The birch tree is one the fastest spreading trees and Berkano speaks of fast, eager growth.  This is a rune of spring, the green shoots rising, flowers exploding in a riot of colour upon the woodland floor, the crying of baby animals calling for food so they may grow strong.  The full breasts and belly of a pregnant woman can also be seen in the shape of this rune.

Berkano is helpful for female cycles, pregnancy and birthing and can be used very effectively with Perthro and Fehu.  It is a gentle, sensual rune and has a protective element which makes it a good talisman for children (especially girls).  It can also be helpful and healing for those who had negative sexual experiences resulting in repression, anxiety or fear.

My rune staff is made of silver birch and I find that the protective, expansive nature of Berkano complements the energies of Isa, Eihwaz, Teiwaz, Algiz and Laguz which I often work with in conjunction with the staff.  All of these runes evoke powerful energies cascading vertically up and down the practitioner and the birch wood is very helpful to me in staying grounded.  I would be interested to know whether it was as effective for a male practitioner as this is a very ‘female’ rune.

Traditional meaning:  Birch tree

Pronunciation: ber-carn-o

Number: 18

Gods: Urd, Holda, Berchta

Colour: Green, yellow

Hour: 05:30-06:30

Half month (Sunna’s Chariot in Berkano): 14th March – 30th March

Individuals with the sun in Berkano are blessed with a great drive to achieve something meaningful with their lives.   Unlike other signs where personal ambition might trample over the dreams of others, this individual will seek to collaborate so all thrive.   Ideas flourish and the Berkano sun-child will be attracted to work which nurtures and supports humanity, animals or the environment.

Learn more about birth runes.

Plants: Birch, Lady’s Mantle

Body: Ovaries, womb, breasts, fertility

Animal: Bear, swan

Mineral: Moonstone

Aroma: Geranium, Dill

Object of Power: The tomb

Discover Berkano for yourself: Journeys with the Elder Futhark

Berkano is the second rune in the Third Aett (third family) of the Elder Futhark.  I will be publishing all the rune journeys on their half month during 2018-19.