Christmas wheat is traditionally planted on December 13, on the feast of St. Lucy (Lucia). Planting wheat is one of many nice and symbolic Christmas customs. Thick and tall Christmas wheat symbolizes the joy of new life and wealth in the upcoming year. Its green color stands for hope and restoration of life. In order to ensure a lucky new year, here are several suggestions for a ravishing dense lawn ever.
- Before planting wheat put it into hot water and let it sit for a couple of minutes. Then drain it off, dry on a paper towel and place into a shallow bowl.
- Don’t save on seeds. The bottom of the bowl should not be visible.
- On the bottom of your bowl put a layer of cotton wool soaked in water. Then cover it with a layer of earth where you plant the seeds.
- Put your Christmas wheat on a warm place in order to ensure it is getting everything it needs to grow properly.
- Don’t water it too much, just enough to ensure that the “soil” is moist.
When it grows enough, which is just around Christmas, a candle is placed in the middle of Christmas wheat which is to be lit on Christmas Eve. Trim it if necessary. Also, note that after Christmas this wheat is to be given to birds or planted somewhere in a garden.
One of the best things about Christmas wheat is that it is another tradition most enjoyed with children. Let them take care of Christmas wheat. That way they’ll feel excitement waiting for the first fruits of their “hard work” to become visible, but they’ll also develop a sense of tradition.
Customs related to St. Lucy’s Day
There are several interesting customs related to the feast of St. Lucy’s day. Perhaps one of them becomes a part of your family tradition.
– In Croatia (in Slavonia to be more precise) girls are supposed to take 12 papers and write a name of a potential suitor, i.e. husband on each paper but one, which is left blank. Papers should then be folded and burnt each they until Christmas one by one. On Christmas, a girl would unfold the last paper which contains the name of her future husband. If the paper is empty it means that the girl would not marry that year yet.
– Name Lucy or Lucia is derived from Latin word which means ‘light’, so there is another custom related to light. On St. Lucy’s Day it is forbidden to weave or sew and as you probably already know, St. Lucy is the patron saint of the blind. In some areas, girls bring burning coal into a house on a plate. If it stays on the plate, that’s a good sign.
Translation: G. Dujmović