© The Press
5 February, 1992
Christchurch, reputed as the Garden City, is renowned for the beauty of its well tended gardens. Most of its keen gardeners can well appreciate the nurturing and uplifting quality that a garden can bring.
Flowers – with their scents, variety and profusion, their wealth of colour - are show-pieces of the garden.
A Christchurch homoeopath, Dr Wendy Isbell, has prepared a number of essences from Christchurch's garden flowers which can communicate these qualities. The Christchurch Flower Essences are liquid, potentised preparations which carry the imprint of specific flowers. They are prepared from the flowers of bulbs, bushes, trees, and garden plants by a special technique. They do not directly treat disease, but help stabilise the emotional and psychological stresses of the individual. These essences are designed to help transform emotions, attitudes and patterns of behaviour which hinder a person's full development. "Bluebell is for transforming a sense of sadness and being weighed down by past experiences, so that one can become centred and clear in one's own current surroundings," says Dr Isbell.
Another of the 41 essences in the spring flower essence kit, violet, is for "tendency to be shy, to shrink back to protect one's individual sense of self."
"The violet will transmute and transform these delicate and retiring tendencies, and develop a warmth, trust and openness in personal and group situations."
Quite how such flower essences work is still not fully understood, but they probably work in much the same way as the Bach Flower Remedies developed by Dr Edward Bach in Britain in the 1920s.
Edward Bach treated disease as literally dis-ease, an unease of the soul or the spirit. He worked through the personality, holding that a cure in that more subtle level would lead to an improvement in the physical condition. Such ideas are part of a tradition that stretches back to Hippocrates 23 centuries ago and given its fullest expression by the founder of Homoeopathy, Dr Samuel Hahnemann.
"Flower essences are to give you that extra lift that you feel when you walk on the beach, when you work in the garden.
"When you are talking about wellness, subtle things like going for walks, having a massage, talking to friends really make a difference."
Giving up smoking is never easy, but when a person is ready to give up and has a genuine commitment to end their dependence on smoking, the Smokefree Forever Programme can be very effective. The technique combines the use of a specially devised homoeobotanical remedy known as Smokestop, and a counselling session with deep relaxation which reinforces the desire to stop smoking. In the six years since it began, the Smokefree Forever Programme has enabled hundreds of smokers to quit – in just one session of an hour. A 30-minute cassette tape is played during the initial session and this is given to the patient as homework until total control is achieved. The fee is $85, which includes the homoeobotanical herbal combination and the cassette tape. Bookings may be made with Penny, the practice nurse, telephone number 661-000.
On Wednesday February 12, at the Avon Hotel, 256 Oxford Terrace, Dr Isbell will give an illustrated talk on the uses of the Christchurch Flower Essences and their indications. The cost will be $15.
Homoeopathic remedies can be used for first aid to treat minor ailments such as injuries, colds, teething, and childhood illnesses. Bealey Homoeopathic Services offers a dispensary service covering homoeopathic remedies, homoeobotanicals, Bach Flowers and the Christchurch flower essences. Health Food Shops, and people who have studied homoeopathic first aid can buy remedies for first aid use at home. A wide range of pamphlets is available, and reference books can be consulted. First aid kits, childhood illness kits, and cold and flu kits are available, with instructions for their use.
The service is located at Dr Wendy Isbell's rooms, 110 Bealey Avenue, opposite Southern Cross Hospital. It is administered by the practice nurse, Penny Monteath, phone 660-505 or 661-000.
Dr Wendy Isbell took the photographs on this page as part of the project to produce the Christchurch Flower Essences. They have been exhibited at Thyme Cottage in Colombo Street. The photographs will also be at the Botanic Gardens Information Centre until the end of February. As well as being uplifting in their own right, the photographs provide an added dimension to the understanding of the Christchurch Flower Essences. In the picture above Dr Isbell is holding photographs of the Snowflake Flower, and the dog-toothed violet. Snowflake essence helps the patient to be clear and courageous. Essence of the dog-toothed violet is part of the relief essence which combines five different flower extracts to produce a mixture which calms and stabilises in periods of stress. It can be used in the short term to address fear, panic, stress and shock.
Star Magnolia, which is said to encourage attunement to higher realities, from the Spring kit of the Christchurch Flower Essences
The wisteria essence has been ascribed qualities which means that "separation vanishes as holiness is shared" by the patient. The flower essences are produced with careful attention to the collection, processing and presentation. Essences are extracted with spring water and stored in stock alcohol solution.
The red camelia, claiming sovereignty from the Spring kit of the Christchurch Flower Essences.