N is for Nasturtium: Pagan Blog Project 2013

First off, there really should be pictures with this post. And there would be, except . . . we have new kittens. They are very distracting. You’re lucky you got a blog post at all this week! Especially since I’m spending a lot of time removing the kittens from my keyboard so I can write this.

When I started focusing on my immediate surroundings as a source of magic, I started thinking about plants much differently. Suddenly any plant could be the right one for a spell or offering.

Including Nasturtiums, those wonderful orange, red, and yellow flowers that grow so well alongside vegetables, attracting pollinators and offering up edible leaves and blossoms.

I’ll be honest, I’ve never used them for any metaphysical purposes before. But as I was casting around for an “N” topic, I came up against a sad shortage of plants whose name began with N. Then I looked out into my tiny garden and there were those bright blossoms flashing in the sunlight.

So how might one work with Nasturtium? I’ve not found it addressed in any of my books on magical herbs, which is exciting–it means I get to learn directly from the plant instead of from a book.

Nasturtiums, as I mentioned, are edible. They have a slight hot, peppery flavor. They bloom primarily in shades of yellow, red and orange, and they do very well in hot, bright sunlight. So I would associate them with the element of fire–and I can imagine nasturtiums presiding over the fire portion of a ritual circle very nicely.

As for what kinds of magic they would be useful for, I look at their personality. They’re happy in the vegetable garden. They’re nice to eat. Their energy is bright and cheerful and playful. This suggests to me a possible use of the flowers in blessings–especially for the home and the garden. It also seems they’d be very fitting as part of a summery outdoor handfasting–that happy companionship they offer would be a good addition to ones wishes for a lifelong romantic partnership.

Nasturtium leaves are quite distinct. They have a little circle at their center, where the leaf attaches to the stalk. The veins radiate out from this center point. They look like little green shields. Vines covered in these leaves spread thickly over garden soil, shading it from hot sun. They feel very protective to me.

The combination of the two makes me think nasturtiums are perfect for blessing a new home and garden–and that nasturtium plants would be a lovely housewarming gift (as long as the recipient is likely to plant them).

And given their fiery nature, I’m now thinking they’d be a great plant to put on the altar as an offering for Brigid, or any deity associated with fire (especially fire as used by humans, like hearth and forge).

So if y’all decide to experiment with them, let me know how it goes.


2 thoughts on “N is for Nasturtium: Pagan Blog Project 2013

  1. I love nasturtiums. they remind me of my grandmother and her prolific yard’s full of plants wherever she lived. in her times plants were so much about feeding the family and livestock.

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