Xylos – as in “xylophone” and “xylitol” – is Greek for “wood”. So, yes friends, I’m talking about trees today. You do what you gotta. (It was that or reprising Xmas for another year).
We are edging towards the longest night of the year up here in the northern hemisphere, so it’s likely that at least some of you are putting up douglas firs (or imitations thereof) in your living rooms. I’ve got my Fake Spruce wreath on the door, and my Fake Holly garlands to string up and decorate as well.
But those aren’t (exactly) the trees I want to talk about today. Rather, I want to talk about trees in general, in the context of Getting To Know the Neighbours. What trees grow in your neighbourhood? Can you recognize them when their leaves have dropped? Can you recognize – to choose folks who live in my neighbourhood – hawthorn, crab apple, rowan, evans cherry, choke cherry, serviceberry, apple, maple, poplar, oak (to name a few) by their bark, by where they grow, by the way their branches bend (or don’t), fork (or don’t), angle (or don’t)? Do you pay attention to what flowers when, to which fruits you can eat (and which fruits you can’t)? Can you tell the difference between juniper and cedar? Can you recognize a Norwegian Spruce at all? Do you know how to tell a pine tree by its needles? How to recognize a waxberry (bayberry) or harvest the thick, white berry-covering and melt it into vegan-friendly candles?
Long Nights Moon is about to crest, and Snow Moon is on its way. Frost and fire, ice and stone. Do you know your neighbours when dressed in skin and bone?
Meliad the Birch Maiden
 Er… I don’t. I mean, I can recognize them, sure, but I haven’t tried to make candles with the wax yet at all. And, while I can usually spot a poplar (size), crab apple (shape of branches + shaggy bark), choke cherry (almost-weeping branches), and maple (bark… ish)… I certainly can’t recognize all of those trees.
Join 1,248 other subscribers
Search By Topicall about me ancestors animism astrology books bread candles cheese community correspondences cosmology and axiology crafting divination divine intervention dreams Eat From The Larder Challenge economics of food embodiment Empress Project energy work ethics of food faith fermentation fermenting fibre arts food and culture gardening glamour(y) gleaning goblin fruit goddesses hearth hunting jewelry King of Coins Project kitchen witch kitchen witchcraft knitting links living religion local food Lunar Cycles magic meet the house spirits New Year New You Pagan Blog Project Pagan Experience 2015 paganism poetry preserves productive home progress reports Queen of Cups Project recipes ritual sacred sexuality seasonal secular holidays Seeking the Mysteries shadow soap spells state of the garden study subsistence tarot trancework urban farming Week 5 Week 8 wheel of the year wild food winter solstice tarot meditation wishes Year of the Pig
New Year New You
The Pagan Bloggers’ Network