Lacebark - Brachychiton discolor


Healing Challenges

  • Menopausal symptoms.
  • Feeling unattractive and sexually undesirable.
  • For depression and ‘empty nest syndrome’.
  • Fear of aging.
  • Feelings of uselessness and having passed the use-by date.
  • For ‘retired husband syndrome’.
  • For hearing difficulties.

Healing Outcomes

  • Comfortable with being the Crone – the Wise Woman.
  • Energetically eases menopausal symptoms.
  • Smoothes the transition from Mother to Wise Woman
  • Encourages joy in sexuality, in older women.
  • For the freedom to dance again.
  • For ease in passing on wisdom.
  • Grants the confidence to express one’s creativity.
  • Assists in hearing the inner voice of wisdom.


A large deciduous tree, it belongs to the Brachychiton family, which consists of the most noble and spectacular flowering trees native to the lush rainforests of the eastern coast. The family includes the dramatic Illawarra Flame Tree, which can grow to a height of 30 metres in its natural habitat, and provides a stunning display of red flowers following a wet summer. Queensland Lacebark is a giant deciduous tree of a spreading habit growing anywhere from six metres to twenty metres high. It has palmately lobed leaves, dark green above and grey, which are softly textured and have the shape of a hand reaching out to give assistance.

The flowers are dull pink and covered with a brownish fur on the outside. Larger than the red flowers of the Illawarra Flame Tree, they are similarly cup-shaped and have five petals with a central stamen crowned on top.

A rainforest tree, slow in the early stages of growth, Lacebark flowers after fourteen years. By this time, the flowers are in a lofty and exalted position and able to oversee the forest floor below.

Doctrine of Signatures

These gracious trees don’t flower until they are fourteen years old — as if they take their time maturing, but when they do, they have acquired wisdom.

The leaves reach out as if to offer assistance to those who would listen.

The flower has many indicators of the healing qualities of this lovely essence. The crown on the top of the stamen resembles a brain. It also looks curiously like an old lady’s hairdo. It gives the impression that this flower carries the ‘wisdom of age.’ In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the brain is governed by the kidneys, which in turn determine the seven-year cycles of a woman and the ageing process.

The base of the stamen and the inner flower looks like the inside of the ear with tiny hairs that rise up from rosy pink flesh. It seems to be indicating that this flower assists with hearing in the aged or hearing the wisdom that age has to pass on.

The colour around the base of the stamen is brownish, like dried-up blood. Towards the top of the cup, the colour changes to lolly pink. The outside rim of the cup splits into five peaks. The outer surface of the cup is brownish orange and highly textured with fine powdery hairs like soft old lady’s skin.

Where the inner surface of the cup meets the outer surface — the pink meets the brownish orange it has the appearance of an upside-down, multi-coloured flared dancing skirt. It is as if age does not matter — we can still dance and have fun, regardless of age. It is as if the lolly pink entices us to stay young in spirit and to stay dancing.

The name Lacebark is reminiscent of the association of ‘lavender and old lace’ with old ladies!

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