Lilies to soothe a broken heart

Flowers that will still the soul

If you've recently broken up with a person you thought was The One, or the longed-for Valentine's Day message never arrived, chances are you're feeling pretty glum. To cure your melancholy and fix your broken heart, you could do worse than a bouquet of lilies. Their healing effect means your heart will soon be as good as new.

Healing lily

The white of the lily represents purity, light, calm and completeness, all important aspects of the healing process. The flower itself symbolises purity, spiritual love, fruitfulness, immaculacy and unity, which your heart could certainly do with right now.

In the 19th century, crushed, warmed lilies were found to have a positive effect on bruises, and its disinfecting powers meant the flower was traditionally placed on wounds. Most importantly, however, the lily bulb is known to have a nurturing and cooling effect on the region of the heart. Flemish botanist Rembert Dodoens (1517-1585) wrote extensively about lilies in his 1554 guide to herbs, and in particular mentioned its ameliorating effect. However the lily was used, though, it was always as an external poultice: the flower contains borium, which is unhealthy for humans to ingest. Luckily there are lots of topical lily oils available to purchase and rub in to soothe your soul.

Start afresh with a vase full of flowers

A broken heart is also an opportunity: the chance to take control of your life, travel the world and meet lots of people. Appropriately enough, the Chinese name for the lily is Bai He: a hundred encounters. In East Asia, it symbolises friendship and fidelity. Plus, the lily will always be there for you. You can rely on its fabulous big calyxes to always provide you with ample support from a vase, and fill your house with sweet fragrance.