Friday, 8 October 2010

Using Samhain Herbs... Day 1

Merry Meet Everyone!

Unless you live down a dark hole, you will have gathered by now the fact that Samhain (or Halloween) is only a few short weeks away and as the biggest event in the Wiccan or Pagan year, most of us have begun to prepare for it.

Today I have begun to gather and prepare the herbs that traditionally form part of Samahin Decoration. However, the reason that I have posted this reasonably far in advance is because I also use herbs in other ways to celebrate the Sabbat. Many of you are aware that I love to use herbs that are naturally to hand - I feel more connected to them, and I feel that if they are growing locally then they are also tied into the wheel of the year! For example, around Beltane I use a lot of nettle because they are seasonably ripe :)

Once again, if you happen to live down a dark hole, then this may come as a surprise to you but it is officially Autumn. That means herbs are in particular abundance before they retire for the winter months. There have been (and will be more) posts on the obvious herbs here (Acorns, nuts etc) but if we look a little deeper into the spiritual meaning for Samhain, you will notice there are a variety of less-obvious herbs to use.

So on Day 1 of my Samhain Herb collection.... Step up, Dandelion.

It will come as no surprise to many of you that ole Lion's Tooth has made my shortlist.. and here I will explain the reasons why! At Samhain the veil between the worlds is at its thinnest, meaning that we are able to commune with both the spirit world and the Divinity easier. This means that the days around Samhain are among the best to jump in with some divination for the upcoming year. 

Well, one of the properties of Dandelion, is that it is perfect for Divination. There are a number of ways that we can use Dandelion do this, but today, I wanted to show you how to harvest and prepare your herb, and by doing this now; when Samhain arrives you will be prepared to use it :) - So follow this with me, and in a few weeks, when the post is made on utilising it, you will have your resources!!

  • Dandelion
  • Trowel
  • Knife
  • Chopping Board
  • Water
  • String
  • Book of Shadows 
OK, With a trowel, go out and dig up (for personal use) maybe 5 or 6 good sized Dandelions.

***NOTE*** there are some copy-cat Dandelion herbs, that AREN'T the real thing! Try to make sure that you are digging up a Dandelion, but for advice - Dandelion leaves have points (like teeth) down them, they bleed white Sap and also are hairless. Whilst the copycats arent toxic, you really need the magic properties of the real deal!

This time of year is awesome, because the roots have gotten nice and big over the summer. They are reasonably easy to get out of the ground, just make sure that you have a good amount of root on your plant!

Next, bring them indoors and cut the roots off the plant, and seperate the two. Wash the roots under cold water and then chop them up into little pieces. This is so that the root can dry out in a cool dark place over the next few weeks (see why I did this in advance?!)

With the Leaves of the plant, clean them off under cold water, and then bind them in groups to hang up and dry. Once again this will take a few weeks, so patience is a virtue!

When these have dried, I will make another post on the ways the we can use them for our Samhain celebrations and activities, so be sure to check back when I make Divination drinks, and Incense with them. Until Next time though, Blessed Be x


  1. Hi Ben!

    Oh I'll keep following this cool series of posts! We have tons of dandelions around here, and although Beltane is our next sabbath, it is also a time when the veil is thin. If the weather changes tomorrow I'll go outside with my little witch to get some dandelions to accompany your steps!

    Kisses from Nydia.

  2. PS: I just grabbed your button, loved it!

  3. Of course, I forgot, you're the Southern Hemisphere!!


  4. Dandelions are my very favorite wildcraft herb. I use them for medicinal purposes or eating so I am looking forward to reading how you use them in magical workings.

    Speaking of, I ought to go search the lawn for them this morning...

  5. Very fun! Love herbs and esp. digging up the dandelion roots because I let them get too big and then they have such cool forms to them.