Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Joy in a Box: Druid Plant Oracle

It all started one afternoon as I was minding my own business (as usual), when suddenly I came across a listing for the Druid Plant Oracle where the seller was asking for $150. I stopped in my virtual tracks. That's a lot of money. That usually only happens when a deck goes out of print, and I wasn't aware that this had happened to the Plant Oracle. I have had the Druid Animal Oracle for a couple of years and enjoy it immensely; it's a great combination of nice writing (by Philip and Stephanie Carr-Gomm) and beautiful artwork (Will Worthington. Come on.). The Plant Oracle (by the same author-artist team) was one I'd wanted to acquire at some point, but just hadn't gotten around to quite yet. Now that I saw that it was on the market at such exorbitant prices I was pretty disappointed. So I did some investigating and found that the Book Depository was selling it for $20! I bought it immediately, with glee. But then I started to feel uncertain. I noticed that there were two listings on the Book Depository - one for the cards, which were listed as "unavailable," and one for the book which is what I'd bought. So I reasoned that it made sense that I'd bought the book for such a reasonable price and that it would come without the cards. I was a little unhappy, but at the same time glad to at least have the book. After all, I love working with herbs, so I thought it would be a nice addition to my herbal book collection. I also have the Druid Animal Oracle, the Wildwood and the DruidCraft Tarot decks (all illustrated by Will Worthington) which often feature the plants covered in the Druid Plant Oracle, so I decided it was worth having the opportunity to delve deeper into card meanings by learning more of the lore associated with these plants. And plus, despite not having the cards to work with, I could always do bibliomancy!

Several weeks later the package arrived in the mail, and as I opened it up I gasped with joy:
It was in fact the entire kit! I ripped the plastic wrapping off, lifted the cover of the box, and inside I found a book, and (cue the angelic voices singing) the cards!
It was a good moment, to say the very least. I am so thrilled to have this deck and the excellent accompanying book in my collection. I spent an hour or so on the couch in the evening flipping through each card, looking some of them up in the guide book, reveling in the art work, discovering which plants were included. I was very happy to find many of my dearest herbal friends, such as Elder, Meadowsweet, Plantain, Clover, and Yarrow, along with some new-to-me plants like Celtic Bean.
So I decided to pull two cards to help "break in" my new, dear deck:

What is my current strength?: Mint
How can I challenge myself (to be/do better)?: Flax
Mint. The slight irony here is that perhaps two hours before doing this reading I was out in my garden weeding around my mint plant, thinking a lot about it, and how I can't wait for it to spread and fill out. Some people try to tame mint because it likes to take over space, but in my case I would welcome it; the soil is sandy and sparse in nutrients so herbs do best here. I have happy rosemary and sage plants, a rather static-but-healthy lavender, and then my newcomers, lemon balm and mint. Over the weekend I was chatting with some friends about the benefits of mint, so it was nice to see it show up here.

Mint, according to the book, is about clarity, focus, and creative drive. It is about the attentiveness needed to take advantage of new opportunities, and encourages being proactive rather than waiting around for something to come your way. As a "strength" this makes sense because over the past month or so I've been working on a lot of new projects, and have had a couple of new opportunities offered to me, both of which required quite a lot of focus, clarity, and active engagement. I do feel that I've held my own in the face of these at-times-challenging, yet invigorating, tasks and projects.

Interestingly, Flax is quite a different - almost opposite - energy. Flax encourages relaxation, acceptance, and integration. It challenges me to go with the flow, to honor the interconnectedness of all things, and to ease into change and transition. With Flax, the good that you put out into the world will come back around to you. In terms of my past month I feel that the overall message here is that I've done well with applying myself fully to the important activities in my life, and now I can step back and see what develops out of the work I've been doing. Rather than continuing to push forward, it is time to settle in to "what will be" and to open myself to synchronicities and communication with others in my flaxen web.

All in all, I am super happy with this deck. And I really love the details in each card. Aside from showcasing the herbs, there are fully illustrated scenes I want to jump right into. Last night I spent quite a while reading about the Sweet Track, a neolithic, raised foot trail in southwestern England, which is featured on the Mint card. I'd never heard of it before, and was entirely intrigued. I'm looking forward to learning what more this lovely deck has to offer!


  1. Lucky you!! I have bought it also just in time from the website of the author.
    It is great for daily draws and just like you did for getting lost in the artwork
    Enjoy this great find!!!!

    1. Thanks, Ellen! I'm really happy. You know it's funny because after all this "ado" about the deck being out of print and so expensive, I have found some places where you can get it at a totally reasonable price. One is Book Depository, and one is directly from the source (where you got yours) from the Order of Bards, Ovates, and Druids website. I think it's hard to find within the USA, especially. I feel quite fortunate all the same! :-)

  2. My experience with acquiring this deck was similar to yours, Olivia. Right down to thinking I'd only receive the book rather than the cards. And from the BD, too.

    I appreciate your attunement to the plant realm. My airy self is learning slowly to develop a working relationship with the earth realm and it's inspiring to me to see it flourishing here on the pages of your blog.

    1. Thanks for the kind words, Rose! How funny that we had the same experience! I wonder how many others did the same :) I love herbs, though my own work with them is very much "in progress." I love running my hands though the rosemary and inhaling its strong fragrance!

  3. Serendipity and it has found a good home. It's nice to read about such good fortune. BB