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Flower Essence Basics - Flower Essence Friday

Happy Flower Essence Friday, moonbeams!  Today we just want to share the basic principles of flower essences for those who may be unfamiliar.

Dr. Edward Bach, an English physician and homeopathic doctor, developed the original 38 flower essences in the 1930’s after years of searching for a method of treatment for his patients that was gentler and less symptomatically focused.  After years of trial and error, testing and case studies, he finally found a solid selection of the remedies he had been searching for. “Each was aimed at a particular mental state or emotion. He found that when he treated the personalities and feelings of his patients their unhappiness and physical distress would be alleviated naturally as the healing potential in their bodies was unblocked and allowed to work once more.”*

Flower essences are an energetic herbal healing modality.  Central to them being effective is the notion that “the human being is more than a physical body, but also incorporates a "body" of life energy, a "body" of sensitivity and feelings, and a spiritual essence or Self. Flower essences are energetic imprints of the life force of plants which interact with these subtle bodies of the human being, and evoke specific qualities within us. We can say that they work in a similar way to inspirational music or art, which carry meaning through the vehicle of sound or light, while the flower essences work through the medium of water.”** It is seeing the body as more than a mere physical mechanism and works with the “emotional body” and spirit to correct patterns of imbalance.

Below is a list of Dr. Bach’s original 38 essences and a very abridged description of the emotional imbalance they treat.  There are also many essences available from the Flower Essence Society and a great deal of more regionally focused essences that feature the native and specialized plants of a particular bio-region.

Agrimony – Avoid problems.  Cover mental anguish with a cheerful façade.


Aspen - fear of the unknown


Beech - intolerance


Centaury - the inability to say 'no'


Cerato - lack of trust in one's own decisions


Cherry Plum - fear of the mind giving way


Chestnut Bud - failure to learn from mistakes


Chicory - selfish, possessive love


Clematis - dreaming of the future without working in the present


Crab Apple - the cleansing remedy, also for self-hatred


Elm - overwhelmed by responsibility


Gentian - discouragement after a setback


Gorse - hopelessness and despair


Heather - self-centeredness and self-concern


Holly - hatred, envy and jealousy


Honeysuckle - living in the past


Hornbeam - tiredness at the thought of doing something


Impatiens - impatience


Larch - lack of confidence


Mimulus - fear of known things


Mustard - deep gloom for no reason


Oak - the plodder who keeps going past the point of exhaustion


Olive - exhaustion following mental or physical effort


Pine - guilt


Red Chestnut - over-concern for the welfare of loved ones


Rock Rose - terror and fright


Rock Water - self-denial, rigidity and self-repression


Scleranthus - inability to choose between alternatives


Star of Bethlehem - shock


Sweet Chestnut - Extreme mental anguish, when everything has been tried and there is no light left


Vervain - over-enthusiasm


Vine - dominance and inflexibility


Walnut - protection from change and unwanted influences


Water Violet - quiet self-reliance leading to isolation


White Chestnut - unwanted thoughts and mental arguments


Wild Oat - uncertainty over one's direction in life


Wild Rose - drifting, resignation, apathy


Willow - self-pity and resentment



You can find our wonderful selection of flower essences here:


*From the Bach Centre website:

*From the Flower Essence Society website:

#moonriseherbs #floweressencefriday #floweressences #drbach #fes #floweressencebasics

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