10 Amazing And Interesting Facts About Flowers
Perhaps my favourite thing about the summer is flowers. I love them. Colourful, sweet-smelling and so pretty to look at, they remind me that winter is finally over and the warmth is here.
A flower gently swaying in the summer breeze always gets my heart beating, and the great thing is that flowers are literally everywhere. They grow by the side of the road, in the countryside, in your garden … they also hang in baskets outside homes, or sit in your mom’s vase. Wherever they are, they always put a smile on our faces.
You might think you know everything there is to know about flowers. They shoot up tall, they look gorgeous, and they smell nice. What else is there to know? But it turns out that there is more than meets the eye to these picturesque plants. Let’s take a look at 10 amazing and interesting facts about flowers.
Tulips Were Once More Valuable Than Gold
Whenever you think of the Netherlands, you probably think of clogs, Van Gogh – and tulips.
Yup, Holland is famous for its tulips. But although rows and rows of these flowers can be seen in Dutch countrysides today and can be bought for just a few euros from a garden centre, there was a time when the tulip was a bit more precious. In 17th century Netherlands, the tulip was more valuable than gold.
Back in those days, the pretty bulbs symbolised immortality, as well as love and life itself. In the 1630’s, tulips were so in demand that “tulip mania” gripped Europe so much that tulips actually became a form of currency!
You didn’t get much bang for your buck, though, as tulips don’t really live longer than seven days.
Dandelion Coffee Is A Thing
The next time you go to Starbucks, ask for a dandelion coffee and see what kind of reaction you get. Because unbeknownst to many of us, dandelion coffee is actually a thing. And the best thing? It contains zero caffeine.
While a dandelion’s petals are used to make wine, its roots are roasted to make dandelion coffee. Mmmm.
A Carnation Can Reveal Your Fate
In Korea, three carnations are placed in a young girls’ hair to tell her fortune.
If the bottom carnation dies first, it means the girl will lead a life of strife and hardship. Her whole life will be a stinker.
If the middle one does before any others, her life will get off to a bad start – but improve.
If the top carnation dies first, she will have a good life first – and then struggle.
The general gist is that there will be struggles at some point. Hmmm we don’t believe it though, you are the captain of your ship.
The Gas Plant Is HOT
Ever hard of the Gas Plant? Perhaps you know it by its more common name, the Burning Bush. Because, yup, the biblical burning bush is actually very real.
Not only is it real, but it also burns! According to Wikipedia:
“In the summer months, the whole plant is covered with a kind of flammable substance, which is gluey to the touch, and has a very fragrant, lemony aroma; but if it takes fire, it goes off with a flash all over the plant. The name “burning bush” derives from the volatile oils produced by the plant, which can catch fire readily in hot weather, leading to comparisons with the burning bush of the Bible, including the suggestion that this is the plant involved there. The daughter of Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus is said to have ignited the air once, at the end of a particularly hot, windless summer day, above Dictamnus plants, using a simple matchstick.”
The Angelica Plant Was Used To Cure The Plague
Okay, we know that even today plants are used for medicinal purpose. The stinging nettle can remedy stomach aches, for example. But it’s quite a crazy thought to believe that a flower was actually once used to treat something as devastating as the bubonic plague.
The angelica plant was used in medieval Europe to cure pretty much everything, from a stomach ache to the plague. We’re not sure how effective it actually was at curing the Black Death, but today it is drank as a herbal tea that is known for its ability to reduce symptoms of heartburn and indigestion.
Sunflowers Kill Poison
Unfortunately, earth’s soil contains nasty elements, such as lead, arsenic and uranium. When consumed in enough quantities, they can kill a human being.
Sunflowers help to remove these poisonous elements from our soil. After the Chernobyl disaster, sunflowers were employed to help remove strontium-90 and cesium-137 from a pond.
Bamboo Is Fantastic For The Environment
When I was a kid, we lived near a stream where stalks of bamboo were literally everywhere. They shot up into the sky like towers, and they were so strong and tough that it was hard to chop them down. As kids, we didn’t like bamboo!
But it turns out that bamboo works wonders for our environment, and is probably doing more to reduce greenhouse gases than the rest of us! This is because bamboo emits around 28% oxygen into the atmosphere while absorbing more CO2 than any other plant. For these reasons, bamboo cleanses the air.
Daisies Can Be Pests
Although the petite and rather lovely daisy symbioses innocence, they can become pests if left to their own devices. They might look sweet and innocent, but if they let daisies get out of control, they can become a serious weed. It’s hard to believe that it’s true, but daises actually thrive in harsh conditions. Moreover, they are resistant to pesticides and most bugs.
There is certainly more than meets the eye here!
The Lotus Was A Symbol Of Eternal Life
Many people would love to live forever. The ancient Egyptians were so preoccupied with the idea of living forever that they viewed the beautiful lotus flower as a symbol of eternal life.
Flowers are often used to symbolise something, and the lotus plant also symbolises resurrection, grace, serenity, purity and beauty for different cultures.
Lilies Can Kill Cats
Aww, aren’t lilies just utterly gorgeous? So sweet and innocent-looking.
Unfortunately, while lilies beautify your home, they can actually kill your cat if it accidentally decides to take a bite. This thanks to their high content of calcium oxalate, a poison which is also dangerous to humans.
Do you know other interesting facts about flowers?