Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta)
Also known as English bluebell, British bluebell, wild hyacinth, wood bell, fairy flower and bell bottle
I know I know, it’s NOT an edible and it is POISONOUS and there isn’t much known on its medicinal properties except that scientists are looking at it as a potential medicine for HIV and some cancers. As a flower essence it is used for those who are feeling weak emotionally or unable to find strength to express those emotions. Bluebell is said to give calm and a sense of peace and groundedness to enable one to speak their truth.
For me though it is not always about the edible or the medicinal properties of a plant. The medicine that comes from this plant (and many others) is to lie amongst it, staring up at the colours of the petals, it is to absorb the energy of it just by lying amongst it, to watch the way the bells sway and move and observe the mystical energy the Bluebell seems to hold.
Bluebells medicine comes to me just from wandering through a forest rich in a carpet of blues and purples mixed together with the white of wild garlic flowers and the buzz of the bumble bee.
It brings to me the memory of hiding in the swathe of violet colours as a child and hoping and praying the fairies, imps or goblins would find me and take me away so that when I put my head up above the sea of blue, life would have changed as I knew it. It takes me to childlike wonder, of remembering a time of being small and sad, muddy kneed and covered in Nettle stings, stumbling upon a forest full of bluebells and I suddenly understood that magic DOES exist here on earth and it is beautiful.
Stories have been told over many many years about Bluebell being a fairy flower, one of the ones that would mark the gateway to the fairy portal and that the fairies would ring the blue bells to call a meeting, any human who heard the call would be lost to fairyland forever.
Bluebells to me have always held a deep rich excitement, a sense of awe and silent wonderment that draws me too them, becoming lost in time, asleep among their vibrant hue, hoping one day to hear the tinkle of their bells.
So often people want to know immediately what a plant does or what it contains without really looking at it, and sometimes I think its best not to know or to be told as this can put a halt on really seeing it and feeling it. You wouldn’t meet a new human and ask “what can you do for me?” you would instead see how you feel about them, how their energy feels, what they look like, how their eyes sparkle and what their hands do when they talk, you would take time getting to know them, getting to know how you feel being next to them and around them. It should be the same with a plant, let go of expectations and needs and just let yourself be taken by them, beguiled and intoxicated. Lie next to them and dream, observe and listen. I don’t need Bluebell explained to me to know that I love her for her magic and mysterious beauty. I don’t care that she is toxic and so I can’t wrap my lips around her and taste her flesh or soak her in oils for my medicine cabinet. I am beguiled by the dark and soft energy she oozes, she has captivated my heart and that is enough for me. Plants don’t always have to hold an edible quality or a known medicinal one for me to love it. They don’t have to be named and categorised and placed into neat scientific boxes and its uses ticked off and explained, they can instead just be gloriously unashamedly who they are, bringing medicine to the heart and food to the soul in abundance just by showing up and oozing them-ness.
IMPORTANT NOTES- This is a POISONOUS plant and should NOT be eaten.