Welcome to Flowers and Colors – The Secrets to Creating Moods through One of Natures Greatest Gifts – Flowers.My name is Heidi Richards Mooney, Owner of Eden Florist and I am delighted to share a journey through floral history, myth and symbolism with you.
Trailing ARBUTUS or Ground Laurel
Meaning: On Earth
The name arbutus is given to several evergreen plants, all belonging to the heath family and ranging in size from the tiniest plant to a tall tree, the most common of which is the trailing arbutus. These fragrant clusters of waxy white blossoms (often tinged with a touch of pink), are considered one of North America’s most attractive wild flowers. These dainty flowers have strong heart-shaped leaves and “hairy” brown stems. The arbutus grows best in sandy or rocky soils, especially in pine woods, where it creeps along the ground, almost hidden beneath dry needles and leaves. It is also the provincial flower of Nova Scotia. The name Trailing Arbutus reflects its similarity to the trees in the related genus Arbutus, while being much smaller and prostrate on the ground. the trailing arbutus is listed as an endangered species in some U.S. states.
In Indian folklore there is a beautiful story about about the lovely spring flower, the trailing arbutus.
The story goes like this: Each year when the winter spirit, Peboan, fell asleep, his discarded furs turned to icy leaves. Coming upon the icy leaves, one beautiful spring day, Segun, (known as the summer spirit) put the leaves in her hair and they immediately came to life. She was so enthralled, she planted them in the earth and breathed upon them. At the touch of her warm breath, pink flowers appeared, giving off the scent of spicy perfume. “When the children find these,” she said, “they will know that Segun has been here, and that Peboan has gone away.”
The trailing arbutus, is also known as the mayflower, because it was the first flower to greet the Pilgrims after their fearful winter. The trialing arbutus or Mayflwoer grows abundantly in the vicinity of Plymouth, John Greenleaf Whittier, poet and Quaker wrote a poem called The Mayflowers which you can read here: http://www.geocities.com/ljacoby_2000/mayflowerpoem.html
Spring makes the world a happy place
You see a smile on every face.
Flowers come out and birds arrive,
Oh, isn’t it grand to be alive?
and here’s a perfect story to illustrate the date:
On Being a Perfect Rosebud by Mira C. Coone
Consider a rosebud. It is one of the most wondrous of God’s creations. Its color can be rich and vibrant or a delicate pastel. It is subtly fragrant and a gentle touch reveals the softness and smoothness of its petals. It holds such promise and has the potential to bloom and burst forth in glorious beauty. We nurture it gently; feed and water it, protect it from extremes of wind and temperature and wait and watch, anticipating its unfolding and the fulfillment of its mission: to bring joy and awe to the beholder of its beauty.
How we are like rosebuds! We are not finished yet. We have not fully bloomed. We have not yet attained the glory and immortality that awaits us. We have shortcomings.
Do we fault or criticize the rosebud for not being a fully blossomed rose? Do we discard it and abandon it and fail to care for or nurture it because it isn’t complete? Do we deliberately pollute its water or subject it to conditions that will damage it? Do we withhold sunlight and water from it? Of course not!
Let me nurture my own emerging self with divine light and living water. Let me see myself through the eyes of the Gardener. Let me marvel at my own unfolding beauty. Let me appreciate the good qualities I have developed thus far and nurture the gifts and talents I have been given. Let me abstain from polluting myself with things or thoughts that would harm me.
May I wait patiently for the gentle unfolding of my full potential and appreciate the journey and the process. I may not yet be a perfect rose, but I am a perfect rosebud, and God loves me exactly as I am.
The Daffodil Principle byJaroldeen Asplund Edwards
Several times my daughter had telephoned to say, “Mother, you must come to see the daffodils before they are over.” I wanted to go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead “I will come next Tuesday”, I promised a little reluctantly on her third call.
Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy. Still, I had promised, and reluctantly I drove there. When I finally walked into Carolyn’s house I was welcomed by the joyful sounds of happy children. I delightedly hugged and greeted my grandchildren.
“Forget the daffodils, Carolyn! The road is invisible in these clouds and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and these children that I want to see badly enough to drive another inch!”
My daughter smiled calmly and said, “We drive in this all the time, Mother.”
“Well, you won’t get me back on the road until it clears, and then I’m heading for home!” I assured her.
“But first we’re going to see the daffodils. It’s just a few blocks,” Carolyn said. “I’ll drive. I’m used to this.”
“Carolyn,” I said sternly, “Please turn around.” “It’s all right, Mother, I promise. You will never forgive yourself if you miss this experience.”
After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel road and I saw a small church.
On the far side of the church, I saw a hand lettered sign with an arrow that read, ” Daffodil Garden .”
We got out of the car, each took a child’s hand, and I followed Carolyn down the path Then, as we turned a corner, I looked up and gasped. Before me lay the most glorious sight.
It looked as though someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it over the mountain peak and its surrounding slopes.
The flowers were planted in majestic, swirling patterns, great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, creamy white, lemon yellow, salmon pink, and saffron and butter yellow.
Each different-colored variety was planted in large groups so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue. There were five acres of flowers.
“Who did this?” I asked Carolyn. “Just one woman,” Carolyn answered. “She lives on the property. That’s her home.”
Carolyn pointed to a well-kept A-frame house, small and modestly sitting in the midst of all that glory. We walked up to the house.
On the patio, we saw a poster. “Answers to the Questions I Know You Are Asking”, was the headline.
The first answer was a simple one. “50,000 bulbs,” it read. The second answer was, “One at a time, by one woman. Two hands, two feet, and one brain.” The third answer was, “Began in 1958.”
For me, that moment was a life-changing experience.
I thought of this woman whom I had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun, one bulb at a time, to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure mountaintop.
Planting one bulb at a time, year after year, this unknown woman had forever changed the world in which she lived. One day at a time, she had created something of extraordinary magnificence, beauty, and inspiration. The principle her daffodil garden taught is one of the greatest principles of celebration.
That is, learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time–often just one baby-step at time–and learning to love the doing, learning to use the accumulation of time.
When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish magnificent things. We can change the world .
“It makes me sad in a way,” I admitted to Carolyn. “What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal thirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it ‘one bulb at a time’ through all those years? Just think what I might have been able to achieve!”
My daughter summed up the message of the day in her usual direct way. “Start tomorrow,” she said.
She was right. It’s so pointless to think of the lost hours of yesterdays. The way to make learning a lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask, “How can I put this to use today?”
Use the Daffodil Principle:
Until your car or home is paid off
Until you get a new car or home
Until your kids leave the house
Until you go back to school
Until you finish school
Until you clean the house
Until you organize the garage
Until you clean off your desk
Until you lose 10 lbs.
Until you gain 10 lbs.
Until you get married
Until you get a divorce
Until you have kids
Until the kids go to school
Until you retire
Until you die…
There is no better time than right now to Work Hard and be happy
Here’s a love story that first appeared in the 1928 edition of Modern Priscilla Magazine. Each coloredword corresponds to a flower . Enjoy the story !
Yellow was especially becoming to little Black-eyed Susan and so when Sweet William, that dashing Rambler invited her to a party atFour o’clock she gratefully accepted this proof of the Lad’s love and put on her yellow dress and yellowLady’s slippers in honor of the occasion. First, she carefully arranged herLadies tresses and then tiptoed softely out of the house so as not to Wake robin, her little brother. The mirror in the hall showed her that she was a Spring beauty, and that if her name has only been Marguerite she would have been a realEnglish daisy.
Her escort’sLondon pride leaped high as he saw her, though, not to be outdone, he had with careful Thriftpolished his ownBachelor’s buttons until they shone like a Goldenrod.
“Not one of theFair maids of Francecan equal your appearance!” he exclaimed proudly. “England forever!” A tinge ofMaiden pinkshowed on her face as he spoke with suchHonesty, for behind it she read aright hisBleeding heart.But she only answered him demurely, “I hope I shall not be aWallflower.”“Far from it,” he answered warmly. “I would scale Jacob’s ladder itself for a dance from you.” By that time they were at the party. “Johnny jump up exclaimed her escort to a boy at the door, ” and give her your seat!” “Never,” answered the youngCockscomb disagreeably, and when pressed, he gave her lover such a blow that he saw his Love-in-a-mist.But when he saw theBishop’s hatapproaching he ran away. “Oh, Billy, are you hurt?” she sobbed wildly. He opened his Eyebrightwith love and answered feebly, “Will you be mine?” “AskPoppy,”she answered shyly; while a Blush rose to her cheek. His Tulips answered in the old, old way and all we can do is wish them Speedwell.
Excepted from Paulo Coelho’s book “Like The Flowing River
In ancient China, around the year 250BCE, a certain prince of the region of Thing-Zda was about to be crowned emperor; however, according to the law, he first had to get married.Since this meant choosing the future empress, the prince needed to find a young woman whom he could trust absolutely. On the advice of a wise man, he decided to summon all the young women of the region in order to find the most worthy candidate.
An old lady, who had served in the palace for many years, heard about the preparations for this gathering and felt sad, because her daughter nurtured a secret love for the prince.
When the old lady got home, she told her daughter and was horrified to learn that her daughter intended going to the meeting. The old lady was desperate.
‘But daughter, what on earth will you do there? All the richest and most beautiful girls from the court will be present. It’s a ridiculous idea. I know you must be suffering, but don’t turn that suffering into madness.’
And the daughter replied: ‘My dear mother, I am not suffering and I certainly haven’t gone mad. I know that I won’t be chosen, but it’s my one chance to spend at least a few moments close to the prince, and that makes me happy, even though I know that a quite different fate awaits me.’
That night, when the young women reached the palace, all the most beautiful girls were indeed there, wearing the most beautiful clothes and the most beautiful jewellery, and prepared to do anything to seize the opportunity on offer.
Surrounded by the members of his court, the prince announced a challenge.
‘I will give each of you a seed. In six month’s time, the young woman who brings me the loveliest flower will be the future empress of China.’
The girl took her seed and planted it in a pot, and since she was not very skilled in the art of gardening, she prepared the soil with great patience and tenderness, for she believed that if the flowers grew as large as her love, then she need not worry about the results.
Three months passed and no shoots had appeared. The young woman tried everything; she consulted farm labourers and peasants, who showed her the most varied methods of cultivation, but all to no avail. Each day she felt that her dream was farther away, although her love was as alive as ever.
At last, the six months passed and still nothing had grown in her pot. Even though she had nothing to show, she knew how much effort and dedication she put in during that time, so she told her mother that she would go back to the palace on the agreed date and at the agreed time. Inside she knew this would be her last meeting with her true love, and she would not have missed it for the world.
The day of the audience arrived. The girl appeared with her plantless pot, and saw that all the other candidates had achieved wonderful results: each girl bore a flower lovelier than the last, in the most varied forms and colours.
Finally, the longed-for moment came. The prince entered and he studied each of the candidates with great care and attention. Having inspected them all, he announced that he has chosen the servant’s daughter to become his new wife.
All the other girls began to protest, saying that he had chosen the only one of them who had not managed to grow any plant at all.
Then the prince calmly explained the reasoning behind the challenge: ‘This young woman was the only one who cultivated the flower that made her worthy of becoming the empress: the flower of honesty. You see, all the seeds I handed out were sterile, and nothing could ever have grown from them.’
(Thanks to Maria Sipka for sharing this with the Women’s Global Business Network on Xing)
In Dreams, Love and Sunflowers by Julie Jordan Scott
My six-year-old daughter Emma is the personification of passion in a compact, package. She and I planted a “Sunflower Farm” two years ago in our front and back yard. Sixteen seeds, sixteen incredible flowers became alive in our yard.
We became fascinated in the study of these plants themselves. Sunflowers are filled with vitality unlike any thing else I have ever known. Big sister Katherine and I gleaned 2112 seeds from a single sunflower blossom.This fact burrowed into my being, planting its possibility in my veins.
(Excerpted from “Phyllis Field Friends Flower Stories” by Lenore E. Mulets)
One morning, in the golden days of the early world, an angel sat just outside the gates of Paradise, and wept. “Why do you weep?” gently asked one who passed that way. “Surely the world is lovely, and Paradise is so near!” “Alas!” said the angel, “I must wait long before I may enter Paradise.”
“Why,” said the other, “it seems but a step to the gates. Why must you wait?”
“Look,” said the angel, pointing earthward. The other looked and saw a dainty blue-eyed maiden stooped over the grass by a brookside. “Do you see those tiny blue flowers which she is planting?” whispered the angel. “They are as dainty as she is herself. They are blue as her own eyes. They have hearts of gold as true as her own true heart.”“Why, then, do you weep?” asked the other.“Ah,” said the angel, “I love the gentle maiden, and with her I would have entered Paradise.
But, lo, when we came to the very gates we were not allowed to enter.”
“Tell me more,” said the other.“A task was given to this earth maiden,” said the angel. “In every corner of the world must she plant this tiny blue flower. I may not enter the gates of Paradise without her. Thus it is that I sit outside and weep.”“Nay, nay,” said the other. “weep not. There is a better way than that.”Then he whispered in the angel’s ear.
And the angel flew to earth where the maiden stooped over her dainty blue flowers. He came to assist her in her task. Hand in hand the angel and the beautiful maiden wandered over the land. In every corner of the earth they planted the blue forget-me-nots. Then one day, when the task was done, they sat together beside the stream and wove wreaths of forget-me-nots.
And with garlands of their own flowers about them, the angel gathered the beautiful maiden in his arms and carried her with him to the gates of Paradise. The gates swung wide at their coming, and ever after the angel and the maiden whom he loved wandered mid fields of happiness in the land of Paradise.