We keep reassuring the neighbors ~ I’m harmless…Really!
We keep reassuring the neighbors ~ I’m harmless…Really!
|(South end of the Old Garden)…It’s the middle of the Old Garden that I’m still working on– the girls and I just picked up another large load of mulch and stones today. I’ve purchased so much mulch and garden supplies from our local Menards this year that one employee asked me if I do landscaping.
Below are some of the flowers and plants that grace our gardens and grounds:
|(Our Large Rosebush)
|(from underneath looking out)
|(My neon hot pink geraniums, up close)…My sixteen-year-old daughter took this photo right after I watered the geraniums.____________________
We have tiki torches all over the yard in the various garden spots, and on Monday, June 4th, the night of the Full Moon, we lit all of them and wandered around the yard for a while enjoying the magickal night while I tried to take pictures of both the full moon and the gardens, just the gardens, and just the moon– the moon photos being mostly unsuccessful, they really didn’t give you the full effect (no pun intended).
Following are pictures that I took:
|(The newest garden spot, which I just created this May,
slap-dab in the middle of the front lawn)…I’ve often noticed that so many people have very bare front yards and create their garden space only in the backyard, out of sight. I didn’t want to do that; I wanted to be able to see a garden from my front door, and I wanted everyone else passing by to see my garden as well. I wanted to be different, and this is something I generally succeed at, just ask my family.
|(Follow the Yellow Brick Road)…I’ve always wanted to create a “Magickal Threshold” into the backyard, and I decided to do just that this year with a grape arbhor and grapevines. The plants are hard to see in the dark, but there are grapes planted on either side of the arbor, and the leaves are suppose to turn beautiful colors in the autumn. We’ll have to see just how much they grow this summer. The Yellow Brick Road in daylight:
|(The Patio Court)…I posted one of the photos of the patio court at Facebook. It was absolutely loaded with orbs. The girls and I love to sit out here in the dark of the evening, with candles lit at the table, sometimes under moonlight, and sometimes by the glow of the tiki torches. The Patio Court, daytime:
The Chicken Corner:
This spot is just inside the backyard, at the end of the brick path, and this is where we have Cletus’s kennel.
The Front Yard Garden in daylight:
I’ve been working like a crazy woman this spring redoing garden spots, adding new garden spots, planting, mulching, planning, shopping, and creating. It’s been a hoot, and I’ve loved the bonus of this early growing season. I’ve added several photos to a new garden slideshow, and I’ll be updating this slideshow from time to time with new pictures. Welcome!…
|Customize your own slideshow|
I’ve been working like a maniac the last couple of weeks redoing the flowerbeds, landscaping, and cleaning up the yard. I wish I would’ve kept track of how many large bags of mulch and soil I’ve gone through; I can tell you that it is a lot! I told my husband that I must have been bitten by some sort of ‘landscape bug’. I’m even fixated enough by it that I notice the landscaping everywhere I go– outside the Dr’s office, in front of the post office, you name it. I think I’ve spent close to $1000 dollars, and I still have the front yard left to do. I bought so much mulch at our local Mennard’s that the guy helping us this week asked me on one of my daily trips…”Do you do landscaping?” I thought a minute, and then I told him, “Yes, I guess I do.” My girls laughed about this all the way home.
I’ve taken a few photos and started a slideshow, but keep in mind that I’m a long way from done yet. As I complete new projects and areas, I’ll take more photos and update this slideshow. We have a large project planned for the front lawn.
|Photo slideshow created with Smilebox|
I was just talking to my girls the other day about flowers and foliage and the seasons. I mentioned that it seems, after that first brilliant ‘coming to life’ in the spring, there is a hot and lazy period. Everything seems scorched and beaten by the summer sun, wilted and tortured by the elements of the dog days of summer; and then comes autumn, blessed autumn. It’s like a second birth, a brilliant blossoming, a breath of cool fresh air that seems to revitalize the world of flora. Everything in the garden throws itself into color and beauty with renewed energy, just in time to begin turning for a glorious autumn show.
Many of the flowers that highlight this time of year are also some of my favorites, and it’s these flowers and plants that I’m going to look at from a magickal point of view. What are their connections to the elements? the planets? magickal intentions? How can I use them to work my magick in order to promote positive change?
Acacia: It’s gender is masculine (projective), it’s planet is the Sun, and it’s element Air. Acacia is used for protection and to promote psychic powers. Burn a small amount of the wood with sandalwood before practicing divination. A sprig from this tree kept in the home will ward off evil and protect the inhabitants from negative outside influences.
Allium: It’s gender is feminine (receptive), it’s planet Venus, and it’s element Water. I use allium in spells for feminine empowerment, to heighten intuition and psychism, and to promote feelings of love and well-being. I’ve used it both in mojo bags and magickal oils.
Alstromeria: White/pink/peach– the gender is feminine (receptive), the planet Venus, the element Earth; yellow/orange/red– the gender is still feminine (receptive), but it carries a bit of a punch; the planet is Mars, the element Fire. I use the milder more gentle form to work gentle magicks, the more robust colors I use in protection magick and self-empowerment spells, when you need strength and good dose of moxie.
Amaranthus: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planet Saturn, and the element Fire. The deity for amaranthus is Artemis– the feminine warrior/huntress. The magickal powers contained within this plant includes healing, protection, and invisibility. Amaranthus was used in pagan burial rites.
Anemone: It’s gender is masculine (projective); the element is Fire, and the planet is Mars. Deities associated with anemone are Adonis and Venus. This plant is also used for health, protection, and healing. To prevent disease, carry the blossoms from this plant in a red cloth upon your person. This plant can also be used in spells dealing with health issues involving blood and the reproduction organs. To keep an enemy at bay, place their photo in a red bag with a handful of the blossoms, or the root of the plant– and leave the dirt in place.
Baby’s Breath: The gender is masculine (projective), the planet Mercury, the element Air. I use Baby’s Breath for magick encompassing communication and creativity. I’ve also used this plant in love spells to instill good open lines of communications between couples, or to loosen the tongue of a shy partner– just be careful how much and how often you do this, you might be surprised at what’s released– or unleashed.
Bittersweet: The gender is masculine (projective), the element is Air, and the planet– Mercury. The most popular magickal use for bittersweet is in spells for protection and healing. I’ve also discovered that this plant, connected to the energies of Mercury and Air, is wonderful for issues of communication, clear thinking, powers of deduction, and the spark of creativity.
Carnation: The energy is masculine (projective), the planet is the Sun, and the element is Fire. Use the magick of the carnation for protection, strength, and healing. Use carnations in healing spells. Place carnations in a sick room to give strength to the one who is ill. Use this flower in healing rituals, mojo bags, and oils.
China Berry: This plant is used for luck. The seeds are considered good luck charms, so use them as thus, particularly in bags or lockets, where you can carry them upon your person. The China Berry can be used in spells to precipitate change.
Chrysanthemum: It’s gender is masculine (projective), the element is Fire, and the planet– the Sun. Chrysanthemums are used primarily for protection. Grown in the garden, they are reputed to keep evil spirits away– and in this case, my garden should be totally free of evil spirits, because I’ve accumulated a mass of mums this autumn. I take this one step farther by color associations– yellow blossoms for spells meant to help you find your voice; magenta blossoms for a good strong dose of pure love, and white blossoms to throw an honest light on any situation.
Cockscomb: The energy is masculine (projective), the element Fire, the planets Jupiter and Mars. The no nonsense energy of the Cockscomb can be used to discover and unleash the masculine side of yourself, when aggression, strength, and courage are called for. The most beautiful cockscomb flowers I’ve seen was in Iowa, when we were traveling through Amish country.
Cosmos: The energy is feminine (receptive), the planet is Earth, and the element is Earth. I use the lovely petals from this plant for goddess magick; to highlight feminine energy– for maiden, mother, and crone; for healing spells dealing with female issues; for safe childbirth; to celebrate those rituals geared toward women and their life milestones, including female puberty rites and a croning.
Echinops: The energy of the thistle will be found within this plant. It’s gender is masculine (projective), the planet is Saturn, and the element is Fire. Use the Echinops in spells for protection and self defense. This plant will also be used in hexing and cursing spells, added to poppets or mojo bags.
Freesia: The planet– the Moon, the element is Water, the gender is feminine (receptive). The Freesia contains the constantly mutating and fluid energy of the Moon and the element of Water. Use this plant according to color correspondences for a surprisingly wide array of magickal intentions. White, for those things of spirit and spiritual energy; red for passion, including not only physical passion, but passion for many things of life; pink to inspire friendhip and loyalty; yellow for God energy, and healing.
Gerber Daisy: The gender is masculine (projective), the planet Saturn, the element Fire. The daisy and the gerber daisy both possess strong energies for love spells, the gerber daisy being more ‘hot-blooded’, meaning there will be more animalistic passion in love spells done with the gerber daisy. This plant can also be used in spells when the energy just needs to be riled up a bit, when you need to light a fire and get people and circumstances moving.
Hypericum: The gender is masculine (projective), the element Air, the planets Mercury and the Sun. The beautiful yellow flowers of this plant can be used in mojo bags and spells to enhance communication, for god energy, for healing, and for spells of self-empowerment.
Juniper: It’s gender is masculine (projective), the element is Fire, the planet is the Sun. The magickal powers of Juniper include protection, protection against theft, love, exorcism, and health. I also use Juniper berries for spells geared to the Winter Solstice, youth & immortality, and spiritual rejuvenation. Juniper is reputed to promote male potency when used in love spells– though I have not personally put this theory to the test.
Kangaroo Paw: It’s gender can be both masculine (projective), or feminine (receptive), depending upon what type of magick you’re using it for, and which planet you’re using for the correspondence. The planets are Mercury and Venus, the elements Air and Water. I have primarily used Kangaroo Paw for fairy magick.
Kalancheo: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planet Venus, the element Earth. Magickally speaking, use the pink blossoms for friendship and healing, the red blossoms for love, and the white blossoms for healing.
Liatrus: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planets Venus and Jupiter, the element Water. This plant is best used for all of its connections to the element of Water, which includes the promotion and growth of your psychic abilities, intuition, dreams and visions.
Gloriosa: The energy of this plant is most decidedly feminine (receptive), its elements both Water and Earth, and the planets Venus and Earth. The Gloriosa blossom is representative of the female anatomy, and its magickal energies are best used for female health issues, fertility, female sexual issues, and female self-empowerment. This plant can also be used in spells, magicks, and spiritual practices to glorify and worship the Mother Goddess.
Misty Blue: The gender is feminine, the planet is Water, the element Water. Use this plant for spiritual practices, for spirit contact, and to promote contact in general with the unseen world and the entities which inhabit it.
Orchid: This is a very versatile plant, magickally speaking. It’s energy is masculine (projective), the element Air, the planet Mercury. Use the orchid in your spiritual practices and spell crafting according to the color of its blossoms: red/love and passion, pink/friendship and well-being, white/spirituality and healing. Personally, I use the speckled blossoms when change is needed and desired.
Pepper Berry: The gender is masculine (projective), the element is Air, the planet is the Sun. The red berries and green foliage from this plant make beautiful additions to wreaths. Magickally, I use Pepper Berry in mojo bags and magicks that deal with the Winter Solstice, God energy, and especially new beginnings.
Protea: It’s gender is masculine (projective), the element Air, the planet Jupiter. The primary magickal use for protea is for spells and magicks that move a situation along so that a final conclusion or decision can be reached. The various methods will include mojo bags and candle magick. This type of magick works best when worked over a period of three to seven days.
Queen Ann’s Lace: It’s gender is feminine (receptive), the planet is Venus and Jupiter, the element Earth. I primarily use Queen Ann’s Lace for issues of fertility, and this can mean not only fertility in the physcial world, but fertility of ideas and creative energies, creativity concerning unusual opportunities, etc. This plant is also used in magicks for Goddess energy and self-empowerment.
Roses: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planets are Venus and the Moon, the element is Water. Roses are most strongly connected with love spells. Use the energies of the various colors for different types of love– red/passionate affairs with lusty sex, or soul mate connections; pink/for strong bonds of loyalty, friendship, and fidelity; yellow/for peaceful partings, to say good-by; white/to honor a love who has passed, or to honor a relationship that has come to a natural conclusion. The white blossoms of a rose can also be used in spells and magick to contact a deceased partner.
Rowen Berry: It’s gender is masculine (projective), its planet Mars, and the element is Fire. Use the warrior energy of Mars and the fiery passion of Fire with the rowan berry in spells and magickal workings that require strength, concentrated doses of high energy, courage, passion of intention, and a strong will power. The poisonous berries are also potent when used in spells and magicks for hexing and cursing. Added to mojo bags and poppets, they work with a vengence.
Salvia: The gender is masculine (projective), the element is Water, and the planets are the Sun and the Moon. Salvia is part of a large family of plants which includes Sage. The primary use for salvia is for cleansing and smudging. Use the smoke from saliva to smudge your home and personal space, your person, your vehicle, or your land. Tie up dried bunches and hang them in the four corners of your home for protection, or hang a bundle of salvia by the front door to prevent anyone wishing you harm from entering.
Solidago: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planet is Venus, the element Air. Solidago, more commonly known as Golden Rod, is used for magickal workings involving money and divination. Carry a sprig of goldenrod in your wallet or purse to insure enough money to cover your needs. Place a piece of pyrite with it. Put a sprig of this plant in a small wooden box large enough to hold your tarot cards or set of runes to enhance the magick of divination and your intuitive powers.
Statice: This plant’s gender is masculine (projective), its element Air, it’s planet Mercury. I personally use statice in magick which highlights or incorporates group events, the gathering of people, peaceful conclusions to group debates or disagreements, as well as to promote peaceful cohabitation and successful growth within an organized group.
Star of Bethlehem: The gender is masculine (projective), the planet is the Moon, the element Water. I use the six pointed white blossoms of the Star of Bethlehem in spells and magicks involving spirituality, personal empowerment, and cleansing. I’ve also found it wonderful for Goddess invocation and feminine magicks. It is energy is inspiring and purifying.
Sunflower: The gender is masculine (projective), the planet is the Sun, the element Fire. The magickal powers of the sunflower includes fertility, wishes, health, and wisdom. Use the seeds from this plant in fertility spells, the yellow blossoms in magicks geared to gain your wish, and to inspire wisdom when wisdom is desired and needed. Carry a mojo bag containing various aspects of this plant for good health.
Yarrow: Yarrow’s gender is feminine (receptive), it’s planet is Venus, and the element Water. The magickal powers of yarrow includes areas of courage, love, psychic powers, and exorcism. Place a bouquet of yarrow on your table during divination sessions, in the four corners of your house to keep evil entities at bay, or place a sprig of yarrow in the pocket of the person you love. I’ve used yarrow in dream bags that I’ve placed beneath my pillow to inspire prophetic dreams and visions. You might want to add a marigold blossom to this bag and a stone of amethyst.
Zinnia: The gender is masculine (projective), the planets Mercury and Jupiter, the element Air. Use zinnias in spells and magicks where courage, fortiude, and strength are needed. This is also a good plant to use in healing spells, and spells of protection. As the zinnia stands strong and tall, so shall it inspire these attributes when you tap into it’s magick.
The photographs in this post that are framed are all original photos taken by Amythyst Raine. These photos are copyrighted, © Amythyst Raine 2011.
Some of the information above may have been taken from the books listed below; but the bulk of information above was taken from my own Book of Shadows, which includes my personal magickal practices and correspondences.
“Cunningham’s Encyclopedia of Magickal Herbs” by Scott Cunningham
“Green Magic: The Sacred Connection to Nature” by Ann Moura
“The Green Wiccan Herbal” by Silja
I don’t know how Laura Ingalls Wilder survived the pioneer age through summer heat and humidity with no air-conditioning and not even one lousy electric fan. I would’ve died. I took my camera outside to capture some of our flowers and stuff this week and was amazed when the lens fogged over. I guess you can tell how cool we keep our house.
This is my new birdbath. I wanted something large enough for the larger birds to be able to get in and really enjoy– and they do! I make sure that I empty, rinse, and refill all birdbaths at least every other day, so that the birds always have fresh clean water and so that mosquito larvae will not thrive in this standing water.
My Virginia Creeper is running amok in this small garden space at the east side of the house, and I let it have it’s way– love it! The Day Lilies and the Echinachea are still blooming. Everything seems a bit later than usual this year, I suppose because May was so darn cold, everything got a late start.
Lily: The gender is feminine (receptive), the planet– Moon; the element– Water; deities include Venus, Juno, Nepthys, Kwan Yin. It’s magickal powers include protection, especially against the evil eye, ghosts, and unwanted visitors. (And I’d have to say that they’ve done an exceptional job on a couple of these points!)
Lilies are also used magically to break love spells (keep a note of this!) and to help bring clues to light in criminal cases.
Echinacea (Purple Cone Flower): This plant was used by American Indians to ensure and strengthen spells. It’s also used medicinally to treat infections. It’s an extraordinarily popular flower, and it grows like gangbusters here in Nebraska. I started years ago planting it in my virgin flowerbeds and it has since spread on it’s own, coming up in some rather unusual places; and me being me, I let it stay where it wishes to go.
Summer wouldn’t be summer without a pot of petunias sitting around somewhere. They bring to mind childhood memories, when my Aunt would buy large boxes of a lavender petunia they called “Sugar Daddy”, and my sister and I would each be given our own little spot of ground to plant them.
My daughters enjoy these vibrant blossoms just as much as my sister and I did.
The treehouse deck is very cozy and private this year, the tree limbs have grown down around the front of it so that you feel very hidden and protected, magickal and empowered, when you sit up there. It’s also very peaceful, and if it weren’t for the large swarms of mosquitoes that we have right now, or the stifling humidity, you’d find me up there more often. But that will change with fall and the color of the leaves.
I have a birdbath and feed platter, as well as the cats’ water bowl and food dishes up here. I know that those two things don’t sound like they go together, but so far, everyone has gotten along. (It must be a special place, where nature can call a truce.)
The girls, and some of the cats, have enjoyed the carpeted treehouse this year– the entrance is above the chair, to the right side of the photo.
My sunflowers surrounding a bird feeding station in the front yard are tall, waaaay above my head, and they’re blooming now! Sunflowers (and lilacs) are my favorite flowers, so I’m always tickled to see these large cheerful blossoms. I leave all plants stand until spring, so during the winter birds enjoy the natural food of seeds, right from the stem. It’s taken me a while to convince my ex-farmer husband to let everything just sit and do it’s normal and natural thing in the autumn and winter, but I think I’ve won him over.
Mother Nature knows best. There’s a rhyme and reason for everything.
Sunflower: the energy is masculine (projective); the planet is the Sun; the element Fire. The seeds of the sunflower are said to enhance fertility, and women wishing to get pregnant would benefit by eating the seeds. (That’s easy– they taste good!) Sunflowers make wishes come true, reveal the truth, guard against pests (all varieties), keep you virtuous ( if you wish to be :), and give good luck to their gardener. What more could you want?
This is the remnants of my Elemental candles. Skry the wax and tell me if you see anything. We have fun doing this at our house, and some of the unusual observations have really hit the mark, more often than not. Some people are actually very gifted with this type of magick. I don’t always allow my candles to burn down this way, most of the time I burn the votive candles in glass candle holders; but once in a while, I’ll just let them pool. I burned these candles over the course of several evenings, a week or two ago.
Online tarot classes: http://ladyamythyst.webs.com/onlineclasses.htm