Throughout human history ancient cultures have always held the belief that plants have not only medicinal properties but magical ones as well.
From the earliest times in recorded history occult philosophers have continuously ascribed specific planetary influences to a wide variety of plants, shrubs and herbs. Even today the use of many common species of plants; including some that are commonly classed as weeds, is common throughout nearly all occult practices.
Growth and the Wheel of Life
In her book Plant Magic acclaimed author Sandra Kynes explores the world of plants through the context of the Pagan Wheel of the Year.
As a member of the Order of the Bards, Ovates and Druids her particular interest in Pagan Magic has led her to catalog a wide variety of plants commonly found in the Northern Hemisphere along and their occult properties.
In the opening to Plant Magic Kynes establishes the groundwork upon which the main content of her book is based.
This includes an explanation of the convention for using the proper Latin names for plants followed by a brief look at the core qualities of each of the planets, plant’s relationships to the fixed stars as well as a brief look at helpful botanical terms.
This is followed by a fairly extensive explanation regarding the effect of our Moon upon Plant growth and development.
Month by Month
The second part of Plant Magic considers the year on a month by month basis and identifies a number of common varieties of plants that figure predominantly during any monthly period.
Here each plant is singled out its mythological, historical and astrological properties. They are also identified along with a description of the specific plant and a rough guide to its magical and medicinal properties.
Kynes even assigns each one the qualities of one or more Runes.
Plant Magic closes with quick guides, an extensive bibliography and an index.
Our Review of Plant Magic by Sandra Kynes
From January to December – moving through each of the eight sabbats along the way, Plant Magic highlights the close connection between a range of plants and the seasons.
These do not necessarily have to be the month during which they grow or flower for this is not a gardening manual, but instead highlights the period with which a plant is connected.
The result is that reading the book is a sheer delight as it becomes less of a reference manual and more of a journey through a magical kingdom.
Most of the varieties chosen for this book are relatively common to magical work but many are not. This means that from a Wiccan or Pagan perspective Kynes opens up many new and exciting avenues of exploration in spell-casting and healing.
Given the consistently high quality found in Kynes other books I came to expect something of equal quality from her in Plant Magic and she in no way disappoints.
In fact for its sheer encyclopaedic content alone I would consider Plant Magic to be Kynes finest work so far and is a sheer testament to the depth of love that she has for her subject and the great care that she puts into her work.
Whether you are a Pagan, Wicca or Magickian you need look no further than Plant Magic by Sandra Kynes. It is a comprehensive digest of magical plants and an indispensable guide to Pagan tradition.