In ancient Ireland there were 365 different body parts, and a different plant to cure each part. So Ireland’s wild plants have been part of our culture and folklore from the earliest times, featuring in the Brehon Laws, early Irish poetry and herbal medicine. To carry a four-leaved shamrock brings luck in gambling, putting nine ivy-leaves under her pillow means a girl will dream of her future husband. Here the plants are described in seasonal order, the perspective of our ancestors. Different aspects of plant folklore are examined: their roles in magical protection, in charms and spells (especially for love!), as emblems in children’s games, in Irish place names and folklore cures.
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