Day 206 - Cane has an interesting history. It is one of two species of bamboo, a type of grass, native to North America. Preferring full sun and disturbance, river cane was formerly most common on floodplains where it occurred beneath open forest canopies. Cane also occurred under canopy openings in upland forests and in scattered-tree savannas. Such sites and soils have been coveted by humans for various purposes for centuries. In the floral industry river cane is dried and used as an accent in many floral arrangements.
Day 207 - Expedite lily blossom opening by using warm floral food solution and by covering the buds with a clear plastic bag to maintain high humidity. Bright light (not direct sunlight) also seems to hasten the opening process as well as assuring good color in the blossoms.
Day 208 - Many floral designers today are using yarn and felt to add intriguing texture to their arrangements. Another way to add this element is with "floral" cotton. The bolls, still on the stem, have been removed from the stalk, hand cleaned and fluffed. The sturdy, star-shaped burrs (which hold the cotton on the stem) are also used sans the cotton at times for a different rustic look. Wonderful for autumn, rustic and country designs.
Day 209 - Chinese lantern, Physalis alkekengi, is a relative of Cape Gooseberry, easily identifiable by the larger, bright orange to red papery covering over its fruit, which resemble paper lanterns. It is native from southern Europe east across southern Asia to Japan. It is an herbaceous perennial plant growing to 40–60 cm tall, with spirally arranged leaves. The flowers are white, with a five-lobed corolla, with an inflated basal calyx which matures into the papery orange fruit covering.
Day 210 - Lei is a garland or wreath. More loosely defined, a lei is any series of objects strung together with the intent to be worn. The most popular concept of a lei in Hawaiian culture is a wreath of flowers draped around the neck presented upon arriving or leaving as a symbol of affection. This concept was popularized through tourism between the Hawaiian Islands and the continental United States in the 19th and 20th centuries. In modern times, a lei is usually given with a kiss - a custom which began in World War II. Traditionalists, however, give a lei by bowing slightly and raising it above the heart, allowing the recipient to take it, as raising the hands above another's head, or touching the face or head, is considered disrespectful.