Looking for a lucky charm and a bit of real magic in your life? The flower of Jericho is the wand to your wizard, black cat to your broom, and crystal ball to the gypsy caravan. This, “magic plant” has been revered by many different cultures and the plant is both symbolic and steeped in legend.
The properties of it are something so unexplainable and unlike any other plant species. The flower of Jericho is a small plant from the moss family with an extremely versatile life span. Named after the ancient city of Jericho, which was constantly reborn from ashes, it is a spectacle to witness. This plant dries up and becomes a tumble weed during a period of dormancy. Once it encounters water, it will spring into action, turning green and blossoming with tiny white flowers. If the water source is removed it will again return to its brown leathery tumble weed state until another source of water is supplied. The flower of Jericho can survive years of drought until it is rehydrated.
This resurrection property is what gives it one of its many names, “conjure weed.” In Hoodoo, the water the plant hydrates in is used to wash a family members grave in order to receive divination or a message from the deceased. It is also used to both cause and eliminate possession. Another Hoodoo use is to place five coins in the water the plant is in, and then use the water to wash doorways. This will bring you prosperity and luck. In Santeria, it is believed that if you bless yourself with the flower of Jericho it will bring you happiness.
In Catholicism, this plant is used as a symbol of Christ’s death and resurrection. Often placed in a paper bag among the decorations, then hydrated on Christmas Eve and displayed.
In folk medicine, the flower of Jericho is used to remedy infertility, prevent miscarriages and treat breathing ailments such as asthma.
When caring for your flower of Jericho there a few things to be mindful of. If you are going to keep the plant in its “live” or green state, the water needs to be changed daily to avoid molding. It should be placed in a bowl with a small amount of water, just about an inch. The plant will sprout roots after a few weeks and can then be planted in soil. If you are going to let it dry out and return to a tumble weed state, give it a few weeks in between watering and drying it out, again to prevent molding. Using warm water will revive it much quicker when you decide to bring it back to life.
Lucky charm, divination, spectacle, or perfect gift for that friend who cannot keep a plant alive…the flower of Jericho should be a staple in your bag of tricks.
© Pepper Root
**The information provided is for reference and educational purposes only. It is not meant to treat, diagnose, or cure any illness or disease, nor is it to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice.