Magickal books often assign herbs and plants to one or more of the four classical elements. But have you ever wondered why herbs are attributed to one element or another? Water herbs revolve around healing, sensuality, and psychism. They tend to be useful for many types of workings.
In case your herbal almanac is not close by, here are some common attributes of Watery plants. Not all herbs of Water will have all of these traits, of course--but the more boxes you can check, the more likely the plant corresponds to Water. (This article is the second in a four-part series. Also read about plants corresponding to Air, Fire, or Earth.)
Attributed to Venus or the Moon. (Jasmine, Mugwort, Lily)
The Moon pulls on the tides, and also on the kingdom of Watery plants. Lunar herbs, such as those used for divination or fertility magick, are usually attributed to Water. Beautiful Venus rules love magick, and many traditional love Herbs are also Watery.
Grows in or around the water, or contains a high concentration of water. (Lotus, Aloe, Cucumber, Willow)
Many swampy and coastal plants obviously belong in the Water category. Succulents, too, though they hoard their water inside. A possible exception is the Cactus, whose spines make it rather Fiery.
Is sweet-smelling, or bears tasty fruit or juice. (Rose, Apple, Lemon Balm)
Water is the element of seduction, indulgence, and delight. Therefore, it's only natural that many of the plants that are most pleasing to humans belong in this category. If it looks good, smells good, and yield its sweetness easily, chances are pretty good that it's a Water herb.
Resembles the ovaries, womb or vulva. (Pomegranate, Peach, Tulip, Lobelia)
The feminine element of Water encompasses most plants that look like lady parts. If a plant is associated with a maiden or mother Goddess (Apple with Idunna, or Lotus with Kwan Yin), it's also likely to be Watery.
Induces sleep, trance, or dream states. (Catnip, Chamomile, Poppy, Belladonna)
Addictive drugs (and some poisons) have a Watery nature. So do medicinal herbs that calm and relax. Herbs for solace and healing (Myrrh, for example) may be attributed to Water even if their other traits aren't particularly Watery.