the magic gardens

2

“Sunset Roses” by Milmon F Harrison

McKinley Park Memorial Rose Garden. Sacramento, CA, USA

Continuing to practice using the new wide angle lens. It’s very different than what I’m used to but opens up some really new possbilities. I was interested in the subtle effects of the fading sunlight on the white roses (and I really like it and the bokeh through the trees). In hindsight, I wish I’d also taken some shots focused on the distance rather than on the roses and allowed them to be less sharp to point to the trees, sun, and clouds behind. For future reference, I think I’ll reverse that to see what I’ll get. Gonna try again and compare.

innaffiare 

Domestic Garden Witch: When Eggshells Grow

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Eggshells for the Garden Witch

The kitchen witch has eggshells piling up on the counter, dried and ready to be ground up for use in protection powders. The garden witch looks at these shells and thinks, “Oh! Fertilizer!”

But if you’re limited in space and have to keep your garden limited to your windowsill, you may find yourself looking at those eggshells and saying “Oh! New pottery!” Not only is creating an eggshell planter a very green practice, but it’s also creative and makes transplanting much easier if you end up having a larger garden later on!

The Container…

Simple enough, you just need mostly intact eggshells. In the picture above, the eggshells are kept in the carton, but I’ve seen eggshells set up decoratively, such as with this picture:

The core of this post is clearly the eggshells, but you can arrange them in whatever way saves space or is aesthetically pleasing!

Carefully fill the emptied eggshell with potting soil. Make an indent in the soil with your finger, and carefully add your seedling before adding a final layer of soil and watering. If you plan on keeping the plants in the eggshells instead of transplanting, you could also carefully poke holes in the bottom of the eggshells so that your plants don’t get over-watered.

How Can I Witch This?

Eggshells alone are extremely protective, and providing your plants with that energy is beneficial. Around Ostara, use died eggshells! Not only will the shells have protective energy, but you’ll be able to use color correspondences and whatever symbols you used for the rite.

Draw symbols or runes of growth, protection, and strength on the shells in order to encourage your plant’s growth!

Bonus points is if you grow protective herbs in the eggshells!

May your harvests always be fruitful!
Blessed Be! )O(

Magickal Folk Names for Herbs

Having knowledge of herbs and plants (either magically or medicinally) during the Middle Ages, often was reason enough to accuse a woman of being a “witch,” so there is no doubt some of the country folk at the time took these herbal folk names literal.  Chances are, these names were used merely as descriptors to help remember them easier.  Most plants were given names descriptive of their uses and others were given names for something they generally resembled. Spells written by witches in ancient times were often written with such descriptors, which personally i believe to be a form of secret coding.

Here is a small list of “witchy” herb names (most of these are already floating around the community) that you can use in your craft when you create your spells.  This list could be a great addition to any Grimoire and i hope you find them as useful as i do.

Enjoy ~~~  Cannawitch

Plants

Aaron’s Rod - Goldenrod or mullein stalk
Absinthe - Wormwood
Adder’s Fork - Adder’s Tongue Fern or Bistort
Adder’s Tongue - Dog’s Tooth Violet (or Adder’s Tongue Fern
Ague root - Unicorn root
Alison - Sweet Alyssum
Angel Food, Archangel - Angelica
Angel’s Trumpet - Datura
Ass’s Ear - colt’s foot or comfrey
Ass’s Foot, Bull’s Foot - colt’s foot
Auld Man’s Bells, Old man’s bells - wood hyacinth, Hyacinthoides hispanica

Bad Man’s/Devil’s Oatmeal/Porridge - hemlock
Bad Man’s/Devil’s Plaything - Yarrow
Bastard - false Dittany
Bat flower - tacca
Bat’s Wing - Holly leaf
Bat’s Wool - moss (which moss?)
Bear’s Foot - Lady’s Mantle
Bear’s Grape Bearberry Arctostaphylos uva-ursi
Bear Paw - ramsons Allium ursinum or the root of male fern Dryopteris Felix-mas
Bear weed - Yerba Santa Eriodictyon californicum
Beard of a Monk - Chicory
Beggar’s Lice - Hound’s tongue
Beggar’s Buttons - Burdock
Bird’s Eye - Speedwell Veronica officinalis
Bird’s Foot - Fenugreek Trigonella foenum-graecum (Also bird’s foot violet and bird’s foot trefoil)
Bird’s Nest - carrot, Indian pipe
Bishop’s Wort, Bishop’s Elder - Wood betony Stachys betonica
Bitter Grass - Ague Root Aletris Farinosa
Black Sampson - Echinacea
Blazing Star - liatris
Blind Eyes - Poppy
Blood from a head - Lupine *
Blood from a shoulder - Bear’s breech *
Blood of a Goose - Sap from a mulberry * Morus nigra
Blood of an Eye - Tamarisk gall * (probably the tannin extracted from)
Blood of Ares - purslane *
Blood of Hephaestus - wormwood *
Blood of Hestia - Chamomile *
Blood - sap of the elder or bloodwort
Bloody butcher - Valerian
Bloody Fingers - Foxglove
Blue Bottle - Bachelor’s buttons
Boy’s Love, Lad’s Love: Southernwood
Brain Thief - Mandrake
Bone of an Ibis - buckthorn * I am not sure if this is Rhamnus cathartica or sea buckthorn Hippophae spp If I can find a recipe containing this, I will know for sure by comparing its purpose to their very different qualities
Bread and Cheese - Hawthorn
Bride of the Meadow - meadowsweet
Bull’s Blood - beet or horehound
Burning bush - false dittany, also a modern name for species of Euonymus
Cow’s Horn - Fenugreek Trigonella foenum-graecum
Bride of the Sun - calendula
Brown Dragon - wake robin
Buttons - tansy

Calf’s snout - Snapdragon
Candlemas Maiden - snowdrop
Candlewick - mullein, the flower stalk
Capon’s Tail - valerian
Carpenter’s Herb - bugleweed Lycopus europaeus
Carpenter’s Square - knotted figwort
Carpenter’s weed - Yarrow
Cat - catnip
Cat’s foot - white balsam, black cohosh, ground ivy
Cat’s herb - valerian
Chameleon star - bromeliad
Cheeses - marsh mallow
Chocolate flower - wild geranium (I don’t buy it)
Christ’s eye - wild clary Salvia verbenaca
Christ’s ladder - centaury
Christ’s spear - adder’s tongue fern Ophioglossum vulgatum
Church steeple - Agrimony
Clear eye - clary sage
Cleavers - bedstraw
Click - goosegrass
Clot - great mullien
Cocklebur - Agrimony
Cock’s comb - amaranth
Colt’s Tail - fleabane
Crane’s bill - wild geranium
Crow’s foot - wild geranium, or wood anemone bulbous buttercup (verified)
Crowdy kit - figwort
Cuckoo’s bread - common plantago
Cucumber tree - magnolia
Cuddy’s lungs - great mullein
Crown for a king - wormwood

Dagger flower - blue flag
Daphne - bay laurel
Dead man’s bells foxglove
Death angel - fly agaric Amanita Muscaria
Death cap - fly agaric Amanita Muscaria
Death flower - Yarrow
Death’s Herb - Belladonna
Delight of the Eye - rowan
Devil Plant - basil
Devil’s Apple - Mayapple or Mandrake
Devil’s beard - houseleek
Devil’s bit - false unicorn root
Devil’s cherries Belladonna berries
Devil’s plaything - yarrow
Devil’s dung - asafoetida
Devil’s ear - wakerobin
Devil’s eye - henbane or periwinkle
Devil’s flower - bachelor’s buttons
Devil’s fuge - mistletoe
Devil’s guts - dodder
Devil’s herb - belladonna
Devil’s milk - celandine
Devil’s nettle - yarrow
Devil’s Shoestring: Various varieties of vibernum, esp Black Haw, cramp bark, hobblebush
Dew of the Sea - Rosemary
Dog Berry - wild rose hips
Dog’s mouth - snap dragon
Dog’s tongue - hound’s tongue
Dove’s foot - wild geranium
Dragon - tarragon
Dragon Flower - blue flag (really, wild iris? not an arum or a Antirrhinum?)
Dragon wort - bistort
Dragon’s blood - calamus

Eagle - ramsons Allium ursinum
Earth apple - potato
Earth smoke- fumitory
Elf’s wort - Elecampane
Enchanter’s plant - vervain
Englishman’s fruit/ White man’s foot - common plantain
Everlasting friendship - goosegrass
Eye root - goldenseal

Fairy smoke - Indian pipe
Fairy fingers - foxglove
Fat from a Head - spurge *
Felon herb - Mugwort
Five fingers - cinquefoil
Fox’s Clote - burdock
Frog’s foot - bulbous buttercup
From the belly - Earth-apple. * potato?? Did the writers know about potatoes? When was pgm written?
From the foot - houseleek *
From the loins - chamomile *

Goat’s foot - morning glory
Goat’s Horn - Fenugreek Trigonella foenum-graecum
God’s hair - hart’s tongue fern
Golden’s star - avens
Gosling’s wing - goosegrass
Graveyard dust - mullein (and sometimes it’s just graveyard dust)

Hag’s taper - mullien stalk
Hagthorn - hawthorn
Hair of Venus - Maidenhair fern
Hairs of a Hamadryas Baboon: Dill Seed *
Hare’s beard - mullein
Hawk’s Heart, Old Woman - Wormwood Artemisia absinthium crown or seed head *
Hind’s tongue - hart’s tongue fern
Holy herb - yerba santa
Holy rope - hemp agrimony Eupatorium cannabinum
Horse tongue - hart’s tongue fern
Hundred eyes - periwinkle

Innocence - bluets

Jacob’s Staff - Great Mullein
Joy of the Mountain - Marjoram
Jupiter’s Staff - Great Mullein

King’s Crown: Black Haw vibernum
Knight’s Milfoil - Yarrow
Kronos’ Blood - sap of Cedar *

Lady’s glove - foxglove
Lamb’s ears - betony but more likely lamb’s ear Stachys byzantina
Lion’s Hair - The extra little roots that stick out of the turnip bulb or the base leaves Brassica rapa *
Lion’s tooth - dandelion
Little dragon - tarragon
Love in idleness - pansy
Love Lies Bleeding - amaranth (Not so ancient, a modern ornamental variant)
Love Leaves - burdock
Love man - goosegrass
Love Parsley - lovage
Love root - orris root

Maiden’s Ruin - Southernwood
Man’s Bile - Turnip Juice *
Man’s Health - Ginseng
Master of the Woods - Woodruff
May Lily - Lily of the Valley
May Rose - Black Haw viburnum
May - Black Haw viburnum
Maypops - Passion Flower
Mistress of the Night - Tuberose
Mutton Chops - Goosegrass

Nose Bleed - Yarrow

Old Man’s Flannel - Great Mullein
Old Man’s Pepper - Yarrow
Old-Maid’s-Nightcap - Wild Geranium

Password - primrose
Peter’s Staff - Great Mullein
Poor Man’s Treacle - Garlic
Priest’s Crown - Dandelion leaves

Queen of the Meadow Root - Gravelroot
Queen of the Meadow - Meadowsweet
Queen of the Night - Vanilla Cactus

Rats and Mice - Hound’s tongue
Ram’s horn - valerian
Ring a Bells - bluebell
Robin run in the grass - goosegrass

Scaldhead - blackberry
Seed of Horus - horehound
See bright - Clary sage
Semen of Ammon - Houseleek *
Semen of Ares - Clover *
Semen of Helios - White Hellebore *
Semen of Hephaistos - Fleabane *
Semen of Herakles - arugula *
Semen of Hermes - Dill *
Seven Year’s Love Yarrow
Shameface - Wild Geranium
Shepherd’s Heart - Shepherd’s Purse
Silver Bells - Black Haw viburnum
Snake Root - black cohosh
Soapwort - Comfrey or Daisy or maybe Soapwort
Sorcerer’s Violet - Periwinkle
Sparrow’s Tongue - Knotweed
St. John’s Herb - Hemp Agrimony
St. John’s Plant - Mugwort
Star Flower - Borage
Star of the Earth - Avens
Starweed - Chickweed
Sweethearts - Goosegrass
Swine’s Snout - Dandelion leaves

Tail of a Pig - Leopard’s bane *
Tanner’s bark - toadflax
Tartar root - ginseng
Tears of a Hamadryas Baboon - Dill Juice *
Thousand weed - yarrow
Thunder plant - houseleek
Titan’s Blood - Wild Lettuce Lactuca virosa *
Torches - mullein flower stalk

Unicorn’s horn - unicorn root or false unicorn root
Urine - dandelion or maybe urine

Wax dolls - fumitory
Weasel - rue
Weasel snout - yellow archangel
Winter wood - wild cinnamon Canella alba
White - ox eye daisy
Witch’s Asprin - white willow bark (this is ancient?)
Witch’s brier - wild brier rose hips
Wolf claw - club moss
Wolf’s foot - bugleweed
Wolf’s milk - euphorbia
Woodpecker - herbLpeony
Worm fern- male fern Dryopteris Felix-mas

Yerba Santa Maria - epazote

Plant Parts/Body Parts

Blood - Sap or juice
Eye - The disc of a composite flower, or a seed
Foot - Leaf
Guts - Roots, stalks, tangly bits
Hair - Very stringy roots (sometimes silk or tangly stems)
Head - Flower head or seed head
Tail - Stem
Tongue - Petal, sometimes stigma
Toes - leaf or bud
Paw - sometimes bud, usually leaf
Privates - Seed pod
Worm - stringy roots
Wool - Moss

Minerals

A Snake’s Ball of Thread - soapstone *
Blood of a Snake - hematite *
Crocodile Dung - Soil from Ethiopia *
A Physician’s bone - sandstone *

Animal Parts

A Snake’s Head - A leech *
Blood of a Hyrax - A rock badger, * small weasel-like/rodent-like (but actually neither) creature native to Africa and the Middle East
Blood of a Hamadryas Baboon - Blood of a spotted gecko *
Bull’s semen - the egg of a blister beetle *
Lion Semen - Human semen *
Kronos’ Spice - Pig Milk *

* From Ecloga ex Papyris Magicis: Liber I, V, xxvi



More Sources for verification -

  • Galen - De succedaneis, Claudii Galeni Opera Omnia, v 19
  • Paulus Aegineta, Corpus Medicorum Graecorum IX/2 vII
  • Dioscorides De Materia Medica
  • Witchipedia
  • Lady Raven
  • Tryskelion
The Domestic Garden Witch: Po-Ta-Toes

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Samwise Gamgee’s Dream Come True!

Originally posted by straightcray

Okay, so if you follow my blog, chances are that you’re wondering if this whole potato theme for today is because of St. Patrick’s. I promise, I’m not enforcing Irish stereotypes on purpose. I just really like potatoes, and when it comes to gardening, it’s a bit of a disservice to overlook this vegetable. After all, when we think about kitchen gardens or home gardens, we think of herbs or flowers, and not about the veggies we eat that live a rather subterranean existence. But potatoes - those lovely little brown lumps that we can get for a couple dollars per five pound bag in the supermarket - are not only inexpensive. They’re extremely hardy little plants that can be grown rather easily.

You don’t need much to get started with this project. First, you need “seed potatoes.” This is not hard to find. Simply take a few potatoes and allow them to grow a bit. They will sprout a few short little stalks from the eyes on the surface. Save these, and get potting mix and two medium to large plastic pots that can easily stack one inside the other.

Carefully cut a few panes out of the inner pot as in the picture above, then place the inner pot into the outer one. Fill the pot part way with soil, add your seed potatoes, and cover them with potting mix. Water as needed until the potato plants peek up out of the soil. Cover them again and repeat this process gradually until the pot is full.

In roughly three months, you’ll have potato plants that are ready to begin harvesting. Simply lift the inner pot up and pluck your potatoes as needed from the sides! Fresh potatoes, free!

Ideally, this method of potato cultivation can help feed a family of four for about a year. My family had used this method, and our family of five was able to stay fed for a year off of two of these planters (we like potatoes… and we eat them a lot…)

Originally posted by relatable-anime-moments

How Can I Witch This?

Potatoes are very useful in witchcraft, and you can find out some of their magickal uses in my Foodie Friday article about Seafood Gnocchi. As for growing them, many of those properties remain the same!

As with any gardening venture, add crystals to the soil to promote healthy and fruitful plants, draw sigils and symbols on the pottery or planters, and incorporate protection or fertility ingredients into the soil - such as eggshell or coffee grounds.

Outside of the useful culinary benefits of having a potato planter on your front porch, a garden such as this is useful for outdoor space cleansing in small spaces, and for inviting prosperity into your home or property since potatoes represent such comforts as full bellies and pockets.

Since a small number of potatoes can be used to produce a much larger quantity in this planting method, you could even turn them into a prosperity or slow growth money spell! Pour your intent into the seed potatoes when you plant them, and as they produce new crops, give them water and food as an offering in order to keep the spell fed! Some of the potatoes produced in this way can also be converted into offerings or used in spellwork, in addition to being used to cook with!

The possibilities are practically endless where potatoes are concerned! See what you can do with these nifty little spuds!

And may your harvests always be bountiful!

Blessed Be! )O(

The Domestic Garden Witch: Gardening Without Plants!

So maybe you’re a college witch with limited space and money, limited to the one window in your dorm. Or, maybe you’re a witch without extensive backyard space who wants to start up a magical garden. Perhaps you’re a kitchen witch who wants the freshest herbs right at her fingertips.

For many witches, having a garden seems to be a bit of a no-brainer. After all, plants and magic go hand-in-hand. Plus, when thinking of a witch, it’s hard not to think of a cottage in the woods with a little vegetable garden out front. Unfortunately for the majority of us, our cottage in the woods is a tiny flat, and our garden out front is a windowsill with limited space.

This is when it comes time to embrace your craftiness and bring your garden indoors! Not only does it place your garden in a convenient location, it also allows you to freshen the air, recycle what would otherwise harm the earth, and embrace your witchy green thumb!

Sand and Meditation

Something that often does not cross an individual’s mind when they hear the word “garden” is the thought of a garden without plants, especially where witches are concerned. After all, witches are sometimes known for the sheer amount of herbs and plants they collect (hell, my boyfriend sometimes criticizes the quantity of herbs I have - not my practice, mind you, just the fact that I have over thirty varieties of herbs in large quantities in my witchy drawers). But gardens take all sorts of shapes and sizes, including that of the zen garden, Japanese rock garden, or meditation garden.

Unlike planted gardens, these are minimalist creations designed to help induce meditative thought and relaxation through the use of flowing patterns and stone placement which often are likened to mountains or islands rising up from the sea. They are generally designed as large features which are raked into different patterns each day, but are easily adaptable for the small amount of room our domestic garden witch might have!

Creating Your Garden

As with any indoor garden, perhaps the first thing to look into is the type of container in which you’d like to keep it. In this case, a dish that is wider than it is tall is recommended. Choose either rounded shapes or rectangular shaped dishes that are shallow yet deep enough to hold sand.

Fill this dish with sand - white is traditional, though colored sands can be found in local craft stores or dollar stores - until it is about half full. Select visually appealing stones and set them on the sand.

With a utensil, trace ripples into the sand - flowing lines reminiscent of water are traditional.

If you feel that you want a bit of plant life, small air plants are definitely helpful. Remember to design your garden based on simplicity. Use natural themes and variations in your design to provide an aesthetic that you find appealing.

Tools of the Rock Garden

Typically when you think of a desktop zen garden, you might envision one of the little kits that you can get as a novelty gift at Barnes and Noble. In these kits, there is of course a couple of little rakes - one for smoothing out the sand and one for providing the patterns.

We’re witches on a budget, though, so let’s take a different approach - one similar to what’s pictured above. While it is completely reasonable to use a fork or a pen to make the patterns, you can take bamboo skewers or chopsticks and turn them into rakes using wire. Using these, you can smooth out the sand and rake patterns into it each day or as often as the whim takes you.

How Can I Witch This?

Unlike all of the gardens I’ve written about thus far, this is a garden whose only maintenance depends upon what you need from a meditative standpoint. Its design is not only decorative, but spiritually functional. If you’re a witch who is still fairly closeted and can’t have an altar, gardens such as these make for excellent substitutions, as they can form a sort of sacred space in which you can meditate and focus your intent.

If you’re a crystal witch, these sand gardens are a dream come true! Instead of placing stones, arrange your grids in the sand and use the rake or skewer to draw patterns in the sand to help focus the energy of the stones in your grid!

Draw sigils in the sand based on your intent and either wipe them away with the rake, or incorporate those sigils into the design of the ripples!

Sands come in various colors and grades. Play around with options for your sand! For cleansing, use a fine black sand. For empowerment, use a fiery orange or red. For healing, use white or light blue! The possibilities are near endless!

Of course, I can’t leave out my fellow kitchen witches! Salt is a key feature of the kitchen witch’s lifestyle. So much so, in fact, that in some circles it is believed that it is bad luck to run out of salt. For this reason, you can replace the sand with salt! This has a couple of benefits: first, it’s inexpensive. Second, it acts as a constant cleanser - much like a quartz cluster or a rod of selenite. When the salt has become to crusty to rake into appealing patterns, it has done its work! Dispose of the old salt and replace it with a new batch! (Do not pour the salt outside! This is harmful to the environment! Instead, find a safer way to dispose of the salt - I usually use the salt to clean out my mortar and pestle, then dissolve it in the sink to drain away).

If you use salt in place of sand, you can take the crystal grid concept a step further! Place the crystals in your “salt garden” and rake as you would if it were sand. This provides a way to cleanse your crystals in a way that is also visually appealing!

Consider different ways to make this plant-less garden a magical addition to the dorm or coffee table!

And may your harvests always be bountiful!
Blessed Be! )O(