Inspired by Rena’s post on our very own Fairmount Park Azalea Garden:
In a time when so much is digital, sending and receiving flowers is a special event that is more memorable than ever. Let’s take a little trip around the world and find out the “travel plans” of our favorite and most iconic flowers, one for each continent, and with special apologies to Antarctica, as its algae, fungi, and moss usually just don’t strike the emotions or imagination!
Originated from: Southwest China
Most experts agree the rose originally came from Asia, and particularly China, but of course the rose has been adopted by cultures the world over, and is usually synonymous with love. The China Rose, or Rosa Chinensis, is a modern and very popular ornamental flower in China, and it’s often bred with double petals for a definite “wow” factor. Color connotes different meanings: red for pure love, pink for gratitude, yellow for friendship.
Originated from: Chile and Brazil
Smaller than its cousins, alstroemeria—also known as the Peruvian Lily, or the Lily of the Incas—is a very colorful and showy “miniature lily” flower that conveys friendship. Hybrid types are grown from winter-growing plants in Chile and summer-growing plants in Brazil.
Originated from: The Netherlands
Although the distinctive bulb-shaped tulip originated in Persia and was only introduced to Western Europe in the 16th century, perhaps no other country is more associated with a flower than the Netherlands is with the tulip. The beauty of the tulip sparked “Tulip Mania” in Europe shortly after it was introduced, and bulbs were even being used as money! Red tulips are for love and romantic affection, and yellow tulips convey a sense of celebration and excitement.
Originated from: Australia
When we think of eucalyptus, maybe our first thought is a cuddly koala munching on a sprig of eucalyptus leaves, and indeed the vast majority of eucalyptus species hail from Australia. In modern bouquets, spiral eucalyptus stems are prized for their oil. The oil’s sweet fragrance is used for aromatherapy, and it’s even a decongestant that is thought to help support the immune system.
Originated from: South Africa
Nothing says Spring quite like the daisy, which is the official flower of April. Daisies come in a variety of bright, cheery colors, and have come to represent youth, innocence, joy, and a carefree spirit. Their unique centers—made of tiny disc flowers—make daisies stand out from the crowd.
Originated from: California
Naturally, there are varieties of many of the flowers we’ve talked about native to North America, but rare is the chance to exactly pinpoint the birth of one of our most popular flowers, the Stargazer Lily. The brilliant and bold Stargazer was created in the late 1970s by Leslie Woodriff in Humboldt county, California, as a variation of the much older Oriental lily. Since then, its popularity in bouquets has skyrocketed, and it has come to convey a wish for wealth and the realization of dreams.