Kitchen Witch: Lettuce

(Lactuca sativa)

Planet: Moon

Element: Water

Energies: Peace, money, celibacy

Lettuce was sacred to the god Min in ancient Egypt. Min, whose graphic depictions as a phallic god were deemed obscene a hundred years ago, also ruled over vegetation of all kinds.

Lettuce seems to have been his favorite due to its greenness and the fact that the core, when squeezed, exudes a milky sap that was probably associated with semen. Lettuce was naturally related to the act of procreation and to fertility. It was commonly stocked in tombs and offered to Min.

At least one Roman emperor was so enamored with this vegetable’s restorative properties that he had an altar, complete with a statue, built to the plant.

Magical uses:

A Mexican woman once told me that when her young children were “crybabyish” or hyperactive, she’d simply put them in a bathtub with
lettuce leaves. This calmed them. Wild lettuce contains opiates and the juice was once drunk to bring on natural sleep. Today, lettuce is eaten with visualization for peace and tranquillity, even though the common head lettuce found in grocery stores contains virtually no opiates.
Like other salad greens, lettuce is added to money-attracting diets. Use in a salad with fresh dill weed for increased money. Lettuce is also eaten (in direct contrast to most other foods) to cool sexual desire and, curiously enough, to prevent seasickness