Wakening from the dreaming forest there, the hazel-sprig
sang under my tongue, its drifting fragrance
climbed up through my conscious mind…
By Pablo Neruda
This native of Europe and western Asia grows in woods and hedgerows. The Hazel shrubs were part of the hedgerows that were traditional field boundaries in England. The twigs are used as dowsing rods. The wood is soft, easily split, but not very durable…yet it was used for inlay work, small pieces of furniture, wattles, basketry, etc.
Several parts are used medicinally…the bark, leaves, catkins and fruits. They are astringent, diaphoretic, febrifuge, nutritive, and odontalgic (treating toothache). The seed is used as a stomachic and tonic. The oil is used in babies and small children to treat threadworms and pinworms.
The nut or cob can be eaten raw or roasted, added to breads, cakes, biscuits, and sweets. An edible oil that is used in salad dressings and baking is expressed from the nuts. They are rich in protein, unsaturated fat, thiamine and Vitamin B6.
Hazel twigs have been used to make magic wands, and dowsing rods. To create a quick, simple circle of protection use a Hazel rod to draw a circle around you in the dirt! In a similar way the twigs hung over window frames and the door lintel will protect the house from lightening.