DELVE INTO THE MARVELOUS WORLD OF FLOWERS
Photo cred: M. DagliLaura’s mentioned her love and appreciation of flowers many times in the past (fun fact: it’s her absolute favorite gift to receive). Recently we were sitting in the office and talking about some flowers here in Wilmington that we both love, and we realized how little we know about flowers, and that’s the case with a lot of us these days. Many of us, Laura and myself included, want to become more in touch with nature. Even just knowing more about the types of trees you pass on the way to work can help you have a deeper understanding of the world around you.
Since most of us out there love a beautiful bouquet or garden of flowers, I thought it would be fun to share what we’ve learned about some of the most popular and well-loved flowers (17 to be exact). Not only are they pretty to look at, but some of them have the most fascinating backstories. Keen to learn more? Continue scrolling and read on!
ROSESDespite what the poem says, not all roses are red. Roses (rosa) vary in size, shape and color, ranging from white to yellows and reds. Most species are native to Asia and bloom on and off throughout mid-spring and fall, making them among the most desirable garden plants. They’re also widely grown because of their beauty and fragrance. The ancient Greeks and Romans associated roses with Aphrodite/Venus, the goddess of love. Roses have been a symbol of love and passion for hundreds of years and will continue to spread love for millennia to come.
TULIPSTulips (tulipa gesneriana) are members of the lily family. Since the seventeenth century, this classic flower has become widely cultivated but they were originally found in a region stretching from Southern Europe to Central Asia. Tulips blossom in the spring into large, brightly colored flowers, resembling a turban, therefore being named after the Persian word for turban. These red, purple, pink, orange, yellow, or white flowers are ideal to give to a partner or family member because they symbolize deep, unconditional love.
CARNATIONSDianthus caryophyllus, more commonly known as carnations, express feelings of love, fascination, and distinction. The sweetly scented spring-blooming flowers have been genetically modified to bloom in many different colors, but the natural flower color is bright pinkish-purple. Its exact origin is unknown because carnations have been extensively cultivated for the last 2,000 years, but many believe that they are native to the Mediterranean region.
AZALEASI was so excited to write about Wilmington’s unique annual Azalea festival, but after doing some research, I’ve come to find out that azaleas, aka rhododendron, are actually native to several continents including Asia, Europe and North America. Every spring when azaleas bloom, there are festivals all around the world celebrating the beautiful lip tint… I mean flower ;) Although our own Azalea lip tint is bright pink, azaleas also come in lavender-pink, bright red, soft white, and coral with white accents. The azalea is known as the “thinking of home bush” in Chinese culture; no wonder why everyone wants to have their own Azalea festival.
Fun fact: “Azalea” was the first lip tint color name that Laura decided on, and it was years before they moved to Wilmington, the city of the Azalea festival. She says that she remembers “Azalea” being the easiest tint name, and that it just came to her as soon as the tint color was finalized. Seems like kismet, doesn’t it? <3
ORCHIDSOrchids (orchidaceae) are the largest family of flowering plants, with over 20,000 species in the world. This exotic flower can produce white, pink, yellow, purple, or orange foliage, and has origins in every continent with the exception of Antarctica. Orchids are known for their fragrance and are widely used in perfumes and aromatherapy.
Vanilla extract, a commonly used flavor enhancer, and something you may have in your pantry right now, is also derived from the orchid plant, more specifically the vanilla orchid plant. Orchids are said to be powerful aphrodisiacs in many cultures so it’s only fitting that they're associated with love, fertility and elegance.