Mugwort, or Artemisia vulgaris, is touted as the witch’s herb. Mugwort is a powerful plant that every witch should have in their arsenal, but the richness of its history goes far beyond the witch. Mugwort is viewed as a weed and a nuisance by some, but don’t let this plant fool you, it’s powerful and potent!
Mugwort has been used for thousands of years and has a multitude of purposes, including ancient beer production, acupuncture, and protection rituals, to name a few. I’ll be focusing on ways to use Mugwort in your spiritual and magickal practice. Keep scrolling for four ways to use Mugwort.
Oracle card featured from The Ritual Deck.
Space Cleansing with Mugwort
There’s been a spotlight on the overharvesting of other plants commonly used in magickal and spiritual practices like white sage and palo santo. There’s undoubtedly some truth to these claims, and white sage and Palo Santo are not always the best option. If you do feel uneasy about using white sage and Palo Santo, or simply want an alternative, Mugwort is a pleasant and powerful option.
Similar to white sage, mugwort is an antimicrobial that can be used to purify the air of your space. Science has caught up with what many of our ancestors already knew, herbal smoke of certain antimicrobial plants can kill bacteria, and mugwort is one of them!
Mugwort has a light, earthy, and slightly sweet aroma. Many prefer it to white sage, myself included. To burn mugwort for energy cleansing you’ll need dried mugwort that’s either loose or in stick form. Use mugwort smoke to cleanse your space by wafting the smoke around with your hand or a large feather.
Beyond cleansing the air of your space, burning mugwort will offer protection and enhance your intuition. Keep reading for more about using mugwort for protection and intuition.
Protection with Mugwort
It’s quite astonishing how many cultures have relied on Mugwort as a protective tool. Native American cultures have used mugwort as a form of protection against ghosts, and as an amulet during sleep to protect against nightmares. In China, mugwort was used to dispel evil spirits during the Dragon Festival. There’s even a reference to St. John the Baptist wearing a wreath of mugwort as protection against evil spirits. In Europe, mugwort was often planted around houses as a form of protection.
Here’s a list of ways to employ the protective benefits of mugwort in your practice:
- Burn dried mugwort in loose or stick form to cleanse and protect your space before performing psychic and intuitive work.
- Hang mugwort above doorways to prevent negativity from entering.
- Plant mugwort around your house for external protection. Be careful, this plant is invasive and can spread quickly!
- Make a satchel of dried mugwort to carry with you for protection on the go.
Magick & Psychic Work with Mugwort
Mugwort is associated with the Goddess Artemis and the moon. These lunar ties give mugwort a strong connection to femininity, psychic work, and all things sleep-related. Another reason for using mugwort while practicing psychic work is how protective it is. Performing psychic work makes you vulnerable to psychic attacks and other negative energies. The protective properties of mugwort are another likely reason it became such a popular tool for witches.
Oracle cards featured from The Ritual Deck.
Here are some ways to use mugwort as a magickal tool:
- The next time you’re doing a card reading or any other intuitive work, aid your intuition by burning some mugwort or drinking a cup of mugwort tea before you begin your practice. Note: Pregnant or nursing women should not consume mugwort.
- To enhance your dreams, receive messages in your dreams, and practice lucid dreaming, place a pillow of dried mugwort under your pillow as you sleep.
- Create a psychic protection charm bag.
- Steep mugwort in a bowl of water to use as cleansing water for your psychic tools, only the ones that can get wet, of course! This is a great option for crystal balls, pendulums, and mirrors used for scrying.
- If you have access to mugwort plants, their stalks are hearty and make beautiful wands for circle casting and spellwork.
- Mugwort is associated with the crone phase of the Triple Goddess and is an excellent plant to work with when working with this energy.
Mugwort has been revered for its medicinal uses as well, especially in women, but that’s a post for another day! If you want to learn more about mugwort, I encourage you to continue to research it, and there’s much to gain from this magickal plant.
Cassie Uhl is the author of five books and two card decks, an artist, intuitive energy healer, and death doula. Her lineage and practices are rooted in pagan earth-based spiritual practices of Northern Europe. She approaches her work and clients with trauma-informed support through all phases of life. She currently resides on the land of the Myaamia people in so-called Indiana of the US.