July’s Full Moon fell at 6:36 p.m. on a Sunday this year and I had a plan. I would make my own flower essence from the Evening Primrose growing in my garden. It had grown there every other year from the wildflower seed I had spread when I first moved into this little house with the big back yard over seven years ago. For the longest time I didn’t even know what this tall, lanky plant with the small clusters of yellow flowers was. Then one day, I happened to spot a drawing and explanation of it in one of my books on herbalism. It was only then that I learned to seek her aroma at twilight. She is pretty enough to look at all right, but she only lets her sweet aroma waft as the day wanes and evening approaches and I had never caught her delicate scent before. This is why she is called Evening Primrose and why my plan was timely on a Full Moon. On this particular Full Moon, I arrived home after performing a house blessing, feeling happy with the work I’d done and filled with anticipation about my first ever attempt at making a flower essence. I am living a magickal life! I’ve experienced the healing that flower essences offer from my dear friend who had given many a remedy to me over the years. Flower essences have helped me recover from traumatic experiences, ease my grief, strengthen my resolve, and remember who I am at a core level. Potent stuff. This year I was determined to keep my water bill low, adding mulch to the garden to keep the moisture in the soil, watering only the vegetable beds every other day, leaving the flower beds to fend for them selves. At 6:25 I walked outside ready to begin; bowl of purified water and moonstone in tow. But when I walked toward the Evening Primrose, they were sagging listlessly; all blooms withered and hanging lifeless! These were plants that didn’t care about my water bill, they were dying of thirst. Literally. I ran to get the hose, all the while scolding myself for letting this happen. “Well,” I told myself to feel better. “You can make some on the next full moon.” But I knew by late August, she’d be past her seasonal peak. I stood there watching the spray of water sink into the soil below the plants, disappointment flooding my heart. It was too late. I’d missed the right timing to make the essence this year. Something you learn as you garden: one thing gives way to another and there is always something more to do. As the Moon came on full, I spied my lavender ready for harvest. Full Moon lavender, perfect! I’d dry it to use along with tansy, lemon verbena, and Artemisia in my sachets as holiday gifts. I braved the bees, too drunk on the lavender to notice me, I think, as I clipped the slender stalks about a foot below the fragrant blossoms. Soon I had a few armloads of them and brought them to the table on my deck. I sat there placing each stalk against the next, positioning the blooms together in bunches. I took each bunch to the compost pile and clipped the ends uniformly. Then I placed a rubber band around the bottom of the stems and hung them on little wires from my drying rack. I followed this routine for about half an hour, maybe forty five minutes as the sun began to sink in the west. As anyone who has worked with lavender for an extended period of time knows, you get as drunk as the bees on the scent. I was stoned before I knew it and all was right with the world. My mind floated back to the flower essence I had wanted to make. I glanced back over to the Evening Primrose and gasped! There they were, totally rejuvenated, standing tall once more. Precious water. A lesson in resilience and hydration. I ran over to them, praising them verbally as I counted the 13 blooms that had miraculously opened! In the growing twilight, their keen yellow looked absolutely neon, and the air was thick with their delicate perfume. Who needs recreational drugs? Learn your flowers, man. I pulled a few strands of my hair out and dropped them in the soil as an offering of gratitude. Then I picked the flowers from their calyxes and gently placed them into the bowl of moonstone water. Back at the table, I wrapped my hands around the bowl and breathing their scent, I gazed unblinking at their beauty, my heart filled with gratitude for nature. It did not escape my notice that Evening Primrose brings rejuvenation to menopausal women. Like me.