Every Spruce tree has a story...
Posted on December 05 2017
In Greek mythology, the Spruce tree was dedicated to Artemis, the Goddess of the Moon, Hunting, Nature and protector of women. The Greeks suggested that the enduring Spruce tree represented constant, eternal life and was labelled ‘The Tree of Birth’; its scented evergreen needles signifying resilience and strength. This is the reason the tree is so associated with Artemis – as renewal, resilience and resurgence are all qualities which she prized above all others.
Since then, the Spruce tree has also been linked to the birth of Jesus by Christians – so much so that the affectionate term ‘Christmas tree’ has been coined by much of the Western community to describe the Spruce tree. A Spruce is traditionally taken into homes and decorated with shining ornaments, garlands and twinkling lights to celebrate Christmas and the birth of Christ on December 25th each year. This tradition only became popular in UK in the early 1800's. When Prince Albert presented his bride, Queen Victoria, with a Spruce tree brightly lit with candles at Windsor Castle in 1841.
However, this special winter tradition really began with the Pagan celebration of the Winter Solstice. The ancient Pagans believed in the power and magic of our natural world. During the darkest months they carried entire Spruce trees (or large branches of soft spruce) into their homes to celebrate the light and life when the winter months were over.
As you can see - there’s a lot more than meets the eye when it comes to the unassuming Spruce tree! Not only is it steeped in ancient myth and magic, this beautiful evergreen tree has a wonderful fragrance and it is incredibly hardy in cold winter conditions.