Herbal Lore Part 2

To start off, it’s important to be aware of the fact that the descriptions I am about to give are based on magical symbolism and NOT medical prescriptions. There is a crossover between medical herbalism and magical herbalism because they have a common origin. Witches were medicine women and what they prescribed was later on proved by medical research. But this is not the case with all the herbs that I am going to talk about here.

This list is a combination of information I got from “The Wicca Bible” from Ann-Marie Callagher supplemented with information from Wikipedia and several YouTube Magical practitioners. The mayority of the pictures are copyright free and from Wikipedia. When the photographer was known, I did attribute him or her. 

The herbs can be used in several ways. For example:

  • decoration for an altar
  • part of an incense blend
  • in a balefire (a fire set for magical or ritual purposes) 
  • in ritual or spell work by anointing a candle with a carrier oil and rolling it in the dried leaves or flowers
  • in pouches to be tied on bedpost or worn as a pendant around the neck
  • in the central point of the household or at the front or back door of your home, you can hang bunches with herbs that have protective or banishing properties
  • in herbal oils

...and many other ways. If you have another suggestion, please share it with us!

Here is my list of herbs and their magical properties...


Basil Ocimum Basilicum

Ocimum Basilicum by Castielli - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Basil comes from the Greek basileus, meaning "royal" because Basil may have been used in some royal unguent, bath, or medicine. Basil is still considered the "king of herbs".

Basil has a variety of magical uses, including purification, love and protection. 

Borage Borago Officinalis

Borago Officinalis by © Hans Hillewaert, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Borage, also known as starflower, is an annual herb. In Botany, an annual plant is a plant that usually germinates, flowers and dies in one year. The leaves and flowers of borage may be carried by those desiring courage and willpower under challenging situations. Borage also promotes strength and endurance. 

Catnip Nepeta Cataria

Nepeta Cataria By D. Gordon E. Robertson - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

The Catnip has its name because of its fame for driving cats wild. The herb works on the whole cat family, not just on domestic cats. Several tests showed that leopards, cougars, servals, and lynxes often reacted strongly to Catnip like domestic cats. Catnip is used in love spells and is sacred to Bast Selchmet, Egypt's cat and lion-headed goddesses. Magical practitioners use Catnip for driving out negativity.

Eyebright Euphrasia Officinalis

Euphrasia Officinalis by Arie M den Toom - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

The herb's Greek name, Euphrasia, means gladness, referring to how you may feel if the herb restores your eye health. Magical practitioners use it for clear-seeing and prophecy. It also raises the energy in all metaphysical work.

Henbane Hyoscyamus Niger

Hyoscyamus Niger by Jeantosti on French Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Henbane is hugely poisonous and hazardous to handle. It is often used in exorcism and banishing as well as to induce visions. It should never be inhaled, applied or taken internally. Magical practitioners working with this herb should take all necessary precautions to avoid poisoning through contact.

Horehound Marrubium Vulgare

Marrubium Vulgare By Thomas Mathis, Veronica Sanchez - own workoto, Salsipuedes, provincia Córdoba, Argentina, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Egyptians once called Horehound the "Seed of Horus," which could be the strange name's origin. It also shows just how sacred they thought Horehound to be. Magical practitioners still use this herb in fertility spells and for protection and prosperity.

Mint Mentha Spicata and others

Mentha Spicata by Martin Kozák - Own work, Public domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Mentha (mint) is a genus of about 25 species (and many hundreds of varieties) of flowering plants in the family Lamiaceae (Mint Family). 

It is an excellent herb for prosperity,  cleansing, healing, money-luck and love. Mint is a good multi-tasker.

Mugwort Artemisia Vulgaris

Mugwort Artemisia Vulgaris CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Mugwort was sacred to Artemis and is therefore known as Artemesia. Burning it dried helps induce psychic vision. It drives cats wild, so make sure your feline companion can't come close to it.  Magical practitioners use it at the doors of their homes to keep felons and false friends away from mischief.

Nettle Urtica Dioica

Nettle Urtica Dioica by Skalle-Per Hedenhös - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Urtica is a genus of plants commonly known as the nettles. They can produce an itching sensation when they touch the skin. The most well-known species is Urtica Dioica, the common stinging nettle.

Nettle is a protection herb that can be burned or buried in a jar to protect property and ward off gossip and hypocrisy. It is a good antidote for someone being spiteful. It is also excellent for banishing.

Rosemary Rosmarinus Officinalis

Rosmarinus Officinalis by Petar43 - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Rosemary is a standard ingredient in the herb cupboard of most magical practitioners. It has several magical functions, including purification, protection, and the preservation of memory. 

Rue Ruta Graveolens

Ruta Graveolens by Rasbak - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

The botanical name "Ruta" comes from Greek, which means  "to set free," referring to its use as a chief ingredient in mixtures used as antidotes to poisoning. 

Many magical practitioners use Rue for purification and good health.

Valerian Valeriana Officinalis

Valeriana Officinalis by AnRo0002 - Own work, CC0, https://commons.wikimedia.org

Valerian has been used as a medicinal herb since Ancient Greece and Rome as a remedy for insomnia. The herb's name is derived from the Latin verb valere (to be strong, healthy). Also, in magical symbolism, Valerian is known for inducing sleep and used in love sachets. 

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