We have lived in our house for nearly 8 years, for the first time in the garden border which has my bay bush, chives and Ramsons growing, another little plant appeared. I knew I hadn’t sewn any seeds in that area and I didn’t recognise it, so left it to grow, so I could try to identify what it was. Now with the shape of the leaves and using online sources, I have discovered it is Enchanters Nightshade.
Enchanter’s Nightshade or Circaea lutetiana; this nightshade is a member of the willow herb family, Onagraceae. It is not related to other nightshades such as the deadly nightshade.
The genus name comes from the enchantress Circe of Greek mythology, a powerful witch who, with the help of herbs, and incantations, could turn men into animals, or create unsubstantial images of beasts. She often called to her aid Nyx, Chaos, or Hecate. The specific designation is derived from Lutetia, the Latin name for Paris, which was sometimes referred to as the “Witch City”. Although its name suggests this, it is not especially toxic but contains a lot of the astringent tannin. The plant is native to Europe, Middle Asia, Siberia, United Kingdom, and the eastern United States and Canada. It grows in woods in deep shade and moist environments on nitrogen-containing clay.
Zodiac: Capricorn and Aquarius
Element: Earth and Water
Powers: Healing, Love, Binding, Hexing
Other Names: Sorcerer of Paris, Witch’s Grass, Great Witch Herb, Wood Magic Herb, Paris Nightshade, Herb of St. Etienne, Southern Broadleaf Nightshade.
Enchanter’s Nightshade is a useful herb for aiding in the Laws of Attraction. Not only the love kind of attraction but to attract whatever it is that you want in your life, including wealth, health, and any number of things. It can be used in the usual ways which you do for spell work, being especially useful in loose incenses. It is also useful in spells for binding, hexing, and love.
Today the only place where you may find Enchanters Nightshade used, is in some skin care preparations. Nicholas Culpeper, in his 17th century book wrote that it could be used for inflammations, shingles, ringworm, and runny ulcers.