Common Hoodoo Roots and Herbs

Devil’s Shoestring

Devil’s Shoestring (Viburnum alnifolium) is a plant that is commonly used in Hoodoo and Southern Conjure magic. It is also known by other names such as “deer’s foot,” “deer’s beard,” and “witch hobble.” It is a small shrub that typically grows to be about 3 to 6 feet tall and has long, narrow leaves and clusters of small white flowers that bloom in the spring. The plant produces small, dark berries in the summer and fall. The plant is native to North America and is found in the eastern United States, from Maine to Florida and west to Texas.  It grows in a variety of habitats, including forests, swamps, and wetlands. Devil’s shoestring is most commonly found in the Appalachian Mountains, from Maine to Georgia and west to Texas.

In Hoodoo, Devil’s Shoestring is used for its protective and luck-drawing properties. It is believed that the plant has the ability to trip up and confuse evil spirits, hence the name “devil’s shoestring.” The plant is also believed to be protective against the evil eye, curses, and hexes.

One of the most common ways Devil’s Shoestring is used in Hoodoo is by tying a few strands of the plant together with red thread or ribbon and carrying it in a mojo bag. The mojo bag is usually carried on the person, either in a pocket or on a necklace, and is believed to bring good luck and protect the wearer from harm.

Devil’s Shoestring can also be used in spells and rituals for protection and luck. For example, it can be burned as an incense or added to bathwater for spiritual cleansing and protection. It can also be used in a floor wash to cleanse and protect a home or business.

In Southern Conjure, Devil’s Shoestring is used in a similar manner as in Hoodoo. It is believed to have protective and luck-drawing properties, and is often used in mojo bags, spells, and rituals. However, the specific uses and traditions surrounding Devil’s Shoestring in Southern Conjure may vary depending on the practitioner and their regional traditions.

Overall, Devil’s Shoestring is a powerful plant in Hoodoo and Southern Conjure magic, and is highly regarded for its protective and luck-drawing properties. Its use in these traditions dates back many generations and continues to be an important part of spiritual practices today.

High John the Conqueror Root

High John the Conqueror root is a botanical root that is highly valued in Hoodoo folk magic. The root is believed to have powerful spiritual and magical properties that can help to overcome obstacles, provide protection, and bring good luck and prosperity to those who use it.

In Hoodoo tradition, the root is often carried on the person, placed in mojo bags, or burned as incense to help achieve a desired outcome. It is also sometimes used in spiritual baths and floor washes to remove negative energy and promote positive energy.

The figure of High John the Conqueror is a legendary figure in African American folklore, and it is not clear whether or not he was a real historical person. High John the Conqueror is often depicted as a trickster figure who has the ability to overcome any obstacle, and he is said to have been brought to America by enslaved Africans.

The origins of the name “John” are somewhat unclear, but it is thought to be associated with the West African trickster figure known as Eshu or Legba. The name “John” may have been used as a way of disguising the African origins of the figure, or it may have been a way of using a common English name to refer to a figure that was already familiar to African American communities.

While it is not clear whether High John the Conqueror was a real historical person, the figure has played an important role in African American spiritual traditions, particularly in Hoodoo folk magic. The root of High John the Conqueror is believed to have powerful spiritual and magical properties, and it is often used in Hoodoo rituals to overcome obstacles, provide protection, and bring good luck and prosperity.

Low John Root

In Hoodoo magick, Low John is a common name for the root of the species Galangal (Alpinia officinarum), which is also known as Chinese ginger or Thai ginger. Low John root is believed to possess powerful magical properties and has been used in Hoodoo and other forms of folk magic for centuries.

In Hoodoo tradition, Low John root is often used for protective and luck-drawing spells. It is believed to help overcome obstacles, bring success and prosperity, and provide spiritual protection. Low John root is also used for its aphrodisiac properties, as well as to enhance psychic abilities and strengthen the senses.

There are many ways to use Low John root in Hoodoo magick. One common method is to carry the root with you in a mojo bag, along with other herbs and talismans that are appropriate for your specific intention. Another popular use is to prepare a tea or infusion with the root and use it to wash your home or workplace, as a way to spiritually cleanse the space and attract positive energy.

Low John root can also be used in candle spells, where a candle is dressed with oil and herbs and then burned to manifest a desired outcome. In this case, Low John root may be ground into a powder and mixed with other herbs and oils that are appropriate for the specific spell.

Jezebel Root

Jezebel Root is a type of root commonly used in Hoodoo magick, a form of African American folk magic. The root is derived from the poisonous Jezebel plant, which is native to Africa and Madagascar.

In Hoodoo magick, Jezebel Root is often used as an ingredient in spells and rituals related to love, sex, and domination. It is believed to have powerful aphrodisiac properties and to be able to attract and control a lover or partner.

Jezebel Root can be used in various ways, such as carrying it in a charm bag, placing it in a mojo bag, or burning it as an incense. It can also be added to oils, powders, and other preparations to enhance their effectiveness.

Vetiver

Vetiver (also spelled “vertiver”) is a fragrant grass with long, thin leaves that grows in tropical regions, particularly in India and Haiti. The essential oil derived from the roots of the vetiver plant has a rich, earthy scent and is often used in perfumes, soaps, and other fragrances.

In Hoodoo magick, vetiver is sometimes used in spiritual and magical practices for its grounding and protective properties. It is believed to help dispel negative energy and to attract good luck and prosperity. Vetiver oil can be added to candles, baths, or sachets, or used to anoint amulets or talismans.

In some Hoodoo traditions, vetiver is also associated with the energy of the root chakra, which is said to be connected to the physical body and the earth. It is sometimes used in rituals and spells to help ground and center the practitioner, or to connect with the energies of the earth and nature.

In Hoodoo rootwork spells, Vetiver is a versatile and powerful herb that is used for various purposes due to its unique properties and associations. Here are some specific ways Vetiver is commonly used in Hoodoo rootwork spells:

  1. Protection: Vetiver is often used in protective spells to ward off negative energies, hexes, and evil influences. It can create a shield of spiritual protection around the practitioner or their home.
  2. Grounding and Centering: Vetiver is excellent for grounding and centering one’s energy, helping individuals stay rooted and focused in the present moment. It can assist in meditation, spiritual work, and maintaining a sense of balance.
  3. Love and Sensuality: Vetiver is associated with love, passion, and sensuality. It can be used in spells to enhance romantic relationships, attract a lover, or increase intimacy between partners.
  4. Prosperity and Abundance: Vetiver is believed to have strong energy for attracting prosperity, success, and abundance. It can be used in money-drawing spells, business ventures, or financial matters to bring wealth and good fortune.
  5. Psychic Abilities and Intuition: Vetiver is known for its ability to enhance psychic abilities, intuition, and spiritual insight. It can be used in divination rituals, dream work, or any practice that requires heightened spiritual awareness.

Overall, Vetiver is a potent herb in Hoodoo rootwork that can be incorporated into various spells and rituals to amplify their effects and bring about desired outcomes in matters of protection, love, prosperity, psychic work, and more.

Asafetida

Asafetida, also known as “devil’s dung,” is a pungent resin extracted from the roots of several species of Ferula, a perennial herb native to Iran and Afghanistan. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine and as a spice in Indian, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean cuisine.

In Hoodoo magick, asafetida is believed to have protective and banishing properties. It is often used to ward off evil spirits, negativity, and harmful energies, and to repel unwanted people or situations.

Asafetida can be used in various ways in Hoodoo magick. One common method is to carry a small amount in a sachet or mojo bag along with other protective herbs and talismans. It can also be sprinkled around the perimeter of a home or property to create a protective barrier, or added to candles, oils, or powders used in banishing or protection spells.

It’s worth noting that some practitioners of Hoodoo magick also use asafetida in curses or hexes, although this is generally considered to be a more aggressive and controversial practice.

Calamus Root

Calamus root, also known as sweet flag, is a perennial herb that grows in wetlands and is native to Asia, Europe, and North America. The root of the plant is used in traditional medicine and spiritual practices, including Hoodoo.

In Hoodoo, calamus root is believed to have the power to bring good luck, protection, and healing. It is often used in mojo bags, which are small cloth bags filled with herbs, roots, and other ingredients that are carried for various purposes. Calamus root may also be used in spiritual baths, where it is brewed into a tea and added to bathwater to cleanse the body and promote spiritual well-being.

Calamus root may also be used in spellwork, particularly in spells related to money, business, and success. It is believed to help attract customers, bring in money, and promote success in all areas of life.

In Hoodoo and rootwork magick, Calamus Root is a potent and versatile herb with a variety of magical uses and properties. Here are some specific ways Calamus Root is commonly utilized in these practices:

  1. Communication and Persuasion: Calamus Root is known for its ability to enhance communication skills, eloquence, and persuasion. It can be used in spells and rituals to help individuals speak more effectively, influence others, and convey their thoughts with clarity.
  2. Clarity and Mental Focus: Calamus Root is believed to clear mental fog, improve concentration, and enhance mental acuity. It can be used in rituals to promote mental clarity, aid in decision-making, and sharpen focus on specific goals or tasks.
  3. Creativity and Inspiration: Calamus Root is associated with boosting creativity, inspiration, and artistic endeavors. It can be used by artists, writers, musicians, and creative individuals to stimulate artistic expression and unlock new ideas.
  4. Protection: Calamus Root is valued for its protective properties in Hoodoo and rootwork. It is used to ward off negative energies, psychic attacks, and harmful influences. It can create a barrier of spiritual protection around the practitioner or their living space.
  5. Success in Academic and Intellectual Pursuits: Calamus Root is believed to enhance learning, memory, and academic success. It can be used by students, scholars, and those pursuing intellectual pursuits to improve cognitive abilities, retain information, and excel in educational endeavors.

Overall, Calamus Root is a versatile herb in Hoodoo and rootwork magick that can be incorporated into spells and rituals to manifest desired outcomes related to communication, persuasion, mental focus, creativity, protection, success in academic pursuits, and more.

Queen Elizabeth Root

Queen Elizabeth root, also known as orris root, is a botanical substance that comes from the rhizomes of several species of Iris plants. In Hoodoo magick, Queen Elizabeth root is believed to possess powerful metaphysical properties and is often used in spells and rituals for love, protection, and spiritual purification.

Queen Elizabeth root is traditionally associated with the energy of the planet Venus and is believed to have a feminine, gentle energy. It is often used in love spells to attract a romantic partner or to strengthen an existing relationship. It is also believed to have protective properties and can be used in mojo bags or other protective charms.

In addition to its love and protection properties, Queen Elizabeth root is also used in spiritual purification rituals. It is believed to help clear negative energy, enhance intuition, and promote spiritual growth. In this context, it is often used in baths or as an ingredient in spiritual cleansing formulas.

Licorice Root

Licorice root is a popular herb used in traditional medicine and spiritual practices, including in Hoodoo. It is the root of the Glycyrrhiza glabra plant and has a sweet and earthy flavor.

In Hoodoo, licorice root is believed to have a variety of magical properties, including:

1. Commanding and compelling: Licorice root is said to have the power to command and compel people to do your bidding.

2. Protection: It is believed that licorice root can protect you from harm and ward off negativity.

3. Love and attraction: Licorice root is also used in love spells and rituals to attract a lover or to strengthen an existing relationship.

4. Money drawing: It is thought that licorice root can bring financial prosperity and abundance.

Hoodoo practitioners use licorice root in a variety of ways, such as carrying it in a mojo bag, burning it as an incense, or using it in a bath or floor wash. They may also use it in spell work by carrying it on their person, using it to dress candles or other objects, or burying it in the ground.

In Hoodoo and rootwork spells, Licorice Root is a highly valued and versatile herb with a wide range of magical uses. Here are some specific ways Licorice Root is commonly utilized in these practices:

  1. Success and Luck: Licorice Root is frequently employed in spells and rituals aimed at attracting success, good fortune, and prosperity. It is believed to bring luck in business endeavors, career advancement, and other areas where success is desired.
  2. Love and Relationships: Licorice Root is associated with love, passion, and harmonious relationships. It can be used in love spells to attract a specific person, enhance romantic connections, promote fidelity, and strengthen emotional bonds.
  3. Personal Power and Confidence: Licorice Root is believed to boost personal power, confidence, and authority. It can be utilized in spells to increase self-assurance, assertiveness, and influence in social or professional situations.
  4. Protection: Licorice Root is valued for its protective properties in Hoodoo and rootwork. It is used to ward off negativity, hexes, and harmful influences, creating a shield of spiritual protection around the practitioner or their home.
  5. Spiritual Growth and Intuition: Licorice Root is associated with enhancing spiritual growth, intuition, and psychic abilities. It can be used in divination rituals, meditation practices, and spiritual work to deepen one’s connection to the spiritual realm and heighten intuitive insights.

Overall, Licorice Root is a potent herb in Hoodoo and rootwork that can be incorporated into a variety of spells and rituals to manifest desired outcomes related to success, luck, love, protection, personal power, and spiritual development.

Lucky Hand Root

Lucky Hand Root is a powerful botanical ingredient used in the practice of Hoodoo.  The Lucky Hand Root is the root of an orchid plant, and it is believed to have the power to bring good luck, success, and protection to those who use it.

In Hoodoo, Lucky Hand Root is often used in mojo bags, which is then carried on the person or kept in a specific location, such as a home or business, to attract good luck and prosperity.

Lucky Hand Root can also be used in spiritual baths and floor washes to bring good luck and protect against negative energy. In these preparations, the root is typically boiled in water with other herbs and ingredients, and the resulting liquid is then used for bathing or cleaning floors.

In some traditions of Hoodoo, Lucky Hand Root is also used in gambling spells and rituals. It is believed to increase one’s chances of winning at games of chance, such as the lottery or card games.

Overall, Lucky Hand Root is a versatile and powerful ingredient in Hoodoo magic, used for a variety of purposes related to luck, success, and protection.

Mandrake Root

Mandrake root is a plant root that has been used for centuries in various cultures for its supposed magical properties. In the practice of Hoodoo, which is a form of African American folk magic, mandrake root is believed to possess potent powers of protection, luck, and fertility.

One common use of mandrake root in Hoodoo is as a talisman or amulet. The root is often dried, carved into a human shape, and carried or displayed in a prominent location in the home or workplace. It is believed to provide protection from evil, ward off negative energy, and bring good luck to the owner.

Mandrake root is also used in love spells and fertility rituals. It is believed that carrying or wearing a mandrake root can increase the chances of conception, and that placing a piece of the root under the bed can improve sexual potency and passion.

Valerian Root

Valerian root is a herb that is commonly used as a natural remedy for anxiety, sleep disorders, and other health issues. It comes from the root of the Valeriana officinalis plant, which is native to Europe and parts of Asia.

In Hoodoo magick, Valerian root is often used for its spiritual properties, particularly in spells related to love, protection, and purification. It is believed to have the power to calm the nerves and promote relaxation, making it useful in spells for reducing anxiety or stress.

One common way to use Valerian root in Hoodoo magick is to create a sachet or mojo bag containing the herb, along with other items such as herbs, crystals, or personal items. This bag can be carried with you or placed under your pillow to promote relaxation and peaceful sleep.

Valerian root can also be used in spellwork to attract love or strengthen a romantic relationship. For example, you might burn Valerian root as an incense during a love spell or add it to a bath to create a love-drawing ritual.

It’s worth noting that while Valerian root has many potential health benefits, it can also have side effects and interact with certain medications. As with any herbal remedy, it’s important to do your research and talk to a healthcare provider before using it.

Solomon’s Seal Root

Solomon’s Seal root (Polygonatum biflorum or Polygonatum multiflorum) is a perennial herb that has been used for centuries in traditional medicine in many cultures, including Native American, Chinese, and European. In Hoodoo, Solomon’s Seal root is believed to have powerful protective and healing properties and is often used in spells and rituals.

The root of the plant is typically harvested in the fall, then washed, dried, and cut into small pieces for use in various remedies. In Hoodoo, Solomon’s Seal root is commonly used as a protective amulet or charm, often carried in a mojo bag or hung above doorways to ward off negative energies or evil spirits.

Solomon’s Seal root is also used in healing spells and rituals, where it is believed to have the power to promote physical and emotional healing. It can be used in a variety of ways, including as a tea, tincture, or infused oil. The root is often combined with other herbs and ingredients, such as comfrey, calendula, or chamomile, to enhance its healing properties.