sapphicsorceress said: Hi! Our hickory tree has started dropping nuts- do you know of any witchcraft uses for them, or folk significance? Thanks!

rootandrock:

mountainmanhealing:

I can’t think of any folk magic associations, but I do know some more practical uses for the tree. I’m not sure your species of Hickory, but the nuts of several species can be eaten, and the sap of the shagbark Hickory can be used like maple syrup and can be applied to skin irritations and wounds. Hickory trees are very strong, and I have several walking sticks made from the wood. I want to say that I saw someone once make a rattle out of the dried nut shells, but that might have been a different tree. 

The outer husks (the green things that eventually turn brown and come away from the nut/shell) make very good rattles And shakers of a similar style to seashell or deer toe rattlers.

The nut meat makes some of the best goddamned pie filling you will ever taste but good luck getting enough out of the bastards.

Yeah I’ve never been able to get enough to make a lot of something. Too many other critters think they’re pretty swell and well. 

sapphicsorceress said: Hi! Our hickory tree has started dropping nuts- do you know of any witchcraft uses for them, or folk significance? Thanks!

I can’t think of any folk magic associations, but I do know some more practical uses for the tree. I’m not sure your species of Hickory, but the nuts of several species can be eaten, and the sap of the shagbark Hickory can be used like maple syrup and can be applied to skin irritations and wounds. Hickory trees are very strong, and I have several walking sticks made from the wood. I want to say that I saw someone once make a rattle out of the dried nut shells, but that might have been a different tree. 

lastrideillustration said: Can you elaborate on your use of a witch's ladder? I'm mostly familiar with is as a form of malefic British witchcraft. Does it have a base in Ozark or Appalachian magic that I'm not familiar with?

There are examples of items similar to the witch’s ladder in the Ozarks. I’ve seen strings of bones and feathers hung up outside of houses as protection from evil. This form of protection likely came in through British folk magic that was brought with the settlers to the area. 

Anonymous said: Anon because I'm on a gaming account at the moment: your hex signs are lovely! I know you make a lot of your own items, did you paint them? :)

No, I leave the hex sign painting to the professionals. I don’t have the patience or eye for geometry like they do. 

Anonymous said: You said they were in debate, which is clearly what that person was trying to help you out with. You seemed awfully quick to get rude.

Their significance is in debate. There are people who believe that they hold some supernatural or symbolic value, there are those who do not believe in any of that and view them as a cultural art form that may have symbolic, but not supernatural value. And then there are people who, wait for it, believe that as an art form it was not developed solely by the Pennsylvania Germans but was also influenced by the art forms and symbolism of other groups present in Pennsylvania at the time.

I would think that the fact that there exists differing opinions on a cultural phenomena would be fairly obvious.

Rude? No, I’d say not. Refer to this post, oh and this one, both of which are very similar in their rudeness and frightful grammar.  

correlladeville said: Being a native of PA and born and raised in the PA Dutch culture, I can promise you that hex signs are held for significance.

I never said they weren’t, thanks. 

bywandandsword:

mountainmanhealing:

Whew. Been cleaning and rearranging my workroom all morning. Hard work but I’m happy with how it turned out.

What are those circles on the wall and what is their significance?

They’re traditional Pennsylvania German Hex Signs, and yes, there is some debate as to whether or not the Pennsilfaanisch Deitsch held them as having a symbolic significance or whether it was completely aesthetic. Having talked with several Hexenmeisters myself I would say it’s a little of both. All of the shapes have a particular function associated with them. The five-pointed star, for instance, is meant for protection, and the distelfink (thistle-finch) or double distelfink in some cases, is used to draw in luck into the house. 

Whew. Been cleaning and rearranging my workroom all morning. Hard work but I’m happy with how it turned out.

Whenever people talk about the “ignorant South” I always point them toward Sacred Harp singing which was born here from among people who most would probably consider without “culture”. Yeah, right. 

A wonderful video on George Fox’s lost “Book of Miracles” and the healing tradition of early Quakers.