* Bountiful Fall Bouquets *
By Kris Law, Windowbox
Autumn gardens are filled with the makings for bouquets and arrangements that can be placed outside or, when it turns cooler and the holidays approach, brought inside for a centerpiece. Try an arrangement with the following late-blooming flowers, vegetables, berries, fruits, and leaves:
Sunflowers : Because of its strong Sun aspect, this plant is good for building a healthy ego. It is also associated with fertility on account of its numerous, prominent seeds; it is said that women who wish to conceive should eat them. Sometimes considered a haughty flower due to its height, the sunflower is also thought to exemplify loyalty or adoration, because of how it follows the Sun's path. Like all Sun herbs, the sunflower is great for rituals for acquiring wealth and for creating a relaxed, comfortable happiness--the same sort you feel on a warm, sunny day. Sunflower combats depression or grief and protects from the negative. It is connected to solar festivals and solar gods like Apollo and to the sign of Leo. The petals are a nice addition to a bath, especially a ritual bath to attract happiness.
Asters : The Chippewa Indians used Asters (Also known as Michaelmas daisies) in hunting magic, smoking the dried roots as a way to attract game (consider using it for other sorts of hunting, for instance, seeking a lover or finding an object). The Iroquois employed this starwort as hunting medicine and in love charms, which shows its rulership by Venus. The Meskwaki and Potowatami made a smudge with it to awaken unconscious people, which points to possible modern-day magical uses in other types of awakenings, as in initiation or awakening one's Third Eye. But this plant has other histories and other uses.
This North American native plant was introduced in England in 1710 and became naturalized there. It gets one of its common names from the feast day of the Archangel Michael (Sept. 29), which is right around the time it flowers. This was one of the four days in the year when rents were paid (quarter days), and so the harvest had to be finished by that day. Thus, this flower can also be seen to signify a time of reckoning, which coincides nicely, I think, with the connection to Astraea as justice. Michaelmas also marked the beginning of hunting season in Ireland, which ties it to the use of the Aster as a hunting charm in North America. And of course, since it is associated with the Archangel Michael, it can be helpful for angel magic.
Dahlias : To dream about brightly colored dahlias is said to symbolize happiness and adoration. To dream about a black dahlia (a rare flower said to bloom only once every million years) is a mystical symbol of rebirth, according to some. Others believe it symbolizes Witchcraft or the occult world.
Zinnias : In the language of flowers, zinnia signifies a faraway friend. Because it attracts many species of butterflies, the elemental correspondence would be air. It is a suggested ingredient in friendship spell, and is an outstanding flower to use as a substitute for a candle in a spell, as it is available in many colors and sizes.
Hydrangeas : The root of this North American native herb contains the planetary metal for Jupiter (tin), although the whole plant is Moon--which makes sense, because it has white flowers, a very juicy root, and is soothing and watery. The root, which is collected in autumn, has been used to deal with internal stones and to calm nightmares, but it can also produce giddiness and sedation. It was used by the Cherokee and by various European settlers of North America. This magic herb is also known as wild hydrangea, seven barks, and common hydrangea.
Sage : Because of its association with dream work, this magic herb is usually thought to be ruled by Moon, but its effect on the mind makes some consider it a Mercury herb. Whichever the correspondence, clary sage finds great use in creating very vivid dreams and aiding in dream recall, especially in terms of divinatory dreams. It is generally helpful in building skills of clairvoyance. It's useful for rites honoring deities like Luna, Diana, or Juno or consecrating tools to be used in works dedicated to them. Some write wishes on the leaves, which can be up to a foot long, and then put them under their pillow before going to bed. Subsequent dreams reveal whether the wish will come true or not. If not, the leaf should be buried. This magic herb is also a candidate for incense, since it is one of the few dried mints that does not smell disgusting when burned. Many perceive muskiness in the scent of clary sage and it is also a fixative of scent, so it is associated with Elemental Earth. For that reason, it can be incorporated into love/sex magic - steep a muslin bag of leaves in bath water before a romantic evening, for instance.
Autumn Bugbane (black cohosh): Love, courage, protection and potency. Use in love sachets or in the bath to prevent impotence. Carry in pocket or amulet for courage and/or strength. Sprinkle around a room to drive away evil. Add an infusion of the herb to bath water to ensure a long and happy life. Burn as a love incense. Put in purple flannel bag for protection for accidents and sudden death and to keep others from doing you wrong.
Vegetables and herbs:
Pumpkins : Lunar magic
vines such as:
Hollow out the pumpkins, gourds, apples, peppers, or squash to create a natural vase for the other items, or cradle the goods in a basket or bowl. You can create a more formal arrangement by using only one type of flower, or combine different flowers, berries, and leaves to create a mixed bouquet in the spirit of the bountiful fall season.
Disclaimer: No one involved in this blog or its contents may be held responsible for any adverse reactions arising from following any of the instructions/recipes on this list. It is the reader's personal responsibility to exercise all precautions and use his or her own discretion if following any instructions or advice from this blog.