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Flower Blog Archive - February 2007

The Flower Expert welcomes the flower enthusiasts to the special feature - Flower Blogs where the flower lovers can share the knowledge about flowers and flower related topics with the flower admiring community world-wide.

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Importance of Roses in Roman Period

The Rose is, according to fossil evidence, 35 million years old. In nature, the genus Rosa has some 150 species spread throughout the Northern Hemisphere, from Alaska to Mexico and including northern Africa.

Garden cultivation of roses began some 5,000 years ago, probably in China. During the Roman period, roses were grown extensively in the Middle East. They were used as confetti at celebrations, for medicinal purposes, and as a source of perfume. Roman nobility established large public rose gardens in the south of Rome. After the fall of the Roman Empire, the popularity of roses seemed to rise and fall depending on gardening trends of the time.

During the fifteenth century, the rose was used as a symbol for the factions fighting to control England. The white rose symbolized York, and the red rose symbolized Lancaster, as a result, the conflict became known as the War of the Roses.

Roses were in such high demand during the seventeenth century that royalty considered roses or rose water as legal tender, and they were often used as barter and for payments. Napoleon's wife Josephine established an extensive collection of roses at Chateau de Malmaison, an estate seven miles west of Paris in the 1800s. This garden became the setting for Pierre Joseph Redoute's work as a botanical illustrator. In 1824, he completed his watercolor collection "Les Rose," which is still considered one of the finest records of botanical illustration...Read More

For more inforamtion about The History of Roses, visit our page History of Roses.

Pictures of Flowering Shrubs

Many flowering shrubs attract birds with their berries and provide brilliant fall foliage. But flowering shrubs are perhaps at their best when blooming, during which time they can stand alone as specimens and serve as focal points in a landscape design. It is the splendor of their blooms that I focus on in these pictures of flowering shrubs. The flowering shrubs I have chosen for this photo gallery run the gamut from early-spring bloomers to those that flower in late summer.

Flowers in Spring

Spring ! Spring is that time of the year when Mother nature's prettiest creations take over to embellish the landscapes and add vibrancy not only to the whole world but also to the hearts.

Spring is especially colorful for the range of flowers it showcases-from the dancing daffodils to the lovely lilies and lavenders, Spring is truly the season of a floral invasion on earth ! And what can be a better way to express your feelings if not through these wonderful Spring flowers ?

When your words fall short, try opening your heart out to your dear ones with the lavender, purple, pink or white Heathers, or may be the red or pink Bouvardias can do the magic this Spring. Not to forget the Daisies, which has an elegance of its own. And then again, you can send those bright red Azaleas or Cyclamen to your loved ones to make a deep and ever-lasting impression in their hearts, which is never to be forgotten.

As the tradition goes, all churches are beautifully decorated with white Lilies on Easter. Hydrangea, another Spring flower, is also an Easter-time favorite and with its bright shades, it's quite a treat to the eyes !...Read More..

For more information about spring flowers, visit our page Spring Flowers.

Toxicity increasing in the Flower Business

The toxicity among the roses is seen at the waterlogged savannah surrounding the capital of Colombia, the world's second-largest cut-flower producer, after the Netherlands. It produces upto 62 percent of all flowers sold in the United States.

There are 110,000 employees in the place and many of them single mothers, and annual exports are upto $1 billion. The flower industry provides an important alternative to growing coca, the source of cocaine. But these economic gains come at a cost to workers' health and Colombia's environment, consumer advocates say.

36 percent of the toxic chemicals applied by Florverde farms in 2005 were listed as extremely or highly toxic by the World Health Organization.

Growers are facing stiff competition from emerging flower industries in Africa and China apply pesticides and fungicides. Their usage is elevating the rates of cancer and neurological disorders and other problems.

But the Producers are interested in going for organic, especially when they are given the high costs of pesticides...Read More

Indoor Plant Benefits

Those plants in your office or home are not only decorative, but NASA scientists are finding them to be surprisingly useful in absorbing potentially harmful gases and cleaning the air inside modern buildings.

There are some indoor plants which help in removing Formaldehyde, Benzene, and Carbon Monoxide from indoor air, which are the main pollutants.

Formaldehyde is a ubiquitous chemical found in virtually all indoor environments. Formaldehyde irritates the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose and throat. It is also a highly reactive chemical which combines with protein and can cause allergic contact dermatitis. The most widely reported symptoms from exposure to high levels of this chemical include irritation of the eyes and headaches.

NASA research has consistently shown that living, green and flowering plants can remove several toxic chemicals from the air in building interiors. You can use indoor plants in your home or office to improve the quality of the air to make it a more pleasant place to live and work - where people feel better, perform better, any enjoy life more...Read More

Flowers on Valentine's Day, definitely. He needs something more!!

There is a part of me that wants to sit at home quietly, away from my office, where I sit staring at the computer screen or sitting in endless meetings. For the romantic homebody self of mine , what appeals as a great Valentine's Day gift is a delicious dinner cooked at home. That way my husband would feel a lot happy. He is someone who feels bad about the very mechanical way in which life goes. Stop for a while, light the candles and have your dinner at your own pace, thats his philosophy of life. After a couple of decades of my association with him, mine too.

Don't overlook flowers, though! Flowers are essential for Valentine's Day. In my opinion, there are some traditions that should be maintained. Using flowers is one such. There is something very beautiful and natural about flowers. Now it might be very easy for you to guess what I am going to give my husband on the coming Valentine's Day. A bunch of roses, a home cooked dinner, and I am also thinking of gifting him with a gift pack that includes a hair gel and a shave cream. (Who else would take care of his appearance but me?)

My Valentine's Day wishlist

This year I take Valentine's Day seriously. I am looking forward to getting a number of gifts from my boyfriend.

I like to get a collection of gift items. While browsing, I came across a nice poem written by Christopher Marlowe. Although it was writen centuries ago, it had certain timelessness about it. Although a bit mushy, it takes you to a different world where knights-in-shining-armors went great lengths to satisfy the wishes of the lovely ladies they courted.

I wish to get red wine and white wine, both. Some beer would do good too. Oh no, it is going to be like this - He'll give me wine and I'll give him beer. Then the usual chocolate and flowers. I also would be happy to get some food - steak, to be precise. A pack of my favorite coffee would be very thoughtful of him.

To sum it up, here is the list: red and white wine, chocolates, flowers, coffee, steak, and necessarily, a romantic poem.

Two unforgettable Valentine's Day memories

My first Valentine's Day memories go back to my childhood. When I was 7 years old, there was this cute, blond-haired boy in school who was my partner in a dance class. He gave me some chocolates for Valentine's Day when we were in the second grade. That is when I first realized that Valentine's Day had something to do with friendship with boys.

Another Valentine's Day that stands out is because it was a great pick-me-upper. I was quite upset because I had lost my job and I had lost one of my favorite aunts. My boyfriend came in the evening with Swiss chocolates in a heart-shaped box, a single red rose and a bunch of red, white, and pink gerbera daisies. The effect these had on me was tremendous.

Pressed Flower Art

Pressed flower art became popular in Victorian times. The Japanese use pressed plants and colorful papers to create Oshibana Art. With a creative approach to the use of materials, a leaf becomes a tree and petals form mountains. With meticulous attention to detail each leaf and flower is glued onto a precise location.

Preserving flowers dates back to earliest recorded history. The bones of a pre historic man discovered in the Middle East was found with a mantle of delicate wild flowers. The pollen grains that remain indicated specific flowers that were used.

During ancient times people used to freshen or liven their rooms with fresh sweet smelling flowers. The art of extracting oil to create perfumes was acquired later. These attars are in great demand today, extracted from various oils and mixed with others to get wonderful smelling perfumes. These attars are made from some aromatic flowers...Read More

The Importance of the Lotus Flower in Buddhism

Flowers are important objects of offering both in monasteries and in temples. The importance of flowers has been lauded in many religious occasions. Hinduism has even explained the importance of many flowers associated with particular gods. The lotus flower stands apart in its enormous value to both Hinduism and Buddhism. The palhi Buddhavamsa shows the existence of four past Buddhas explaining the Buddha Dipamkara to be the first one.

However Mahayana Buddhism reveals the number of past Buddhas to be more than in other Buddhist traditions. The importance of the lotus flower is associated with the origin of the Kathmandu valley also, which was once a big lake. Vipashvi, one of the human Buddhas came to the Kathmandu valley from Bandhumati (India) for meditation in the northern hill of the lake named today as Nagarjun. While he was in deep meditation, he was divinely inspired to sow the lotus flower seed in the lake from his meditating hill. He carried out the divine order in the full moon day of March-April. After six months, a lotus flower bloomed and a light from the divine was inserted into it again on another full moon night. The Adi Buddha in the form of flame was self-created which is Swayambhu today.

Roses again? I'm leaving you...and she did!

Folks, think out of the box more often.

In other words, stop gifting your loves with roses!Couple Screaming

if you can think out of the box, you will land the right jobs, take the right investment decisions, and your significant other will be with you longer.

A guy and his girlfriend quarrel big time. They yell and scream. Murder threats are uttered!

A few days later comes Valentine's Day. The guy approaches the girl with a bunch of roses. Still in an extremely annoyed mood, she throws the bunch at him. Later during a stroll with her friend, she sees lilies in the garden and wonders aloud as to why guys always gift roses and not something as natural as a handpicked lily from the garden.

Trust me - the above scene from a Teen movie is NOT too bizarre to be true! I had a similar experience back in college.

My first ever serious relationship. As an expressive lover, I wrote poems for my girlfriend regularly. So regularly that a few weeks after we started dating, she would stretch her palm out toward me for that sheet of note book paper, with a bored expression. For two years, I gifted her with red roses and chocolates on Valentine's Day. I took her to restaurants during weekends - Italian, Chinese, Korean, Indian, Greek, you name it. As I had read in books, I always paid the bill when I took her out.

This was why it was such a shock for me when she left me. I played the whole episode in my mind a hundred times over and still couldn't figure out why she did that to me.

Time went by and I fell in love with a really wonderful woman and eventually married her. Still the questions from my first serious relationship lingered. What exactly had gone wrong?

Years later, my wife told me something that opened my eyes. She told me that I was always very rigid about the way I did things. My nature is that once I get into a routine, I stick to it religiously. To add to it, I always felt that bookish answers were the correct ones. Yes, she had hit the nail on the head. I realized, although a little late, that roses were partly responsible for my failures.

To my mind, roses symbolize all those run-of-the-mill things that a lot of people unquestioningly accept as truth.

Roses, in real life and in movies, cause girlfriends to get angry and leave.

As part of my thinking-out-of-the-box exercise, I started taking a different way home. Started listening to new types of music. Having learned from my mistake, I even asked the neighborhood teenager to gift his girlfriend with something other than roses.

The latest I heard from him was that my advice was useful.

British pensioners choose web surfing over gardening

..but not by much....

According to recent survey by insurance company AXA, 41% of retired Brits prefer web surfing (primarily Email, chatting and search) compared to 39% with Gardening as their favorite pastime.

My little hunt for Valentine's Day rose and flower bouquets

mixed-rose-bouquet.jpgI was browsing through the web looking for some nice flower arrangements as a Valentine's Day gift. Selecting the right kind of bouquet is quite a formidable task, given the millions of arrangements of flowers you come across on Internet. Let me share with you some information about a few bunches I stumbled upon while going through some of the websites that deal with flowers.

Growerflowers.com presents a splendidly beautiful bouquet. It has four roses placed at a higher level over a bed of white flowers (they're called pompons,i learned)and pink carnations. The combination of three different types of flowers makes it visually very pleasing.

There is another bunch that impressed me quite a lot. Again from growerflowers, this was a combination of 12 red and 12 white roses. You know what, this arrangement of flowers would make a terrific Valentine's gift. The leaves and the long stems, both retained with the flowers, capture to some extent, the flowers' natural setting. At the same breath, let me share this too with you - a bunch of yellow, pink, and orange roses. Six of the stems are spray roses and the the remaining six are tea roses of various colors.

There is this bouquet made from various types of roses, which was up for display on pickupflowers.com. This bouquet has flowers whose colors range from pure white through passionate red. Well, those adjectives are the ideas associated with those colors, you see.. very lovely looking bouquet.

Bleeding Hearts

Don't be content simply with buying cut roses for your Valentine. Put in an order for a bleeding heart plant, too! He/she can plant it in the spring and enjoy its heart-shaped blooms for years to come. Bleeding hearts: truly one of nature's most romantic plants!

Rose Meanings

Before you buy your Valentine roses, learn about a time-honored system for determining rose meanings. This system allows you to match rose color to the "message" you intend to send to the recipient.

Garden Shrubs

Tireless workhorses in our landscapes, garden shrubs deserve all the attention we lavish upon them. In the Northern Hemisphere, it will soon be time once again to enjoy the color display put on by the flowering shrubs.

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