Sunday 17 March 2013

Celtic Tree Month of : Alder

Alder 3/18-4/14

The alder is native to Europe & Britain, it is found growing in swampy land near banks of streams & river.  It's a cousin of birch & hazel & generally grows near them in forests.  It needs the rivers to proprogate itself,  it grows up to heights of 70 feet; it matures after 30 years.  It grows up to 150 years old.  The ripe seeds falls in October and November.  

In the Norse legends the month of March was called the "the lengthening month of the waking alder", the specific time was called "Lenct", & was a time of enforced fasting as the last of the winter's provisions became scarce.  This practice eventually became known as Lent, once the church came into power.  

In Irish legend the alder was the first male created, & the first female was made from the rowan tree.  It's also known as the faerie tree, said to grant access to the realms.

Irish: Gaelic Name:  Fearn
Ogham/ Rune: ; |=, Ansuz
Ruling Planet:  Venus
Abilities: Divination, prophetic, Protection of self & country, 
Spring, Autumn
AspectColors: PurpleHeart Chakra
Birds:  Hawk, Seagull & Raven
God/Goddess:        Cronos, Vernostonus, Bran, 
Element:   Water & Fire
Ogham/ Rune: ;
Ansuz means the mouth, the voice of the Goddess, signals, true vision. The other Rune is Isa standstill, time to turn inward. 

Uses: These are some ideas of how to incorporate Alder into your life
  • The bark, fruit & leaves can be used as a dye
  • Black Alder's inner bark can be used to make a wound wash especially for deep external wounds, & as a tea for internal injuries
  • Fresh bark is an emetic (vomiting agent)
  • If your going to be faced with an argument or dispute, bring a piece of alder bark with you for protection
Old Healing Lore:
  • Make a tea of the leaves or bark and use on burns or inflammation
  • Freshly picked leaves are great insect repellents
  • Native American Tribes used the alder for a variety of purposes from treating diphtheria, to cramps & vomiting, and for rheumatic complaints,  the innder bark & leaves were used for fevers, to stop internal bleeding. It was also used a wash for sprains, bruises, headaches & back pain.

  • Alder makes you confront your fears.  In the Ogham when Alder turns up. it is time to use the alder shield to protect you from the excess of emeotions. Call on alder's spirit to face down fear & anger
  • Once used in the shields of the warriors, the alder tree is associated with a local warrior hunter God named Vernostonus in Scotland, his name translates to "The Red One" since when cut the tree bleeds red.
  • Tyrol (a German belief) states that the tree is associated with the dead & magicians after a young boy witnessed a dead woman being brought back to life when the wood was supsitited in her body for a part that was missing.  
  • In Scotland, there are tales of peope being taken by the faires and alder logs being left in their place. One such tale is of a groom who dies then returns to his bride and tells her he has been taken by the fairies when his tomb was opened, in place of his corpse was a log of alder.
  • In Irish tales it is associtaed with the white fairy horse  & water sprites. 
Fun Facts:  
  • When cut the wood turns from white to red making it look like blood
  • Before there were insect repellant or glue traps, wet alder leaves were gathered and strewn on the floor, insects got stuck to teh leaves and died
  • Alder was once used to create musical pipes, which were believed to be so harmonious that the top branches of Alder trees became known as the "oracular singing head of Bran" the raven god. 
  • The whistles made from Alder was believed to be able to 'whistle up' the North Wind
  • As a water tree, the Alder doesn't rot, so it was used to make boats, canal gates, bridges & platforms and piles. Out of water the wood will split making it an unlikely choice as fence post.  In Scotland it is nicknamed the "Scottish mahogany" as it was used to make furniture.  
Learn More Here then check out the resources below.

Tree Legends for the Tyrol Lore
Celtic Tree Mysteries by Stephen Blamires
A Tree in Your Pocket by Jacqueline Memory Peterson
Alder Image (Your
Druid's Herbal of Sacred Tree Medicine

Welcome the New Month!!

1 comment:

  1. Nice Post.It will give the aggressive to all Peoples..Good post,It will help a lot to all over the people.Keep sharing..Tree Service Birmingham AL


I love my readers, and your comments help me to know how you feel, so please share.
Thank You and Goddess Bless.