Clearly and soulfully tuned to an Em (A=440) pentatonic scale, modes 1 & 4, (with an extended upper octave range as heard in the sound sample) this Tree Tobacco ( Nicotiana glauca ) Prayer Flute, as with all Dryad Flutes, was bored out unsplit ~ the natural appearance, strength and integrity of her growth rings left intact. Some of the bark has been artistically removed to decrease the depth of the finger holes, contrasting nicely with the finely finished wood grain. This flute measures 25 3/4" in length, with 4 tuning holes. 15 of the branch's nodes, spiralling up around the branch, have been inlaid with crushed green turquoise. Elk lacing lends its spirit and strength to secure the bird to her nest. To help prevent wetout, the bird has been fitted with a cedar shoe, and a drain hole, covered by the lacing, has been designed into the air chamber. This branch flute has been well sealed, inside and out, so that neither of the alkaloids in Nicotiana glauca (nicotine and anabasine) come into contact with the player.
Tree Tobacco is a species of wild tobacco native to South America that can grow to the size of a small tree. It has naturalized to other parts of the world, including here in Southern California where the Cahuilla Indians used its leaves "interchangeably with other tobacco species in hunting rituals and as a poultice to treat swellings, bruises, cuts, wounds, boils, sores, inflamed throat, and swollen glands." (source) Various types of tobacco have been used traditionally in native cultures throughout the Americas as offerings to the spirits, for planting, for gathering food, for healings and for the Native American Pipe Ceremony. (source)
The Tree Tobacco used for this flute was gathered with respect and gratitude from an area slated for development, shortly before the bulldozers would have plowed her under. Her life continues now as a spirit filled flute, especially suited for prayerful, healing intentions.
A high quality, Dryad Flute Pouch custom made for this flute by Sabine,
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