Here are interesting facts about 10 famous flowers including Daffodils, Tulips, Roses and Lotus and Carnations.
In Russia, red tulips were used to declare romantic love, where blackish center of red tulip symbolized coal-burnt heart of the lover in the passion of love.
Tulip bulbs were sold costlier than gold in 1600’s in Holland. In 1630’s a kind of frenzy for tulips occurred in Western Europe named “Tulip mania” and tulips became so expensive as to be treated as a form of currency.
Tulip bulbs can be used in place of onions in many recipes.
Tulips lifespan is very short, being 3 to 7 days.
Tulips symbolizing imagination, have earned a reputation for declaration of love.
Tulips can grow at a rate of 1 inch per day even after being cut.
A sacred flower and symbol of resurrection in Egypt, this flower which grows in marsh and damp wetlands, has a property to stay dormant in times of drought and to blossom again when water returns.
Given favorable conditions, lotus seeds can stay viable for long periods, even extending to several years. Oldest recorded germination was seen in a dry lake bed in north eastern China, from seeds that were 1300 yrs old.
Stamens of lotus are dried to produce fragrant teas while lotus seeds or nuts can be eaten either raw or popped like popcorn. Lotus seed paste is used in many pastry, cake and pudding recipes.
Fabric made from fibers of lotus plant is used in Myanmar for making robes of Buddha. According to old legend, lotus flowers bloomed everywhere that lord Buddha walked.
In Asian traditions, lotus is seen as a divine symbol of sexual purity and non attachment. Also symbolizing elegance and beauty, lotus is used in poetry and songs, allegorically for ideal female attributes.
Flowers and leaves of dandelion are rich source of vitamin A and C, calcium, iron and potassium. One cup of dandelion tea can provide 7,000-13,000 I.U. of vitamin A.
The English name of dandelion is derived from the French dent de lion which means “lions tooth” due to it coarsely toothed leaves.
Its flower petals are used in making dandelion wine while its roasted roots are used as a caffeine free dandelion coffee.
Sunflowers are also known as Helianthus (Helia: Sun Anthus: Flower) in scientific terms.
Sunflower was used as a symbol of Spiritual Church due to its property of turning towards sun as “spiritualism turns toward the light of truth”. Its property of move towards sun is called “heliotropism”.
Sunflowers can be used to remove or extract toxic elements from soil like arsenic, lead and uranium. After Chernobyl disaster, they were use to remove cesium-137 and strontium-90 from a nearby pond.
Sunflower oil is widely used for cooking while its seeds are used as snack.
Daisies symbolize innocence.
Daisy is a ‘two in one’ flower i.e. white petals peripherally and tiny yellow disc petals that form the eye.
Its medicinal properties include relieving indigestion, easing of cough, slowing the bleeding and easing back pain.
Daisies can become serious weed if not controlled as they thrive in very rough conditions and are resistant to many bugs and pesticides.
Some daisies open their petals in day’s sun time but close them in evening when sun sets giving them the name “day’s eyes”.
Daffodils are believed to have earned their name from the word asphodel (genus of perennial plants native to western, southern and central Europe) and the Dutch article “de affodil”. Another widely known name for them is Narcissus.
All species of Narcissus have the alkaloid poison named lycorine in bulbs and also in the leaves. Daffodil bulbs can be confused with onion while cooking and may lead to poisoning.
Daffodils are cultivated for commercial use for making galantamine, a drug for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
In west, Daffodils symbolize vanity while in the East, they are a symbol of wealth and good fortune.
It is national flower of Wales.
Roses, often associated with Virgin Mary, are symbol of love and beauty. Red roses are widely used on Valentines Day to express love.
Rose hips (the berry-like fruit structure of rose) of some species of rose are amongst the richest source of Vitamin C. They are used to make jams, jellies and also brewed for tea.
Two thousand flowers of rose are needed to produce one gram of rose oil.
In Chinese herbal medicine, some species of rose are used to treat stomach problems.
A red rose held in hand is a symbol of socialism or social democracy.
Lilies derived their name from Greek root ‘lirion’ meaning “true, white”.
One of the most famous lilies is Madonna lily which is always white with yellow stamens. It is one of the oldest lilies dating 3000 yrs back. Roman Catholic Church dedicated it to Mother Mary.
Madonna lily can stand adverse conditions against pests, diseases and frost.
Madonna lily was used in 17th century for treatment of snake bites and sore muscles. Its leaves and flowers used to make useful liniments to heal wounds and bruises.
Day lily is an edible variety which should be eaten in moderation or else it can act as a diuretic or laxative.
Accidental eating of day lilies can cause renal toxicity and death in cats.
Arum lily contains large amounts of calcium oxalate poison which is extremely poisonous on ingestion, even to humans.
Dahlia is a daisy like flower and is related to both daisy and sunflower.
It is the national flower of Mexico.
Dahlia is believed to get its name from an 18th century Swedish Botanist, Anders Dahl.
“Dahl” sounds very much like ‘dal’ in Swedish meaning ‘valley’. Thus it is also called ‘valley flower’ sometimes.
Dahlias serve decorative purposes in cakes, tarts, pastries, salads and in garnishing of deserts.
Dahlias with large flowers usually have only 4-5 flowers per plant.
Dahlias come in a variety of colors and many hybrids create many beautiful colors.
They are very susceptible to viral and bacterial infections.
Carnations’ scientific name ‘Dianthus caryophyllus’ means ‘flower of the Gods’.
Some people believe that the name comes from ‘corone’ meaning ‘floral garland’.
It is the national flower of Spain.
They come in all natural colors ranging from white to red.
Carnations are many times related to feelings. Red carnation symbolize deep love, white represents pure love while yellow represents dejection.
It is said that carnations first grew from Mother Mary’s tears seeing Jesus carrying the cross to cavalry.
In France and francophone cultures, carnations stand for bad luck and misfortune.
In Korea, to tell the fortune of a young girl, 3 carnations are put on her hair. If the bottom one dies first, she will have a hard life. If the middle one dies first, she will have hard times in youth but life will improve later. If the top one dies first, she will have a tough life only in the end.