"Perunov Mace" - mountain ash
The last month of summer invariably pleases us with a plentiful harvest. That's just the trouble - the bitter berries, to try them, you have to wait for the frost. At the end of September there is a special day, “Peter and Paul - the mountain ash”, then after the first frost the fruits of the mountain ash become sweet.
Wonderful, though usually sad, songs are composed about mountain ash. The people love her no less than a birch, and also have long been planted near houses.
© Luigi FDV
Mountain ash brings great benefits to people. Its red sweet fruits contain a whole complex of vitamins (there are more vitamin C in it than in lemon), trace elements and tannins. Since time immemorial, mountain ash has been ranked as a medicinal plant. Its flowers and fruits, juice and powder from dried berries are widely used in folk medicine.
Mountain ash blooms in May, and then its flowers attract thousands of bees and with their help give fragrant honey. Rowan shoots also went into business: of them weaved bodies for wagons, country furniture, baskets. Viscous and hard wood with beautiful regular annual rings is well polished. She went to the manufacture of utensils, axes and handles for hammers were made from her. But products from it can not be stored in moist places, since then they lose strength.
By the harvest of mountain ash, in the old days they learned to predict the weather: abundant fruiting promised a rainy autumn and a frosty winter. The ancient Slavs called mountain ash Perunova club, asking for her protection from various troubles. Echoes of such beliefs survived almost to the last century. Mountain ash was necessarily used in wedding ceremonies, since they believed that it was a talisman of young people. Her berries were laid in the pockets of the bride and groom, and the leaves were placed in shoes to protect themselves from the machinations of evil spirits and sorcerers.
For the same purposes, when laying a new house, Udmurts stuck a mountain ash stick in its center, and a live mountain ash was planted in the Vladimir province. And vice versa, in Belarus this tree was considered vengeful - whoever cuts it will die soon or a dead person will appear in his house.
Different beliefs were associated with mountain ash among different peoples, because it is very widespread, practically throughout the entire territory of our country. The genus "mountain ash" includes more than one hundred species, in our country there are 34. Some mountain ash reach a height of 30 meters, their crowns are visible high in the sky on straight, slender trunks. Other types of mountain ash almost knotted, bent, "head bowing to the very tyna." But such are rare - mountain ash reaches for the sun.