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Begin with the tree, the hole already dug, a pile of earth beside the hole, and a bowl or watering can of water.

Stand facing East, and say:

"In recognition of the Earth my mother and of the sky my father, and of my true source beyond all things, I ask that I may plant this tree, to bring clear air to the blue sky, and rich soil to the dark earth. May it grow tall and strong - its roots reaching deep into its home, its leaves reaching ever higher towards the sun."

Hold your hands over the pile of earth and say:

"I ask that this earth might be blessed, and that it might feed and nourish this young sapling well."

Pick up the tree and as you plant it, talk to the tree, either out loud or silently, saying:

" May you grow fine and tall" etc.

When it is planted, hold your hands over the water and say:

"May this water be blessed, may it refresh and sustain this young sapling well."

Pour the water around the base of the tree, and then holding both arms out towards the tree, say:

"In earth and water will you grow. In the air will your leaves speak as you reach towards the fire of the sun. We respect and honour and admire you, O tree, and all trees, for you represent both Peace and Power - though you are mighty you hurt no creature. Though you sustain us with your breath, you will give up your life to house and warm and teach us. We give thanks for your blessing upon our lives and upon our lands. May you fare well in this chosen place."

Book of Shadows © 2002, Dana (Huntress of the Dark)