Ozark Encyclopedia – O – Onion

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Onion – Allium cepa

Parts used: bulb

Traditional uses: Syrup of chopped onions taken for colds. Used to destroy germs because of a volatile oil in roots. Onion placed in a sick room to draw fever out.

“Antiseptic, diuretic. A roasted Onion is a useful application to tumours or earache. The juice made into a syrup is good for colds and coughs. Hollands gin, in which Onions have been macerated, is given as a cure for gravel and dropsy.” ~Grieve MH

Red onion on bedpost for a cold – “A big red onion tied to a bedpost is said to prevent the occupants of the bed from catching cold. A famous politician in Arkansas had an onion fastened to his bedpost as recently as 1937. When I asked him about this he laughed rather sheepishly. ‘That’s just one of Maw’s notions,’ he said, referring to his mother-in-law. ‘She lives with…

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5 Magical Binding Plants

The Witch & Walnut

5 Magical Binding PlantsHappy Friday Everyone!

Although there is absolutely no sight of spring in the air in my parts and won’t be for quite some time, I still felt compelled to write about living binding green things. Perhaps it is all the sunshine. Binding is a popular option when it comes to spell work. This post is not about binding spells, just vines options you can use for your binds.

Various man-made options work well if you are not looking to take a nature walk.  Threads, yarn, cord etc can be used, but if you prefer working with nature here are the most popular options to work with and these are readily available from spring, well into deep autumn early winter.

Creeping nightshade  

Very common and found growing along fences, even fences in parking lots, trail edges and forest edges. These easily rip out, you won’t need scissors.

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Clematis – Very easy…

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Ozark Encyclopedia – O – Oak

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Oak – Quercus

Parts used: bark, leaf

Traditional uses: Astringent, antiseptic, bark and leaves can be used to treat diarrhea and dysentery, can be used in poultices and to help stop bleeding.

“The astringent effects of the Oak were well known to the Ancients, by whom different parts of the tree were used, but it is the bark which is now employed in medicine. Its action is slightly tonic, strongly astringent and antiseptic. It has a strong astringent bitter taste, and its qualities are extracted both by water and spirit. The odour is slightly aromatic. Like other astringents, it has been recommended in agues and haemorrhages, and is a good substitute for Quinine in intermittent fever, especially when given with Chamomile flowers. It is useful in chronic diarrhoea and dysentery, either alone or in conjunction with aromatics. A decoction is made from 1 OZ. of bark in a quart of…

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Ozark Encyclopedia – N – Needles

Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Held in mouth while cutting onions – “A girl from Cape Fair, Missouri, once told me that a woman can peel or cut up raw onions without making her eyes smart, simply by holding a needle in her mouth while she does the job.” ~Randolph OMF 138-139

Held in mouth for sore eyes – “…in other backwoods towns I have heard that a needle in the mouth is generally believed to be good for sore or watery eyes, no matter what the cause of the irritation.” ~Randolph OMF 139

Needle used in making a love charm – “A girl can take a needle which has been stuck into a dead body, cover it with dirt in which a corpse has been laid, and wrap the whole thing in a cloth cut from a winding sheet; this is supposed to be a very powerful love charm, and a woman who owns…

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Reparation and Healing the Land as part of American Druidry

I also live in an area of mining, paper mills, and farms, so I understand working with timbering and strip mine areas.
We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, so we can only move forward with what was left behind.

The Druid's Garden

Sunrise over the land Sunrise over the land

Two weeks ago, I talked about what American Druidry looks like. One of the big issues that came up in conversations here on the blog in the comments and also in the comments on the Druid’s Garden Facebook page was guilt from those of non-indigenous heritage. Guilt about the legacy of abuses against Native Americans in this country–a legacy that continues to this day. Guilt of being here on this land, knowing that many of us who are here now are here because of three centuries of genocide. Guilt about knowing that despite all that we may do now, this past bloodshed colors the way that we interact with the land, our relationships with the spirits of the land, and everything else we try to do to connect with the land and build sacredness.  In the last two weeks, I’ve heard how people feel the spirits…

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Doe, A Deer, A Female Reindeer: The Spirit of Mother Christmas

gather

Oh wondrous headed doe… Amongst its horns it carries the light of the blessed sun…” Hungarian Christmas Folk Song

Long before Santa charioted his flying steeds across our mythical skies, it was the female reindeer who drew the sleigh of the sun goddess at winter solstice. It was when we “Christianized” the pagan traditions of winter, that the white bearded man i.e. “Father Christmas” was born.

santareindeer

Today it is her beloved image that adorns Christmas cards and Yule decorations – not Rudolph. Because unlike the male reindeer who sheds his antlers in winter, it is the larger and stronger doe, who retains her antlers. And it is she who leads the herds in winter.

reindeer100-001

So this season, when we gather by the fire to tell children bedtime stories of Santa and his flying reindeer – why not tell the story of the ancient Deer Mother of old? It was she…

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Artist of the Month GLORIA OJULARI plus Amazing ideas for Christmas 2017.

Lore of the Christmas Rose

Good Witches Homestead

COMMON NAME:  Christmas Rose
GENUS:  Helleborus
Species, Hybrids, Cultivars:
H. niger “Angustifolius”-small flowering, pure white form. H.n. “Praecox”-blooms September-February. H.n. “Major,” H.n. “Multiflorus”-smaller flowers.
FAMILY:  Ranunculaceae
BLOOMS: Winter
TYPE: Perennial
DESCRIPTION: This plant, which grows to a height of 12 to 8 inches, has interesting evergreen leaves that are slightly toothed and divided into seven to nine leaflets. The large white flowers are 2 inches or more across, with bright yellow stamens in the center. The blossoms turn pink or purplish as they age.
CULTIVATION: Christmas roses prefer sandy, neutral soil rich in humus. They do best with a bit of winter chill, and they need heavy mulch to protect them from the summer heat. Protection from winter storms and severe weather will also benefit the plants. Winter sun, summer shade, and ample moisture throughout the year are the perfect conditions for the Christmas rose. Plants can be divided in…

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Sacred Tree Profile: White Pine’s Medicine, Magic, Mythology, and Meanings

The Druid's Garden

White Pine Towering in a Conifer Forest at Parker Dam State Park, PA White Pine Towering in a Conifer Forest at Parker Dam State Park, PA

In the Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) legend, there was a terrible conflict between five different nations of people. This conflict was rooted in cycles of pain, revenge, and chaos. A messenger of peace sent from the Great Spirit, the “Peacemaker,” sought to unite the five warring tribes. After convincing them to unite, they came together to make peace, but they still carried their weapons. The Peacemaker uprooted a White Pine tree and had them throw all of their weapons into the hole. He then replanted the tree, and the underground waters carried away the weapons. On the tree, the needles grew in clusters of five, to represent the five nations who came to find peace. The roots of the tree spread out in four directions, to the north, south, east and west; the roots are called the roots…

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On Being an American Druid

The Druid's Garden

The quintessential image of a druid is a group of people, all in white robes, performing ritual inside an ancient circle of stones.  This image is probably the most known and pervasive of all visuzaliations of druidry, and for many, it shapes the our perceptions of what druidry should be. But taken in a North American context, this image presents two problems.  First, we have no such ancient stone circles and two, another group has already claimed the quitessential white robe, and its not a group with which we want to associate our tradition.  This kind of tension, along with many other unique features of our landscape, make being an American druid inherently different than a druid located somewhere else in the world.  In the case of any spiritual practice, context matters, and context shapes so much of the daily pracice and work.    And so today, I’m going to answer…

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