The Magic of Alder

By Isabella @TheWandCarver

Alder is a tree you don’t really find much information on around the web. I find this strange as it is a very magickal tree and is one of the 25 trees of the Celtic Tree Ogham not to mention all the things it can be used for.  Perhaps it is ignored as a tree because it is more of a shrub? The same could be said of a Hawthorn, if it were kept pruned back. But the common Alder can grow to be as much as 90 ft tall. The Alder is also a relative of the Birch tree. I think it’s quite special because if you cut a branch from it (with its permission, of course!) the white wood turns red and in Ireland at one time it was a punishable crime to fell an Alder…it may still be for all I know. It is a tree sacred to the God, Bran. “Alders are especially associated with Bran; at Cad Goddeu, ‘The Battle of the Trees’, Gwydion guessed Bran’s name from the alder twigs in his hand. The answer to an old Taliesin riddle ‘Why is the alder purple?’ is ‘Because Bran wore purple’. Bran’s alder may be a symbol of resurrection”. ~ Wikipedia

golden alder uk

Golden Alder tree ~ perfectplants.co.uk

Alder is the 5th consonant of the Ogham, Fearn (F) and it is a birth tree for those born between March 18 – April 14.  If you are an Alder sign within the Celtic tree astrology system, you are a natural-born pathfinder.   You’re a mover and a shaker, and will blaze a trail with fiery passion often gaining loyal followers to your cause.   You are charming, gregarious and mingle easily with a broad mix of personalities.  In other words, Alder signs get along with everybody and everybody loves to hang around with you.  This might be because Alder’s are easily confident and have a strong self-faith.  This self-assurance is infectious and other people recognise this quality in you instantly.  Alder Celtic tree astrology signs are very focused and dislike waste.  Consequently, they can see through superficialities and will not tolerate fluff.  Alder people place high value on their time, and feel that wasting time is insufferable. They are motivated by action and results.  Alders pair well with Hawthorns, Oaks or even Birch signs. (cre8veonline.com, n.d.)

Alder Ogham Pendant

Alder birth tree ogham pendant, Fearn ~ photo by I. Macy

Elements:  Water, Fire, Earth and Air

Ruling Planet: Venus

Gender: Masculine

Powers:  protection, giver of courage, easer of fear and doubt

When using Alder for magickal uses, take care in using Alder as a magic wand. Alder harnesses the power of the four elements and can be a bit unpredictable. Alder wands are most often used in resurrection ceremonies. Alder bark and wood is a very purposeful base for loose incense and extremely useful for driving away negativity. Teas can be made from the leaves for treating many maladies from burns to sore throats.

So, next time you see an Alder tree, give it a hug! It’s a most fascinating and magickal tree, even if it doesn’t get talked about very much! Many thanks for reading and warmest blessings x

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