Flower remedies. Pick fresh blooms and place them in bowls of spring water and leaving them  in sunlight on a cloudless day. In this way, the water is “potentised” by the essence of the flower.  The potentised water is then mixed in fixed proportions with brandy, which acts as a preservative, and stored in a dark glass bottle.

How flower remedies work

The remedies are normally taken by dropping a few drops of the essence into a small amount of still mineral water.  This mixture is then slower sipped.

Though plant-based, flower remedies are more homeopathic than herbal in the way they are said to work.  That is, they work psychologically and psychically at the energy level, rather than chemically.  Supporters describe them as “liquid energy” because they believe they encapsulate the flowers’ healing energies and present them in a form that can be used therapeutically in the simplest and most effective way.

Flower remedies are said to deal with and overcome negative emotions and in this way encourage a sense of enhanced personal well-being, which is then extended to physical health through improved powers of self-healing.

There is no accepted research yet to support this idea of a psychic-psychological effect, but flower remedies remain widely popular throughout the world and a large number of people swear by them.  The concept behind this therapy is often difficult to grasp, but there are several clinical studies that suggest that the therapy does work on the mental and physical health of clients.  Perhaps the most successful and popular example is Bach’s Rescue Remedy, which acts as emergency treatment to reduce the effects of trauma and shock after an accident, or in stressful situations, and through that stimulates the healing powers of the body.  This remedy has attracted an extra-ordinary amount of interest from other alternative practitioners and, increasingly, conventional medical doctors.

What can Flower Remedies Treat?

Treatment with flower remedies is both restorative and gentle, and because they work on the premise that good health is based on emotional balance, most conditions will respond to their use.  In particular, the following may benefit from treatment:

  • Nervous disorders
  • Depression, anxiety and mood swings
  • Asthma, eczema, psoriasis and other deep-seated conditions
  • First aid (bruises, bites, burns)
  • ME and Aids

Cautions and Contra-indications

Flower remedies are suitable for people and animals of all ages and there are no contra-indications known.

Choosing and Using Flower Essences

Many naturopaths may prescribe flower essences as part of their treatment, but they are also designed so that they can be safely self-prescribed, or prescribed for others.  Simply choose essences whose qualities best describe your particular problem.  It could be an emotional upset such as mood swings, a physical weakness such as poor immunity, or a spiritual question (“What is the purpose of my life?”).

Successful choice is said to depend on being as specific as possible, using just two or three essences at a time.  As well as being sipped in a glass of spring water, drops can be taken directly on the tongue or with herb tea.  They can also be dropped into a bath.

Flower essences from around the world

Symptoms to Treat



Shock and trauma

Star of Bethlehem (Bach), Arnica (FES), Hibiscus (Himalayan Aditi), Fringed violet (Australian Bush)

Soothes after all kinds of unexpected shocks such as receiving bad news, receiving an unexpected tax demand, losing your job, as well as physical shocks such as cutting your finger


Alpine mint bush (Australian Bush), Olive (Bach), Life Force (gorse, elder, sycamore, valerian, grass of Parmassus) (Findhorn)

When emotionally drained, burned out and apathetic.  Restores vitality, enthusiasm, motivation and joie de vivre

Mood Swing

Chamomile (FES) Scleranthus (Bach)

Restores a sense of balance and calm when feeling touchy, tearful, irritable and restless

Mental Clarity

Paw Paw (Australian Bush), Brown Brononia (Australia Living) Madia (Flower Essence Society)

Aids concentration and decision-making when confused and unable to think clearly and solve problems because your mind is overwhelmed and befuddled


Black-eyed Susan (Australia), Yellow flag flower (Australian), Impatiens (Bach), Indian Pink(FES)

For when you feel extremely tense, anxious and unable to cope with the pressure of life.  Helps you unwind and relax

Relationship problems

Ixora/Red Hibiscus (Himalayas)

For enhancing compatibility between couples, bringing renewed vitality and sexual excitement to relationships

Emotional Pain

Violet Butterfly (Australian Living), Bleeding Heart (FES)

Soothes emotional pain and lets you get on with life when shattered by breakups.  Good for those going through a separation or divorce


Bluebell (Bailey), St John’s Wort (FES), Mariposa Lily (FES)

Restores feelings of happiness and optimism in those feeling emotionally low often for no particular reason.  Mariposa Lily’s especially good for children


White Chestnut (Bach), Filaree (FES)

When everything seems to give cause for concern and distressing thoughts fill you mind, often causing headaches and insomnia

Fear and Panic

Rock Rose (Bach), Scottish Primrose/thistle (Findhorn)

Brings courage and inner peace in times when you feel terrified and powerless to control yourself


Five Corners (Australian Bush), Larch (Bach), Lehua (Hawaii)

Restores faith in yourself at times when you feel inadequate and lack self-esteem.  Lehua is especially good for women.