Saturday, February 28, 2009

Plant Magic

This waxing moon is the perfect time, here in the Mid-Atlantic, to start seeds indoors so that they'll be ready to plant outside as seedlings in a month or so. I've read that magic was first done to ensure successful hunts, but agriculture lends itself to so much magic, and it's doing magic with and for my plants that often connects me at a deep and cellular level with my many-times-great grandmothers. From the soil, to the seeds, to the containers, to the compost or other fertilizer, to the land where the seedlings will ultimately go, there are plenty of opportunities to do magic for plants. And there's something about plants that seems to make them receptive to our magic.

Like many gardeners, my eyes are often bigger than my yard and my budget. I spend a few months in the winter going through catalogues, reviewing my landscape plans, dreaming about what I'd grow if my yard got more sun or if I had a bit more space/time/water, etc. By January, I order -- mostly seeds, but some seedlings, as well, which will come sometime in April.

This year, I'm planting both curly and Italian parsley in the herb bed instead of dill, which, again, didn't do well for me last year. I'm putting in basil seedlings and I'm planting more French Thyme seedlings to supplement the few plants that I was able to grow last summer from seed. I think the lavender, rosemary, and sage will all come back, and I'm hopeful that maybe the pineapple sage will, as well, although I've bought more seeds, in case I need to fill in a bit. The woad, very faithful performer every year, is already looking green and strong. I've bought peppermint, spearmint, and chocolate mint seeds; I'm tearing up the mint bed for the patio and I'm going to rip the Night Owl roses out of their pots on the deck and grow mint in all those pots. I'll move the gardenia pots out there, as well, once it's warm enough, and am looking forward to the smell of mint and gardenia on warm summer evenings. I've tried for years to grow Bowles Black violas; I'm giving it one final shot this year in some small pots that go on the ledge shelf on my garden shed. And, of course, from last year, I have tons of datura, woad, black-eyed susan, morning glory, moonflower, and black hollyhock seeds, and I'm planning to grow the datura, moonflowers, and black hollyhocks all around the new fence.

I do a lot of simple sex magic for plants: cast a circle, call the directions and a Goddess, have an orgasm, direct the energy to the seeds, soil, land, etc. I also surround myself with the seedlings and ground, strongly feeling my own roots and the roots of the plants growing and strengthening, pulling in needed energy and nutrients. The night before I transplant the seedlings and the week or so after they're transplanted, I often do a lot of magic to help them over that transition (liminal) period.

I save the plastic pots that I get when I buy seedlings and re-use them, but I also make my own little pots out of newspaper and a wooden mold, although you can do the same thing with newspaper and a glass. This year, I may try inscribing the pots with some runes, although I'm still thinking about which I'll use.

What are you growing this year? What are you giving up on? What kind of magic do you do for your plants?

I've got a few packages of vegetable seeds that Shumway sent me for free. I don't have room to grow them, so I'll bless them and send them to the first person to send me their snail mail address at

Photo found here.

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