Much of the Hazel’s association with the heart comes from the legend that the Hazel stands at the heart of the Faery realm. Hazel benefits us with the gift of wisdom, enabling deep thought, insight and divination. Hazel grants creativity and unblocks fear of the unknown. It enhances self awareness, encourages self honesty and enables us to be true to ourselves. Inner guidance, inner knowledge and inspiration are gifts from the Hazel, enabling us to walk the paths of enlightenmentand connection that leads us to oneness with nature and her spirits.
Folklore and Mythology
Hazel has a reputation as a magical tree. A hazel rod is supposed to protect against evil spirits, as well as being used as a wand and for water-divining. In some parts of England, hazelnuts were carried as charms and/or held to ward off rheumatism. In Ireland, hazel was known as the 'Tree of Knowledge’, and in medieval times it was a symbol of fertility.
A quarter of the worlds hazelnuts are grown in a small town in Turkey called Ordu. The residents there believe the Haxelnut has aphrodisiac qualities and feed them to their animals to encourage breeding.
A hazel rod, wand or touchwood is said to protect against evil spirits and those with bad intentions.
A forked twig of hazel is the wood most favoured by diviners, especially for finding water. An ancient rhyme states
'True treasure lies where the hazel spies'
In Devon farmers believed
that their cows produced
more milk when grazing
in a field with a hazel hedgerow.
Uses of Hazel
Hazel wood can be twisted or knotted, and as such it historically had many uses. These included thatching spars, net stakes, water-divining sticks, hurdles and furniture. Hazel was also valued for its nuts, or 'cobs'.
Today, hazel coppice has become an important management strategy in the conservation of woodland habitats for wildlife. The resulting timber is used in lots of ways and is becoming increasingly popular as pea sticks and bean poles used by gardeners.