The Love Potion – Evelyn de Morgan, 1903
There are some things after all that Sally Owens knows for certain: Always throw spilled salt over your left shoulder. Keep rosemary by your garden gate. Add pepper to your mashed potatoes. Plant roses and lavender, for luck. Fall in love whenever you can.
— Practical Magic, by Alice Hoffman
The magical lore about lavender is vast and ancient. It has long been associated with spiritual love, encouraging forgiveness and compassion, and allowing for the full creative expression our individuality.
Carrying it enhances strength and courage, and according to the Southwest School of Botanical Medicine, “Lavender is often considered an aromatic ‘Rescue Remedy’ and is ideal for men, women and children. It calms, releases, and balances strong emotions such as frustration, irritability, nervous anxiety, panic, hysteria and insomnia. It appears to cleanse and soothe the heart, allowing for a release of anger, the emotion which so often is cause for severe depression. Lavender’s nature is to heal and release all discord which may arise in our physical, emotional and spiritual lives.”
Some say that lavender, like other plants cultivated for their fragrance, should be planted during the Moon’s first quarter, ideally in the sign of Libra, to achieve best results.
In Ireland, it is a long tradition for brides to include lavender in their bouquets, as it brings good luck and happiness. The wise grandmothers know to plant lavender around the house to keep away bad luck and evil spirits. And spouses who place lavender flowers between their bed sheets will never quarrel.
In fact, the essential oil is believed to be an aphrodisiac for some men (makes you wonder what those little old ladies with their lavender water were really up to!). Yet other tales insist that lavender scent protects one’s chastity. Obviously, your mileage may vary on this score.
Lavender makes a most magical companion plant when planted with roses. Some believe that, besides the powerful magical energy when they are combined, the lavender will help keep aphids away. Other traditions suggest that lavender should be planted near thyme and marjoram, but never planted with rue or parsley. Seems that I have unknowingly broken that rule for a few years:
Folk tales suggest that carrying lavender will enable you to see ghosts, and it is universally recognized as an aid when contacting the Fair Folk. It is a must in any self-respecting Faerie Garden. And being a well-loved herb for them, as some of my visitors here on my blog have pointed out, a bundle or sprig makes a very appropriate offering.
The flowers can be burned to induce sleep, and scattered throughout the home to maintain peaceful harmony within. If it’s a sunny, well-drained spot, try planting lavender under your clothes dryer outlet vent. The warm air from the vent will spread the scent of throughout your patio or yard.
This weekend, I hope you will treat yourself to some lavender magic! May it bring you joy and many blessings!