The Mythology of Flowers – Lilies

‘lilium’ a Latin term considered to be one of the first words for flower. Traced back to 1580 B.C., with images of lilies discovered in a villa in Crete, the blooms have long held a role in mythology. The Greeks even believed it sprouted from the milk of Hera, the queen of the gods. The Greeks and Roman included the lily in many religious myths and ceremonies and cultivated the flower extensively.

Unlike most other flowers, the lily never goes dormant and grows natively all over the world. This strength combined with its beauty, have made it a favourite in stories in many cultures.

In Christian faith, white lilies have been used to represent the Virgin Mary, becoming a Christian symbol of purity. Medicine in Medieval times used the mashed roots of the Madonna Lily to heal skin ulcers and sooth sore tendons, whilst Traditional Chinese Medicine uses various lily varieties to produce a cooling effect on the body. In present day China, the lily is in high demand for weddings as its name is similar to a phrase used to wish the newlyweds happiness for a century. It is also said to help relieve heartache and is given to people that have experienced recent loss.

The lily is also used as the symbol of European royalty, stylised into the well-known fleur de lis and is commonly recognised as being a regal symbol. White lilies are used as a symbol of purity, the striped pink Stargazer Lily is often given as encouragement during difficult times, yellow for good health, whilst red can be used for weddings and proposals.

Lilies are generally the flowers most often associated with funerals, with white specifically used to symbolise that the soul of the departed has experienced restored innocence after death.

The Mythology of Flowers – Carnations

Carnations date back over 2,000 years so there are many myths, stories and symbols behind them. One of the world’s oldest cultivated flowers, the carnation’s scientific name ‘dianthus’, translates to “flower of love” or “flower of the gods”

According to a Christian legend, carnations originally appeared after the Crucifixion of Christ, growing in the spots where the Virgin Mary’s tears fell to the earth. This is said to be how the carnation became associated with a mother’s love.

In the Victorian ages, the colour of a carnation was at times used as a way to send a secret message to an admirer, with a solid colour meaning ‘yes’, striped meaning ‘I can’t be with you’, and yellow meaning ‘no’. In Korea, three carnations were sometimes placed in the hair of a young girl to tell her fortune. It is believed that if the top flower dies first, the last years of the girl’s life will be difficult. If the middle flower perishes first, her youth will be challenging, and if the bottom flower dies first, she will be told that her whole life will be a struggle. Such a dire message from a simple flower.

Carnations have also been used in tea or topical applications throughout history for their healing properties, including as a treatment for depression, insomnia and hormonal imbalances. The ancient Aztec Indians used the blooms as a diuretic and to treat chest congestion. Now it is a common wedding flower in China, whilst in Japan the red carnation is often given for Mother’s Day. Yellow carnations commonly symbolise friendship and white stands for good luck or innocence.

In the Netherlands, white carnations are worn to remember the country’s war veterans, whilst in France, purple carnations are the traditional funeral flower.

Carnations are the flower for January.

The Mythology of Flowers – Roses

Throughout history, ancient myths, stories, and fables have all contributed to the perceived meanings of our favourite flowers, and led to them being associated with many customs in various cultures around the world.Many cultures associate flowers with the life cycle, including birth and death. From blooming buds symbolising birth and awakening, to certain colours symbolising death and mourning, there is a flower to suit every occasion, cultural event, or ceremony.

We unknowingly have carried many stories and customs surrounding popular flower types into the present with us, learning from previous generations that a particular bloom is appropriate for certain occasions, or that some flowers are more suited to a role in our beauty products, cake decorations, or gifts, than others.

For the ancient Romans, the rose signified beauty and was associated with goddesses, most famously; Venus and Aphrodite known as the goddesses of love, beauty, and desire. It was also seen as evocative of death and rebirth and often planted on graves.

You don’t have to look far to find mention of roses in literature, poetry, and music, or spot them in art, home wares, or fashion. Stories have contributed to roses being seen universally as the flower of love and desire, and used commonly to celebrate anniversaries, weddings, and romantic love.

However, the type of love symbolised comes down to the colour of the rose.

Red roses symbolise deep romantic love and endless devotion, whilst pink is perfect for a new love.
White is often used in bridal bouquets as they signify purity, whilst yellow is thought to represent friendship or to send ‘get well’ wishes.
Orange roses are bursting with passion and energy and can convey intense longing and passion.
Soft and delicate, lavender roses express whimsy and enchantment. While darker shades of purple are intrinsically linked to royalty and majesty, the softer shades are more appropriate for expressing sentiments such as ‘love at first sight’.

The rose is also flower for June and the national flower of the United States.

Why should you have fresh flowers in your home part 4

Being positive, improving your worklife, decorating your home all great reasons for having fresh flowers in your house but finally we talk about welcoming your guests and putting everyone in a great mood.

What better way to welcome guests to your home than with a fresh bouquet positioned in the hallway or living area (this will also have them remarking on the beauty of your home rather than noticing the mess you didn’t have time to get to).

Fresh flowers are the perfect table setting for a dinner party or special lunch, and show how much effort you put into planning the party you’ve thrown. Flowers can also be tied into your party theme to make the event even more spectacular, like pink to celebrate a baby shower for a new little girl, or roses to celebrate an important anniversary. There are so many options here, come in and talk to us for suggestions.

I’d love to know why you have fresh flowers in your home and how they make you feel, get in touch and let us know!

Why should you have fresh flowers in your home part 3

So, we’ve talked about the power of positivity and improving your worklife with flowers now lets just get right down to it with
Decorating your home.

Flowers are a quick way to decorate your home; pulling together your personal style and making your living space appear more polished.
Not only are flowers are a beautiful finishing touch to your interior design, they have the ability to change the feel of your home or of particular rooms.

Bright arrangements can lift the vibes of your living space, brightening homes with dark furniture or limited light. More understated bouquets can make a hectic home feel calmer, or an arrangement of one colour in varying shades can tie together your colour theme.

For example, finishing off a monochrome room with a fishbowl vase of all white blooms. If you need some help with this just ask next time you are in the shop and Im happy to help out.

Why should you have fresh flowers in your home part 2

Last week we discussed the power of positivity and the affect flowers have on out lives. This week its how to
Improve your worklife

On top of decreasing stress, flowers have also been reported to lift concentration levels and creativity, and increase cognitive performance. For people who work from home and want to improve their concentration, or need a creative lift, a bouquet of fresh flowers is an easy way to stimulate both.

Putting them in your home office or on your desk at work is a sure fire way to reap the benefits, with bright colours or a creative arrangement even more beneficial for getting the creative juices flowing.

If calming is your aim, opt for lighter colours that fall near to each other on the colour wheel, whilst choosing blooms in bright and opposite colours will energise you.

Why should you have fresh flowers in your home?

Most of us love the sight of fresh flowers in our home, whether they appear as a weekly bouquet, a once in a while treat, or reserved for special occasions.

It’s not hard to guess why, flowers are beautiful after all.

However, there may be more to it. Flowers have been shown to have extraordinary power over us mere humans, affecting our moods and improving our health and work performance.

I’ll be looking at various reasons over the next few weeks why everyone should introduce fresh flowers into their home…

Firstly – Boost your mood

Scientific research has shown that flowers can genuinely boost your mood, increasing happiness and decreasing feelings of stress and anxiety.Researchers have put this amazing side effect down to a culturally learned association of flowers as a symbol of positivity.

It’s no wonder when flowers are present at some of our happiest events like weddings, birthdays, and new births. Flowers can also trigger memories of these special events or of approaching spring and summer, a time when most of us are generally happier.

Think about how the sight of flowers makes you feel; we’re not scientists but we’re pretty sure they’ll make you feel more positive about the day!

Scientists also believe that happiness from the sight of flowers could be tied to an evolutionary trait, with flowers signalling to our ancestors that an area was fertile and food could be easily found or grown.

There’s also a strong scientific reason why we give flowers to people who are unwell, especially in hospital. Studies have shown that patients recovering from operations in a room with flowers reported lower rates of pain and less stress and fatigue than those in rooms without flowers.

Next week we’ll look at improving your worklife with flowers.

It’s April Already

Events

So many – Easter, school holidays, Anzac Day & then the big one – Mothers Day…

It’s April already, summer is over, autumn in full swing & daylight savings about to finish. The year is rolling past but don’t forget to stop & smell the flowers along the way.

Flowers

Dahlias are delicious, lizzys are luscious, stock is stunning & gerberas are gorgeous. Natives, roses & chryssies all beautiful as well. Keep your eyes out for the first dis buds then you know Mothers Day is around the corner.

Plants

Stunning succulents on show in the window, just a small selection of the vast variety available, great for indoors & out. Cyclamens are in full swing, in all colours. Enjoy inside during the day & then outside in the cold night air for best results.

Kalanchoes, fuschias, begonias, anthuriums, spathfylliums just to name a few. A beautiful time of year for all plants.

New shells are out of stock at the moment unfortunately but I am hoping to get some more before Mothers Day. Don’t forget the range of the ceramic drawers or my new pile of flippy floppy flowers. I’m always unpacking new things.

As always if there is anything you need please ask & I will do my best to source it for you. Anzac Day I will be supporting the RSL as usual & doing a wedding so forgive me if I don’t stop & chat!

Hope the Big Bunny is good to everyone.

 

Thanks Liane