As part of our 125th Anniversary celebration at Stein Your Florist Co. we are sharing a year of floral education, November 1, 2012 thru October 31, 2013. Each day we will post something new on our Facebook page to share our knowledge of our favorite things, flowers and plants and we'll be updating our blog every 5 days or so. No need for pencils and notebooks, just sharing some simple lessons in floristry.
Day 216 - The name cornflower comes from the fact the flowers grow abundantly in corn fields in Europe and the U.S. They are edible and have a sweet, cucumber-like taste and can be used to make tea. They have been used in traditional herbal medicine as an anti-inflammatory.
Day 217 - Dianthus barbatus (sweet william) is a species of Dianthus native to southern Europe and parts of Asia which has become a popular ornamental garden plant. It is an herbaceous biennial or short-lived perennial plant growing to 30–75 cm tall, with flowers in a dense cluster of up to 30 at the top of the stems. Each flower is 2–3 cm diameter with five petals displaying serrated edges. Wild plants produce red flowers with a white base, but colours in cultivars range from white, pink, red, and purple or with variegated patterns.
Day 218 - Achillea millefolium, known commonly as yarrow, is a flowering plant in the family Asteraceae. It is native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere in Asia, Europe, and North America. In New Mexico and southern Colorado, it is called plumajillo (Spanish for 'little feather') from its leaf shape and texture. In antiquity, yarrow was known as herbal militaris, for its use in staunching the flow of blood from wounds. Other common names for this species include gordaldo, nosebleed plant, old man's pepper, devil's nettle, sanguinary, milfoil, soldier's woundwort, thousand-leaf, and thousand-seal.
Day 219 - The exact origin of Sweet William's English common name is unknown, but first appears in 1596 in botanist John Gerard's garden catalog. The flowers are edible and may have medicinal properties. Sweet william attracts bees, birds, and butterflies.
Day 220 - Silene is a genus of flowering plants in the family Caryophyllaceae. Common names include "campion" (shared with the related genus Lychnis) and "catchfly". Silene undulata is used by the Xhosa tribe in Africa as an oneirogenic agent. Reputedly, a small amount of the root bark of this species is pulverised with water to produce a white froth. This froth is then sucked off and swallowed. The user's dreams for the following several nights are said to be more vivid and memorable than usual, although no effects are felt while awake.