Lessons From the Forest
From seed to harvest, the sacred Palo Santo cycle reminds us of the power of plants to guide us. Our relationship with this tree teaches us many things, especially when we give back to a plant that provides so much!
Reforestation is crucial to everything we do at Sacred Wood Essence. It is not enough to sustainably gather Palo Santo that has been allowed to cure for many years on the forest floor. We must also work to ensure the long-term health of Ecuador’s Dry Tropical Forest, the source of our sacred wood.
The Seeds of Palo Santo Renewal
The reforestation process begins with gathering Palo Santo seeds in the wilderness. On rocky slopes and in dry creek beds, the harvesters search for the small green fruits of the Palo Santo tree, with their tiny black seeds inside.
The seeds are planted in nutrient-rich soil infused with Palo Santo sawdust and Palo Santo aromatic water. Palo Santo seeds have a low germination rate, so many are needed for the process to be successful.
Once the saplings begin to thrive, they are planted throughout the forest and carefully monitored for years to come. This requires a great deal of skill and dedication on the part of the sacred collectors.
They must keep track of the young trees as well as the mature ones and those that have fallen over. Through this process, they develop an intimate knowledge of the forest that is their livelihood.
Renewing the Sacred Palo Santo Bond
Here in the Northern Hemisphere where many of us at Sacred Wood Essence make our homes, this time of year brings a welcome return of light and warmth. As we watch leaves begin to open and flowers emerge from the earth, we are reminded of the cycle of life and its connection to the sacred Palo Santo cycle.
To mark this change of season, we light a special Palo Santo stick and send a prayer for all people to receive sustenance, and for all forests to achieve renewal.