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Thread: Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

  1. #1

    Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

    It's difficult for me to buy/find a lot of the herbs or flowers i need for certain potions or spell work. I was wondering if you could use any other flowers/herbs from the same scientific "family" to the same result? It would make sense if flowers from the same species all held the same properties. Right? Example: lets say Clematis is for Serenity, wouldn't any other flower from "Buttercup" family be for serenity too? Maybe it's all about what you believe? Just as all symbolism and herbal/floral lore is slightly different in every coven. (I don't mean to offend anyone with this question. im just tryin to understand)


  2. #2
    Dragon Lady Yorin's Avatar
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    Its not about finding the "right path" but more so finding the path that's right for you

    Re: Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

    From what I've found, as long as you have something along the same lines of what they're used for you should be ok. A lot of different flowers and herbs have the same purpose, usually just from different angles. One reason some specific herbs or flowers are used is not just for the properties like serenity, but for the specific scents that they produce when they're either set out, burned, or used in an oil. If you're using it in a mannor that you're going to be eating/drinking/using it on skin, you might want to check before you go ahead and substitute whatever you want to that way you know its still safe.

    If you want, once I'm home I could probably post a bunch of links for you of where I get my herbs from when I can't find what I actually need.
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  3. #3
    Silver Member Tylluan Penry's Avatar
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    Phantom Turnips never die. They just get stewed occasionally....

    Re: Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

    There is rarely just one 'correct' plant for a particular intention. And once you understand how plants work in magic, it's fairly easy to substitute. Not sure how plant naming goes in your part of the world, but clematis and buttercup really aren't part of the same family. My book 'The Magical Properties of Plants and how to find them' (published by Capall Bann) dealt with plants by magical intention because it's rare to find a plant and then wonder what to do with it. Usually the intention comes first. For example, all plants with thorns can be used for protective work. Some may be more suitable for certain types of work, but all will do at a pinch.

    Phantom Turnips never die.... they just get stewed occasionally....

  4. #4
    Cannibal Rights Activist Ophidia's Avatar
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    Re: Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

    All you really have to do is search for 'magical herb correspondences' - there are tons of websites out there w/just that - lists of things herbs & plants correspond with magically. Also, don't limit yourself to herbs - you can use fruits, veggies, nearby shrubs & trees, too.

    One of the easiest ways to remember them is via the elements:

    Air - most mints, gingko trees (used in many cities as landscaping because of their hardiness & resistance to pollution)

    Water - 'cool' plants, plants w/a lot of moisture in them (like certain types of cactus), or water plants (lotus, aloe, cucumber)

    Fire - 'hot' spices & herbs, thorny herbs/plants (cinnamon, hot peppers, ginger, horseradish, roses, acacia trees)

    Earth - fungus, and most roots (potatoes, yams, beets). Since earth also corresponds to 'North', many pines & evergreens are 'earthy' - but some may be more fiery or watery

    You can also use the color of flowers & fruits for some (many people say 'use colors in magic based on how you feel about the color, but I'm a traditionalist when it comes to color associations, so my correspondences may differ from yours)(Oh, and roses are great because they come in so many different colors - red, yellow, pink, white, etc.):

    Red (Fire/South) - love, passion, anger - roses, carnations

    Orange - adds energy and invigorates - carrots, yams, oranges

    Yellow (Air/East) - cheering, friendship, also ruled by Mercury/Hermes, so good for communication & studies - lemons, dandelions

    Green (Earth/North) - career or finances, fertility - green beans of any kind are always good for money spells - beans are 'earthy'

    Blue (West/Water) - calming, soothing, sleep - chicory flowers, rosemary, blueberries, blue corn

    Purple - good for psychic work, meditation - deep purple plums, Concord grapes, eggplant, lavender

    White - cleansing, purifying, a good base color - white potatoes, coconuts, white flour, refined sugar, salt, baby's breath (the filler in floral arrangements), white lilies

    Black - protective, grounding - any fruit that turns black when dried - prunes, raisins, currants, black pepper, gourmet black salts

    Pink - romantic love, self-love - watermelon, passion fruit, dragonfruit
    The forum member formerly known as perzephone. Or Perze. I've shed a skin.

  5. #5

    Re: Substitutions for Magical Herbs/Flowers?

    I agree with the other members, as with many facets of the craft herbs are symbolic of multiple qualities and many herbs qualities overlap. With care you can develop two spells with the same intended effects with completely different herbs. In my opinion it is your intent which is the most important aspect of the spell, and all other parts may be considered catalysts.

    A list of herbs and their uses, and also a list of effects and several herbs which can be used can be found here

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    I hope this can help somebody,
    Last edited by Juniper; 01 Jul 2012 at 10:50. Reason: Link removed to adhere to forum rules

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