Hawthorn Herb of Beltane
Botanical: Crataegus oxyacantha (LINN.)
Family: N.O. Rosaceae
The Hawthorn is the badge of the Ogilvies and gets one of its commonest popular names from blooming in May. The Hawthorn is called Crataegus Oxyacantha from the Greek Kratos, meaning hardness (of the wood), oxcus (sharp), and akantha (a thorn). The German name of Hagedorn, meaning Hedgethorn, shows that from a very early period the Germans divided their land into plots by hedges; the word haw is also an old word for hedge. The name Whitethorn arises from the whiteness of its bark and Quickset from its growth as a quick or living hedge, in contrast to a paling of deadwood.
This familiar tree will attain a height of 30 feet and lives to a great age. It possesses a single seed-vessel to each blossom producing a separate fruit, which when ripe is a brilliant red and this is in miniature a stony apple. In some districts, these mealy red fruits are called Pixie Pears, Cuckoo’s Beads, and Chucky Cheese.
Dried haws or fruits
Cardiac, diuretic, astringent, tonic. Mainly used as a cardiac tonic in organic and functional heart troubles. It is used in particular for angina.and the treating of coronary artery disease. It improves heart function and is useful for mild congestive heart failure and irregular heartbeat. Hawthorn is a valuable remedy for high blood pressure it is additional effective in raising low blood pressure. Both flowers and berries are astringent and useful in decoction to cure sore throats. A useful diuretic in dropsy and kidney troubles. Combined with Ginkgo it is used to enhance poor memory.
Planet: Mars and Venus
Symbolism: Purification, sacred marriage, and male-female unity
Powers: Romance, Fertility, Faery Magick, Fishing Magic, Happiness, Divination, Chastity,
Hawthorn flowers have been used to increase fertility and are incorporated into handfasting and Weddings this time of year.
The leaves are believed to ensure chastity and are often used for this purpose.
Carried in a sachet during a fishing trip it is said to ensure a good catch. Worn or carried it promotes happiness in the depressed, troubled, or sad. Use for protection, love and marriage spells