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The Magic of Trees: Dendrotherapy & The Healing Properties of Trees. Benefits of Hugging a Tree.

Updated: May 17, 2022

Trees...the children of Mother Earth. Their power, knowledge and wisdom are underestimated by many and completely unknown to some. But this was not always the case. Our ancestors recognized the powerful properties of trees and knew how to work with them.

Perhaps for this reason, many of us us are still drawn to nature, seeking support and healing.

Like everything living on this planet, trees have an energy field. During their interaction with humans, the energy exchange takes place that can aid in healing of our bodies. It is important to know how to approach a tree and what kind of trees you can work with safely, as the trees are divided into donors and vampires.

This is what we will be talking about in this blog post in detail.

Why Are The Trees So Powerful?

Much like any plant in nature, the trees absorb the energy from all elements: Water, Air, Fire and Earth.

If you look at traditional Chinese model, the elements are the following: wood, fire, earth, metal, and water, which in my opinion, highlights the power of trees even further.

Do not expect the impossible from plants, but learn how to correctly use the power that they are able to give to a person.

Why Are the Trees Good Absorbers of Sound Energy?

Trees have a powerful energy field. They are universal protective talismans, capable of shielding themselves from negative energy and attract positive vibrations like a magnet.

Trees are composed of many layers and surfaces that attract, absorb and reflect different sound energy types. Specifically, it is said that the leaves play the key role in scattering the energy. But it does not mean that you can only work with the trees during leafy seasons.

The Stories That Trees Have to Tell

The energy of the Trees is connected to knowledge and wisdom. This was widely known to our ancestors and the trees were treated with much more respect than they are receiving now.

The life of people and trees has long been connected by sacred ties, since the veneration of trees had an important place in the entire spiritual and sensual development of human beings.

Trees have a "memory", which in fact is much stronger than human's. And since green giants live for several hundred and even thousands of years, they can be considered a real storehouse of information. Everyone has seen the annual rings on the sawing of the trunk - this is a secret tape in which the story of the whole life of the tree is encoded but you need to "deserve" to hear it.

trees in the woods
Image Credit: Unsplash/Dave Hoefler

Why Should You Work With Trees

"What are the benefits of hugging a tree?"

I hope if you are on this page, you have come to the realization that nature is the primary source of healing. While I am in no way denying the scientific and pharmacological breakthrough and just like anyone else take Advil when my migraine destroys me, I recognize that if I want to get rid of the symptom, I take medication but if I want to get rid of the pattern, I need to look beyond.

The healing power of the forest lies in the plants and trees that reside there and differs based on the type of vegetation. Ultimately, the healing properties of trees depend on a composition of different molecular components, enzymes, amino acids, mineral salts, alkaloids and vitamins. Breathing in the air we receive parts of those components through resin, essential oils and phytoncides created.

Since the old times it was known that seating by a tree and breathing fresh air of the forest helps to get rid of insomnia, tiredness and anxiety. You will trade it for joy, freshness and clear mind. (And by the way, you can receive similar effects by growing plants in your very home but make sure these are NOT plants that you bring in home to die. While I love a fresh bouquet for a special occasion, you need to know when it is time to let it go before it starts to radiate the energy of death.)

Practice of Hugging a Tree
Practice of Hugging a Tree. Image Credit: Unsplash/Trent Haaland

Energy Absorbing vs. Energy Giving Trees

We will need to stop by this subject for some time, as it is the basis of Dendrotherapy and correct and safe work with trees.

Trees, much like any other creatures, such as animals, birds, fungi and humans are living beings. As such, they are composed of their very own special energy that can be beneficial and destructive. And when we lean against the tree for the purpose to connect with it, it can either give the energy that corresponds to it or take the energy from you.

Donor Trees are the ones that share healing power with us. Hugging a donor tree gives you energy.

Vampire Trees are the ones that consume our energy.

But when it comes to healing, both kinds are equally important.

How to Distinguish a Donor Tree from a Vampire Tree?

To understand what kind of tree is in front of you, lean against it for a few minutes.

If you feel increase in energy, clarity of mind and strength it is the donor tree. Oak, birch, pine, apricot, apple, rowan are donor trees.

If you feel drained, tired, lightheaded - it is a vampire tree. Aspen, alder, poplar, juniper and willow are vampire trees.

But like I said, both are equally important, especially when it comes to healing, so no need to be scared of them.

How to Work with Trees for Physical & Mental Healing

So, now that we've talked about the difference between the donor and vampire trees, let's talk about how to work with them when we need healing.

First, you will need to approach a vampire tree. The tree will help to draw out the negativity, emotions, pain that is draining your energy field. You may need to repeat this, let's call it "meditation", for at least 5 times. Normally, when we work with any kind of healing, we start with 5 sessions. This is Level 1. After 5 sessions, the intensity is increased. But you should feel some kind of release before you move onto the next step.

Find a few different trees you will work with and try to stick to them. You will already understand their energy and how they will specifically work with you. During your 5 sessions you will need to observe how you are feeling. I mentioned above that you may feel drained and tired but these are normal things for those types of practices. But if after 1-2 weeks you feel no difference, you may want to turn to another tree.

The second part of your dendrotherapy is the charging process. Of course it is better to do this practice during spring or summer time, early fall the latest. After that trees, much like the rest of the Mother Earth will be going to sleep.

There is condition you must meet, sort of a tree etiquette to follow. You need to greet the tree and speak to eat with a respect you give to a beloved elder. They are wise but quite vulnerable, especially due to them being mistreated by humans. After your practice always thank the tree. You may bring some kind of offering to nature at some point but ensure you are not polluting the area. It can be something simple, like a piece of bread.

So What Do You Actually Do During Your Tree Therapy?

As you've already understood, there are two parts to Dendrotherapy: the release and the charge. Let's look at the process in detail.

When engaging in a Dendrotherapy session, you need to monitor your condition, in case of its deterioration - stop the process. It is usually recommended to stand next to the tree for no more than 2-3 minutes at first, but in winter this time can be increased, since the energy processes in the tree are less intense than in the warm season. If everything is going well, you can gradually increase the time to 10 minutes. The optimal time of day for Dendrotherapy is in the morning, or between 4:00-7:00pm. Fruit trees have the maximum energy potential during the flowering period.

The Release: Working with Vampire Trees to Cleanse.

Let's use aspen tree as an example to see how to it can help ridding of an illness or bad energy.

The illness itself is an accumulation of bad, stale and negative energy. But vampire trees will gladly assist in drawing this energy out of you.

If you have back, joint or any other localized type of pain, you will begin by leaning against the tree with these parts. If its something internal then simply start by sitting down with your back aligned with a tree trunk. If its cold out then do the same thing but standing upright. Don't hang out with vampire trees for too long, 2-3 minutes per session is enough for a start.

Tree Hugging: How to Charge From a Tree.

Start either in seated or standing position. Your spine should be aligned with the tree trunk. The position is important as you want to almost become a part of that tree. Close your eyes and imagine just that. Visualize the roots coming down from your spine, all the way into the Mother Earth. Imagine your roots intertwined with those of the tree and the energy exchange that is taking place.

After spending approximately 10 minutes like this comes the tree hugging part. Turn around facing the tree and give it a hug. Your third eye should come into contact with the tree. Spend at least another 10 minutes like this. This time visualize the actual process of healing.

For example, if you are working with a pine tree on tiredness, anxiety and stress issues, visualize those issues no longer being a part of you. Imagine feeling energized, confident and calm. Imagine the sense of temperance and peace and a healing white light pulsing in and out of your third eye.

After you are done give thanks to the tree like you would thank your doctor.

Maybe at some point you will feel foolish or think its some kind of fantasy taking place but you know, there are a lot of things taking place in the world that can't be explained by humans...yet. But many have finally come to a realization that Mother Earth is our primary healer and has so much to offer.

SAFETY NOTE #1: please look at the tree you want to work with carefully. DO NOT work with threes or any plants that are ill. Look at the bark, leaf quality, insecticide infestations. In the case of a vampire tree, you risk giving your energy to the tree that it will use for its own healing, while in the case of a donor tree, you may end up absorbing its bad energy, along with its illnesses.

It is also worth to note that trees become a part of a larger energy field with their nearby surrounding. Therefore if the tree beside your house is ill, it is the sign that the energy in your home is polluted.


Let's take a look at some most common trees individually.

Donor Trees

Healing & Magical Properties of Oak Tree

Oak Tree magical and healing properties
Oak Tree. Image Credit: Veeterzy

Let's start with the King Tree of the woods, the Oak Tree.

Oak Tree has a very strong masculine energy, so men may find it easier to work with it. It also does not like to work with energy of people lacking sense of responsibility and enough seriousness, so to speak. Don't come to work with this tree if you feel angry or irritated. It is a powerful donor tree that happily shares positive and warm energy, promotes strength and healing. It is a great source of grounding if you are dealing with anxiety or panic attacks, it is just not the tree that work well with people that don't like to take any action themselves.

It is worth to mention that it will be a good donor and healer of warriors, veterans and people going through any kind of trauma related to war.

Interesting fact: Oak Trees can form friendships with humans that will last years. They will be capable of sending healing even at distance. So go make yourself an Oak Tree friend today!!

The energy of the Oak strengthens authority, power and discipline. It offers perspective, clarity and understanding in any situation you may feel stuck, promotes vitality and optimism.

Carrying acorns with you is said to promote mental clarity, memory and concentration. Just be careful of any worms they may have inside that can accidently end up in your pocket (totally didn't happen to me).

Best time to work with Oak Tree: after sunset and before sunrise (or follow general guideline).

Healing & Magical Properties of Pine Tree

Pine Tree
Pine Tree. Image Credit: Unsplash/Dusan Vevercolog

Pine is a tree with a very powerful aura. The energy of pine will help you to get rid of stress and improve mental health. Pine is able to clean the human biofield from negative effects. This tree helps with nervous exhaustion, overwork and infectious diseases.

Pine can assist you during stressful times. It is noted that contact with pine pushes a person to transform their life for the better. It really changes the approach and the view on life, offers you a more positive outlook.

Pine is a tree of tranquility and spirits. If you are going through a time in life when it is necessary to make an important life choice, pine tree will provide with a calm atmosphere, and communication with it offers wisdom. The aura of this tree is very strong, it will help the person who turned to it on their spiritual development and growth path. With direct contact (a.k.a. tree hugging), the power of pine carries away the irritation, annoyance and stress that accumulate daily in the human soul.

For the most part pine energy helps to get rid of nervous and mental disorders, stress.

Remember that pine is a merciful and kind tree. It should be approached with an open mind and soul.

Healing & Magical Properties of Maple Tree

Maple tree can help to find a peace of mind, give the sense of calm, develop self-confidence. Maple, although considered to be a donor tree, is really energy neutral, suitable for all people in different situations and with various diseases.

It is also quite beneficial for those who have problems in the field of communication. If it is difficult for you to talk to people for the first time, and you constantly feel discomfort in society - turn to the maple tree for help. Also, maple tree is able to change personality and help to cope with the internal negativity.

Interesting fact: Maple leaf as a talisman that promises good luck in all new undertakings and career growth. Carrying it with you will bring you success and victory.

Maple is a tree that helps to find inner peace of mind, develop self-confidence. It will work with any personality and energy. It is a tree of inner strength and balance. It does not hold a grudge and takes on all emotional outbursts, thereby helping one to release the built-up negativity.

Healing & Magical Properties of Birch Tree

Birch Tree
Birch Tree. Image Credit Unsplash/Miles Farnsworth

Birch is the most delicate tree in terms of energy. Birch emits a soft, calm energy that goes in a strong continuous stream. The energy of birch contributes to the healing of both physical and mental wounds. Birch can be approached by the sick, weakened and recovering people. It will alleviate suffering, help restore strength and vitality, accelerate the healing process.

Tree hugging sessions with birch are helpful for people with upset nerves, who are in a state of depression or anxiety. Although birch has soft and peaceful energy, its influence and potency is very strong; in terms of energy it can be compared to an oak tree. Birch tree relieves fatigue, neutralizes the negative effects of everyday stress, helps to restore mental harmony.

Birch is a protector of females. It is believed that women benefit from working with this tree the most. Approach this tree if you need to relieve the consequences of stressful situations and relieve aggression.

It has also been found that birch helps to improve sleep: nightmares disappear after the first contact with a birch tree. It is also recommended after a hard working period to simply touch the bark of the birch and ask for restoration. Your strength will return and you will forget about fatigue altogether.

SAFETY NOTE #2: On the Difference Between Aspen & Birch Trees

Note that aspen and birch trees look very similar but the difference between them is crucial if you want to engage into dendrotherapy practice.

I'm not an expert in these matters but I want to give you some information.

Aspen Tree Leaves
Aspen Tree Leaves

The leaves on an aspen trees are small and heart shaped. The bark on the aspen tree is rather smooth and will not peel easily. Aspen trees often grow in clusters.

Birch Tree Leaves
Birch Tree Leaves. Image Credit: Purdue University

The leaves on a birch tree are elongated and have a slight V shape. The lines on the bark are very defined and the bark can be peeled. Birch trees also produce an edible sap.

Vampire Trees

Like I mentioned above, Vampire trees absorb negative energy and illnesses of different kind. But it is important to monitor how you are feeling. Do not hang around them for too long or you may feel overly tired.

Healing & Magical Properties of Willow Tree

Healing & Magical Properties of Willow Tree
Willow Tree. Image Credit Unsplash/Ingmar

Willow is a tree with a very positive energy. Contact with willow helps with hypertension and other vascular disorders. Working with willow tree calms and relaxes the nervous system, helps to eliminate headaches.

There is a belief that the willow has magical properties - it protects against troubles, misfortunes and evil spirits. You can even keep willow branches in the house for protection.

Willow has more influence on female energy, so women may find it easier to work with.

Willow is a magically strong tree. Girls in ancient times used its twigs and leaves in love spells. Willow tree is all about tenderness, romanticism, lightness. It is believed that its impact on fate is unique, as it connects like-minded hearts and attracts sole mates.

Healing & Magical Properties of Aspen Tree

Aspen Tree
Aspen Tree. Image Credit: Unsplash/Intricate Explorer

Aspen is the number one tree to absorbs negative energy. This property of aspen used to be considered magical. Aspen can help with headache and toothache, tumors, radiculitis and osteochondrosis. Pieces of wood "pull" the pain out, relieve irritation, so the piece of it can be applied to the sore spot. Aspen can help to get rid of problems and negative energy, remove the inflammatory process.

Aspen is an protector against evil witchcraft attacks. If your aura has become vulnerable due to depression or illness, negative energy can easily penetrate into it. In such case, hugging the aspen will disperse all this negativity you may have picked up. Like a sponge, it absorbs negative energy and converts it into positive vibrations. Healers are confident that its healing properties can relieve a deadly disease. It is also a powerful painkiller.

Aspen could not be planted near the house. This tree is used to transfer an illness, which is why it is used in shamanic practices and healing.

Aspen, just like willow take away negative energy well, but it is important to monitor the duration of the session, otherwise you can feel very tired.

Healing & Magical Properties of Juniper Tree

Juniper Tree
Juniper Tree. Image Credit: Unsplash/Sebastien Noel

Juniper is probably the most known to people who practice magick, as juniper berries are used very often in rituals. Just as the berries are used in banishing spells, the tree itself is a great help to fight negative emotions. It is a vampire tree capable of not only taking in negativity from people but also from the surroundings. It also has a great cleansing qualities.

You may use juniper branches in smudging and make juniper tincture to cleanse specific objects.

You can also turn to juniper for protection and even carry a small branch with you, as it was noted that it protects against curses and evil eye. Juniper can also be used when one needs to get rid of an unwanted love spell.


I hope you found this blog post helpful. What other trees do you want me to talk about?

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