Astro-Herbal Calendar: Summer 2018

The following calendar maps out upcoming transits for Summer, 2018, so we can tune into the cosmic influences. It can help us determine how best work with the energies that arise. This calendar also contains recommended herbal remedies for each of the major planetary transits. The suggested herbs have been determined using the ancient practice of Medical Astrology, a tool that links human anatomy and physiology to plant and fungi spirits. 

As these ancient practices become increasingly popular in modern times, we are learning to join heaven and earth. We are discovering powerful ways that we can relate not only to our bodies, hearts, and minds, but also to the Earth, its seasons, and our collective unfoldment.

The suggested herbal remedies in this calendar are brought to you by medical astrologer Emily McDonald of Ethos Rising




June 21-September 22

Summer Zodiac Signs: Cancer, Leo, Virgo

Summer begins on the Summer Solstice, when the Sun is at its zenith. The longest day of the year, this is a time to celebrate light, abundance, and joy. Today, the Sun also moves into Cancer—into the domain of the sensitive Crab. Ruling home and our emotions, we are turning inward and focusing on family, intimate friendships, and our private lives.

This summer, many significant astrological transits are taking place. Mars is stationing retrograde, helping us recalibrate the inner masculine and make room for a more empowered feminine. Six planets will be in retrograde, allowing us the chance to reevaluate our paths forward. We’re making sure that our karma is clear, our foundations strong, as we begin to build and inhabit the future paradigm. It’s set to begin in 2020, when Saturn and Pluto form a conjunction in Capricorn. Finally, with three eclipses on the horizon, we’re breaking out of old patterns and more fully inhabiting our deeper truths and potentials.

Supportive Remedies for Summer:

Rose Hips (Rosa sp.): cooling to the body, refreshes the spirit

Lemon Balm (Melissa offinicalis): enhances relaxation, restores youthfulness

Linden (Tilia americana): calms tension, opens self to the collective

Summer 2018 Astrology Transits


June 21–July 22: Sun Enters Cancer

Good time for: turning inward, focusing on family, intimacy, vacations, and alone time, as well as self-care and emotional release

Good time for: reevaluating our inner masculine, our anger and aggression, and our paths forward, regenerating our energy, preparing for our next phase

When Mars retrogrades, it appears to be moving backwards from the perspective of earth. This occurs once every two-plus years. During this period, we are pulled to reassess our current projects, our trajectories, and our desires. Rather than leaping ahead, we tend toward quiet introspection. Our energies are geared toward our personal lives and inner worlds as we pause to question our passion, aggression, and drives.

We might be careful not to internalize our anger or hold onto resentments now. Tension, depression, anxiety, and apathy are possible if we don’t work with this energy consciously. We have the chance now to connect with stillness. We’re recalibrating our inner masculine so we can soften and make room for a more enlightened future—one that holds more clarity, purpose, and liberation, as well as an exalted feminine. This is a beautiful time for sexual intimacy and for breaking out of patriarchal values and father wounds. By the time Mars stations direct, we’ll have done important work, revisiting and releasing the past, and allowing for greater harmony, true love, and peace and we leap into the future.

Supportive remedies for Mars Retrograde in Aquarius/Capricorn:

Aquarius rules the ankles and Capricorn the knees, while Mars rules our blood and adrenal system. Now is an excellent time to work with herbs that help us focus inward.

Aspen (Populus tremula): supports the breath, instills trust

Blessed Thistle (Cnicus benedictus): circulates stagnation, enhances self-respect

Sweet Violet (Viola odorata): hydrates and softens, supports emotional connection


June 28: Capricorn Full Moon

Good time for: aligning our outer and inner lives, bringing our work life into harmony with our emotional lives, letting go of the past, dismantling emotional conditioning from our parents

Full Moons are a time to let go and release anything that no longer serves us. They’re a moment of culmination and fruition as the Moon reaches maximum brightness—falling directly opposite the Sun. The Full Moon exposes the night, tapping us into magic, hidden dimensions, and our unconscious minds.

Capricorn rules career, the past, and achievement. With an emotional Full Moon in restrained Capricorn, we could feel tension. Capricorn Moons help us gain mastery of our emotions, calling on our discipline to release any wallowing or clinging to the past. Since Capricorn also represents the father and external authority, this is the perfect time to purify any childhood conditioning that is still holding us back from our full expression.

Supportive Remedies for Capricorn Full Moon:

Capricorn the knees, while the Moon rules our bodily fluids, emotional memories, and biological rhythms. Full Moon is a powerful time to work with herbs that help us illuminate and celebrate our deeper selves.

Mullein (Verbascum thapsus): aligns skeleton, tunes inner dialogue

Honeysuckle (Lonicera caprifolium): relaxes muscular tension, releases regret

Jasmine (Jasminum officinale): decongests accumulations, nourishes femininity

July 12: Cancer New Moon Patrial Solar Eclipse

Good time for: Major rebirth out of old traumas and patterns, Bringing dreams into reality, Emotional breakthroughs, Family breakthroughs, Forgiveness and reconciliation, Creative regeneration

New Moons are a time for fresh starts and setting intentions. Solar Eclipses are supercharged New Moons, bringing intensity as they swiftly catapult us onto our true life paths. With the Moon partially eclipsing the Sun, our deeper emotional natures are taking precedence over ego. At the same time, this marks an epic beginning of a new cycle, offering a clean slate that helps us recharge and begin again. What projects, dynamics, or relationships do we now want to initiate?

Cancer is ruled by the Moon. It’s the most sensitive and emotional sign, representing nourishment and the mother. This partial Solar Eclipse is surrounded by major aspects—two Grand Trines in earth and water signs, along with an opposition from transformative Pluto. We can now break out of old conditioning, particularly patriarchal values and belief systems that came from our parents. Meanwhile, the earth and water trines are helping us bring our dreams into reality—eliciting peace, forgiveness, reconciliation. They’re also offering beautiful support for relationships and creative regeneration. Aligned with the North Node, our true life path, we’re aligning with our deeper purpose as we continue to empower the divine feminine and recalibrate the masculine.

Supportive Remedies for Cancer New Moon Partial Eclipse:

Cancer rules the stomach and breast, while the Moon rules our bodily fluids, emotional memories, and biological rhythms. New Moon is a powerful time to work with herbs that help us accept and prepare for the next phase of self-actualization.

Pine (Pinus sylvestris): facilitates elimination and release, promotes self-forgiveness

Water Lily (Nymphaea alba): cools and moistens, heightens intimacy

Willow (Salix vitellina): shifts mental patterns, encourages perseverance

July 26–August 19 – Mercury Retrograde in Leo

Good time for: review, introspection, magic, psychic communication

Mercury retrograde occurs when Mercury appears to move backward from the perspective of Earth. Energetically, this has the effect of making our communication wonky. It can mess up our listening, speaking, writing, texting, and negotiating. Travel, shipping, and computer codes can also become wonky, earning Mercury Retrograde its negative reputation.

However, this transit is also beneficial. As the planet of intellect and communication turns its powers inward, we enter a wonderful period for reflection, review, and introspection—as well as dreams, magic, and psychic communication. We can find deeper ways to communicate now, beyond ordinary language and mundane reality.


Supportive remedies for Mercury Retrograde in Leo:

Leo rules the heart space, while Mercury oversees our cognitive capacities. Working with flower essences to unite heart and mind can assist us in experiencing a potent mercury retrograde.


Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale): supports emotional expression, relaxes tension

Sunflower (Helianthus annus): imparts humility and self-esteem, brings warmth to inner self

Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla): restores equilibrium, promotes internal ease


July 27 – Aquarius Full Moon Total Lunar Eclipse

Good time for: Letting go of inauthentic relationships, Finding deeper purpose, Exposing truth, Orienting toward the collective good, Emotional honesty. 

Full Moons are a time to let go and release anything that no longer serves us. They’re a moment of culmination and fruition as the Moon reaches maximum brightness—falling directly opposite the Sun. The Full Moon exposes the night, tapping us into magic, hidden dimensions, and our unconscious minds. A Lunar Eclipse is an exaggerated Full Moon, bringing final endings, revealing our shadow selves, and uncomfortable truths about others. Memories and dreams surface and elicit our deepest emotions. 

This Total Lunar Eclipse in Aquarius will be the longest eclipse of the century, falling almost exactly conjunct the South Node. The longer the eclipse, the more significance it holds, so this will be the most important eclipse of the 21st century. The eclipse also falls conjunct Mars—our masculinity, direction, drive, and anger. These areas of our lives are about to face disruption and major release. Falling in Aquarius and squaring Uranus, this Lunar Eclipse is very much affecting our future, liberation, authenticity, and humanity at large. We are making big adjustments to grow into our more genuine selves, and finding ways to offer our talents to the world for the benefit of all. Gone are the days of vanity and selfishness taking precedence over the good of all. We’re tapping into greater emotional honesty while coming to terms with the truth of who we all are. Lies, deceit, and corruption are being exposed so we can move into the new paradigm with integrity—both personally and collectively. At the same time, we’re finding our tribes as our communities and grassroots efforts gain strength and attention. We’re rectifying abuses of power as we learn to create our own lives and worlds from our truest hearts—rather than looking to gurus, saviors, or outside figures of authority.


Supportive remedies for Aquarius Full Moon Total Lunar Eclipse:

Aquarius rules the ankles, which facilitates our mobility, while the Moon rules bodily fluids, emotional memories, and biological rhythms. With this eclipse occurring conjunct the South Node and Mars Retrograde, now is an excellent time to work with herbs that can help us eliminate internalized aggression and parental or patriarchal conditioning. This way, we can make space for fresh energy and liberation. 

Agrimony (Agrimonia eupatoria): releases stagnant energy, clears perceptive fog

Yerba Santa (Eriodyction glutinosum): clears congestion and opens energetic channels

San Pedro* (Trichocereus pachanoi):  the Grandfather Spirit who helps to heal our inner masculine and release addictions, while working as a highly revelatory and transformative agent of higher consciousness


*psychodelic substance = microdose


Read more by Juliana McCarthy at Ethereal Culture 

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