Make a Garlic Braid
At least 12 garlic bulbs with the tops still attached. (Onions also
Baling twine or soft jute parcel post string, cut into a 4 to 6 foot length
Lammas herbs for decoration (optional)
If desired, chant a rhyme while braiding to empower the braid for protection. Make this ritual as simple or as complex as you care to.
Start with three of your twelve garlic bulbs.
Use one end of twine to securely tie together the stems.
Begin braiding the stems as you would hair for pigtails, working the twine as a unit with one of the stems.
After making several crosses, begin adding additional garlic bulbs, taking care to space them evenly. (You'll be combining several stems into one section of the braid; no one stem will extend for the entire length of the braid.)
Use the twine to make a loop at the end of the braid (for hanging).
Hang the braid in an airy, dry, shaded, place for two weeks.
At the end of this period, check to see if the tops are completely dry. If not, allow them to hang there longer (until the tops are completely dry).
Variation: If desired, either weave in or glue on dried flowers -- particulary those sacred to Lammas:
goldenrod, peony, nasturtium, clover blossom, yarrow, heliotrope, boneset, vervain, Queen Anne's lace, myrtle, rose, sunflower, poppy, milkweed, mushroom, wheat, corn, rye, oat, barley, rice, basil, mint, meadowsweet, apple leaf, raspberry leaf, strawberry leaf, bilberry leaf, blueberry leaf, mugwort, hops, holly, comfrey, marigold, grape vine, ivy.
Note: As stated above, the braids must be allowed to dry for at least two weeks before giving or displaying.