Valentine.gr/The Greek Flowers Portal
 

flaglogo-gr.bmp (910 bytes)  

Unitedkingdom_sm.gif (528 bytes)  

Loading

Welcome To The Greek Flowers Portal

Home   Info   Contact

   

Join Valentine mailing list!
Enter your email address below,
then click the 'Join List' button:



 
ADVERTISEMENT...

 

  LINK OF THE MONTH

Valentine.gr  

November 2005

Did you know that the Scientificname of the plant Ornithogalum has Greek origin meaning "Bird's Milk" and this term is synonymous with a "wondrous thing"?

Star of Bethlehem - Ornithogalum umbellatum

Star of Bethlehem - (Ornithogalum)

Star of Bethlehem, (Ornithogalum umbellatum) is a low, spring-blooming bulbous plant of the family Liliaceae (lily family), native to the Mediterranean region but naturalized in North America and cultivated in gardens. The plant has rather stiff, grasslike leaves and a cluster of white star-shaped flowers marked on the back with green. It spreads easily and tends to become weedy. Although the fresh plant is poisonous, the bulbs have been prepared and used as food in the Old World. The flower has been associated with the star that guided the Wise Men to the manger (Star of Bethlehem).

Ornithogalum umbellatum is an herbaceous plant that grows from bulbs that are renewed each year. The bulbs are ovoid in shape and measure (0.5-1.5 in.) in length. The coat of the bulb is membranous. The leaves are narrow and linear, measuring 10-30 cm (4-12 in.) long and 2-5 mm (0.1-0.2 in.) wide. The leaves form a tuft from which the scape emerges. The white, star-shaped flowers are borne on a scape that can grow up to 30 cm (1 ft.) in height, but is usually shorter. The umbel-like raceme contains 3-10 flowers. Each flower has 6 petals and measures 1.5-2 cm (0.5-0.75 in.) in diameter. The outside of the flower is green and white margined. The flowers appear on the plant from May to June. The capsules of this plant are subglobose in shape and 3-sided. Each locule contains many black seeds. Ornithogalum umbellatum disperses itself by means of its bulbs, which can be dispersed by water.

Ornithogalum umbellatum is native to North Africa as well as Europe. In Europe, it is found from Portugal and Spain in the west, south to Italy and Greece, north to parts of France and east to Turkey.

Since this plant is still being used horticulturally, it is likely to continue spreading beyond its current range. Ornithogalum umbellatum is poisonous if not lethal to livestock and should be prevented from spreading into agricultural situations. Ornithogalum umbellatum produces new bulbs each year, and these bulbs are readily moved downstream to new localities. It has the ability to form locally dense stands along the edges of the rivers and streams, allowing it to crowd out native riparian plants.

Because it is toxic, Ornithogalum is not much browsed by wild animals, & all parts of the plant should be regarded as poisonous to people & livestock. However, the bulbs are edible if they are either well-cooked, or dried & powdered. They are sometimes eaten raw, but the possible dangers make that less than wise. According to S. Facciola's Cornucopia: A Source Book of Edible Plants the blossoms have been used as an ingredient in baked bread & pastries.

Extracts are used by herbalists for treatment of fearfulness, suicidal depression, or grief, as well as for ulcers, flatulence, & such serious diseases as cancer.

Star of Bethlehem is one of the five flowers in the rescue remedy. This essence is a restorative remedy for calming anyone who has experienced shock or trauma. It has a balancing energy that is helpful in taking while undergoing counseling or therapeutic healing periods. Aids the grief process.

The name Star of Bethlehem is mainly in allusion to the six-pointed blooms, but may also have come about because it was used as a famine food by medieval pilgrims to the Holy Land & was to be found growing all around Bethelehem, perhaps planted there by the Christian pilgrims. It was known in Europe in an earlier time as Dog's Onion, but by the 15th Century it became associated with pilgrims & so came to be called Star-of-Bethelehem.

By a curious coincidence, the Greek name which is preserved in the modern Scientific genus name was "Bird's Milk," & is called Bird's Milk in several languages. The term Bird's Milk is synonymous with "a wondrous thing," but originally alluded to an ancient belief that doves were of a single sex (females) & from the large breasts of the dove they were able to give milk, mammal-like, to their young. The Dove was throughout the mid & near east believed once to have been a Star that descended to the world as a benefactor to humanity, so that both the Star & the Dove symbolized such goddesses as Ishtar, Aphrodite, & Cybele. When in Aristophanes' Lysistrata Pithetaerus says, " I will make you a king and will feed you on bird's milk & honey," he speaks of milk of a Goddess-bird that dwells upon Olympus.

Source:
http://www.bartleby.com/65/st/starBeth.html
http://webapps.lib.uconn.edu/ipane/browsing.cfm?descriptionid=82
http://www.paghat.com/sleepydick.html

 

  LINK OF THE MONTH

 

Champak - Magnolia champaca
Hookerís lips - Psychotria elata
Suicide Tree - Cerbera odollam
Konjac - Amorphophallus konjac
Madagascar ocotillo - Alluaudia procera
Water Banana - Typhonodorum lindleyanum
Salak - Salacca zalacca
Natal Plum - Carissa macrocarpa
Ashanti blood - Mussaenda erythrophylla
Duranta - Duranta erecta
Maqui - Aristotelia chilensis
Manuka - New Zealand Tea Tree - Leptospermum scoparium
Suriname cherry - Eugenia uniflora
Australian Finger Lime - Citrus australasica
Sacred Flower of the Incas - Cantua buxifolia
Job's tears - Coix Lacryma-jobi
Velvet Bean - Mucuna pruriens
Java Apple - Syzygium samarangense
Screwpine - Pandanus utilis
Marimo - Aegagropila linnaei
Achocha/Caigua - Inca cucumber - Cyclanthera pedata
Rubber Tree - Hevea brasiliensis
Sugar cane - Saccharum officinarum
Sacha inchi - Plukenetia volubilis
Coffea - Coffee Tree - Coffea arabica
Liquorice - Licorice - Glycyrrhiza glabra
Mullein -Verbascum thapsus
Iceplant - Mesembryanthemum crystallinum
Chayote - Sechium edule
Roselle - Hibiscus sabdariffa
Black Goji - Lycium ruthenicum Murray
Rose Cactus - Pereskia grandifolia
Durian - Durio zibethinus
Jackfruit tree - Artocarpus heterophyllus
Cassabanana - Sicana odorifera
Chilean myrtle - Arrayan - Luma apiculata
Kurrajong - Brachychiton populneus
Rice-paper Plant -Tetrapanax papyrifer
Shell Ginger - Alpinia zerumbet
Harlequin Glorybower - Clerodendrum trichotomum
Coco de Mer - Lodoicea maldivica
Silver Tree - Leucadendron argenteum
Buffaloberry - Shepherdia argentea
Himalayan Honeysuckle - Leycesteria formosa
Raisin Tree - Hovenia dulcis
Borojo - Alibertia patinoi - Borojoa patinoi
Butterfly Pea - Clitoria ternatea
Honey Flower - Melianthus major
Ombu - Phytolacca dioica
Lion's Ear - Wild Dagga - Leonotis leonurus
Moringa - Miracle Tree - Moringa oleifera
Sea Daffodil - Pancratium maritimum
Spear Lily - Gymea - Doryanthes
Camphor tree - Cinnamomum camphora
Waterwheel - Aldrovanda vesiculosa
Flowering rush - Butomus umbellatus
Four o'clock - Marvel of Peru - Mirabilis jalapa
Dead Manís Fingers - Decaisnea
Bitter Melon - Momordica charantia
Shoapnuts Tree - Shoapberry - Sapindus
Acerola - Malpighia
Monkey Ladder - Sea Heart - Entada gigas
Cherimoya - Annona cherimola
Caper - Capparis spinosa
Lithops - Living Stones
Chaste Tree - Vitex agnus-castus
Chilean Lantern Tree - Crinodendron hookerianum
Parrot's Beak - Lotus berthelotii
Water Hyacinth - Eichhornia crassipes
Guaiac Tree - Guaiacum officinale - Lignum-vitae
Mickey Mouse bush - Ochna serrulata
Cow's Udder - Solanum mammosum
Miracle fruit - Synsepalum dulcificum
Akebia - Akebia quinata
Chilean Firebush - Embothrium coccineum
Caesalpinia - Caesalpinia pulcherrima
Welwitschia - Welwitschia mirabilis
Saguaro - Carnegiea gigantea
Schisandra - Schisandra chinensis
Monarda - Bee balm - Bergamot
Tamarind - Tamarindus indica
Neomarica - Walking Iris
Red hot poker - Kniphofia - Tritoma
Sikkim rhubarb - Rheum nobile
Reseda - Mignonette
Paulownia - Paulownia tomentosa
Belamcanda chinensis - Leopard lily
Blue Poppy - Meconopsis
Cannonball Tree - Couroupita guianensis
Tamarillo - Cyphomandra betacea
Goji - Wolfberry - Lycium barbarum
Vanilla - Vanilla Planifolia
Stevia - Stevia rebaudiana
Pachypodium
Physalis
Ceropegia
Sturt pea - Swainsona formosa
Clematis
Grevillea
Jade vine - Strongylodon macrobotrys
Sansevieria - Snake Plant
Trochetia
Yareta - Azorella compacta
African tulip tree - Spathodea campanulata
Angel's Trumpets - Brugmansia
Achiote - Annato - Bixa orellana
Sausage Tree - Kigelia pinnata
Castor Oil Plant - Ricinus communis
Firewheel Tree - Stenocarpus sinuatus
Bat Flower - Tacca
Snake gourd - Trichosanthes cucumerina
Sedum
Hydnora - Hydnora africana
Pickerel Weed - Pontederia
Argan - Argania spinosa
Astilbe - False Goats Beard
Feijoa - Pineapple Guava - Acca sellowiana
Aquilegia - Columbine
Cassiope
Sweet Box - Sarcococca
Christmas Cactus - Schlumbergera
Foxtail Lily - Eremurus
Rue - Ruta graveolens
Pittosporum
Ylang-Ylang - Cananga odorata
Rose of Jericho - Anastatica hierochuntica
Gunnera
Waterlily - Nymphaea
Calico Flower - Aristolochia
Daylily - Hemerocallis
Contorted hazel - Corylus avellana Contorta
Torch Ginger - Etlingera elatior
Mistletoe - Viscum album
Devil´s claw - Harpagophytum procumbens
Teasel - Dipsacus
Pampas grass - Gynerium argenteum - Cortaderia Selloanna
Purple coneflower - Echinacea purpurea
Coral Tree - Erythrina crista-galli
Portulaca
Lobelia
Field Poppy - Papaver Rhoeas
Narcissus - Daffodil
Mimosa pudica - Sensitive Plant
Boxwood - Buxus sempervirens
Firethorn - Pyracantha
Star of Bethlehem - Ornithogalum
Cosmos
Muscari - Grape Hyacinth
Papyrus - Cyperus papyrus
Zinnia
Honeysuckle - Lonicera
Passiflora - Passion Flower
Calendula - Marigold
Lupine - Lupinus
Canna - Indian Shot
Witch Hazel - Hamamelis
Oak - Quercus
Brunsvigia - Candelabra Flower
Tree peony - Paeonia suffruticosa
Olive - Olea europaea
Cornflower - Centaurea cyanus
Desert rose - Adenium obesum
Oleander - Nerium Oleander
Abutilon
Sweet Pea - Lathyrus odoratus
Chaenomeles - Flowering Quince
Forsythia
Amaryllis - Hippeastrum
Butchers broom - Ruscus aculeatus
Bay Laurel - Laurus nobilis
Gloriosa
Bamboo
Gladiolus
Artichoke - Cynara scolymus
Clivia - Clivia Miniata
Dipladenia - Dipladenia sanderii
Date palm - Phoenix dactylifera
Peach - Prunus persica
Almond - Prunus amygdalus
Willow - Salix
Pomegranate - Punica granatum
Protea cynaroides
Colchicum autumnale
Bird of Paradise - Strelitzia reginae
Cardon - Pachycereus pringlei
Wolffia arrhiza
Puya raimondii
Fuchsia
Asphodelus - Asphodel
Primula - Primerose
Dicentra spectabilis - Bleeding Heart
Edelweiss - Leontopodium alpinum
Helleborus Niger - Christmas Rose
Zantedeschia - Calla Lily
Fritillaria imperialis - Crown imperial
Aster
Heliconia
Common Sunflower - Helianthus annuus
Bee Orchid - Orphys apifera
Convalaria majalis - Lily of the Valley - Muguet
Syringa Vurgaris - Lilac
Viola
Impantiens
Snowdrop - Galanthus
Poinsettia - Euphorbia pulcherrima
Dionaea muscipula
Banksia
Sea anemone
Amorrhophallus titanum
Rafflesia arnoldi

 

ADVERTISEMENT...



 

Valentine.gr/The Greek Flowers Portal
....

Home | Information | Advertise | Contact Us | Greek Version | English Version