Hedge Witch: Into the Wilds…

Let me take you on a journey through the wilds of nature and back to the roots and bones of witchcraft, a natural witchcraft that works with the seasons and all the natural items that Mother Nature provides drawing on magical folk lore with a dash of hedge witch and gypsy magic too.

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Rachel Patterson

Rachel Patterson

 
Rachel is a witch...has been for a very long time, not the green skinned warty kind obviously...the real sort - but she is also a working wife and mother living in Hampshire, England who has also been lucky enough to write and have published a growing stack of books on the Craft. She loves to learn she loves to study and continues to do so each and every day but has learned the most from actually getting outside and doing it. She regularly gives talks and workshops at pagan events. Rachel is also founder and an Elder at the Kitchen Witch online school of witchcraft. She likes to laugh...and eat cake...
 

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Flowers, seeds, roots and leaves...

How to harvest: Flowers, seeds, bark, roots, berries & leaves

If you are picking flowers or plants for magical workings then here is a basic guideline:

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At the crossroads

There are a heap load of folk songs that tell us the devil resides at the crossroads but we don’t really need to worry about him…what we are more interested in is the belief that the crossing of two roads is a powerful spot.  The crossroads is the centre of the four winds and the four directions.  The centre point links the two worlds, that of the living and the dead – it is an ‘in between’ place.   In some traditions you would go to the crossroads at midnight to meet Eshu/Elegba and in others it is the place sacred to the sun god Ra and the godsBhairava, Hermes and Mercury and the goddess Hecate.  The crossroads is also a place where Hoodoo tricks take place and where spells can be buried to ‘do their thing’.   

You may find in your local woods or even parks that there is a place where two dirt tracks cross or even where a bridge goes directly over a straight run of river or stream.  That centre spot is an excellent place to work magic.  It is also a good place to dispose of magic tricks and workings after you have finished with them including candle stubs.

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Offerings

Offerings

When I collect anything from the wild I do like to leave an offering of some sort.  If I am in the woods or fields I don’t often have anything to hand so I give the plant or tree a blessing and a thank you. 

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Shells & Sea Glass

Shells

Living near the sea I am lucky enough to be able to collect sea shells easily, I love walking along the beach and always come back with pockets full of shells and hag stones.

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Getting connected...

Every space whether it is your back garden, your living room, the city park or the middle of a field it all has its own unique energy and history.  

I live on the edge of a large city in a terraced house.  My house was built in 1920 but before that there was another house on the land and before that and before that.  In fact as I also live near the sea, the city being a port it has attracted dwellings probably since man needed a roof over his head and somewhere nearby to catch food (i.e. the sea).  The first recorded dwellings date back to the late 9th Century and we have apparently had Romans, Normans, Saxons and all and sundry living here.  So the land itself holds a huge amount of memories and echoes from our ancestors, oh the tales it could tell…

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It's a thorny issue...

Lots of plants have thorns on them; roses, brambles and blackthorn spring to mind and these thorns can be used for magic.  Think about what a thorn does, they are protection for the plant, they guard it against predators and they are sharp and defensive.  They can pierce, they can cut and they can draw blood.

Folk lore says that blackthorn thorns were always used to curse but folklore says a lot of things that we have since twisted around to our advantage but if that is the choice you make…thorns (any type) are very good for cursing and hexing spell work, rose thorns work especially well in affairs of the broken heart. 

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Honour the bones...

Bones

In the old days bones and animal parts were used widely for magical purposes.  People were hunters they used all the parts of an animal primarily for food and warmth, and the bones for magic.

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