Honeysuckle: Herbal Support for Mind, Body & Spirit
A practice as old as time… sending, sharing, and cooking with specific flowers to express a sentiment, be it hope, sorrow, peace, joy, or love. Known as floriography, flowers have long been used to reveal sentiments of love and affection, and, if arranged in a certain way, they could even convey a secret message or meaning. Honeysuckle was one such flower used to relay deep affection and strengthen the bonds of love.
Recognized by a delicately sweet aroma and long vines dappled with unusually-shaped pink or yellow-orange blossoms, Japanese Honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica) flower extracts have many medicinal benefits. Honeysuckle has been shown to lower blood cholesterol levels and have antibacterial and antiviral properties. Externally, the flowers are applied as a wash to skin inflammations, rashes, and sores.
Though there are many ways to prepare Japanese honeysuckle, tea is one of the most popular. Teas made from honeysuckle leaves, buds and flowers can be enjoyed on their own or in combination with other “like-minded” herbs such as passiflora or lemon balm. A complement to its use in strengthening the bonds of love, honeysuckle is also seen as a useful aid in letting go of the past, releasing memories, and moving forward with life, one sweet sip at a time.
Star of Bethlehem Flower Essence
For those of you who might just be learning about flower essences, this is a system of plant-based remedies designed to promote and balance emotional well-being. The flower essence therapy was developed in the 1930s by Dr. Edward Bach. He designed Flower Essence Therapy to be as simple as possible, “I want to make it as simple as this: If I am hungry, I will go and pull a lettuce from the garden; if I am frightened and ill, I will take a dose of Mimulus.” There were 38 original remedies with details provided on how to use them. Dr. Bach promoted the idea that flower essences could be used by anyone alongside the care given by their family doctor. Regulators agreed and so this medicine has always been available on the open market for anyone to use.
One of the flower essences, Star of Bethlehem, is described as a remedy for states of grief and shock. Dr. Bach described it as. “For those in great distress under conditions which for a time produce great unhappiness. The shock of serious news, the loss of someone dear, the fright following an accident, and such like.” Whether from a current event or stemming from the past, Star of Bethlehem may provide comfort and calm in the storm of distress or unhappiness.
Now that you have learned about honeysuckle and Star of Bethlehem, if you are interested in learning more. Talk to your ND about other flowers which can serve as natural remedies.