Evening Primrose is a beautiful biennial wildflower in the Onagraceae or evening primrose family. A basal rosette of hairy leaves forms in the first year and in its second, the plant shoots up dense spikes of showy, 4-petaled, fragrant yellow flowers that bloom, as the name implies, at dusk.
A widespread weed that is native to eastern and central North America and naturalized in Europe, evening primrose is well-known in the supplement industry for its pressed seed oil and highly valued for its rich fatty acids including linoleic acid and gamma-linolenic acid. The seed oil is commonly sold in capsules and used extensively in Europe for treating premenstrual syndrome, especially breast tenderness and cramping, as well as regulating prostaglandin production and liver function. It is also commonly used in midwifery to assist the cervix in softening and effacing during labour.
While much of the research on evening primrose focuses on the seed, the entire plant is in fact edible, and medicinally it has many uses as a vulnerary, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory and relaxant nervine. Herbalist Kiva Rose states “It can be a most useful calmative, especially suited for nervous exhaustion, hormonally oriented irritability and depression and anxious, tense children. It is of an uplifting character, and useful in cases of mild to moderate depression, most noticeably so when associated with exhaustion, addiction withdrawal and chronic digestive issues.” Acutely it can be helpful for spasmodic coughing, cramping and topically as a poultice or salve for wounds and venomous insect bites.
Evening Primrose Flower Essence
Energetically, evening primrose has a gentleness in her medicine that softens the edges by working with the heart and solar plexus chakras to open fully to love and relationships without fear of rejection and addresses imbalance on a soul level. It is indicated for those who feel rejected in early childhood, most often by their parents and for those whose strategy to cope with rejection is to avoid any deep emotional connection.
Evening primrose flower essence also works on our shadow side, which often hides aspects of our personality that we don’t like, so we ignore them. As a flower essence, evening primrose illuminates these hidden emotions and aspects and brings them to the surface and as uncomfortable as that can be it also can bring a great sense of inner peace. This essence can also be helpful to those who fear parenthood and the emotional bond that comes with it. It helps to cleanse difficult or toxic family relationships and can be especially helpful in healing mother issues for both the mother and the child.
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- Wild Rose College Evening Primrose Flower Essence Monograph