Necromantic Herbs: Plants of the Dead

A very informative article, partially re-blogged from Grey Necromancer Journal,.  Please visit the link below for the full article. I personally have not used some of these plants in the method provided.  I work with other bontanicals for ancestral workings and will be providing a series of posts on my ancestral and journeying works as the we venture further into the dark half of the year. Journey safe, and use at your own discretion. ~ Shakti Shaman.


There are a number of plants which can be extremely useful to the necromancer. Among these are the following.

Aconite: Also known as Wolfsbane or Monkshood. Because of its incredible toxicity it is better to not to harvest it. If one has the dried root it can be preserved in order to serve as a tutelary spirit. Not to be used by amateurs.

American Sycamore: Known as “Ghost Trees” for their distinctive patchy appearance. Associated with the dead and poverty.

Apple: Considered the food of the Irish dead and the inhabitants of the Otherworld. Can be added to incense blends to feed the spirits of the dead and ancestors.

Asphodel: In Greek legend is connected with the dead and the underworld. Sacred to Hades, Persephone, and Hekate. The roots were eaten by the poor of Greece and hence thought good enough food for the dead. Could be burnt as incense or the roots could be given as food offerings.

Bay Laurel: Used to communicate with the dead, possibly through use as an incense. Easily available in the form of bay leaves.

Birch: Petitions and blessings are written on the bark of this tree which is then burnt or buried in the grave of the spirit.

Cedar: The dried needles when smouldered serve both as a sustaining feast and call for the blessed dead, and the smoke is used to exorcise malevolent shades. The wood works for this purpose as well when turned into a fetish or as a staff.

Chervil: Also known as garden chervil or “gourmet’s parsley” a tea or other drink made with it can be imbibed to aid in rituals of communion with the dead.

Copal: Serves as a offering to the dead and can be used to appease the spirits who remain in states of trauma or confusion after death.

Cypress: The oil of this tree serves as a great addition to incenses and formula of the underworld.

Dittany of Crete: Used to aid in the manifestation of the spirits of the dead. Also has somewhat of a nasty reputation because of where it tends to grow. Harvesters tend to fall from the cliffs and crags where it grows and plummet to their death.

Elder: In Norse mythology the tree is considered the Guardian of the Road to Hel (and thus sacred to Hela, Goddess of the Dead). Also associated with the ancestors.

Graveyard Mold: Technically no folklore or magical traditions associate this herb with necromancy of any kind. However I have included it here because I believe it can be used as a compound in necromantic incenses. Since it grows on graves it should contain some of the essence of the dead.

Lavender: Burnt as incense in order to bring peace of mind to the dead.

Mandrake: According to legend King Solomon carried a piece of this root in his seal ring to give him sovereignty over souls. Since one of its names is the “Little gallows man” it can be used as a poppet for laying curses of death, illness, pain, etc.

Mugwort: Ingested as a tea to aid in divination and talking to the dead. Also boiled in water and, then the liquid is used to wash divination tools.

Mullein: Erroneously described as a substitute for graveyard dirt, this in fact is a misconception. Known as the “Hag’s Taper”. The soft leaves are used as candle wicks and the dried stalks are soaked in beeswax or tallow to make a torch for rituals of necromancy. It is also burnt to see manifestations of spirits of the dead at night, to see into the Otherworld, and communicate with the spirits and deities that dwell there. Can also be used in talismans.

Myrrh: The oil aids in all blends of a necromantic design. Can also be mixed into incenses.

Thyme: Burnt as an incense helps ease the soul of a person who died a violent death.
Willow: The wood of the willow is used in incenses and in the construction of fetishes dedicated to the dead.
Wormwood: Used for summoning spirits and to help them manifest.

Yew: Known in European countries as the Death Tree, it is a symbol of death, reincarnation, and longevity. Is planted in graveyards to protect the spirits of the dead. It can be used to banish malevolent spirits of the dead. Often associated with sorcery and dark magic. It is considered the sister of the Tree of Life, the birch.

One thought on “Necromantic Herbs: Plants of the Dead

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s