In the past, all tribes had a shaman, a druid who used plants to treat, and sometimes heal, conditions that afflicted loved ones, acquaintances, and strangers as well. Later, In Medieval Times, women who were called witches did the same, but with the difference that they had the bad luck of living in an environment in which their fellow citizens believed that they were daughters of Satan and / or that they were cursed.more than enough reasons to condemn them to die at the stake.
Fortunately, today society has evolved a lot in this regard, and we know well that witches, like shamans in their time, were people who knew medicinal plantswhich before they called magic plants because they did not know how exactly they acted inside the organism.
Before continuing reading this article, it is important that you know that the information written here is merely informative. If you have any questions related to your health, you should contact a doctorsince it is the only professional who can help you.
In this blog we want you to be informed, and we like to talk about the uses of plants, but we do not have knowledge of medicine. Having said that, Let’s see which are the plants that are associated with witches:
Poppy (Papaver somniferum)
La poppy It is a type of poppy native to the Mediterranean region. It is an annual cycle herb that reaches a height of between 15 centimeters and one meter, with green, egg-shaped or lobed leaves. SUs flowers bloom in spring, and are composed of four or eight white, red, or purple petals.
Its fruits and dried sap are used to make opium and heroin illegally. However, also has uses in medicineas they contain morphine and codeine, two substances used to relieve pain.
White henbane (Hyoscyamus albus)
The white henbane is a biennial or perennial herb native to Mediterranean Europe and Macaronesia that reaches a height of 70 centimeters. Its leaves are green, oblanceolate or domed-lanceolate, and are 35 centimeters long by 15 centimeters wide. The flowers are about 3 centimeters in diameter, and they are yellow.
The plant was used as an aphrodisiac and even as a narcotic, but at present consumption is only allowed if it is prescribed by a doctor.
Belladonna is a perennial herbaceous plant native to Europe, North Africa, and Western Asia. It can grow as a subshrub or bush with a height of approximately 1,5 meters. It develops oval leaves with a length of up to 18 centimeters, and It has purple bell-shaped flowers and something aromatic.
It is believed that the name comes from the use that Roman ladies gave it, who made infusions with the leaves to whiten the skin. Other civilizations took advantage of it to pay homage to their gods, such as Bellona in Celtic lands, or Athena in Greece. Currently, atropine is extracted from its leaves to prevent the eye from moving involuntarily during an ophthalmic operation. Also, in low doses it can make us blush, but in high doses it is poisonous.
Foxglove (digitalis purpurea)
La foxglove or digital it is a biennial plant native to Europe, Africa and Asia. In Spain we find it in the Sierra Nevada, at high altitudes. During its first year of life, it only produces leaves, which form a rosette about 30 centimeters wide; and the second from the center of this sprouts a flower stalk that measures between 0,50 and 2,5 meters. Its flowers are lilac or purple, and are shaped like a hat. This characteristic makes the English call it fairy capswhich translates as witch hat.
For what do you use it? In cool for nothing as it is very dangerous to cause cardiac arrest. But the leaves, once dried, something that has to be done after harvesting them, were used in their day to treat arrhythmias. It is currently considered a poisonous plant, something that never really stopped being, but after using it as a pulse regulator, in cases of epilepsy and other illnesses, it has been concluded that its use is inappropriate.
Jimson weed (giving straw)
El stramonium It is an annual herb that grows from sea level to altitudes of 1300 meters above sea level. It is easy to distinguish it, by its green leaves that can be ovate, rhomboid, or oblanceolate, and by its white or bluish bell-shaped flowers that sprout in summer.
It receives the name of fig tree of hell, since it is poisonous. Only 30-60 grams taken as an infusion are necessary to die. The problem is that, if it is mixed with tobacco, it has hallucinogenic properties, which is why there are people who do not care to take the risk … and who end up in a hospital for doing so.
Mandragora (Mandragora sp)
La mandrake it is a perennial herb native to Eurasia. It has dark green lanceolate leaves with a lighter green midrib. It has small, white flowers, which sprout between the leaves during spring. But what has attracted the most attention is its root: it grows underground, vertically, and During the Middle Ages they believed that, when it was pulled out of the ground, it emitted a scream capable of killing anyone who dared to tear it off. They too drew her as a human figure.
What we know today is that is rich in alkaloids, which have hallucinogenic properties. Although in traditional medicine it has been used as an analgesic, aphrodisiac and sedative.
As you can see, magical plants, or if you prefer, the plants associated with witches, have very varied properties: some are medicinal, but others are poisonous and therefore potentially deadly. It is interesting to know them, because after all, witches, like their predecessors, shamans, or druids, were people ahead of their time.. They went to the field and investigated the plants. They spent their time getting to know them to cure diseases or, at least, relieve pain.
It is very sad that, for this reason, by knowing, they ended their days burned at the stake.