Everybody wants to have good dreams, so what about combining good dreams with a natural sleep aid? Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) has been classified as an herbal oneirogen, which is a plant that produces or enhances dream-like states of consciousness (Barrett & McNamara, 2012). Unfortunately, most of the oneirogenic benefits of mugwort have not been scientifically confirmed due to lack of funding in research (Barrett & McNamara, 2012). However, over centuries mugwort has been admired for its magical, mystical, and spiritual uses (Szaro, 2020).
Herbalist Scott Kloos (2017) says that mugwort leaves in all forms—tea, tincture, smoke, or even hung above the bed or placed under the pillow—promote vivid dreams and help uncover, access, and transform areas of psychic unconsciousness. Regardless of the lack of research-based studies, this unique plant continually shows up in many different anecdotes and literature across time (Szaro, 2020).
If you don’t dream, or you don’t remember your dreams, try making this Mugwort Dream Pillow adapted from herbalist Judith Berger’s Herbal Rituals book.
Mugwort Dream Pillow
Our dreams can tell us many things about ourselves, so it can be a good idea to keep a dream journal by your bed. When you wake, write down anything you can remember about your dreams, and record the date. Later, once you’re fully awake, you can look up different meanings of dreams and see if it triggers any revelations for you. Yield: 1 pillow.
4 tablespoons mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) leaves
1 tablespoons hops (Humulus lupulus) flowers
1 tablespoons lavender (Lavandula spp.) blossoms
1 teaspoon peppermint (Mentha x piperita) leaves
1-2 cups flax seeds
- Cut two rectangular pieces of muslin cloth (7 inches x 4 1/2 inches) and sew three sides together. Flip material right side out.
- Combine herbs and seeds. Mix well and fill the bag 3/4 full.
- Close the open edge of the bag then fold it over 2-3 times (1/2 inch for each fold) to encase the raw edges. Sew this closed.
- Cover your eyes with the bag while you rest.
- Place the bag under your pillow when you sleep.
- Heat the bag lightly in the microwave and breath in the deep scents of the herbs before going to bed.
Consider making additional dream pillows for family and friends. They make fabulous hostess gifts and are ideal for care packages. Learn more about mugwort and herbal pillows below.
Barrett, C. & McNamara, P. (2012). Encyclopedia of sleep and dreams: The evolution, function, nature, and mysteries of slumber: Volume 1. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO.
Berger, J. (1999). Herbal rituals. New York, NY: St. Martin’s Griffin.
Kloos, S. (2017). Pacific Northwest medicinal plants: Identify, harvest, and use 120 wild herbs for health and wellness. Portland, OR: Timber Press.
Szaro, M. (2020). How to use mugwort for dreams, sleep, and more [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://theherbalacademy.com/how-to-use-mugwort/