Glossary of Flowers: Z

Zinnia The ‘Zinnia’ is named after the botanist J.G.Zinn (1727-59). It is any species of the genus Zinnia of the family Asteraceae. The common zinnia of gardens (Z. elegans), called also youth-and-old-age, is a rather coarse, easily cultivated annual, popular as a cut flower for its warm colours—ranging from white and yellow to red and […]

Glossary of Flowers: W

Wallflower In Voltaire’s words, ‘perfection is attained by slow degrees; it requires the hand of time’. In the world of fauna, the painstakingly slow measures by which a virginal bud blossoms into a beautiful flower, attains the stature of perfection when the humanity enthuses over its exotic charms. The wallflower, a great favourite for bedding […]

Glossary of Flowers: V

Violet Disraeli rated the value of candour above all other qualities, “Candour is the brightest gem of criticism”. The flower symbolising candour is the white violet. In terms of love, the white violet is emblematic of an adventurous spirit. This white flower, known as Viola Alba, has other coloured varieties. In fact, violet is the […]

Glossary of Flowers: T

Tulip It is said, “the eyes of women are Promethean fires”. No praise is sufficient to encompass the exotic beauty of a woman’s eyes. However, the gift of a tulip might do the magic! Yes, a variegated tulip symbolises beautiful eyes. In fact, a yellow tulip says, “There is sunshine in your smile” and expresses […]

Glossary of Flowers: S

Sage of Bethlehem The Sage is any species of the large genus Salvia, aromatic herbs or shrubs of the family Labiatae. The common sage of herb gardens is S. officinalis, a strongly scented shrubby perennial, and native from S Europe to Asia Minor. The dried leaves are used as seasoning; sage tea, once popular as […]

Glossary of Flowers: R

Resurrection Flower In the religion and mythology of almost every ancient country n the world, a garden is portrayed as the place of divine habitation. In the classical mythologies, such a heavenly abode exited atop the mount Olympus, unreachable by the fruny mortal. Again, in the Biblical version of the formation of this world, the […]

Glossary of Flowers: P

Pansy A great deal of poetry and thought has been given to love, magic and the potential of floral aphrodisiacs. The humble pansy, when put over the eyes of a sleeping person, compelled him or her to pursue the first person they set eyes on in the morning. Dedicated to St. Euphrasia, the pansy is […]

Glossary of Flowers: O

Oak Some plants have become perennially entrenched in our memories, and often in the annals of literature, with certain images and associations. An instance of this is the oak-tree strong, hardy and reliable, this tree of the beech family is an emblem of unchanging durable mettle. The timber of oak of the Quercus genus is […]

Glossary of Flowers: N

Narcissus Narcissus poeticus, commonly called the poet’s narcissus, is derived from the family of Amaryllidaceae. In fact, it is any bulbous plant belonging to the genus Narcissus, of this family, having showy yellow or white flowers with a cup-shaped corona. The white flower symbolises selfishness, possibly due to the legend associated with this flower. According […]

Glossary of Flowers: M

Mistletoe Mistletoe is the common name for the Loranthaceae, a family of chiefly tropical semi parasitic herbs and shrubs with leathery evergreen leaves and waxy white berries. They have green leaves, but they manufacture only part of the nutrients they require. Mistletoes are aerial semi parasites, attaching themselves to their hosts by modified roots called […]