Saturday, June 25, 2016

Feel the Passion (Floral Design with Max)

This one little flower has caught my attention again and again. So I had to find out more information about it. I first saw it when we were walking to the agriturismo winery, and occasionally after that, but we were always hustling around, so I never asked any questions. It wasn’t until our floral design class with “Max” that I learned more about this incredible plant. Max found it as one of the harder plants to use in floral arrangements but said that it is as pretty as an orchid. The common name of the flower that we can find in Italy is Passionflower, while its scientific name is Passiflora X belottii, and it belongs to the Passifloraceae family. There are about 500 different species within the genus as well. The flower is both perfect and complete. Perfect meaning that both male and female parts are present on the flower at the same time, and complete, meaning that the flower contains sepals, petals, stamens, and pistils.

While doing some research I found that most species are found in Southeast America, nine are found in the U.S, and others are spread over the rest of the world. Apparently, the plant was discovered by Spanish explorers in Peru around 1569. The flower got its name because they believed it symbolized Christ’s passion and indicated his approval for their journey. I also found that some think the flower got the name passionflower because its corona resembles the crown of thorns worn by Jesus during the crucifixion. The corona is the outgrowth and in this case are the white and purple hair-like pieces of the flower. It helps to draw pollinators into the center of the flower.

The flower does produce fruit that is an egg-shaped berry, either yellow or purple in color. However, not all are edible, only specific kinds. And there are many medicinal uses for the flower today including, but not limited to treating insomnia, generalized anxiety disorders, seizures, and asthma.

This one flower turned out to contain a lot more information than I had thought. Making me want to explore other species of plants to see what I can find.


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