The Shamanic Herbal: Frigga's Herbs


[Birch](Betula alba.)

Names: Berkana, Beorc, Beth, Beithe, Bereza, Berke, Bouleau, Lady of the Woods
Medicinal Uses: Birchleaf tea has been recommended for rheumatoid arthritis. The extracted bark oil is used in soaps for eczema. Birch leaves are antiseptic and can be used in wound poultices.
Household Uses: Birch beer is made from the bark extract, and wine and vinegar can be made from the sap, which can also be boiled down into a syrup. The extracted bark oil is used to condition leather.
Traditional Magical Uses: A cradle of birchwood protects babies. The traditional witches' broom was often made of birch twigs. As birch is a strong but gentle purifying tree, birch limbs have been used to strike possessed people or animals as a way to exorcise them.
Shamanic Magical Uses: Birch twigs are traditionally used for the ritual flogging between rounds of the Finnish sauna. The flogging (which can be as hard or as gentle as one wishes) both ritually purifies one and gets blood circulating to the skin. As Frigga's tree, a talisman with her name carved in runes can be used to take you to her private hall, Fensalir, assuming that you have prior permission to be in Asgard. Birch leaves can be burned in a fire in order to send her a message. Birch is the tree of the Berkana/Beorc rune.

Lady's Mantle

[Lady's Mantle](Alchemilla vulgaris)

Names: Bear's Foot, Leontopodium, Lion's Foot, Nine Hooks, Stellaria
Medicinal Uses: Tea is drunk for pregnancy, contracting the uterus after childbirth, and menopausal symptoms.
Household Uses: Boil for a green wool dye.
Traditional Magical Uses: Used for charm bags for safe pregnancies and childbirth.
Shamanic Magical Uses: This plant is well liked by Frigga in her role as matron of birthing and families. Use it with the rune Berkana/Beorc for safe pregnancy, birthing, and protection of babies and small children.

Shepherd's Purse

(Capsella bursis-pastoris)

Names: St. James' Wort
Medicinal Uses: Tincture of Shepherd's Purse will stop internal bleeding, including uterine bleeding after childbirth or during excess menses.
Traditional Magical Uses: Charm for pregnant women.
Shamanic Magical Uses: Much beloved by Frigga, this plant is good in charm bags for healthy pregnancy, especially where there is a question as to the mother's survival.


(Thymus spp.)

Names: Various, depending on varieties
Medicinal Uses: Tincture is antiseptic and preservative; dead bodies were anointed with thyme oil to keep them fresh for the funeral. Tea is good for hangovers and colds, and added to cough drops and syrups.
Household Uses: Plant around beehives, decoct for a household disinfectant, and add to any savory dish.
Traditional Magical Uses: Purification and healing spells. Thyme tea is drunk to stave off nightmares.
Shamanic Magical Uses: Thyme is beloved of Frigga, and offerings can be made to her of its leaves and blossoms. To honor her, one might plant a thyme clock with different thymes for the hours of the day. You can also plant thyme in the shape of the rune Berkana/Beorc, her rune. Thyme is also good to drink or burn in order to stave off nightmares that may be caused by outside influences, especially for children.


(Reseda luteola)

Names: Dyer's Yellow
Household Uses: Classic yellow dye plant of our ancestors.
Traditional Magical Uses: None that we know of, although dyeing is its own magic.
Shamanic Magical Uses: As Woad seems to be Odhinn's, so Weld seems to be Frigga's. The two were dyed one over the other to make the famous Lincoln Green of Robin Hood's men. If you are up to making magical dyes, you can make both and ritually dye a natural-fiber garment, invoking them as a pair. Lincoln Green might be a good dye for a wedding-gift garment, as they are a long-married couple.


(Linum usitatissimum)

Names: Linseed
Medicinal Uses: Flax seed has recently been proven to have high levels of phytoestrogens, which act as a feminizing hormone. It should be eaten regularly by postmenopausal woman, male-to-female transsexuals, and anyone else who needs natural female hormones.
Household Uses: Flax is the plant from which we get linen thread, obviously. Also, the seeds can be pressed into linseed oil for wood protection.
Traditional Magical Uses: Flax seeds are used in money spells, and placing them in your shoes will ward off poverty. Mixed with mustard seed or pepper, they ward against sorcery.
Shamanic Use: Flax is sacred to both Holda and Frigga, both of whom are spinners. It can be sprinkled to call upon either of them, or to help find your way to Fensalir, Frigga's hall where the spinning and weaving is done.