Another book review! I've been home so I've been reading quite a bit lately. Just one book away from twenty-four this year. Maybe next year I can read more? The latest book I finished is Garden Witchery: Magic from the Ground Up by Ellen Dugan. Any hedgewitch or witch interested in herbs and herb magic MUST read this book!
As always I will begin with what I didn't like. Honestly, I don't have any complaints. While the book is fairly simple and based on Wicca, it still provides excellent information and even options for more advanced practitioners. The only section I felt was out of place was the chapter on the sabbats. While I enjoyed reading what her family does for the holidays, it seemed a wee bit out of place with the general theme of the book.
This book, however, was fantastic all the same! Dugan is an experienced witch and gardener, making her an expert in garden witchery. I am in the process of planning our front yard for next year and this book was incredibly helpful. The floral language, plant correspondences, general gardening tips, and how the moon cycles affect gardening were wonderful! I cannot wait to add them to my grimoire and start my own gardening journal this year. There are wonderful plans to create themed gardens, including a faerie and Gothic gardens, and notes on how each plant will do in your area making this book an excellent resource.
While I have many books on gardening and herbs already, Dugan's book is by far the best thus far in regards to magical planting. Her stories and writing kept me engaged throughout and encouraged me to think through what I want from my garden. All the ideas running through my head cannot wait to take shape! However, Dugan reminds her readers to keep realistic expectations; start small. It takes years to grow a large garden and it is an ever changing process.
Furthermore, Dugan offers a host of spells, rituals, and crafts you can employ to grow a magnificent garden, attract faeries, and bring peace and healing to your family. She also provides a basic guide to spell crafting using your herbs and flowers, reminding her readers that the magic comes from within us; all the extra stuff just helps the spell along. She encourages her readers to memorize correspondences, a suggestion I strongly endorse. Memorizing and utilizing the correspondences separates the novice from the experienced witch.
Overall, I give this book 5 starts, making it a must own for any hedgewitch or witch interested in herbal magic, lore, and remedies. It is an outstanding book, one I will be returning to again and again throughout my magical life.
As the year nears its end, have you managed to squeeze in any magical reading? If so, let me know! I always love expanding my library!