Lammas (the English name) or Lughnassad (the Irish name), is the midpoint between summer solstice and fall equinox. The days begin to wane, though it still feels high summer, except sometimes in the morning, that whiff of autumn. It’s the first of the three harvest sabbats.
My bounteous harvest of creativity in the studio keeps me from this blog lately. The photo above is this year’s Lammas herb harvest, sage apiana, also known as white sage, the kind burned in American Indian ceremony, and women’s circles too (who no doubt adopted it from our indigenous brothers and sisters). It is a lovely smell and can immediately let me drop down a little to that calm place. I have one bundle from another harvest (always bound in red thread for red’s magical qualities) but this time have left the leaves separate. They are easier to burn a little at a time in an ashtray or shell at the altar, without filling the room with too much smoke. On the right are bundles of seed I collected this year. I planted this sage apiana from seed I sprouted (not being able to find it at my local corporate nursery, strangely enough) many years ago, and this year the plant rewarded me with many long fronds of flowers and seed. I will share these bundles with friends who wish to try growing this in their own gardens, but fair warning, it can take a long time to germinate.
I often find myself performing my herbly tasks at the sabbats, harvesting, drying, bundling, tincturing. It’s how I mark time in the herb garden.
Happy Lammas or Lughnasa to you and yours: may plentiful harvests continue coming your way through all these next three months of harvest season!