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I have seen so many sunflowers this year; some planted intentionally, some not. I am growing them, but I have had little solar sentinels pop up all around the yard. Sunflowers are good at... Sun! When they're young, they are heliotropic: their little stems and heads will track the sun throughout the day. Once they are seeded, they will stay stationary.

Sunflowers are heliotropic even before they bloom

Since sunflowers know about the sun, it makes sense that their medicine embodies just that. Sunflowers can extract radiation. They have been planted outside nuclear sites, sometimes becoming so "hot," that the sunflowers themselves had to be removed and treated as toxic. That makes it an excellent remedy for those who have undergone chemotherapy, have had x-rays, or have been exposed to other forms of radiation. I like to think that sunflowers somehow have a communion with the sun to send all the radiation back.

Sunflowers are a composite, which means they have two sets of flowers: the ray flowers are what we call the petals - and each petal is a tiny flower. They darker spots in the middle are called disc flowers, and they, too are their own separate flower. So a sunflower is a "composite" of all these hundreds of flowers and share this trait with fellow family members Chrysanthemum and dandelion.

Rays and discs!

The outer edge of the plant is called the corolla, which share its word word with the outside of the sun, corona. "Corona" means crown, and "Corolla" means little crown

(or even a Toyota). "Cor-" can also refer to something agreeable, like "cordial" and "accord." In the Northern hemisphere, sunflowers tend to start showing up around the time of Leo, which is ruled by the sun and Apollo. Apollo sometimes is linked with Helios, another solar deity. Helios drove his chariot with the golden, disc-like wheels around the sky to create day, and drove beneath the world, hearing toward the west, at night. Although the word for heart is "car-" (cardiac, cardio), I think it's very similar to "cor-." Leo is the king: he wears the crown (cor-) and rules the heart (car-). The main artery of the heart ("car-") is the coronary, which is named because it rests on the heart like crown. Another trait of kings: courage. Courage is what you get when you leading (king/cor-) with the heart (car-).

I think this is a very interesting year for all these sunflowers to start popping up, when we have the Coronavirus that keeps hanging around. I think the earth often gives us hints as to what we need to be eating or surrounding ourselves with. Perhaps the medicine is in the seeds; sunflower seeds produce a very beneficial oil which is good for rebuilding the adrenals or after feeling extremely worn out. It also has the bit of sunshine to it. Perhaps we can use this to rebuild after having a bout with Coronavirus. Viruses tend to like cooler temperatures, and sunflower oil is warming in nature. Oils are also very lubricating and helps with dried out tissues, which may be able to help with a drier lung tissue state. Warming herbs also get the lymphatics moving, which is what you want to do when an illness is dumping its waste products into your system.

This is an amazing little plant - and it can grow in your back yard, with a little help from the birds at the feeder. The medicine is simple, but powerful. So if you're feeling a bit run down and need a pick me up, reach for a handful of sunflower seeds. Or maybe let a sunny sunflower cheer you on and warm your spirit.


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