Gilding once told her Dad, she didn’t want a tree house unless it was made out of a tree. Guess what, she never got a tree house. But there is just something so magical about literally being inside of a tree.
These installations by artist Patrick Dougherty bring all those whimsical dreams back.
Spinoffs, Decordova Museum, Lincoln, Massachusettes, 1990. Ph: George Vasquez.
Crossing Over, American Craft Museum, New York, New York, 1996. Ph: Dennis Cowley.
Trailheads, North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, NC, 2005.
Ph: Courtesy of the North Carolina Museum of Art.
Around the Corner, University of Southern Indiana, New Harmony Gallery, New Harmony, IN, 2003. Ph: Doyle Dean.
Call of the Wild, Museum of Glass, Tacoma, WA, 2002. Ph: Duncan Price.
The Summer Palace, Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 2009. Ph: Rob Cardillo.
With his skills in carpentry and a love of nature, Dougherty began studying primitive techniques of building. From there he began to experiment with tree saplings as construction material. His first work, MapleBodyWrap, built in 1982, was included in the North Carolina Biennial Artist’s Exhibition. By the following year, he had his first one person show. Since then he has build over 150 works throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia. The above works are just a sampling — Gilding’s favorites, so to speak. Trust when she says, it was hard to narrow it down to these. More of his works can be seen on Patrick Dougherty’s site.
The vertical garden uses moss and drought tolerant succulents, requiring only an occassional light watering with a spray bottle.
Never one to be able to keep plants alive, Gilding lives vicariously through friends and family who can. The beauty above comes from Gilding’s cousin and is a Fuchsia, commonly misspelled fuschia.
In J. Wesley Hanson’s book, Flora’s Dial, written in 1845, Wesley dedicates to each day a flower and with each flower their language and a poetic extract. The purpose of the book was to afford a little pleasure to those who love flowers with a comprehensive book with which they may seek and delight upon a single flower and all it has to offer for any given day. Also, the author had the unique position of access to the complete works of Old English Poets, affording him the opportunity to include within this book poetic gems that are of rare worth.
As Wesley writes, “There is religion in a flower.” The author hopes that the influence of his book may be of a religious one in a sense; that the Graces of Life may spread through the pleasures of flowers in home and heart. He writes, “Go, little book, God send thee good passage!” (SourceC)
In Flora Dial, Fuchsia is dedicated to November 23rd. Its meaning, faithfulness.
Growing bountifully in its motherland, shamrocks, according to Martha, make a great houseplant.
The standard growing tips:
1. Plant in well-drained peat-based potting soil.
2. Keep at normal room temperature (55 to 75 degrees).
3. Grow in bright, indirect light.
4. Water regularly on top of the soil.
5. Let almost dry between waterings.
6. Fertilize once a month.
Having a name said to be derived either from the appearance of smoke rising from the ground because of its whitish, blue-green color (quite a ghostly appearance when seen from afar), or, as according to Pliny, because the juice of the plant brings on such a flow of tears that the sight of it becomes dim with smoke, Fumitory, is well known in floriography for meaning hatred.
According to ancient exorcists, when the plant is burned, its smoke has the power of expelling evil spirits, it having been most famously used in the geometric gardens of St. Gall.
An herb, though most akin it to a weed, Fumitory is small and slender with climbing stems and clusters of spiking small flowers of a pinkish hue topped with purple or, more rarely, white. Flowering throughout the summer, the herb spreads rapidly and is reported to have smothered a wheat crop at Mudgee, in New South Wales. Shakespeare makes several references to the herb, and folk belief credits Fumitory with a special power to bestow long life.
The first tulips in Holland were planted at the University of Leiden in Autumn of 1593. From its very beginning, enterprising Dutchmen sought to use their love and skill with plants to create the one thing that Mother Nature had not done — a quest to create the elusive “black tulip.”
Hybridizing, or cross-breeding, seeks to create a pleasing harmony attributes. The desired outcome may simply be for esthetics as well as for betterment for mankind. Sometimes, though, one single cockamamie quest to capture a single attribute captures the hybridizing community’s imagination. And thus fables are born. The fabled quest for the “black tulip” is perhaps the best known.
But that doesn’t stop the fervor
of excitement for the most elusive (and
indeed unobtainable) flower. In fact, the
fabled flower took center stage in the Alexander Dumas novel “The Black Tulip” (1850), a romantic tale in which the quest to hybridize the elusive and valuable “black” tulip is entwined within a love story laced with murder, torture, greed, dastardly intrigue, and sudden surprises.
Stunning results have been achieved but, as Frans Roozen and other experts insist, true, absolute black is actually impossible to achieve.
Link: The Elusive Black Tulip
“When I first saw the flower I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was a flower, lonely but proudly standing, amidst nothing but sand and more sand. I thought there had to be some kind of magic fooling with me: black flowers are rare, but in the middle of the desert… I approached the plant cautiously. Somehow I could think of nothing else but to pick the flower and treasure it. It is exactly what I did: I took the flower and brought it to my home. Its petals were like those of a water lily, large and shaped like a date, but it had the thorns of a rose, and the scent was strong and sweet and somehow comforting. It reminded me of the roses in Varcopas and as the Desert Rose is a very common flower, I dubbed this one the Black Desert Rose. It was the best name I could think of.”
…~Frigord the Weird
Diaries, Vol. VII, p. 45f
Written by the man who owes his name, and death a mere hour later after picking the black beauty, to the Black Desert Rose.
Vague pictorial designs of this flower can be found in even the oldest of the Shendar domes. The old Stratanian coat of arms features the rose as the focus point. However, the rarity of the flower makes an accurate description of the flower difficult, at best, and there are few written sources of information on the flower, Frigord the Weird’s account being one of them. Yet, his name alone lends a certain amount of skepticism to his account, especially given the hallucinigenic properties of the rose’s fragrant smell.
Ancient Shendar oral culture has a warning poem about the temptress rose, one of the only other vaguely defined depictions of the Black Desert Rose: a flower with black petals and green stem, thorns, and a pleasant aroma that alludes to having hallucinatory effects purposely designed to draw its prey in.
But the most characterstic feature of this flower is its elusiveness; it is seldom seen. Unique to the Ráhaz-Dáth Desert, the BLack Desert Rose is not found on other continents, not even those of Aeruillin. During the wars with the darkfriends, especially the Third Sarvonian War, the Black Desert Rose was found several times by Stratanians. The finders were brutally executed as the rose, because of its malicious nature, was considered an ill omen of the Dark One, Coór. These events are recorded in the Thalambathian library, though its blacker pages of Stratanian history died out after the war as once again it was rarely found.
A special fact about the flower is that it seems to be attracted to evil — or next best, people with evil intentions. Its habit of being acquired by the Templars of the Black Pearl, the Seven of Thalambath, and Darkfriends from the Third Sarvonian War.
The origin of the dark rose remains elusive — speculative at best. Myth has it that the city of Thalambath was created with magic. Still lingering powers cause certain flowersto create this malicious offspring.
Quite an amazing flower of succulence. Too bad its fake…welcome to Santharia.
Named after Charles Bouvard, the personal physician to Louis XIII and the superintendent of the Royal Gardens in Paris, modern varieties of bouvardia have names such as Pink Luck, Albatross and Royal Katty. Their star-like flowers grow in clusters on thin, branching stems, like small flower bouquets in soft shades of pink, white, yellow, salmon and red.
With a delicate scent and feminine appearance, in the language of flowers, bouvardia represent enthusiasm.
The Night Blooming Cereus (Epiphyllum oxypetalum) is one of the most cultivated species of cactus in the genus, with magnificent perfumed flowers that only open after dark and with each flower only lasting the one night. In China the plant’s name means “a beauty under moonlights.” That is to say that culturally the flower is revered as a treasure and is treated as such.
The above photograph was taken by Robert Fovell, a professor in the Atmospheric & Oceanic Sciences Department at UCLA.
Links: Night Blooming Cereus–Robert Fovell
There is a famous planting of Grape Hyacinths at the Keukenhof Gardens in Holland which is known as the Blue River. This is a dense planting of Muscari armeniacum [Grape Hyacinth] that winds through the Gardens, past trees, shrubs, and other spring flowers. Year after year, this is one of the most photographed scenes in this park.
Grape hyacinths are so
named because their
clusters of small, bell-
shaped, cobalt-blue flowers look like clusters of upside-down grapes. However, this flowering plant is not limited to its better known blue hue, and can, in fact, be found in varying shades of blue to white and may have green highlights.
In the language of flowers, the hyacinth, dependant upon color may mean: constancy (Blue); I’m sorry, please forgive me, and/or sorrow (Purple); playfulness, sport or play (Red or Pink); loveliness, I’ll pray for you (White); and jealousy (Yellow).
The fleur de lis, translated from French as “flower of lily,” is a stylized design of the lily and is used both decoratively and symbolically. It may be purely ornamental or it may be at one and the same time political, dynastic, artistic, emblematic and symbolic, especially in heraldry. While it has appeared on countless European coats of arms and flags over the centuries, the fleur-de-lis is particularly associated with the French monarchy on a historical context, and nowadays with the Spanish monarchy as the only remaining monarchs of the House of Bourbon. It is an enduring symbol of France, but, being regarded most notably as the emblem of the monarchy, was not adopted officially by any of the French republics. On the contrary, as Spain is a constitutional monarchy, the fleur-de-lis symbol is associated with the Spanish King Juan Carlos I (of French dynasty origin) and the Kingdom of Spain. In North America, the fleur-de-lis is often associated with areas formerly settled by France, such as Quebec and Louisiana and with the Francophones in other Canadian provinces. It is also the emblem of the Swiss Municipality of Schlieren, Zürich.
The lily itself is native to the northern temperate regions and finds home in the Old World extending across much of Europe, the north Mediterranean, across most of Asia to Japan, south to the Nilgiri mountains in India, and south to the Philippines. In the New World they extend from southern Canada through much of the United States.
In the Victorian Era, when flowers were often used to send messages, allowing the individuals to express feelings which otherwise could not be spoken, the white lily often spoke to purity while a scarlet lily meant High-souled aspirations.
Oh, and then there’s Lily Allen.
Did you know the protea is also commonly referred to as sugarbushes.
The genus Protea was named in 1735 by Carolus Linnaeus after the Greek god Proteus who could change his form at will, because proteas have such different forms.
The Proteaceae family to which Proteas belong is an ancient one. Its ancestors grew in Gondwanaland, 300 million years ago. There are many species of Proteas, of which 92% of them occur only in the Cape Floristic Region, a narrow belt of mountainous coastal land from Clanwilliam to Grahamstown. The extraordinary richness and diversity of species characteristic of the Cape Flora is thought to be caused in part by the diverse landscape where populations can become isolated from each other and in time develop into separate species.
Bougainvillea is the beloved nickname Gilding gave to one of her nieces. A longtime admirer of this hardy plant so eager to grow for anyone, including brown thumbs like Gilding herself, the nickname fit for this darling neice like bracts to the petals for numerous symbolic reasons. Now it appears the name fits even more closely to the child than even Gilding herself knew as it seems the two share common personalities.
Bougainvillea is native to South America from Brazil west to Peru and south to southern Argentina. The name comes from Louis Antoine de Bougainville, an admiral in the French Navy who discovered the plant in Brazil in 1768.
They are thorny, woody, vines scrambling over other plants with their hooked thorns. They are evergreen where rainfall occurs all year, or deciduous if there is a dry season. The leaves are alternate, simple ovate-acuminate. The actual flower of the plant is small and generally white, but each cluster of three flowers is surrounded by three or six bracts with the bright colors associated with the plant, including pink, magenta, purple, red, orange, white, or yellow. Bougainvillea is sometimes referred to as “paper flower” because the bracts are thin and papery.