All About: Earth Fairies | Gnomes

Some faeries have an affinity for a certain element. This means they either live in, work with, draw their magic from, and/or guard this element. Not all faeries are necessarily elementals (connected to a single element), but all are connected to nature.

Here is the first of four posts on the elemental fae, including information and some simple ideas for experiencing the magic of the particular elemental.

Gnome is the general term for all types of earth fae, including:

Brownies are the helpful fae that may decide to take up residence in your home. They may help with tidying up, keeping food fresh, helping dough rise, keeping things magically dust free and reminding you to water your plants! They may even act as a guardian for you and your family. In return, brownies will appreciate a bowl of milk set by the kitchen hearth and a little of whatever you're cooking. To make your home welcoming to brownies, keep the windows open, fresh flowers on the table, something baking in the oven, and go about your chores with a cheerful attitude. Then open your door and invite them in with this saying:

"Good brownies, fae of the hearth, you're welcome in this home. May light and love and warmth of heart follow wherever you roam"

To make sure not to offend: Don't leave out extravagant gifts. Faeries do not like to feel you are paying or bribing them. Don't attempt to give them clothing, as they see this as you trying to force human habits on them. Lastly, don't grumble about their work or complain about them. No one wants to stay if they're not appreciated!

Trolls can be found living in most rocky areas, under hills, burial mounds, and in caves and mountains where they build their stone halls. They inhabit many intricate underground cities where they work at their craft, ruled by a king and queen. Gifts to them can be crystals, precious metals, stone spirals, rock sculptures and shiny pebbles. To glimpse a troll, sit in the entrance of a cave at twilight. Like dwarves, trolls are adverse to sunlight. Be careful of bands of trolls though, as marauding trolls are often hostile to humans and sometimes even to other faeries, preying on travelers by tossing large rocks.

Knockers are mine sprites, living under the earth, in mine shafts and rock crevices. They get their name from the tapping noise they make to let miners know where valuable ore veins are, and gifts would be left for them to ask for their protection. There are stories of humans making deals with the fae, as long as they gave the knockers a portion of their findings, the earth fae would ensure the mine never ran dry. But woe to the man who became greedy and ignored the knockers. When the fae found out his betrayal, they left never to return, and the greedy man never again made profit from the mine.

Dwarves take the form of short, bearded men. There are no female dwarves, and new dwarves are created out of clay. Like trolls, they have vast cities under the mountains and earth, and are talented in many crafts.

Dryads are female faeries who guard and are connected to specific trees. They are wild and beautiful, fiercely protecting their forests from those who would harm them. To see a dryad, you must be still and quiet. Sit beneath a faery tree (oak, rowan, hawthorn, elder, birch, willow) on a summer day and let yourself feel dreamy and hazy. Lean your hands against the trunk of the tree and speak to the dryad living there. Then watch the corners of your vision for slight movements in the leaves. You can leave her a small flower bouquet or weave a daisy chain and hang it on a branch.

Leprechauns are solitary Irish sprites, who are generally faery shoemakers and guard hidden treasures. If a human happens to glimpse a leprechaun, the faery is bound to lead them to their buried gold. But blink or look away for a second and the leprechaun will vanish! In this way, leprechauns are said to bring luck and good fortune.

Pixies wear red and green clothing, and are the tiny sprites parading around mushroom rings that appear so often in fairy stories. They love practical jokes and are often tricksters. Sometimes the pixies will help humans around the house and farm, by preventing milk from spoiling, making sure the animals are content, etc. Since they enjoy causing mischief, if random items disappear and reappear in odd places, you might have pixies living near you!

Elves can be a general name for the fae folk, but elves are also tall, stately faeries that resemble beautiful humans, inhabiting green woodlands and holding court under bowers of trees. In Norse mythology, there are two great courts of elves. The high elves, who live in a heavenly realm and have little interactions with humans, and the dark elves who live in a underworld realm and are talented blacksmiths, creating many treasures. There are also mound-elves, who live under the hills on the earth, and hold moonlit dances to music that may enchant the mortal who hears it. Burial mounds are another common haunt for elves, and the elm is considered an elfin tree as its wood was often used to make coffins. You can find elves wherever there are woodlands.

Small ways to acknowledge Earth Fae:

  • Practice grounding techniques, and try to take a few minutes to ground everyday
  • Pick up rubbish you find in nature
  • Support your local beekeepers
  • Visit a farmers market
  • Make small fairy rings or spirals from stones outside for the earth fae
  • Spend time getting to know your different plants' personalities and growth cycles
  • Focus on building strong relationships
  • Take care of your health first before attempting to heal others
  • Treat your houseplants to a little extra fertilizer
  • Walk barefoot outdoors
  • Learn to identify local plants
  • Leave out seeds for the birds and squirrels
  • Go on a foraging trip seasonally
  • Try making your own vegetable garden
  • Learn how to make natural cleaners
  • Wear crystals as jewellery
  • Look up ways you can help the environment
  • Drink coffee or black tea
  • Press leaves and flowers in a book
  • Learn how to make simple herbal remedies (poultice, infusion, compress, etc)
  • Keep your goals realistic
  • Feed your body by staying hydrated and making sure to eat regularly
  • Try making your own herbal tea blends
  • Take a break from a problem by going on a walk
  • Read a book under a tree
  • Set time to exercise
  • Stop, straighten your back and stretch
  • Make your own ink from pokeberries
  • Wash out an reuse any food jars you buy to store dried herbs
  • Study herbalism and keep a botany journal for your findings and notes
  • Collect rainwater for your indoor plants
  • Visit a favourite nature spot at different times of day (and then draw it if you wish)
  • Draw little growth sigils (ex.) on paper and mix them into the plant's soil
  • Dance around a tree with a friend
  • Take a nap in a meadow
  • Start a collection on interesting rocks, feathers, leaves, etc. that you find
  • Let a portion of your garden grown wild
  • Paint protective sigils onto 4 stones and place in each corner of your yard
  • Make herbal sachets to hang in your home
  • Keep a small jar of dirt on your desk or bedside table (you can add moss, mini candles and crystals to it)
  • Make plant fertilizer from coffee grounds and eggshells


I hope my writings and research can bring a bit of happiness and magic to your day! 🍀