Celebrating Litha – How to Make a Besom


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It is 2 days before Litha, the Summer Solstice. For me there is something magical and sad about the longest day. My garden is full, there are plants I have planted and plants that have just appeared. In Scotland this year we have had a few nice days and there is the hope that more will come our way. But the longest day means that the days will slowly start getting shorter again and before we know it Samhain is here and the darkness has returned. 

This weekend I am celebrating the light. When I am done writing this I am going to go and clean my altar and get it ready for my solstice ritual tomorrow. 

I have just made a little altar besom and wanted to share the process with you.

I have used lavender wood as the handle. My front garden is full of lavender and some did not survive the winter. When I started digging them out to make space for something else I discovered how beautiful the wood is and decided to keep some. 

Every year I harvest a lot of mugwort to make tea, use in spells and make sleep pillows. I have been keeping the woody bits for the solstice fire, but it is going to rain so there may be no solstice fire tomorrow. These bits have made the centre of the ‘hairy’ bit of the besom. I tied them into a little bundle with some twine, but you could use anything.

I then tied this bundle to one end of the lavender stick I am using.

I decided to use fresh herbs to finish off the besom. Traditionally you would use dried bits, but my harvest has only just started and some are not ready yet. Anyway the fresh herbs will give a lovely smell. They have just been placed around the dried mugwort and I have tied them on as I went. I used lavender, rosemary and thyme, but any woody herbs will do. 

I finished off the bottom of the herb part by twisting twine around and just tying in a bow. 

Happy making and may you have a light filled Litha.

With Love

Wise and Untamed


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