Safflower - (Carthamus tinctorius) |
Safflower is an annual herb with yellow flowers, apparently indigenous to Persia and northwest India. The seeds produce a bland oil used for cooking and salads. The flowers yield a yellow color, soluble in water, and a more permanent red, which has been used for dying silk, and in the manufacture of rouge. The seeds are used as a masticatory. The Copts prescribed it for bandages and as a remedy to be taken:
”An old wound if you want it to heal: old, dry safflower, cadmium; grind it together. Sprinkle it on [the wound], fasten a bandage to it and tie it. It will heal.”
Magickal Uses: According to Pliny, the Egyptians would hold this herb in their hand as a protection against poisonous stings: “The cnecos…an Egyptian plant…[must be mentioned] for the great help it affords against venomous creatures as well as against venomous fungi. It is a well known fact that as long as they hold this plant, those stung by scorpions feel no sharp pain.”
Saffron - - (Crocus sativa) Folk Names: Autumn Crocus, Crocus, Karcom, Krokos, Kunkuma (Spanish), Saffer (Arabic), Spanish Saffron
To honor the Moon and the goddess of fertility, Ashtoreth, the Phoenicians would eat crescent shaped saffron cakes. In Persia saffron was used to raise the wind and in more recent times, expectant Persian (Iranian) women wore a sachet of saffron at the pit of the stomach to ensure a safe and speedy delivery.
Magickal Uses: Saffron is added to potions and sachets designed for inciting love or lust. It may also be added to healing spells and an infusion made from it for ritually washing the hands before healing ceremonies. The infusion may be drunk in moderate doses to increase psychic ability and to reduce mild depression. A tradition in Ireland was to rinse the bed linen in the infusion; this was to strengthen the arms and legs while one slept. Kept in the home it will protect it from lizards. It is said that a chaplet of saffron will inhibit drunkenness.
Sage - (Salvia officinalis) Folk Names: Garden Sage, Red Sage, Sawge
There are over 900 species of sage (Salvia) worldwide, and dozens of cultivars in addition to that. While sage is best known today for turkey dressing, it has been one of the most important medicinal plants in history. The Greeks used sage to heal ulcers and snakebites. The Romans considered it a sacred herb and gathered it with much ceremony. The Chinese, Native Americans, ancient Egyptians, Latin Americans and Europeans have all used sage for medicinal purposes.
Must eat sage in May.
Diviner’s - (S. divinorum) One of the most unusual and rare sages. This sage is used by Latin American Shamen to put their patients into a “trance,” whereby the Shamen “divines” what is ailing the patient through their ramblings. Used for healing the mind, body and soul.
Judean/Candlestick - (S. judaica) This is one of the rarest, and most significant sages in the world. Judean sage, as documented in Moldenke’s Plants of the Bible, is the sage after which the traditional Jewish symbol of the menorah was patterned. The plant’s inflorescence when pressed flat, has almost the exact shape and form of the seven branched candlestick of the Temple.
White - (S. apiana) This is the sage used by western Native Americans for spiritual purification of dwellings and sweathouses by smudging with smoke produced from burning the dried leaves.
Herbal Uses: Sage is a drying agent for the body. The tea of the leaf will dry up night sweats. breast milk, and mucus congestion. It benefits the nerves and the menstrual cycle as well. Being astringent, it helps with diarrhea. Use it as a sore throat gargle and as a poultice for sores and stings. Use two teaspoons of the herb per cup of water, steep for twenty minutes and take a quarter cup four times a day. Tincture fifteen to forty drops, up to four times a day.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use sage for night sweats, coughs, and to dry breast milk.
Magickal Uses: Tradition holds that those who eat sage become immortal both in wisdom and in years. Sage is used in wish manifestation, by writing the wish on the leaf and hide it under your pillow for three nights, if you dream of your wish it will come to pass, if not then bury the leaf; and to attract money. Sage absorbs negativity and misfortune. It drives away disturbances and tensions, and lifts the spirits above the mundane cares of life. Burn to consecrate a ritual space. Carry it as an herb of protection (usually in a small horn). Use it in the ritual bath and chalice. A few interesting gardening tips about sage are: 1) It is bad luck to plant sage in your own garden, have someone else do it for you. 2) Always plant some other plant in with the sage. A full bed of sage without something else growing in with it will also bring bad luck. 3) Sage draws toads to the garden.
Sagebrush - (Artemisia spp.)
A favorite purification herb among the Native Americans.
Magickal Uses: Burn sagebrush during ceremonies for exorcism or healing. Adding it to the ritual bath will promote purification from actions in the past.
St. John’s Wort - (Hypericum perforatum) Poison Folk Names: Amber, Fuga daemonum (Latin: Scare-Devil), Goat Weed, Herba John, Klamath Weed, Sol Terrestis, Tipton Weed
A highly esteemed herb since ancient times when it was used to heal deep sword cuts. Warning: Can cause skin allergies in sunlight, and prolonged use should be avoided.
Herbal Uses: The leaf is the part used for lung problems, bladder complaints, diarrhea, dysentery, depression, hemorrhages, and jaundice. Steep two teaspoons of the herb per cup of the tea. Take one-half cup in the morning and one-half cup at bedtime. Bedwetting is helped by a nightly cup of the tea. The oil and fomentation are applied externally to injuries, especially when nerve endings are involved (fingers and toes) and to soften tumors and caked breasts. Caution: Malignant tumors must be treated with care. Never rub or massage a malignant growth, as cells may become detached and travel to other parts of the body. To make the oil, cover the flowers with good, cold-pressed olive oil and leave the sealed preparation in the hot sun for twenty-one days or until it becomes a rich red. The oil is excellent for massages, as it affects the spine directly. A poultice of it helps varicose veins, mild burns, inflammations, neuralgia, and rheumatism.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Hypericum for puncture wounds, surgery, nerve injury, asthma that is worsened by changes of weather or before storms, tetanus, neuritis, and chronic drowsiness. The symptoms are relieved by bending the head backwards and worsened by cold, damp, and touch.
Magickal Uses: The Welsh called this plant the “leaf of the blessed”. It was understood to be an ideal combination of water and fire, the ultimate healing essence. Fire symbolized the fruitful light-filled forces of summer, and water the gathering and setting forces of the dark season. Midsummer is the time of balance between these forces of light and dark. In Brittany the plant is ritually gathered by peole wearing loose, flowing robes. One must pray and ask permission before plucking it with the left hand. The earth around the plant is first loosened with a knife, and the whole plant is pulled out at once. Great care is taken to ensure that the roots are intact and undisturbed. The picking of this herb symbolizes the dismemberment of the God, the Summer Lord. It is a solemn sacrifice. After drying or tincturing the plant is administered to the sick. When you give this plant to one who is sick, you are re-membering the God: putting back together the pieces of his body that have been scattered. If St. John’s Wort is gathered on Midsummer or on a Friday, and then worn, it will cure melancholy and mental illness. It is also worn to prevent fevers and colds. Soldiers have worn it to become invincible and to attract love. Dried over the Midsummer fires and then hung near windows it is used to protect from necromancers and evil. Use it for protection from thunderbolts and fire by placing it in a glass jar near the window. Burn it to exorcise demons, ghosts, and spirits.
Sandalwood - (Santalum album) Folk Names: Sandal, Santal, White Sandalwood, White saunders, Yellow Sandalwood
Herbal Uses: The fragrant heartwood is a classic for bladder infections. It is taken to help in the passing of stones, in kidney inflammations and in prostatitis. The oil is cooling to the body and useful for fevers and infections when used as a massage. The scent is calming to the mind. Sandalwood has been used internally for chronic bronchitis and to treat gonorrhea and the urethral discharge that results. Simmer one teaspoon of the wood per cup of water for twenty minutes, and take up to two cups a day in quarter-cup doses. The dose for the alcohol tincture is twenty to forty drops, four times a day, not with meals.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Santalum as a remedy for aching in the kidneys.
Magickal Uses: Sandalwood oil placed on the forehead aids in focusing the mind. The scent opens the highest spiritual centers and so makes an appropriate incense for rituals, exorcisms, and healings. The powdered wood is strewn to the directions or offered to the fire to bring protection and consecration to any ceremony. A sandalwood chip may have your wish written on it and burned. Mix it with lavender to enhance contact with the spirit world. Mix it with frankincense for the highest spiritual “octave”. The scents of frankincense and sandalwood have some of the highest vibrations inherent in any plant. They will resonate with aspects of ourselves or with Devic/Angelic beings of the highest order. This makes them a preferred choice for Full Moo rituals and séances. Beads made from sandalwood promote spiritual awareness. Rose is another herb held to have that frequency, thus attracting or eliciting the highest spiritual vibrations from within ourselves and the cosmos.
Sarsaparilla - (Smilax aspera) Folk Names: Bamboo Briar
Magickal Uses: To attract money and prosperity, mix with sandalwood powder and cinnamon and sprinkle it around your home. It is also a good addition to love spells.
Sassafras - (Sassafras albidum)
Magickal Uses: Sassafras is added to prosperity incenses. Carry it in the purse or wallet for this reason. It is also added to spells and sachets for healing.
Satyrion - See Meadowsweet, Orchid root.
Savory - (Satureja hortensis)
Lemon savory is a very rare, new savory recently discovered in South Africa. Pink savory is one of the several herbs used in the Middle Eastern blen of herbs called Za’tar. Summer savory is often called the “bean herb” because of the excellent flavor it adds to legumes. Winter savory is valuable medicinally for alleviating the pain of bee stings.
Magickal Uses: Carry Summer Savory with you, or wear to strengthen the mind.
Scullcap, Skullcap - (Scutellaria galericulata, L. laterfloria) Folk Names: Greater Scullcap, Hamlet Flower, Hoodwort, Madweed
Herbal Uses: Skullcap has a special affinity for the nervous system. Convulsions, hysteria, headache, and insomnia are treated with this plant. It is reputed to be a cure for rabies and has been used in epilepsy. Skullcap is a useful brain tonic, especially when combined with lady’s slipper, valerian, and passionflower. It is used to help in alcohol and drug withdrawal and strengthens meditation.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Scutellaria lateriflora for conditions of nervous fear, cardiac irritability, spasms, muscular twitching, and frontal headaches. Nightmares, migraine with aching eyeballs, nausea, colic, and diarrhea are within its sphere, as is impotency with a terror of never getting better.
Magickal Uses: Skullcap is an herb of peace and relaxation. It is added to the chalice as a strengthener of vows. It is given to one’s spouse to wear as protection from the charms of the opposite sex.
Selago - (Lycopodium selago) Folk Names: Linn
A member of the genus that also includes club moss and wolf’s claw, selago is used magickally and medicinally by Druids. The club mosses are found in North America, northern Europe, Asia, and the southern hemisphere. The plants are several inches in height and resemble moss. They creep by means of prostrate stems, which branch upward at intervals, with crowded, linear, simple leaves. Large two-valve spore cases produce the medicinally active spores.
Herbal Uses: While the whole plant was used by the ancients as a cathartic, the spores were used as a diuretic in edema, a drastic (a forceful agent of cure) in diarrhea and dysentery, a nervine for rabies and spasms, a mild laxative in cases of gout and scurvy, and a corroborant (strengthening agent) for rheumatism. The dose is ten to sixty grains of the spores. The spores also make a dusting powder for skin diseases and diaper rash. The herb, L. selago, is emetic (induces vomiting) and cathartic (induces defecation) in small doses. Caution: Selago can be an active narcotic poison when overused. For this reason it is probably better to use only the spores, which are nontoxic. The whole plant can be used externally, however, as a counter-irritant—made into a poultice, it will keep blisters open and kill lice. Native Americans used the spores of Lycopodium to stop nosebleeds and to stop the bleeding of wounds. The spores were also used to absorb fluids from various injuries.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Lycopodium for urinary and digestive disturbances, especially when malnutrition or liver involvement is suspected. Yellowish spots on the skin, a tendency to catarrh, and in children, a sickly disposition in general are characteristic indications. Symptoms tend to run from right to left and are worse on the right side of the body. Between 4:00 and 8:00 P.M. is the worse time for all symptoms. The patient craves warm drinks; has poor circulation, cold extremities, and pains that come and go; and tends to be sensitive to noise and odors. Mentally, there is melancholy, apprehension, and a loss of self-confidence. Homeopathic Lycopodium can be safely used internally (homeopathic medicines are extremely dilute).
Magickal Uses: The spores of selago are highly flammable. Magicians once used them to create “lightning flashes” and other pyrotechnics as needed. These effects were originally intended as a form of sympathetic magic—of evocation by emulation—not simply (or deceptively) as stage effects. Druids respect the plant to such a degree that it is gathered only under strict ritual guidelines. One of the Ovates will dress in white, bathe both feet in free-running water and offer a sacrifice of bread and spirits, and then with white robe wrapped around the right hand, using a brass hook (or if a high rank, a gold-covered brass sickle), would dig up the plant by the roots. A white cloth immediately covers the herb. When properly gathered, the herb becomes a charm of power and protection. Wear it, add it to incense, and use it to commune with the Gods and Goddesses.
Self Heal - (Prunella vulgaris) Folk Names: All-Heal, Heart-of-the-Earth
A member of the Labiatae family, this plant is easily found in grassy meadows at the edges of woods in Europe and America. It grows from one to three feet high and has slightly hairy, square stems. The petioled opposite leaves are oblong-lanceolate, and the tiny, two-lipped, purple flowers are arranged in tiers composed of rings of six to twelve stalkless blossoms.
Herbal Uses: The name Prunella is from the German Brunellen, given to the herb because it cures die Breuen or “trench mouth,” a bacterial infection of the mucous lining of the mouth and throat. Soldiers who spend much time in garrisons often develop this condition. Mixed with honey in a simple infusion, it is also excellent for sore throats. Steep two teaspoons of the herb in one cup of boiled water for twenty minutes. The dose is one-fourth cup, four times a day. Self-heal is applied in poultices and salves to external ulcers and wounds and is taken as a tea to heal internal injuries and to recover from surgery. As an astringent, the herb is helpful for diarrhea when taken as a tea and for hemorrhages when used both internally and externally. It has been used to lower fevers and in hepatitis, jaundice, high blood pressure and edema. The Chinese value it for its anti-tumor properties. In 1988, it was reported that Prunella vulgaris and Selaginella doederleinii (a Lycopodium) demonstrated an antimutagenic effect of over fifty percent in salmonella bacteria that had been exposed to picrolonic acid or benzopyrene. Prunella vulgaris was found to contain antimutagenic factors against both directly and indirectly induced mutations. In another 1989 study, an anti-HIV compound was isolated from infusions of P. vulgaris. Chang and Yeung reported in 1988 that water infusions of P. vulgaris and other herbs used in Chinese medicine inhibited the in vitro growth of HIV virus. (Prunella had long been known to traditional Chinese herbalists as an anti-infective agent.)
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Prunella primarily for colitis.
Magickal Uses: Druids gather self-heal in a manner similar to that used for vervain (Verbena officinalis). It is picked when the Dog Star is rising, at night, during the dark of the moon. It is dug up by the roots with a golden sickle and then held aloft in the left hand. After prayers of thanksgiving are said, the flowers, leaves, and stalks are separated for drying. Place self-heal on the altar when working healing magick. And be sure to leave a gift for the Earth to compensate for her loss when you pick this precious herb. Self-heal is an herb of Venus.
Senna - (Cassia marilandica or C. acutifolia)
Magickal Uses: Senna is used in love spells, potions and mixtures.
Sesame - (Sesamum orientale)
Sesame is an annual plant growing to 90 cm, with oblong leaves, purple or white flowers and a 3 cm long capsule containing flat seeds. It is native to tropical climates and is widely cultivated for its seeds, which yield the valuable sesame oil.
Herbal Uses: It is nutritive, laxative and emollient. The leaves and seeds may be used as a poultice, and the ground seeds with water added may be used to treat hemorrhoids; they may also be used as an emmenagogue.
Magickal Uses: The notorious magick words, “open sesame,” are traced to the legend of the plants power to discover hidden treasure, secret passageways and to unlock doors. The seeds are considered lust inducing when eaten. A jar of seeds, left uncovered, will draw money to the home.
Shallot - (Allium spp.)
Magickal Uses: When added to the bath they cure bad luck.
Shamrock - See Sorrel
Skunk Cabbage - (Symplocarpus foetidus) Folk Names: Meadow Cabbage, Pole Cat Weed, Skunk Weed, Suntull, Swamp Cabbage
Magickal Uses: To make a talisman that draws good luck (especially for court cases), wrapp a small amount of skunk cabbage in a bay leaf on Sunday.
Slippery Elm - (Ulmus fulva) Folk Names: Indian Elm, Moose Elm, Red Elm
Herbal Uses: See Elm
Homeopathic Uses: See Elm
Magickal Uses: Slippery elm is used in magick for its effect on communications. To endow a child with influential communications skills, have them wear the bark around their neck. To prevent gossip about you, burn slippery elm and then toss a yellow knotted cord into the fire.
Sloe - (Prunus spinosa) Folk Names: Blackthorn, Mother of the Wood, Wishing Thorn
Magickal Uses: An all purpose magickal wand, or “wishing rod” may be made out of this wood. Dowsers often use sloe for their rods also. When hung at the door or carried, it will banish all types of evil and misfortune, demons and negative vibrations.
Snakeroot - (Aristolochia serpentaria) Folk Names: Pelican Flower, Radix Viperina, Serpentary Radix, Serpentary Rhizome, Snagree, Snagrel, Snakeweed, Virginian Snakeroot
Magickal Uses: This root is carried as a talisman for good luck, finding money, and general hex and cure breaking.
Snakeroot, Black - (Sanicula marilandica)
Magickal Uses: This root is either carried or worn. When worn it attracts lovers. It may also be kept in the bedroom and added to the bath for this purpose. Carry it to attract money.
Snapdragon - (Antirrhinum majus) Folk Names: Calf’s Snout
Magickal Uses: Snapdragons are a protective herb. Step on one and hold in your hand for protection from immediate danger or evil. Wearing one will prevent you from being deceived by unscrupulous people, and wearing the seed around your neck protects from bewitchment. Snapdragons are a welcomed addition to the altar when performing protective rituals or when breaking spells, hexes or curses. Use with a mirror behind them to send the negativity back to its source.
Solomon’s Seal - (Polygonatum officianle or P. multiflorum) Folk Names: Dropberry, Lady’s Seal, St. Mary’s Seal, Sealroot, Sealwort, Solomon Seal
One of the offertory incenses.
Herbal Uses: This is an endangered species. Gather it with reverence and only when you find a large patch (take only a few; leave at least seven healthy plants). The part used is the root. The roots are mashed with a little cream and made into a poultice for black eyes, bruises and sprains. Mixed with powdered slippery elm bark, they make a poultice for fresh wounds. Solomon’s Seal is a useful herb for lung disease, especially when there is bleeding in the lung. The dose is six to fifteen grams, It is healing and soothing to the intestinal tract and is given for hemorrhoids, chronic dysentery, tuberculosis, and heart conditions. One ounce of the root can be simmered in one cup of water for twenty minutes and given in quarter-cup doses, four times a day. The leaves are simmered into salves. The roots are mashed and simmered in wine and given to humans or animals to promote bone healing. The young roots may be eaten as a vegetable (P. biflorum, an American Solomon’s seal, has the same medicinal and nutritional properties).
Magickal Uses: Solomon’s seal is an herb of cleansing and consecration. Add it to the incense on the altar. Use it during rites of exorcism or protective rituals. The root is used either whole, place in the four corners of the home for protection, or as an infusion and sprinkled to exorcise unwanted spirits.
Sorrel - (Oxalis acetosella) Folk Names: Cuckowe’s Meat, Fairy Bells, Shamrock, Sourgrass, Sour Trefoil, Stickwort, Stubwort, Surelle, Three-Leaved Grass, Wood Sorrel, Wood Sour
Herbal Uses: Sorrel has sensitive leaves that fold up at night and at the treat of bad weather. Its beautiful white flowers, veined with red, bloom from May to July. Cold sorrel tea can help with heartburn and liver disorders. Steep two teaspoons per cup of water for twenty minutes; the dose is a quarter-cup four times a day. Or make a tincture. Take ten to thirty drops four times a day. The leaves are eaten in soups and salads. Caution: people with weak kidneys should avoid sorrel because of high oxalic acid content.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Oxalis acetosella juice on cancerous growths of the lip. The fresh juice is also helpful on insect bites, stings, warts, and infected wounds.
Magickal Uses: Sorrel is used for healing. The dried leaf is said to bring luck, protect the heart from disease, and enable one to see fairies. Fresh shamrocks are placed in the sickroom to bring health and healing. Shamrocks are scared to the triple Goddess. A four-leafed shamrock brings fame, wealth, faithful love, and perfect health. A five-leafed shamrock is unlucky. A two-leafed one enables the wearer to see their future love.
Southernwood - (Artemisia abrotanum) Folk Names: Appleringie, Boy’s Love, Garde Robe, Lad’s Love, Maid’s Ruin, Old Man
Magickal Uses: Burn as incense to prevent any type of trouble and to drive snakes away. Use in love spells by either carrying or placing in the bedroom. Beneath the bed it is said to cause lust.
Spearmint - (Mentha spicata) Folk Names: Brown Mint, Garden Mint, Green Mint, Green Spine, Lamb Mint, Mackeral Mint, Mismin (Irish Gaelic), Our Lady’s Mint, Spire Mint, Yerba Buena (Spanish)
Magickal Uses: Spearmint is excellent in healing magickal operations. It is especially effective for lung conditions and when the aroma is inhaled it increases psychic and mental abilities. Stuff your pillow or mattress with spearmint for protect while you sleep.
Spiderwort - (Tradescantia Virginia) Folk Names: Spider Lily
Magickal Uses: This herb was carried by the Dakota Indians when desiring to attract love.
Spikenard - (Inula conyza) Folk Names: Nard
Magickal Uses: When worn around the neck, spikenard brings luck and prevents disease. It also ensures fidelity.
Spleenwort - (Asplenium ceterach) See Fern
Squill - (Urginea scilla) Folk Names: Red Squill, Sea Onion, White Squill
Magickal Uses: This herb has been a favorite since classical times. Hung over the window it protects the home. For prosperity, place one in a jar or box with silver coins. Carry one and any hexes or curses will be broken.
Star Anise - (Illicum verum) Folk Names: Chinese Anise
Herbal Uses: Chew the seeds after a meal to help the digestion. Simmer the seeds to make a tea for colic and rheumatic complaints. Steep one teaspoon of the crushed seed in one cup of boiled water for twenty minutes, and take up to two cups a day. Often added to other brews to improve taste, the tea of the seed will help cramps and nausea, promote menstruation, and increase breast milk. It also relieves insomnia. The seeds are simmered into salves for scabies and lice. The oil is a stomach tonic. The seeds can be tinctured in brandy with some lemon peel; the dose is one-fourth to one-half teaspoon. Use brandy instead of the usual vodka, whiskey, or grain alcohol.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use Illicum for long-standing colic with a pain in the region of the third rib, as well as for asthma, epilepsy, and cough with pus-like phlegm.
Magickal Uses: The seeds are used for increasing psychic powers by burning them as incense or wearing them as beads. The seeds also make very good pendulums. Carried, they bring good luck and can be “charged” by placing them on the altar, one in each of the directions. The powered bark is also used in incense. The tree is planted by the Japanese around temples and on graves as an herb of consecration and protection.
Starwort - See Chickweed
Stillengia - (Stillingia sylvatica) Folk Names: Queen’s Delight, Queen’s Root, Silver Leaf, Stillingia, Yaw Root
Magickal Uses: Burning the root of this herb is helpful in many ways. Two of them are 1) to develop psychic powers, and 2) to locate a lost object. Simply follow the smoke and it will lead you to the item.
Strawberry - (Fragaria vesca)
Magickal Uses: Being an herb of Venus, strawberries incite love when eaten. Expectant women sometimes carry a sachet of strawberry leaves to ensure an easy pregnancy. The leaves are carried for luck.
Sugar Cane - (Saccharum officinarum) Folk Names: Ko (Hawaiian)
Magickal Uses: A traditional herb in Hawaiian magick for love and lust. It is said that if you chew a sugar cane while thinking of your beloved, they will come to you. Before rituals and spell casting, sugar may be sprinkled to cleanse the are of negativity.
Sulphur Wort - (Peucedanum galbaniflora, P. officinale)
Sulphur wort is an umbelliferous plant native to Persia. It produces a fragrant gum resin of a greenish tint known as galbanum, which was an ingredient in the famous Mendesian unguent. In the Bible it is mentioned (called helbenah) as being used for incense. The ‘green incense’ mentioned in Egyptian texts may have been galbanum imported from Persia. Theophrastus mentions that the plant grew in Arcadia, and that the root had warming properties used in a heating ointment, and it was also given in treatment of the spleen. But the seeds and juice were useless, he claims. In Coptic medicine galbanum was used with other ingredients in a poultice for a wound and aching feet, and it was found useful to expel bugs from the home.
Sumbul - (Ferula sumbul) Folk Names: Euryangium Musk Root, Jatamansi, Ofnokgi, Ouchi
Magickal Uses: An herb that is a good basic. Worn it brings luck and health. As incense, it increases psychic powers. For love it may be carried, burnt, or infused into the bath.
Sunflower - (Helianthus annuus) Folk Names: Corona Solis, Marigold of Peru, Solo Indianus
Herbal Uses: Sunflower, a New World plant, has only recently entered the neo-Pagan tradition. Sunflower seeds are simmered in water (one ounce seed to one quart of liquid) until half of the water is absorbed or evaporated. Add six ounces of gin as a preservative, and honey to taste. The preparation is a good syrup for lung and throat problems, coughs, and colds. The oil can be used for the same conditions; ten to fifteen drops, three times a day. A tea of the toasted seed has been used to treat fevers, and is a substitute for quinine. The leaves are smoked as an herbal tobacco mixture.
Homeopathic Uses: Homeopaths use the remedy Helianthus for spleen afflictions, intermittent fever, catarrhal conditions, nasal hemorrhages, nausea, and vomiting. Black stool, dry mouth, red-hot skin, and vomiting are guiding symptoms. Helianthus is used externally as a wound remedy in the same ways that one would use arnica or calendula tinctures and salves.
Magickal Uses: An herb of happiness. The sunflower is said to protect one from smallpox by either wearing them like a necklace or in a small bag around your neck. When eaten they help a woman conceive. Place one under your bed to know the truth. They will also grant wishes. Cut it at sundown while making a wish. One who has been anointed with the juice from the stem of the sunflower will be virtuous. Grown in the garden they bring luck. In Aztec temples of the sun, priestesses carried sunflowers and wore them as crowns. As sun symbols, these flowers symbolize the healthy ego, the wisdom, and the fertility of the solar logos.
Sweet Grass - (Hierochloe odorata)
Magickal Uses: Before beginning any magickal operation that calls for the aid of spirits, or beings, burn this herb to make the area more pleasing to them.
Sweet Pea - (Lathyrus odoratus)
Magickal Uses: This herb, when worn will attract people and cause friendships, and brings courage and strength. When carried they make the truth evident.