Rowan Tree Symbolism and Meaning

The Rowan Tree is a small but tough tree that is native to the British Isles. It makes up a part of the rose family and thrives high up in the mountains, praised for its beauty and hardiness. A symbol of protection and known as the “Tree of Life”, read more about Rowan Tree Symbolism and Meaning and see why both the ancient Celts and many of us today love this tree.

Rowan Tree Leaves


The Rowan Tree is one of the smaller UK native trees, it produces creamy white flowers in spring and vivid red berries in the autumn. These deciduous trees like to take root in higher altitudes which sometimes gives them the name “Lady of the Mountains” or the“Mountain Ash Tree”. Although it may prefer the heights, Rowan Trees can grow almost anywhere and will thrive, growing happily all over the UK.


The Rowan Tree in Scottish and Celtic Folklore

Rowan trees are favoured in Scotland and are held with high esteem in Scottish and Ancient Celtic folklore. It is a tree said to offer protection in more ways than one and it was once forbidden to cut one down in the case of bad luck. If items were harvested from the then they were only to be used for the means of ritual and nothing else.

As well as this, planting a rowan tree by your house is said to keep those who reside within safe from bad luck and evil spirits. It was also believed that carrying Rowan twigs on your person was a way of using the rowans protective qualities to keep you safe from threats of evil spells and witchcraft.

Rowan grows well in higher altitudes which is what makes it so popular in Scotland. Within Scottish folklore, it was believed that chopping down a rowan tree would only bring bad luck as they are such a strong symbol of protection.

Red is seen as a protective colour, this is what attributes protection to the Rowan Tree. The berries were once thought to protect against enchantment and witchcraft. The berries are bitter and loved by the birds but can just as easily be transformed into a delicious batch of Rowan Berry Jelly.

The Rowan is also popular within many other stories and ideologies throughout history. In Norse mythology, it was believed that the very first woman was made from the Rowan Tree and the man from the Ash Tree.

Another story states how the branches from the Rowan Tree saved the life of the mighty Thor, God of Thunder. The tale goes that as Thor was being swept towards the underworld in a fast flowing river he was able to take hold of a rowan branch which safely got him back to shore.

The goddess, Hebe who lost her chalice of youth enlisted an eagle to go on a journey to retrieve it. The eagle fought to return it to her and wherever it dropped a feather or blood is where a rowan tree would grow.


Medicinal properties of the Rowan Tree 

Rowan berries were used in the prevention of scurvy, the high concentration levels of vitamin C found in the berries was vital in preventing the illness.

The organic acids, tannins and sugars that are found in the berries produced by the rowan tree have a diuretic effect on the body. In turn, this made them popular to use when making tonics for the body and other medicines.


Magical Properties of the Rowan Tree

The rowan tree can help clear the mind and open up a person’s inspirations. The tree is used within vibrational medicine due to the belief that it is able to tune our bodies into nature. It can broaden and open our perspective and make room for a wider imagination.

If you are planning to take a journey and wish to find enlightenment on your path then take a walking stick made traditionally made of rowan wood. It is believed to protect travellers from becoming lost and will help clear the mind and open up perspectives. It will level out your vibration and your mind and body into that of nature and the surrounding universe.

If you like the thought of sending a magical tree as a gift make sure to check out our Ancient Wisdom Trees range. Each sapling has a unique and meaningful link to the UK’s folklore and mythology.


Rowan Tree Zodiac

Rowan Tree Sapling
  • Ogham Letter: Luis (L)
  • Symbolic Meaning: Courage, Protection, Connection
  • Ruling Planet: The Sun
  • Ruling Elements: Fire
  • Season: Spring & Autumn
  • Corresponding Star Sign: Aquarius / Pisces

With just the positive energy of their presence, people born under the Rowan sign have the ability to make people feel comfortable and can transform any situation they place themselves in. They are in touch with their philosophical mind and often feel misunderstood making them seem a little aloof in interactions.

Rowan signs are a quieter type and have a calm outward demeanour but look inside and you will see a completely different story. They burn bright with a passion for change that propels them through life. People like to look to them for their unique views.

As people, they are individuals. They don’t fit inside a box and will often dance to the beat of their own drum. They are idealists and progressive thinkers. They make great leaders and listeners, always being respectful of others opinions and perspectives.

Send a Rowan Tree Gift

The Rowan Tree Gift is amongst one of our most popular saplings to send to friends and family. As planting this tree next to your home is said to protect those who reside within this is the perfect sapling for a unique house warming gift.

Even better, send someone their very own Zodiac Birthday Tree gift and send a Rowan Sapling to friends and family born between the dates of January 21st - February 17th.