September 3, 2018

Sunflowers photo by Lilith Dorsey. All rights reserved.

Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadows. It’s what the sunflowers do. – Helen Keller

Sunflowers are sacred to many different Gods and Goddesses. Adored by everyone from Apollo to Baba Yaga  to Oshun to Incan priestesses, the love of this flower is worldwide. There is the legend of Helios and Clytie. The University of Melbourne website shares the following version of the story:

“Before scientists studied a plant’s internal clock, the Greek myth of Clytie and Helios was used to explain their movements. Clytie was a water nymph who fell madly in love with Helios, the sun god. But Helios had eyes for another woman and ignored Clytie. Full of unrequited love, Clytie would watch Helios race his chariot across the sky. She didn’t eat or drink and after nine days of watching him cross the sky, she became rooted to the ground and transformed into a sunflower.”

This story explains a Sunflowers delightful tendency to turn with the sun throughout the day before its blossoms are fully opened. Turning is only one of the delightful features that this flower exhibits in the garden. Of particular interest to me is the fact that these plants will clean the soil of toxic components like arsenic. Maybe this is one reason it is so popular in urban settings. Sunflowers are native to North and South America, and very easy to grow. Several varieties are both hear and/or drought tolerant. They come in a variety of sizes and a range of colors mostly in the orange and yellow family.

Folklore and Facts about Sunflowers

  • Some Indigenous North Americans view Sunflowers as a symbol of courage.
  • Sunflowers are referred to as the fourth sister of the Three Sisters corn, bean, and squash.
  • Putting these plants in your yard is said to attract luck.
  • Many Asian philosophies equate sunflowers with a long life, good fortune, and vitality.
  • Give them on your third anniversary to symbolize loyalty and adoration.
  • Eating the seeds are said to make one fertile.
  • Leaving a bowl of seeds on a new grave is said to help the deceased journey successfully to the afterlife.

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July 30, 2018

Licorice root photo courtesy of pixabay. Licensed under CC 0.

For some licorice root is merely and ingredient in candy, but its magickal history is much more complex. Used in Hoodoo, Conjure, and traditional European magicks this root is certainly a worthy addition to the witch’s arsenal.

Useful for culinary, medicinal, and magickal applications licorice has its root in many different areas. This plant is also known as Sweet Root, Lacris, Lacrisse, Lycorys, Yastimadhu, and Reglisse. It is ruled by the planets Mercury and Venus, and is associated with the element of water. It can be found growing wild in Greece, Spain, Italy, Iraq, Syria, Russia, and China. However, you can also grow it at home, just be sure to soak the seeds before planting.

According to ” Traditional Chinese Medicine describes licorice root as the ultimate harmonizer, offering strength to the other herbs in the formula and blending the energies of the formula to achieve the desired results. ” When we are discussing magick the root also takes on this property.

Magickal Uses of Licorice Root

Primarily, licorice root is used magickally in love and lust spells. It can be carried to attract romance and passion. Alternatively it could be added to a mojo bag to help strengthen the fidelity in a partnership.

There is also a long history of licorice being used in spells to control and compel. The ethics of these types of workings are questionable so please proceed with caution. One area where this might be useful however, is when applying for a new job or position. Here’s a spell you might want to use.

Job Interview Licorice Spell

1 Tbs. Licorice Root chips

1 oz. Sweet Almond oil

3 drops Patchouli oil

3 drops Vetivert oil

3 drops Ginger oil

Glass Bottle

Put sweet almond oil into the bottle. Add remaining ingredients. Close the bottle and rub it between your palms. Focus on success and luck coming to you. Wear the oil when you go for a job interview or meeting.


If you enjoy this post please check out the rest of the writings in our Herbal Magick series, and as always remember to like, comment, and share !

July 13, 2018

Rose water photo by Lilith Dorsey. All rights reserved.

Water is life, and Rose Water is no exception. A long time ingredient in Hoodoo and other types of magick, Rose Water is a sweet and refreshing element in many different types of spells and rituals. Magickally it is used in spells for love, romance, healing, psychic energy, and protection. As a beauty product this can be used as a moisturizer, toner, hair rinse, a skin and face spray, and is even used as an ingredient in cooking.

Rose Water Instructions

There are many commercial preparations on the market, but you can also make your own if you want. The blog Everything Under the Moon tells us how :

Make Your Own Materials

• 2-3 quarts rose petals
• water
• ice cubes
• pot with rounded lid
• brick
• bowl that fits inside pot

1. Place the brick in the center of the pot. There is nothing magical about the brick. Its purpose is simply to hold the collection bowl above the surface of the roses.
2. Put the rose petals in the pot (around the brick) and add enough water to barely cover the petals.
3. Set the bowl on top of the brick. The bowl will collect the water.
4. Invert the lid of the pot (turn it upside down), so the rounded part of the lid dips into the pot.
5. Heat the roses and water to a gentle boil.
6. Place ice cubes on the top of the lid. The ice will cool the steam, condensing the rose water inside the pot and making it run down the lid and drip into the bowl.
7. Continue gently boiling the roses and adding ice as needed until you have collected the rose water. Don’t boil off all the water. You’ll collect the most concentrated rose water in the first few minutes. After that, it will become more and more dilute. Turn off the heat when you notice the condensation isn’t as rose-scented as you would like. You can collect between a pint and quart of rose water in 20-40 minutes using 2-3 quarts of rose petals.

Rose Water Happiness Spell

If you haven’t noticed already I love to use this ingredient everywhere. One of my favorite spells from my book Love Magic is for a Happiness Water Bath. It combine equal parts of Florida water, and rose water, along with lavender and carnation oil. You can use it in your bath, as a floorwash, or just sprinkle it around for great blessings of joy.

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June 29, 2018

Iris Fulva aka Jezebel Root photo courtesy of flickr. Licensed under CC 2.0

When it comes to Hoodoo herbs Jezebel Root is one of the most notorious. Also called Louisiana iris root, it can be used for success in gambling, business, and love magick.

The blog My Secret Hoodoo tells us ” Jezebel Root is any of five species of iris native to Louisiana, including; Iris fulva, Iris hexagona, Iris brevicaulis Iris giganticaerulea, and Iris nelsonii. Any of their hybrids are also acceptable. Many people are confused by the name Louisiana Iris. They may think that any iris that grows there is a Louisiana Iris, which is not true. For example, both Blue Flag and Yellow Flag grow there but they are not members of Louisiana Irises. The magical uses of Jezebel Root are quite similar to Orris Root/Queen Elizabeth Root. Jezebel Root is used for female domination and to attract a male lover…. It is used by prostitutes to attract male clients. It’s apparently becoming popular with gay men who want to attract a more dominant lover. Also, I’m hearing and reading more online from waitresses and strippers who claim it softens customers up and makes them more generous with their tip giving.”

The original Jezebel was a Phoenician Queen in the 9th C BCE. Her name has become synonymous with cunning and ruthlessness, but some see an alternate narrative of a strong woman who fought back despite epic odds.  If we look back at the root’s history, it’s clearly a tricky one (pardon the pun.) Jezebel root was said to have been used by prostitutes to get a rich man, and keep him attached. Obviously, the ethics behind this is questionable, but there are also other uses for the root.

Jezebel Root Spells

  • The simplest spell with this root is a wishing spell. Simply write your wish on a piece of paper. Wrap it around a piece of jezebel root and tie it up with a natural cord. Carry this in your pocket until the wish comes true.
  • Due to it’s reputation many of the jezebel spells are used in attraction workings. A jezebel spell oil can be rubbed on your shoes (traditionally high heels) before going out in order to attract a rich man.
  • A simple spell for wealth and business success can be done by wrapping a piece of the root in a dollar bill. Consequently you then carry this with you when you have important meetings or contracts to sign.

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June 9, 2018

Hibiscus flower image courtesy of Wikimedia commons.

Big and bold the beauty of the Hibiscus flower is truly a sight to behold. Botanically, the plant is part of the genus Malvaceae, and is part of the mallow family. During my first trip to Jamaica I was pleasantly surprised to find these brilliant beauties everywhere. Locals told me they were called Jamaica flower.

However, the Caribbean isn’t the only place that delights in this flower. In China giving these blooms symbolizes the fleeting yet beautiful nature of fame. While the Victorian language of flowers used this to represent an appreciation of delicate beauty. Hibiscus is a common ingredient in use in both kitchen magic and spellwork. One of the things that my hometown of Brooklyn has become famous for of late is a place called Dough Doughnuts. During my last workshop on Love Magic I talked about their sublime Hibiscus doughnut, and many folks in my audience nodded in agreement.

Love That Hibiscus

Magickally Hibiscus is great to use in spells for love. You can use it in cooking, like the people at the doughnut shop. Alternatively, you can use it in regular spells, such as baths, candle magic, and floorwashes to bring love and harmony into your life. The blooms are very short lived, so consequently the easiest way to obtain the flower is in it’s dried form. This can be used as a tea or simple infusion and then sprinkled about your home, or drank to attract love. If you would like a more detailed recipe here’s my favorite one for Hibiscus Lemonade

Hibiscus Lemonade Recipe

1 inch piece of ginger root, peeled

2 inch piece of orange peel, dried

1 cup honey

1/4 cup Hibiscus Flowers, dried

1 cup lemon juice

6 cups water

Boil two cups of the water in a small saucepan over low heat. Add ginger root, orange peel, and honey stirring well. Turn heat down to simmer and cook for one minute. Remove from heat. Add the hibiscus flowers and lemon juice. Cool the mixture down to room temperature and strain. Place in a large pitcher along with the remaining 4 cups of water. Chill and serve over ice. Makes 6 servings.

For more magickal recipes please see my African-American Ritual Cookbook ! As always if you have enjoyed what you read here please remember to like, comment, and share !

May 24, 2018

Shrubby Cinquefoil (Five Finger Grass) photo by Paul Asman and Jill Lenoble. Licensed under CC 2.0

Five Finger Grass is one of the most popular herbs in Hoodoo and Conjure magick. Also called cinquefoil, five fingers, hand of Mary, silverweed, torementil, and witches weed, this herb is known for it’s ability to bring success and protection. The botanical name for this herb is Potentilla, and there are over 300 different varieties of this plant. The five elongated leaves on this plant resemble fingers, and that is how it got its name.

The Five Fingers of Mercury and Venus

Most often Five Finger Grass is associated with the planets Mercury and Venus. According to the website “Cinquefoil is usually considered to be a Mercury herb, because it normally lies along the ground and spreads quickly by its thin but tough stalks. And the Mercury association makes sense, given cinquefoil’s long association with divination and magick. For instance, Agrippa includes cinquefoil in a recipe for Mercury incense and said that cinquefoil drives away devils and helps one to resist poison.” The plant’s connection to Venus comes from it’s use in spells for love. Noted author Judika Illes’ in her work  Encyclopedia of 5000 Spells, burning Cinquefoil as an incense at bedtime will let you have dreams of your lover.

Fingers Full Of Money

There are many ways to use Five Finger Grass to put money and prosperity in your hands. Consequently, a few of these include:

  • Put a bit of this herb in your wallet or pocketbook to help draw money to you.  It will also help you to find sales, deals, and bargains.
  • A mojo bag filled with this grass and a piece of ginger root will draw success when gambling.
  • One folk magick spell says to place a pinch of Five Finger Grass behind a mirror, and then face the mirror towards the front door. This will help to keep bill collectors from your home.
  • Make a floorwash with the grass, Florida water cologne, and cinnamon to bring money into your space.


If you enjoy what you read here please check out the other posts in our Herbal Magick series, and remember to like, comment, and share !

April 26, 2018

Camphor image courtesy of wikimedia. Licensed under CC 2.0

Camphor is old school herbal magick, hoodoo, and witchy protection. It can be used in oil, or in block form. It’s botanical name is Cinnamomum camphora, and it is native to China, Taiwan, and Japan. The tree it comes from is part of the Laurel family, and can grow for over 1000 years.

Today it is used medically for arthritis, sore muscles, and also as an insect repellent. In addition, with the extreme weather changes many people have been sick lately, and they should consider using camphor in their healing practices.  Magickally, it’s uses all mainly revolve around protection from negative energy, sickness, and other creepy things. However it is also effective when used for luck, divination, psychic connection, prosperity and love.

Magickal Uses of Camphor

  • Place a square or 3 drops of oil in a white bowl along with one cup of spring water. This then goes under your bed to rid you of negative energies and nightmares.
  • Place a camphor square in the corners of a room to protect from evil.
  • Put a square or 3 drops of oil into a bottle in your yard or garden to remove negatvity
  • Burn on charcoal along with rosemary to drive away sickness and bad energy.
  • Make a healing candle by placing 3 drops of oil on top of a white candle. Burn to help heal from physical and emotional trauma.
  • Around the home it is known to repel insects, and rodents.
  • In the Hindu tradition it can be utilized to remove the evil eye.
  • Astrologically this herb is associated with the Moon and all lunar magick.
  • Wrap a square of camphor with a silver dime on top of it in red cloth. Carry in your pocket to increase your success.
  • Do Not Eat !!! This is highly toxic.

Please check out the rest of the posts in our Herbal Magick series. Finally if you like what you see here, please remember to like, comment, and share !

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