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Acanthus: Greece's Floral Emblem Never Suffers From Summer Heat

April 24, 2017

Greece's Floral Emblem

Hello again, Naho here. As it continues to grow hotter each day, summer fatigue is slowly but surely getting to me. Greece's floral emblem Acanthus, however, is an unrelenting flower that always stays strong against high temperature.

    

Today I would like to write about the land of art and culture, Greece, and some secrets behind its beloved national flower, the Acanthus.

Acanthus: A Symbol of the Arts and Strength

The name of Acanthus originates from "akantha," the Greek word for "thorn," referring to the flower's thorn-bearing bracts.

In ancient Greece, a sculptor named Callimachus used the pattern of acanthus leaves in some of his works, the design was thus named after the flower. Roman architects erected the Corinthian capital employing the "acanthus design," and the pattern is also often seen on church ceiling paintings during the Medieval Period. Perhaps it is from such association to the history of architecture that the acanthus derived the meanings of "the arts" and "craftsmanship."


Edelweiss: The Secrets Behind Switzerland's Floral Emblem

April 17, 2017

Switzerland's Floral Emblem

Hello again, this is Naho. When summer comes I'm always in the mood for outdoor activities. On a hot day like this, for example, hiking sounds like a great choice to get freshened up.

Edelweiss, widely known as Switzerland's floral emblem, is a mountain flower that flourishes at extremely high altitudes. Today I would like to write about this unique flower, where the name "edelweiss" came from, and Switzerland's languages as well as its popular tourist destinations.

Beautiful White Flower Grown in the Alps

Switzerland's floral emblem, the edelweiss is a darling, innocent flower nicknamed the "Swiss Alpine fairy." It features firm leaves and stems covered in thin hairs that allow it to survive under severe circumstances.

A song named "Edelweiss" was featured in The Sound of Music, a popular American musical, and the flower of edelweiss has since become famous all over the world.


Lily of the Valley: Finland's Gorgeous but Deadly Floral Emblem

April 10, 2017

Finland's Floral Emblem

Hello again, Naho here. If anyone asks what my favorite fictional character is, Moomin will always be the answer.

The story of the Moomins is set in Finland, a country with deep, mysterious forests that could almost bring fairy tales to life. It is said that lilies of the valley, Finland's national flower, also grow inside those forests.

Innocent and Delicate - The Finnish Lily of the Valley

Known as the country where the character Moomin is from, Finland is every bit the fairy-tale landscape we imagine from the books. Lilies of the valley, the country's floral emblem, bloom beautifully in its mountain forests, and have been a common sight in Finland for a long time. The flower has such an innocent and adorable air to it that, there seems to be a custom in France where people give lilies of the valley to brides on weddings.

The scientific name of lilies of the valley is Convallaria majalis, a species that's native to Europe. Compared to one of its variations found in Hokkaido, Japan, those grown in Europe feature larger blooms and a more accented fragrance.


Heather: Norway's Floral Emblem

April 3, 2017

Norway's Floral Emblem

Hello again, Naho here. Summer's long gone and it's that time of the year gain. If autumn comes, can winter be far behind?

I'm terribly sensitive to cold weather. Norway's national flower heather, however, grows strong even in the most extreme of environments. In this blog post I would like to write about the secrets to the sturdiness of the flower that blooms vigorously on the heathlands of Europe and how that relates to the Norwegians and their values.

Heathers - Charming Flower: Grown on the Moors of Norway

Heathers are extremely cold-tolerant, and depending on the species, some can even survive at below-freezing temperatures. It is said the name of the flower stems from such hardiness - heather for heath.

Emily Brontë's novel Wuthering Heights, considered as one of the greatest tragedies in English literature, is set in a moorland where the farmhouse of Wuthering Heights is located. It is on such desolate, barren lands that the flower of heather grows, full of passion and vigor despite nature's adversity.

April 2017

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