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How Does Your Garden Grow?

The Seed & Sickle Oracle Deck Coaches You Through the Growing Pains & Gains of Life

The Seed & Sickle Oracle Deck, [created by] Fez Inkwright. New York: Sterling Ethos, c2021. (Box contains 55 cards + 2 Guidebooks, both 149 pages in length & color illustrated). ISBN: 978-1-4549-4427-0 (U.S. Price $26.95; Canada Price $40.50. *Card/box quality. Sturdy card-sized box (for standard cards) that fits both the cards & guidebooks. The flip-open box actually opens at the bottom of the box. Cards ruffle well, but be aware, they are a cardboard-type stock so they may need care in handling.

Skill level: I believe this accessible to any skill level card reader.

The good news (at least for me) is that you do not need a green thumb to appreciate the Seed & Sickle Oracle Deck (SSOD), because I don’t have one. What I do have is a love & reverence of nature…the Earth & all beings that dwell within. The SSOD really enhances that connection to the seasons, & the cycles of life & of course, to the plant kingdom.

Besides filling our hearts with joy & and serenity, the plant world provides us with so much more (food, medicine, clothing, shelter). Also, according to SSOD deck creator Fez Inkwright, a lot of ancient folklore & early religions have been inspired by the agricultural cycle. “We are all farmers at heart, driven by the cycle of planting and harvest; the turn of the year from when we set down roots to when we reap the fruits of our hard work”. And this is the oracle’s theme.

When I purchased the SSOD, I was expecting plant world illustrated cards & a guide of interpretations & spreads. I was surprised to find a twist here. There are 2 guidebooks included (the Dawn Guidebook & the Dusk Guidebook) to reflect the cycle of sowing & harvesting (times of productivity & times of rest).

Interpretations & spreads in the Dawn Guidebook are useful for questions concerning starting new projects or relationships, working towards a goal, or focusing on revitalizing yourself. Interpretations & spreads in the Dusk Guidebook are useful for questions concerning how best to take care of yourself…your body & mind.

The cards are grouped into suits with a little indicator icon on each card as to whether it is part of the spring, summer, fall, or winter suits. The cards are numbered from 0-55 (0=The Seed Card & 55=The Sickle Card). And, of course, the card numbering follows the seasons from spring through winter.

There are unique spreads in each guidebook, but some of the spreads do repeat. A nice

touch is that the Dawn guidebook has spring & fall equinox spreads; the Dusk guidebook has summer & winter solstice spreads. There is one interpretation for each card. Inkwright does offer an interesting twist on how to read reversals. If a reversal comes up in either a Dawn or Dusk reading, the creator suggests reading the interpretation in the other booklet for that reversed card. This is a wonderful idea as often our goals & projects are influenced by the state of our physical/mental health and vice-versa. If using this with Tarot, it was suggested to just pull a card at the beginning or end of a reading.

Here's one card example of the different interpretations you would get (depending on the type of reading you are doing). Let’s look at one of the cards I took a picture of: The Poppy

Card. And I am paraphrasing the interpretations. In the Dawn Guidebook, the Poppy tells us to not get bogged down in all the minor details, otherwise we might come to a full stop. Let some of the less important stuff go for now, so you can continue moving forward. The message in the Dusk Guidebook is that the Poppy is the perfect plant to address issues related to grief & death. Life is full of little losses (as well as big ones). They can build up & shut us down. No matter how big or how small the losses, examine them & then move forward no longer allowing these memories to hold you back.

I like the thought that went into constructing the SSOD. Could all of this have been compressed into one larger book? Yes, but I do like the 2-book concept. Could the cards have a better quality, yes, but I think with proper care/concern, they will be o.k. for normal use.

Connecting the oracular messages with the plants & the cycle of the growing season is really appealing to me. All the things we do in life, like the growing season…has a beginning, middle, & ending & then we start again. I already feel a connection to this oracle & I’ve barely dived in. I think this would be a fine deck for anyone to use. It could be especially appealing to plant lovers, gardeners, farmers, & nature worshippers/lovers. –reviewed by Banshee ShadowWolf

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