Kobold gayfeather (liatris/loosestrife)

Week 23 of the PBP.

All right. This my first blatant use of a commercial name in order to make a plant fit into a letter. I really really wanted to talk about loosestrife, and this was the only way I could make it fit—there are surprisingly few plants in New England with either common or scientific names beginning with “k”!

In any case, this is an incredibly invasive plant, originally brought over as a medicinal herb. In August it turns many swampy areas in the Northeast a brilliant purple. There is a certain amount of irony that a plant named “loose strife” has inspired such a crusade against it!

Loosestrife is actually one of the plants I use magically on a regular basis, mainly as a charm to ease anxiety and tension. It’s a wonderful tool for this, and during Lughnasah I like to keep vases of it all over the house to mitigate the rising tempers of August heat. Because of its swampy habitat, I associate it with Water and with Venus, both because of its beauty and voluptuousness.

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