

Herbs

Herb Safety and PSAs

Other Herb Information

* = external link / resource

Working with Plants

1. Start your own Herbal. There are some great books out there, but recording your own experiences/uses/collected lore for herbs is invaluable. Draw, press or take photos of the plants you include. 

2. Learn about plants by seeing them with your own eyes. Visit botanical gardens, nurseries, garden centres and parks to see the plants in situ and (hopefully) correctly labelled. The human brain has an amazing memory for plants, it is a survival skill to be able to identify them. When you walk through a park or garden, notice the plants and identify those you know to re-establish this memory.

3. Grow things. Be as ambitious as your space, money and time allow. Collect plants that are hard to find, appeal to you and suit your climate. Go beyond culinary herbs. Be aware of where you plant things in the garden, both directionally and symbolically. Plants you have grown are constantly receiving offerings of your time, energy and resources and are therefore more likely to be willing to assist you.

4. Plants will die. Even the most experienced gardener will lose plants. Accept it. Don’t just buy a few seedlings and then decide you lack a green thumb because they all died. Some herbs are annuals, that means they only live for a season, some plants are deciduous, some will simply not be suited to your climate or area and fail to thrive. Be patient and persistent and become a student of gardening as well has herbcraft.

5. Work in depth with a particular herb or tree to discover its secrets. Read everything you can about it, research folklore and planetary correspondences, consume it raw, dried, as a tea and a tincture. Prepare a spagyric essence from it. Burn it as incense. Infuse oil with it. Grow it, talk to it, dream about it. Watch how it changes through the seasons, collect its seeds, smell its flowers. Do this until you know it inside out, and then begin again with another. 

6. Substituting herbs is tricky business. No, you can not replace all flowers with lavender or all herbs with rosemary. That is lazy nonsense. Put some actual effort into getting the herbs you need for a spell, and if you genuinely can’t acquire them find something botanically related, energetically similar or at very least ruled by the same planet.

7. Treat herbs and trees as spirits, with respect and humility. Ask before your take, leave offerings, communicate, bond with them and you will be rewarded with gifts and wisdom and powerful ingredients for your spells.

8. Poisonous herbs and strong entheogens are for advanced practitioners. Don’t just start growing or using them because you want to be taken seriously. Some of these plants are tricksters, they can be very seductive. They are quite capable of controlling you. Be wary.

9. When harvesting for magical use, think not only what the plant is but where it is growing. A tree on a university campus will have different properties to the same kind found in a graveyard. A herb growing at the crossroads is different to one found by a stream. 

10. Expand your learning and awareness beyond trees and herbs. Learn the lore of mosses, lichens, fungi and seaweeds. Parasitic and carnivorous plants. Get to know the plants that grow locally, even if they are far removed from those found in your books.

11. Check your sources when it comes to lore. If a book tells you lavender is good for love spells, question it. Try to discover where the information came from, look up the older herbals, read books of plant folklore, investigate planetary and elemental correspondences based on the nature and virtues of the plant, not just what Cunningham says. 

12. Develop relationships not only with individual trees and herbs, but with particular species. Plants can be spirit guides in the way that animals can. There is an oak tree, and then there is Oak. They can teach, guide and protect. Having a handful of plant allies you know intimately and fashioning your tools from their wood, planting them around your house and visiting them in the wild will make your connection to those spirits all the stronger.

Folk-lore as the True history of Witches


What has come to my mind recently is the nature of our historic understanding of witchcraft/cunning craft/etc as practiced in Europe over the course of the past 200 or so years. We base much of our knowledge, and further more most of the pages of the known literature, on the testimonies of parish priests, inquisitors and confessions often made under duress and torture. This body of knowledge has become, for the worse of history, the basis in which contemporary craft practice has been rooted. It is a framework of Christianity, a universe predicated on a savior, and a god who forbids such acts in law. An Abrahamic cult brought to the British Isles by the Roman in the 6th century. A patriarchy of knowledge control and subjugation.

Yet there exists, starting in the early 17th century, a profound body of knowledge that is not derived from tortures or confessions but on stories and knowledge freely given amongst locals in villages and towns. It is the body of what we now call ethnographic study, but is most commonly known as folklore. Starting in 1878 The Folk Lore Society in London began publishing a series of ethnographic studies, both in magazine and book format. But such folkloric study goes back several centuries before to men from the Brothers Grimm, Thomas Crofton Croker, Dalyell, Henderson, Kirk, Lady Wilde, and many others over a span of 300+ years. People who went into the pubs and gardens and talked to the real people of these places. Who listened and wrote down the stories of warding off beings and banishing dead souls. The instructions for curing illness and the nature of laying on hands and second sight.

This body of knowledge is a directly transmitted oral testimony, storytelling and folk beliefs handed down within families and gathered together by the folklorists and antiquarians from across regions of the British Isles and Europe. There are hundreds of books of these beliefs, many with detailed descriptions of spells to attack, to ward off spirits, to bind and banish and drive forth. Often listing exact components of charms and dances. Studies on the nature of folk magic in Scottish highlands, on horse magic in East Anglia, of the witch bottles and warding wands of Wales, and endless stream of valid information on the flowing tradition of folk magic as a living practice in the UK over the past half of a millennia. As well as documenting the exact pronunciation of regional words, curses, and spirits terminology, often with a glossary!

And yet this body of knowledge is almost completely overlooked in the contemporary literature on witchcraft practice. Which instead relies on the testament of Church torturers as to what was said, on the scant testimonies of victims of a system of abjuration pointed against herbal healers and common folk practitioners, more often than not elderly widows whose properties could be confiscated by the Church warden.

Its time for a rethink of our understanding of the nature of folk magic. How it is the very essence of true witch practice and is at its heart older and truer a practice that those tainted by the narrative of the Church over the past thousand years of attempted suppression. We must dig into this lost literature, much of which is available online for free as pdfs hidden on archive.org and in google books.


[I intend to post a list in the near future compiling links to some of the better documents of contemporary folk practice, particularly that from the UK.]

A Few Guides/Resources Regarding Herbs and Safety

Okay, so I’ve seen a few posts today that have spooked me a little. In them, their is recommended use of herbs that are in fact poisonous or can be harmful in larger doses

I understand that lots of these posts are by new witches, or indeed older witches (because sometimes, people who’ve been practising for a while - myself included - do forget that what we consider common knowledge, is on fact not) and witchcraft is a constant journey of knowledge, so this is not a berating post!

Instead, I’m just going to list a few resources on poisonous herbs.

Lists and Properties:

Growing/Caring for Poisonous Plant Life:

2

You’ve Fucked with the Wrong Witch jar. 

Recently someone stole personal items off of my patio within the night and it really irritated me. A few days ago in the morning I saw someone out of the corner of my eyes while I was making tea and they were wearing a grey hoodie, hood up where I couldn’t see their face. It looked weird to me but really when you are home alone all day you feel everyone is suspicious coming by your house (at least that is just me, note, I live in apartments and on top of that live right near a trail everyone walks on, so I get people passing by all the time.) The next day lighters were taken off my patio, and it isn’t like I can go to the police. “Oh, some person in a grey hoodie stole lighters from me.” They can’t and wouldn’t do anything, there isn’t anything to go off of. Plus there lighters, who cares? People might say let it go but I won’t. Honestly, no matter how big or small of what was taken the fact is I feel violated. Someone jumped my enclosed fence onto my patio, trespassing and took my shit. That isn’t okay with. 

By this incident I was inspired to make this jar and I hope that it can help you if you come across something similar within your life. Justice comes to those who yield the sword. 

Ingredients: 
A black candle
Dragon’s Blood incense ashes. 
Tobacco or tobacco ash (optional)
Coffee grounds 
Lily of the Valley (optional, warning, this herb is poisonous. If you use, use with care) 
Poppy
A pinch of salt. 

Directions: 
Light your candle. Open your jar, place your ingredients one by one as you wish. You can say whatever you would like to set your intentions or say nothing at all, this is what I said though: 
                “No harm or thievery shall come to me because this is my home and I will protect it. With my power and my two hands I shield those away who want to cause harm and tricks and if you come across this threshold without permission then you shall feel my wrath that will cause a storm of unfortunate luck for you because I am not the person you should be fucking with.” 
Once you are finished, cap up your jar, and let it sit next to the candle as it burns out. (If you can, don’t leave a candle lit if you won’t be home) Once the candle is done, charge your jar as you’d like. (full moon, crystals, incense, etc.)

To Use: 
Sprinkle this powder under your front door mat or around your patio/balcony in the corners. Make sure it is where you won’t accidentally get any on you. I don’t recommend placing this on the bare ground either. There is salt in this and you don’t want to kill that spot of the earth. 

WARNING:
I do not recommend placing this powder inside the house. This is more for an external barrier to surround your home. Plus, there are toxic ingredients within spell and you don’t want any to harm you, others, or pets. 

Herbs to avoid during pregnancy

 There’s a lot of reasons to use herbs. You want a more natural medicine to treat something. You enjoy the taste of fresh herbal teas. You practice some form of paganism and/or witchcraft and use herbs in your craft. You should always consult with your medical care provider before starting any herbal regimen. Be sure to look into any herbs and natural remedies you want to try too, to make sure they don’t negatively effect you because of any pre-existing medical conditions.

This particular section though, I’m going to be talking about herbs and pregnancy. Some plants contain substances that we know can lead to miscarriage, premature birth, birth defects and more. I know some people will use this list as a reference for natural contraceptives. That’s fine, but there is an important part to touch on with that.

When we think of contraceptives today, we think of hormonal contraceptives or barrier methods. Herbs are neither of those. Herbs that work as contraceptives are abortive. They don’t prevent you from becoming pregnant, they terminate a pregnancy very early on. It is important to note that if you’re using contraceptive herbs, and still become pregnant enough that you’re aware of it, you should either stop use immediately or look at your other options for terminating the pregnancy. I’m not promoting abortion, but you should be aware that using contraceptive herbs, and having them fail, can result in serious birth defects. If that’s not something you want to deal with, be aware that continuing to take the herbs may make it worse, not just get rid of the pregnancy.

If you’re looking at this for a list of herbs to avoid while you’re pregnant, so as not to risk hurting the fetus and ensuing baby, then you should be avoiding these herbs if you’re trying to become pregnant too. Studies show that 30% to 50% of all fertilized eggs are lost before a pregnancy is actually established, and the woman never even knows about it. Of known pregnancies, 10% to 20% end in miscarriage. So, it’s important if you’re trying to have a baby, to do everything possible not to contribute to those numbers.

So, with no further ado, these are the herbs to avoid if you are now, or are trying to become pregnant.

Saw Palmetto

Goldenseal

Donq Quai (used in combination with other herbs to induce miscarriage)

Ephedra

Yohimbe

Pay D'Arco

Passion Flower

Black Cohosh (used in combination with other herbs to induce miscarriage)

Blue Cohosh (used in combination with other herbs to induce miscarriage)

Chamomile (roman)

Pennyroyal

Ginseng

Evening Primrose

Feverfew

Kava Kava

Aloe

Valerian

Rosemary (in amounts greater than normally found in food)

Yarrow

Licorice

Angelica (used in combination with other herbs to induce miscarriage)

Lovage

Mistletoe

Myrrh

Sage

Thyme (in amounts greater than normally found in food )

Tumeric

Motherwort

Also, while you (hopefully) don’t ever ingest known poisonous herbs, I’d also advise not handling them while pregnant as some things can be absorbed through your skin. Not a lot, but better safe than sorry. These are herbs that are listed by the USDA as Unsafe or Potentially Unsafe for use during pregnancy.

Hecate Aesthetic ; requested by @kakussy-licious

Hecate is a goddess in Ancient Greek religion and mythology, most often shown holding two torches or a key and in later periods depicted in triple form. She was variously associated with crossroads, entrance-ways, light, magic, witchcraft, knowledge of herbs and poisonous plants, ghosts, necromancy, and sorcery.

6

Herbs, flowers, fruits, wood: The substitutes you can count on!

You’ll probably be using at least one of the above things in most magical workings. Here’s a quick breakdown! 

ROSEMARY: Rosemary can substitute for any herb. Used for its own properties, it is a good component in cleansing baths, can be kept under the pillow to remember dreams, and things associated with memory: memorable impressions, recall, and enhancement of one’s own memory. In cooking, it makes a delicious addition to savory dishes and meats, while also providing a complex flavor to sweet applications. Rosemary infused in honey or tea is strong and tasty, and it adds a sophisticated edge to simple sweets like sugar cookies.

ROSE: Rose can substitute for any flower. Make sure to only get roses for culinary applications or grow your own, since those from a florist will likely contain pesticides! Roses are known for their uses in love spells, but are also used in many applications calling for happy, benign energy. Rose can soothe an angry heart, especially if the anger is due to relationship issues. In cooking, rose is a delicate floral note that can easily be lost under intense flavor, and is best highlighted in sweet or mild applications. Rose petals and rosehips make great tea, and can be jellied for a vitamin-C rich treat. Rose petals can be infused into oil, honey, sugars, and alcohol. Rose water can be used to enhance the flavor, but be sparing—storebought rosewater does not taste as light as homemade, and can overpower and ruin natural floral flavors.

LEMON/ORANGE: Fruit substitutions are less straightforward than others, but lemon, orange, and occasionally apple are considered solid go-tos. Pick whichever is right for the working or recipe, based either on intent or the other spell components! Lemon is associated with water and the moon, and used frequently in purifying and cleansing—both magical and non-magical. Lemon and honey in hot water is a great remedy for sore throat and indigestion, and the smell of lemon will perk you right up on a sleepy morning. Lemon (or any citrus) peel infuses fantastically in sugar, honey, booze, etc. Avoid using pith (the white stuff) and stick to the flavorful zest and juice. Zest is great in practically any baked good, and simply pouring hot water over used lemon rinds will make you entire house smell amazing.

PINE: Pine is regarded as a good substitute for most resins and woods. Pine resin is easy to collect, as are the needles, with a little reading on the species of tree. Pine is thought to banish sickness and bring in prosperity and luck, and often hung over doors or mixed into fragrant sachets to place under pillows. Pine needle tea is bitter, but rich in vitamins A and C; it should be incorporated sparingly to cooking applications, and you may want to enhance it with mint to avoid overuse of the bitter pine taste. In outdoor cooking, pine smells beautiful under a grill or in a fire.

CLARIFICATION: Some people have pointed out that pine can be dangerous to burn due to the high quantities of resin in the wood. This is not untrue! Pine can produce larger quantities of creosote and smoke, due to the resin and tar in logs. However, unless you cook with an all-pine fire regularly, it is not likely to reach dangerous levels (which you wouldn’t anyway, because all-pine fires will make your food taste like a BUTT). I also specified that it should be outdoor flame, since in a wood stove it can cause dangerous buildup. Also, not a great idea to use exclusively pine wood in a fire, as it won’t burn as well/won’t taste great; it’s best when cut with oak. Since pine burns hot, I like to start my bonfire/grill with it, and then pile apple or cherry wood on for the actual cooking an hour later. A few good pine logs/handful of chips will burn well, smell great, and be largely harmless. So like most spell components, research well and use in moderation! 

TOBACCO: Substitute for any poisonous herb. NOT FOR CULINARY USE. It is worth mentioning only in the case that someone is adapting a non-edible spell or ritual into an edible recipe that includes a poisonous herb—NEVER bring toxic plants into the kitchen, at risk of cross-contamination, and instead substitute tobacco by burning a cigarette near the pot (or, if you don’t want that in the house, burning it outside and catching a little smoke in a bottle to bring in). Do not add ashes to the cooking, as they are also poisonous. Don’t let this anywhere near your mouth.

QUARTZ: Not exactly a cooking ingredient, but stones are often used in magic and it is possible to bring them into the kitchen. Clear quartz is a good substitute for any stone you may not have, as it cleanly amplifies energies. While I wouldn’t ever put stones IN something you intend to eat, if you insist on soaking a stone/crystal in liquid recipe ingredients (water, tea, milk, etc), use quartz or another safe stone; malachite, copper, and many other minerals become poisonous when introduced to liquid environments. Don’t put any stone in something acidic, like juice, unless you are POSITIVE it will 1. not erode, and 2. not poison you. Don’t put crystals or stones in overly hot or boiling water, as this could cause them to crack and explode. And if they DO, don’t eat anything with sharp little crystal bits in it! Seriously, treat small shattered crystals like you would glass shards.

Most of these substitute ingredients are entirely edible (or at least mostly harmless) in some form, so if you’re trying to adapt a nonedible spell to baking or cooking, consider using some of these subs in the place of less…digestible…spell components. There are usually plenty of other subs with the properties you need, but these steadfast six are not only reliable, but pretty easy to acquire!