Witch - Grown
True Mandrake Root
My name is Kristy, my craft name is Acantha, which translates to "thorn". My journey with mandrake began much like any spirited person who seeks rare herbs for their path. Instead of bringing home Mandragora, I brought home Podophyllum, which we know as "American Mandrake". This made me kinda pissy, so I did more research and discovered the true rarity of this plant. I learned that it's hard to grow, stressful and stubborn. Naturally, I like to try anything, so why not add gardening or horticulture to the list? Many, many hours were spent scouring the internet to find information on the cultivation of these mysterious roots. As magic would have it, those secrets are locked away in the old wooden boxes of those who have communed with the Mandragora, herself. My purpose with mandrake is still unclear, but my first mission is to teach, spread awareness and hatch all the seeds I can get my hands on. I am but a tool.
I don't choose my path, it always unravels before me, unexpectedly and ever-evolving. The things I identify with are as follows : Sympathetic Magic, Hoodoo, Green, Hedge, Druidry, Chaos, Primitive, Old World and beyond. Rootwork is my jam, and I am honored to have one of the strongest of those roots - on my side. Boiling it down to light/dark/good/bad...I am a happy rainbow that will handle my biz when crossed. Like - Care Bears mixed with Hellraiser.
In order of happiest to grow with me: Mandragora Turcomanica, Mandragora Officinarum and then Mandragora Autumnalis. In my garden I have a group of "Elders", as I call them. They are a row of sixteen Turcomanica that will grow undisturbed for years, unless the soil requires care. These elders are from old-world farmers in Turkmenistan that are working to conserve the species. My first Officinarum are from a local breeder in the USA. The newer Officinarum are from my friend in Israel who has his own private groves that he visits annually to collect fruits from. (Hidden within an Oak Forest, yet dry and hot.) His seeds are special and will be taking the spotlight in my nursery. Lastly, the Autumnalis are from Spain, hand-grown and they have a special seedcoat that is almost transparent, which gives them more ease of germination.