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Herbal Diary

June is Gemini season and, therefore, the perfect time to talk about herbal allies that can heal and empower my Gemini friends. Although Gemini is the third sign of the zodiac, this will be the second post in my Astroherbal Allies series. I started with Pisces (12th sign) because I'm a Pisces and so it is my favorite sign ;) Gemini's are born between May 21st and June 21st. They are mutable signs ruled by the planet Mercury and the parts of the body Gemini rules are the arms, hands, chest, lungs, shoulders, nerves, and respiratory system. This means that while quick-witted and social Gemini's will have beautiful, strong hands and arms that they often use when expressing themselves, they are often prone to respiratory conditions (colds, coughs, asthma), tension in the upper back, and other maladies of the hands, arms, and nervous system. Gemini is the sign represented by the twins, allowing them to see both sides of an issue before making a decision. Gemini is a creature of two worlds, some say the two halves represent light and dark. Twins can represent opposing minds, but can also represent a hybrid nature, "half human, half divine" with one self rooted in the physical world, the other self travels through the astral realms with ease. They are fond of socializing and are adept at making friends, but can at times feel as if they have an evil twin that fills their minds with nervous and negative thoughts. The Gemini nervous system may become taxed if this sign does not take care to nourish their bodies and their minds with meditation and other regular self-care practices.

Image credit: Cocorrina and Co.

As Gemini is ruled by Mercury, examining this planet's nature may aid in finding effective herbal support for this sign. Mercury the planet is associated with the quick-moving fluid known as is quicksilver, or mercury the element, and the Roman deity Mercury is called the messenger God. Swift on their feet, Geminis are considered the fastest moving signs of the zodiac. Mercury (the God) rules over communication, travel, business transactions, writing, knowledge, debt, fear, loss, and money matters. The planet and it's accompanying zodiac sign are ruled by the air element which brings inspiration but also flightyness.

Image credit: Lucy and the Wild

Herbs that support the respiratory system (elecampane, horehound, licorice, and mulberry), relieve tensions, reduce air/gas in the digestive system (dill, fennel, marjoram, lavander, and savory), and balance the nervous system (lavander and valerian) and adrenals (germander, Lilly of the Valley, and parsley) are all excellent companions for Gemini.

Peppermint (Mentha piperita) enlivens the mind and spirit of inspiration. Additionally, the rosmarinic acids and menthol chemicals found within peppermint aid with respiratory ailments and brain fog. It also relieves tension in the body, but especially in the digestive system.

Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) is a nervine and general nervous system tonic. This herb is perfect for those whose minds run in circles when trying to go to bed, or find their brains in obsessive loops. Skullcap relieves nerve pain, relieves spasms, and also promotes calm. Gemini have a tendency to spin out and have trouble finding their way back to ground and center within their bodies. Skullcap can assist with realigning the mind and body through rest. This herb can encourage the production of endorphins by way of its chemical constituent scutellarin. Sajah Popham aslo says it acts as a cap to prevent excess energy loss through the top of the head.

Below you will find some herbal combinations to support Gemini's with their common ailments:


- Lavander

- Skullcap

- Hops

- Milky Oats


- Mugwort

- Damiana

- Blue Egyptian Lotus

- Wormword

- Passionflower

Image credit: French Frou Frou

SORE MUSCLE SALVE (for those tight shoulders)

- Arnica


- Peppermint


- Peppermint

- Elecampane

- Nettles

- Licorice

- Ginger

- Mullein

- Holy Basil

- Eucalyptus

- Maidenhair fern

Image credit: Laura Pee

Gemini's Other Gifts:

Intellectual prowess

Articulation of the mysterious


Helps others find their words

Divination: Bibliomancy, runes, etc

Astral Travel and dreams

The Divine Trickster - the power to de-escalate or diffuse tension with words, the power to spin words to their advantage, they have a knack for revealing facts via humor rather than confrontation.


Cunningham, Scott

1986 Magical Herbalism: The secret craft of the wise. Llewellyn Publishications. St. Paul, MN.

written by Willow Blackthorne

You may already know about the connection between astrological signs and parts of the body. If not, I plan to write another post about the topic in the near future, so stay tuned and just roll with the idea for now. This post should probably be the 12th in this series because Pisces is the 12th sign of the zodiac. But Pisces also happens to be my sun sign and therefore it’s where I want to start! Let’s begin by looking at the correspondences. Correspondences, in terms of pagan and other spiritual worldviews, are various elemental, planetary, color, materials, herbal, crystal, or other things that have energetic similarities. For example, the element of fire is often associated with war, passion, the planet Mars, lions, fire ants, the mineral iron, the color red, the spice cinnamon, and many other things. These are all correspondences.

A well-known correspondence to Pisces is the planet Neptune, the watery planet of dreams and illusion. Therefore, Pisces will often develop magickal abilities such as astral projection, lucid dreaming, prophetic dreaming, and other divinatory skills.

Each of the zodiac signs corresponds with parts of the human body as well. The parts of the body Pisces rules are the feet, lymph glands, and immune system. Therefore, balanced Pisceans are known to have beautifully shaped feet, enjoy foot massages and pedicures, and have strong immune systems. They may also suffer more from ailments of the feet such as in-grown nails and blisters, have overly sensitive or ticklish feet, or that strong immune system may manifest in an over-active one causing auto-immune diseases. The capacity for the best and the worst aspects of health and wellness in relation to those body parts are found in Pisces. When our bodies are in balance, our energy flows easily and our lives tend to feel balanced. We thrive and grow into our true selves. There are herbal allies that pair well with these body systems that can help bring the body into balance and heal the common ailments reported by this water sign.

Foot soaks

Pamper your feet often and you will feel at your best. Use herbal and essential oil-infused bath salts with relaxing herbs or fragrances that open your third eye. Lavender is well known, but a blend of frankincense and myrrh are also good.

Dreaming Tea

When you desire to catch a glimpse of the future or clairvoyance whilst you dream, sip some of this tea before bed. Make a ritual of it and do not use any screens or devices an hour before you lie down. Light a candle, journal or meditate, or do some relaxing bedtime yoga. Be sure to snuff your candle before bed. You can pair the tea with your favorite premade incense or make your own with the following recipe:

  • 2 parts Mugwort

  • 1 part Lavander

  • 1 part Damiana

Steep 1 Tbl in 8 oz of water, covered for 10 minutes, then strain and drink before bed. As a bonus, plan to journal or a meditative session before bed. Talk to yourself about what you are trying to gain clairvoyance about or what you’d like insight about. This is also a good recipe to drink before divinatory practice.

Flying ointments are recipes that provide a heightened state of awareness and assist the wearer in visiting other planes of consciousness and existence. The ointment is rubbed on the skin, often the sensitive areas of the body where they will be more readily absorbed. Some rumors even associate the image of witches riding on brooms with the practice of witches applying ointment to the broom handles then applying it to the vulva. Recipes come from ancient times, although there are some contemporary recipes as well. They often include poisonous or potent herbs that are dangerous to work with. The validity and historical accuracy of these recipes is arguable... For this reason, I will not offer a recipe for you here. Flying ointments should be crafted and used with caution and respect.

Nervines and Sleep aids

Pisces may exhibit conditions of nervousness, anxiety, and insomnia at times. Their deeply empathetic and sympathetic nature may lead to feeling others’ pain or imbalances. Nervines are excellent for relieving stress, tension, and emotional instability, making them perfect partners if the goal is a grounded, well balanced state and slipping easily into that restful, dreamlike state that Pisces thrives in.

Passionflower is one of my favorite nervines and sleep aids. She is bitter and cool and has an affinity for the heart and liver. As well as providing nervine and sedative effects, Passiflora also possesses hypnotic, antispasmodic, and anodyne (painkilling) effects. With an Ares rising sign, I tend toward heated ailments and temper, my sleeplessness and stress often derive from angry, hot conditions in other words. Therefore, the cooling actions of Passiflora ease my tension more effectively than Valerian. Passiflora pairs well with Skullcap, and the two are often more effective when working together than as simples (by themselves). Infusion 3 - 9 grams. Tincture 10 - 30 drops.

If you tend toward cold, nervous constitution, Valerian’s warming, spicy, and bitter flavors will help shift you into balance. Valerian’s affinities are also for the heart and liver, and the root is a relatively well known supplement even for Western biomedical practitioners. Valerian’s calming and sedative effects may ease pain, cramps, and spasms. She also provides carminative (gas relieving), stimulanting, and pain killing effects. Infusion 3 - 9 grams. Tincture 10 - 30 drops.

California Poppy -The chemical properties of this plant are similar to the opium poppy as you may have thought. Although, I’m not certain you would test positive for opium on a drug test if you work with California Poppy regularly for sleep. This plant will also ease nerves and provided antispasmodic, analgesic (pain relieving), and febrifuge (fever reducing) properties. Infusion 3 - 9 grams. Tincture 10 - 30 drops.

I recently conducted an archaeological survey in Flagstaff. Being the hedgewitch that I am meant that I could not help but take this opportunity to record the beautiful plants I found along the way. Although the modern environment that encompasses Flagstaff is not exactly the same as it was in prehistoric times, I believe studying the modern flora can still provide clues to the resources that were available to people in the area in prehistoric times. Today Flagstaff sits within the Coconino National Forest, which contains Ponderosa Pine forest and Alpine Tundra biomes ranging between 7,000 ft and 12,663 ft. I was specfifically surveying on I-40, an east-west oriented highway that unites many in-use segments of the historical trans-continental highway Route 66 ("Come get your kicks"). This region has experienced many episodes of human-modified large scale infrastructure projects and therefore plants that prefer disturbed soils are the ones I mostly found. Wild, native weeds" can be found alongside modern cultivars whose seeds were tossed by motorists or blown into the area from local agricultural plots. In historic times, farmers and gold hunters from European countries moved into the area and likely experienced a similar ecological landscape as we have today. Of course, humans have been gathering and working with plant communities long before Europeans. Prehistoric Native populations have occupied this area as far back as at least 8000 years ago. Evidence can be found in the cliff dwellings and Pueblo structures of the Sinagua and Anasazi tribes. Native plant communities were the only source of medicine and a major source of food before agriculture or industrial farming practices. The knowledge of medicinal and edible plants is unfortunately not as widespread as it was in prehistoric, or even historical times. In case you wondered, the modern Native communities of the area include the Dine (sometimes refered to as Navajo), Hopi, Havasupai, Hualapai, and Kaibab-Paiute peoples (

My personal mission is to preserve as much medicinal, edible, cultural, and spiritual knowledge as possible about each of the areas that I live in. I'm starting by identifying the plants that I come across on hikes and surveys. Some plants were so common that I just plain spaced taking photos of them. I'll try to update this post later to include them, or just make a later post on Wild Sunflowers and Thistle. Here's a few common plants that can be found in the Flagstaff area:

Rocky Mountain Bee Plant. Cleome Serrulata.

Some sort of Morning Glory?

Possible Red Yarrow, Achillea millefolium rubra

Pineywoods geranium, Geranium caespitosum?

Wild Rhubarb? Dock?

New Mexico Evening Primrose, Oenothera neomexicana


Red Elder, Sambucus racemosa


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