Mugwort has a long history of medicinal and magical use; nowadays it is most commonly used as a digestive stimulant and as a support to the female reproductive system, but for many centuries – even millenia – it was believed to have protective powers and was used to combat witchcraft and ward off evil.
For a plant that is so often written off as a ‘weed’, mugwort holds a remarkably elevated position in herbal folklore; it is said to have been one of nine herbs that were sacred to anglo-saxon tribes, and its many healing properties gave it its ancient name Mater Herbarum, or ‘mother of all herbs’. Its use as a medicinal plant has declined in modern times, but there seems to have been a revival of its use as an esoteric herb, especially with those seeking to harness its visionary qualities and experience more lucid dreams.
Mugwort is a tough perennial that is often found growing in wastelands throughout much of the Northern Hemisphere. It is an easy plant to grow, thriving in neglected parts of the garden where other plants may struggle. It can be grown in full sunshine or partial shade, and you will have plenty of leaves to harvest within a few months of sowing.