Borage (Borago officinalis)
The subject of Flower Essences has many people confused. Some think it is a perfume or fragrance of a flower that they will taste when they take it, others think it to be an old fashioned flower water. Neither is true....
Flower Essences were originally discovered more than a hundred years ago by English doctor and homeopath, Dr. Edward Bach. He used them to heal himself and the culmination of his work was the creation of the 38 Bach Flower Remedies.
The definition of a Flower Essence is when the vibrational energy of a flower is captured in pure spring water during morning sunlight, or sometimes in moonlight.
The water becomes the carrier of the flowers' energy. Flower Essences help to cleanse the psycho toxins of negativity out of our spiritual metabolism, reestablishing resonance with our inner voice.
I began making Flower Essences using flowers that I grew in my garden at home, with the exception of the pink Wild Rose that I found at the edge of the woods at the flower farm where I work. I have a special sacred spot in my garden where they are created. I call it The Magic Corner. They can of course be created anywhere and I have my own ritual that I like to follow. I have a couple of small glass bowls or a large cut crystal one that I use when combining several different flowers or when using larger blooms. I don't like to use the city tap water where I live as it is likely full of chemicals, even when filtered, so I buy good quality spring water in glass bottles to make my essences. Of course there are times when you may be out in nature, away from home and all you have is a little drinking water left in the bottom of your bottle, and that's perfectly fine....
Early morning is the best time to make an essence, before the suns rays are too strong. Snip one or more blooms of the flower whose essence you wish to capture, and without touching them, let the blooms fall directly into the glass container of water. Then place the bowl in the sun; I like to leave mine outside between two and four hours, depending on the flower. Intuitively I feel that some need a little longer than others to surrender their energy!
Once you feel that the essence is ready, strain the water through a fine muslin or fabric to capture the spent blooms and return them to the garden bed. I use brandy to preserve my essences, either white or dark. In a 4oz bottle I place 2oz of the Flower Essence water plus 2oz of brandy. This is called the Mother Essence. In a separate 4oz bottle I pour 2oz brandy and 2oz fresh spring water, then add between 1 and 15 drops of the Mother Essence. I always add 13 drops to mine, this number feels good to me. 13 being the number of the Goddess! This bottle is called the Stock Bottle. Repeat the previous step in a third bottle, half water and half brandy and add your chosen number of drops from the Stock Bottle essence. This is called the Dosage Bottle. This is the one that you will take in dropper form, placing a few drops as needed under or onto your tongue. I like to let the essence pool under my tongue for a few seconds as I visualize the particular flower and its energy before I swallow.
The first Flower Essence I made was Hellebore, it was the first flower blooming in my garden in very early Spring.
I chose several blooms of different colors and placed a few crystals on the ground beside the bowl. I always set an intention and thank the flowers for their medicine. Later I painted paintings of the blooms as this helps me to connect with the medicine of the plant and I use them for my bottle labels.
"The Hellebore lovingly allows old hurts to heal and helps us move on from grief and negative belief patterns so we can embrace a brighter future."
Several months later I began to realize that each flower that had called me to make an essence, held the healing vibrational medicine that was primarily meant for me.....I learned quickly that when I tune into myself and into nature I receive clear messages.
Evening Primrose, Hellebore, Crab Apple Blossom, Narcissus, Artemisia, Yarrow, Clary Sage, Violet, Moonflower, Wild Rose and Borage. These are the primary Flower Essences that I make and are available for purchase on this website. I recommend reading the information about each essence and discovering which one resonates with you. It is likely the one you most need! I also created one on Beltane in 2016 which combined Cosmos, Larkspur, White Rose, Comfrey flower and Sage flower. I use this essence in my Black Moon Elixir
I made several essences on the morning of Summer Solstice, 2017. Solstice and Equinox, full moons, new moons and eclipses are good times to make Flower Essences as the effects of the medicine is enhanced. Among others, I made a Borage Flower Essence that morning. I hadn't spent much time thinking about it, but I find the plant and the flower really captivating. When you have a feeling of deep love for a particular plant or flower it usually means it is an ally and you should get to know it. I recognized that I was drawn to the azure blue of its star shaped petals, a color that my eyes and heart had been drawn to for months. I bought an Azurite crystal too. Color is very much a part of the medicine for me, as a painter I pay close attention to how colors make me feel and which chakra they align with. The azure color and Azurite crystal resonate with the third eye chakra, bringing inner vision into alignment and clearing away tension and confusion.
A few weeks ago I began dreaming about Borage and noticing it in books and articles. I know now that it was coming in to my consciousness to let me know that I needed its medicine. I had recently been chronically overtired and depleted of energy, the more I exercised to be strong for farm work, the weaker I got. Instead of getting stronger, I became more and more exhausted. I began to pay attention to the spiritual presence of this plant and became curious as to what its medicine was and what it was trying to communicate with me? I went through my books and herbals and I made my own personal dosage bottle. I looked back and closely studied all the photos I had taken of it in my garden when it was blooming and I recalled how I had seen it growing wild everywhere when I was in England last year. It had clearly been seeking my attention.
What I discovered was truly remarkable. Borage means "brave or courageous person" and it helps to alleviate emotional states of heaviness or depression. It opens the heart chakra to release tensions in the emotional body and increases stamina in the physical body, especially in the adrenals, circulatory system, skeletal structure and thyroid. Turns out, of course, that it was exactly the medicine I needed. I have been taking a half a dropper three to four times a day for the past week and feel SO much better. This form of "medicine" is subtle and as with many other plant based remedies, it may take a little time to work. Be patient.
Flower Essences can also be used externally. The vibrational healing energies can be felt when applied to the chakras or acupuncture meridians and even a few dropperfuls placed in the bath can be helpful and soothing.
On a side note....It's not uncommon for me to add a few drops of a Flower Essence to my clean brush water when working with watercolors.... I find it gives my painting a little more magic!!
Above, a watercolor I painted of the Crown Chakra in Celia Gunns' Chakra Garden in Somerset, England.
To learn more about Flower Essences, here are a few books I recommend:
Plant Spirit Medicine, Pam Montgomery
Plant Spirit Healing, Eliot Cowan
Flower Essences and Vibrational Healing, Gurudas
Bach Flower Therapy, Mechtchild Scheffer
Photos and Art by debbie delany