Monday, February 13, 2012

Tree Lore: Greenheart

Every good Fairy Princess attends to her studies.  My course in Tree Lore here at the Fairy Academy has proven to be quite intensive!  Just to share the wealth of knowledge that I'm learning, and to lighten the homework some, I put a poll on my Facebook site asking about which tree I should elaborate on this week.  The winner was Greenheart, and this is what I've learned in my research :)

Elemental Association: Earth, Water
Astrological Signs: Capricorn, Taurus, Pisces, Cancer, Scorpio
Ruling Planet: Moon, Neptune
Gender: Male, Female
Greenheart is quite the temperamental wood.  This is a tropical wood and verges on the smaller side of trees that inhabit the rainforests.  Even still, the tree tends to grow tall and straight. The heartwood of this tree varies from light to dark olive (and sometimes blackish) tint from which it derives its name. Greenheart is native to South America and particularly Guyana.  

It is rather infamous for both its incredible durability as well as its dangerous nature.  The wood of this tree, when cut, has been known to dry and expand or split so quickly and with such force as to drive splinters into the roofs of the lumber mill.  One is cautioned against splinters when working this wood because they will cause infection.  

That said, a goodly piece of tamed Greenheart is second only to Teak in its durability and is particularly resilient in wetter atmospheres whilst still maintaining its flexibility.  This makes it popular for the construction of docks and pylons. Greenheart was also a very popular wood in the making of fly-fishing rods in some cultures.

One very interesting American Folklore says that Greenheart (or Greenheart-Er-Knowledge) is the name of the devil's daughter.  In contrast to her father, she appears to be a sympathetic and benevolent character. In a story of Jack and the Devil, she helps Jack out-smart the devil three times by building him a ladder from her cut nail and stands of hair.  Eventually he wins her in marriage.

This wood will be good for encouraging ingenuity and creative solutions to challenges or hurdles.  It helps to remind us that while knowledge is valuable, applied knowledge can be extremely versatile and powerful.

Greenheart helps to strengthen courage and resolve and is an excellent choice for working with the ocean and Merfolk.  It is resistant to decay by water and so can act as an excellent vessel for travel, scrying in ponds, lakes or other aquatic sources.  It may also deliver messages and draw upon the energy of the natural world around us.

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