Hi, my loves and welcome to WiccaNow. Recently I’ve been writing guides to all my favourite magickal herbs and plants, like this guide to the magickal properties of dandelion, one about chamomile, another about vanilla and a guide to lemongrass. I’ve also written an overview of a whole lot of plants in my botanical witchipedia. Continuing in the vein, today I want to share my guide to the magickal properties of pine with you.
Pine is an extremely long-living tree which is held in great esteem by many cultures. Its magickal properties include longevity, fertility, protection and joy among others. It can help to fight colds and coughs as well as potentially improving memory and preventing scurvy due to its high vitamin C content.
Disclaimer: Any medicinal benefits given here are a product of my own research and as such should not be taken over the advice of trained medical professionals. If you are ill, please go and see a doctor. Always make sure that anything you consume is 100% safe. If you are pregnant, consult your doctor or midwife before consuming something you haven’t tried before.
History of Pine
Pine, which refers to any conifer in the Pinus genus, belongs to the Pinaceae family. There are around 120 species of evergreen conifers distributed around the world however most of them are native to the Northern Temperate regions.
Conifers have been around for an extremely long time. They evolved around 300 million years ago and pines evolved around 153 million years ago. The Pinus genus of the family diverged from other pines around 95 million years ago.
Pine trees are evergreens, meaning that they don’t lose their needles during the winter. The are rather large, with most trees reaching between 15-45m at maturity. They generally have a very long life span, with most reaching at least 100 years of age and many getting significantly older. The longest living pine is a “Pinus Longaeva” which is based in the White Mountains in California. It is counted as one of the worlds oldest living organisms and is thought to be around 4,600 years old. There is one tree which was older, coming in at 4,900 years or more when it was cut down.
The felling of this tree, named Prometheus, is extremely controversial. Donald Rusk Currey was an undergraduate studying climate dynamics during the Little Ice Age and needed a core sample of trees from this era. Unnecessarily, he chose the oldest tree around and tried to take a core sample of it. He broke his instrument (maybe even two of them) and couldn’t get a new one before the end of the research season so chose to take a chainsaw and cut the tree down instead.
He went to the district Forest Service ranger and asked for permission to cut the tree down so that he could examine the full cross-section of it. He was granted permission after he convinced the Forest ranger that the tree was not a notable landmark. He was well aware that the tree was far older than any other he had studied. The absolute idiocy of some people amazes me. Imagine cutting down a 5000 year old tree because it’s easier than waiting another season to start your research. In my opinion, he should have been barred from any future academic positions but instead he went on to have a successful career and defended his decision till the end.
Pines are often mentioned and referenced in literature and art for various cultures all over the world. China, in particular, has an affinity to pine and it’s a common motif in painting and poetry. Japanese painters also often use pine trees as a motif for longevity and health.
Fun Facts About Pines
- The spiral growth of a pine tree may be arranged in Fibonacci number ratios.
- The new spring growth of pines is sometimes called a “candle”.
- Pine cones are gendered, with most trees carrying both male and female pine cones.
- Male pine cones are smaller and only stay on the tree for one season. Female pine cones are larger and will stay on the tree for 1.5-3 years.
- Some species of pine require fire to regenerate.
- Most pines prefer acidic soils and require good drainage although a few species are able to grow in wet soils.
- The ink used in many Chinese paintings and texts uses pine soot as one of its main ingredients.
- White Pines are called the “Tree of Peace” in some Native American cultures due to a legend about a conflict between 5 nations that ended when they buried their weapons under a white pine tree. According to this legend, the Great Spirit sent a messenger to the 5 warring tribes who convinced them to unite and make peace. The 5 tribes still carried their weapon however so the messenger pulled out a white pine and made them throw their weapons into the hole. The messenger then replaced the tree and the water under the tree carried away the weapons. The clusters of 5 needles on this particular pine represent the 5 nations who came together and found peace under the white pine.
- A French explorer, Jacques Cartier, used the First Nations ancestral herbal knowledge to prevent scurvy on their voyage home from the New World by making tea from pine bark.
- According to Greek myth, a nymph named Pitys was relentlessly pursued by the god Pan. In order to escape him, she was turned into a pine tree by the other gods.
Medicinal Benefits of Pine
You can use pine needles in a bath to help reduce inflammation and to calm you. A tea made with fresh, young pine needles may help to treat fevers, coughs and colds. The tea is also a diuretic which can help keep your liver healthy provided that you drink enough water during the day. You can also do an inhalation with fresh pine leaves in the water to help clear your nose when you have a cold.
You should note that the different parts of the tree (needles, bark, resin) all have slightly different medicinal uses. Pine resin may be toxic so don’t consume it unless you have done so before and know it’s safe.
- Helps symptoms of colds and coughs
- Contains Vitamin C
- May help ease muscle aches
- May help joint pain
- The resin can be used to help remove splinters
- Contains antioxidants
- Might help those who suffer from erectile disfunction
- May help to keep blood sugars balanced
- May help to improve brain function and memory
- Might help to protect your skin from sun damage
- Might help to boost your mood
Magickal Properties of Pine
Pine is often associated with longevity because it’s leaves remain green all year round and it also has an extremely long lifespan. It’s said to bring luck and joy with it, so if you feel like you’re lacking in both those things, take a pine branch and hang it over the entry way of your home. Pine cones ward away negative energy and provide protection
Deities: Pan, Diana, Baccus,
Zodiac: Aries and Scorpio
Crystals: Citrine, pyrite, moonstone
So, my loves, I hope this gives you all the information you were searching for about the magickal properties of pine! Let your energy be positive, your life long and your prosperity fertile.
Until next time,