MENHTA PIPERITA &
The mint family is large & complex group, with over 25 species and hundreds of varieties & cross hybrids. Including lavender, rosemary, sage, oregano, balm, etc. These plants share many properties & often a very similar chemical makeup.
But for the purpose of this article, I will be referring to Peppermint (mentha piperita) & Spearmint (mentha spicata).
It is identifiable by its fresh minty scent, its lance-shaped, serrated bright green leaves & its tiny purple or pink flowers. It is one of the most popular flavorings and has been used for centuries.
During the time of Ancient Greece, Mint was a symbol of true hospitality. In fact the word "mint" is derived from the word "Minthe" the name of a nymph in Greek Mythology. It has been recorded in use as far back as Ancient Rome. In those times, mint (presumably spearmint) was used to scent baths & perfumes.
In the late 1600s, a natural hybridization of spearmint and water mint (mentha aquatica) occurred. It was first cultivated in England, and by the mid 1700s, Peppermint had been included in the London Pharmacopoeia.
Today, Peppermint is used in a number of products, from candies, ice cream, cigarettes , liqueurs and many more. Its volatile oil (containing menthol) is also used in medicine. Spearmint is more commonly used in the food industry including: mint sauces & jellies, candies, baked goods and chewing gum.
But these herbs have lots of great healing properties as well.
Improves digestion & reduces bloating
Treats irritable bowl syndrome
Can be used as a decongestant & expectorant
Sooth muscle & nerve pain.
Can relieve tension headaches (oil applied to temples and forehead)
Peppermint (mentha piperita)
Spearmint (mentha spicata)
Parts used: leaves
Collection: harvested at any time
Peppermint aromatherapy is ideal for relieving congestion, cold & flu symptoms, asthma & to enhance mental clarity.
Topically peppermint essential oil treats acne & headaches. It can also be used on the back of the neck(1drop) to cool on a hot day.
Magickal Properties of Peppermint
Mint is commonly used in healing mixtures & potions. Fresh leaves (or a drop of essential oil) can be used as a treatment for headaches, by applying juice of the leaf to temples, or applied on the back of the neck to cool on a hot day. To prevent illness, water peppermint leaves on your wrist. A poppet stuffed with mint & anointed with healing oil can sooth stomach upsets.
Mint is also used in travel spells, to provoke lust, along with wealth & prosperity spells. It is also capable of ridding a space of evil when combined with marjoram, rosemary & salt water
Fresh mint leaves placed on your altar calls good spirits to help with your magick.
Magic & Medicine of Plants, by Readers Digest
Desk Reference to Natures Medicine, by Steven Foster & Rebecca L. Johnson, published by National Geographic
Cunningham's Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, by Scott Cunningham