While mint is my all time favorite herb, bay is the one that I use the most in my spells and witchcraft. Whether whole leaves or powdered, I add it to a lot of the bottles and charms that I make. The most common type of bay used is bay laurel and the leaves are used, both fresh and dried, to add flavor to any meal. Unlike basil, the fresh bay leaves are actually less potent than the dried ones, reaching their peak of flavor a few weeks after drying. This herb is commonly used in Mediterranean cooking, appearing in soups, stews, and meat dishes. If you are cooking with whole bay leaves, make sure to remove the leaves before eating. This is because even after cooking, the leaves remain hard and can scratch the digestive tract or cause choking.
Healthwise, the fresh leaves are chock full of Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and folic acid, making them a wonderful addition to your diet. Outside of the rich amount of vitamins, bay is also good for your digestive track as it stimulates both urination and vomiting, so it can be taken if you ingest something toxic. Taken moderately, the chemicals actually help settle upset stomachs and bowels, and can even lessen the symptoms of Celiac’s disease. A salve made from the essential oil can be applied to the chest to help ease respiratory conditions and chemicals in the leaf can help prevent cancer and help with cholesterol issues. Mentally, the chemicals in bay lower levels of stress hormones in the body and gives relief from anxiety.
The reason why I use bay so much in my witchcraft and spells is because it’s an extremely strong protection herb. As the bay laurel is sacred to Apollo, this herb is also associated with the sun and healing. Also associated with wishes and fortune, a simple spell is to write your wish on a leaf and then burn it to bring that wish into fruition. Burning it in your home also help purify the space, whether to get rid of negative energy or make the space yours. Used in potions and spells, bay can help enhance psychic ability as well and can be placed into dream pillows to help bring about psychic dreams.