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Posted by on in Culture Blogs

Goldenrod (Solidago virgaurea) and sweet goldenrod (S. odora) brighten the autumn roadsides, fields, and meadows. The genus name comes from the Latin solida, meaning “whole,” and ago, “to make” suggesting that goldenrod has been used for a range of medicinal purposes. According to folklore, goldenrod points toward hidden treasure or marks hidden springs. It was also believed that carrying a piece of goldenrod would aid in finding treasure. Blooming at the same time as ragweed (Ambrosia artemisiifolia), goldenrod took the rap for causing hay fever until studies showed that its pollen is too heavy to be airborne. Use dried flowers in a sachet for spells to attract wealth and prosperity. Place several sprigs of flowers and leaves on your altar to aid in divination. Cut long stems of flower plumes and place these wherever you need to lift and boost energy. Goldenrod is associated with the element air. Its astrological influence comes from Venus.

 

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Planet and Plant Magic with Jupiter

Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system is a prominent luminary in the evening sky in the northern hemisphere. Planetary energy can be used to enhance magical work especially when combined with the energy of plants. Draw Jupiter’s astrological symbol on a small piece of paper to combine with any part of a plant you use. Carry a clove with you to enhance success. When seeking justice use an acorn or oak leaf in a spell to raise energy. Oak will also help with strength and authority. Use myrrh during meditation to deepen your spirituality. To sharpen your intuition, burn a couple of pine needles. Attract money and prosperity by tucking a sprig of sage into the drawer or cabinet where you keep financial papers. Combine Jupiter’s symbol with a little anise for luck.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Light Up Your Summer Magic

To paraphrase the wizard Gandalf: the smallest of things can hold a great deal of power and that includes insects. Symbolism, energy, and visualization provide the means to call on their power. Also known as a lightning bug, the firefly is one of the good bugs and a gardener’s friend. The flickering bioluminescence of adult fireflies can turn any backyard into a magical display of twinkling lights. Like many people, I have fond childhood memories of catching and releasing them. Quite naturally, the firefly can aid us anytime we seek illumination and inspiration. Representing hope, it can also help when we need guidance. For spell work, include the firefly when you need to remove negativity or any metaphorical darkness in your life. As an activator, this bug adds power to spells. We can also call on it to get our own energy moving to help us achieve our goals. In addition, the firefly can give our creative expression a big boost.

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Magical Midsummer’s Day & Saint John’s Wort

Under the category of “if you can’t beat them, join them,” the feast of Saint John was a Christian substitute for the celebrations that were centered on this time of year. The counterparts to Saint John’s Day and summer solstice are Christmas and the winter solstice. In essence, Jesus and Saint John took the place of the oak and holly kings. Midsummer’s Day is part of the celebrations that occur around the times of the summer solstice. Falling midway between planting and harvest, it marks the middle of the growing season. One form of love divination was to pluck a flower of Saint John’s wort on Midsummer’s Eve. If it was still fresh and not wilted in the morning, one’s marriage prospects were good.

 

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The Healing and Magical Wizard Solomon’s Seal

The Israelite King Solomon was said to have great wisdom, and to possess a special signet or seal ring that aided him in his magic work. By medieval times, he was regarded as a great wizard. According to herbal lore, he was said to have placed his seal upon this plant when he realized its value. It is still used in herbal medicine for a range of treatments and regarded as a powerhouse. The circular scars on the rootstock, which are said to be the mark of Solomon’s seal, are actually left by the stems that die back after the growing season. During the Middle Ages, the design of the seal ring was regarded as a powerful amulet.

 

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Cailleach Lingers

In northern New England we’re used to long winters and lots of snow, but on May 9th? Perhaps the Cailleach has not gone away.

Known in Scotland as Cailleach Bheur, she was the personification of winter and ruled the weather from Samhain to Beltane. One of her tricks was to pound the earth with her long wooden staff to make the ground too hard for plants to grow. She especially liked snow, but by the beginning of February her store of wood ran low which meant that it was time to collect fallen tree branches. If the day was bright and sunny she would gather wood and be all set for more cold weather; but if the weather were cloudy and wet she would stay home and work her magic to bring winter to an end. Where grass doesn’t grow under a holly tree, it was said to be the spot where she threw her staff when spring arrived.  

To protect your garden, walk around it three times as you say three times: “Cailleach, great crone of winter; mother of darkness whose stories are told. Bless these plants, keep safe my garden; protect us through the storms and cold.”  

 

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A Powerful Plant Ally in Stressful Times

Lavender is a beloved garden plant that is widely known for calming nerves, balancing emotions, and fostering a sense of peace. The scent of this plant aids in getting restful sleep, which is especially important during stressful times. Lavender essential oil is the easiest way to use this plant.

 

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