Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Several Fairy Plants

Wood Anemone: Beautiful plants. I have some anemones, also called wind flowers, that bloom in my spring garden.

From The Scots Herbal by Tess Darwin

“A widespread plant of woods, also found on upland grassland and moorland where it may be a relic indicating previous woodland cover. It provided  a safe refuge for fairies to take their beauty sleep or shelter from rain, as the flower closes at night and at the onset of wet weather.”
Blooms in spring. Note: Poisonous. Contains a bitter oil that causes severe skin irritations and gastric disturbances if ingested. Musky scent. Alternative name ‘Smell fox.’

Butterwort Family: From The Scots Herbal by Tess Darwin

“This was a magical plant in the Scottish islands. People who carried it were protected from witches; cows that had eaten it were immune to elf-arrows. It was woven with other flowers into a magic hoop to place under the milk pail and protect the milk from fairies. There is a story of a woman keeping watch over a newborn baby to prevent fairies stealing it and leaving a changeling—a sickly, fey fairy child—in its place. Two fairies came to the cradle and could not take the child because its mother had eaten butter made from milk of a cow that had eaten butterwort.”

From this informative site on Butterwort (A carnivorous plant):

“The striking triangular leaves, with their rolled edges, appear in a star pattern at the base of this pretty flower.”

The flowers are deep violet-blue with a pointy funnel shape. Butterwort is widely distributed in Scotland, Wales, and the north of England. It likes a damp habitat such as bogs, fens, wet heaths and the crevices between rocks.

Butterworts main use medicinally is for coughs, particularly whooping cough. The leaves are used to curdle milk in order to make butter.

For more on butterwort and several other moorland plants visit:

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