Betula alba

Celtic Name


Celtic Tree Calendar Dates

December 24 - January 20

Parts Used

Bark, leaves

Herbal Uses

The resinous substance secreted by young shoots and leaves have acidic properties and when combined with alkalies, create a tonic laxative.
To aid with dropsy, gout and rheumatism, make an infusion (Birch Tea). This tea is also valuable in dissolving kidney stones.
And infusion made with the bark can be employed to treating and the ridding of putrefaction. A decoction (boiled in water) will aid skin eruptions and dropsy by bathing the area with the birch bark water.

Magical Uses

Birch is associated with purification, protection and exorcism, and represents renewal, rebirth and beginnings as it is the first tree after Winter to come into leaf.

To ward off the evil eye, tie a red ribbon on the branch of one of these lovely trees. To exorcise people and animals by gently striking them with the twigs of this tree. The wood was once used to make cradles as the wood would protect the young one within as well as boughs hung over the child to keep them from being enchanted by the Little People.

Birch will also protect against lightening. The branches were marked with ogham and carried for protection in small pouches as well as given to newlyweds for fertility. In Wales, the Birch is a tree of love, and wreaths are made out of the branches and twigs as tokens of love. When beginning a new project or journey, call upon the powers of the Birch as it is also a tree of new beginnings and new view points. Birch rods are used in protection spells and carried to protect from malicious magics (crossing/hexing) or even mundane situations/people.

See Also

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