Categories
Plants

Spartium junceum (syn. Genista juncea) is the first!

It is so cold in Europe these days,temperatures far below zero, snow, wind everywhere.In Ljubljana we have temperatures 8 degrees under average for February. I couldn’t help myself,I just had to go to the seaside, to make this winter at least a bit bearable.But down there the story is the same,with an exception-wind is there much worse (bora wind).The canals in Venice are frozen, some dalmatian islands have got snow after decades.And in Portorose, harbour of roses,  instead of buzz of many tourists walking down the main street only wind bending palms is heard.And it really is cold!Winter!But I’ve brought good news from there:SPRING IS HERE!!!!! In Portorose broom(brnistra) blooms! Its tiny, fragrant, yellow flowers have just started to bloom-no matter how bad the weather is.This are good news, indeed!!


Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fabales
Family: Fabaceae
Subfamily: Faboideae
Tribe: Genisteae
Genus: Spartium
Species: S. junceum
Binomial name
Spartium junceum
L.

from:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spartium

 

Categories
Plants

EUROPEAN BEECH in snow

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Fagus sylvatica-european beech
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Fagales
Family: Fagaceae
Genus: Fagus
Species: F. sylvatica
Binomial name
Fagus sylvatica
L.

from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fagus_sylvatica

Winter is here, we don’t have much snow ,but the temperatures are deep below zero.I had my walk anyway,in the forest behind my home.For the first time I’ve seen so many cupules  on beeches-then I remembered we had extremely hot and dry summer.Birds will be thankful………………………………maybe even I will try these seeds, in Europe they were eaten centuries ago,I only need a good recipe 😉

Categories
Plants plants everywhere

Cyclamen

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My sister has a nice habit of buying cyclamen for her kids each winter .As  I bought one myself last week the spring seems nearer; it will be easier to wait for the first cyclamen in the woods. A little poem goes like:C is for cyclamen-do not try to hide from us for your smell is telling where you are………

And indeed, the shy cyclamen smells so strong, you cannot miss it, as kids we wandered the woods to find the very first ones…..

Searching for more details for this post I found lake Bled district ,Slovenia,  has special dark variant of Cyclamen purpurascens: can’t wait to find it -I promise a post  ; )

Till then something from:

http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cyclamen_purpurascens

Classification System: APG III (down to family level):

Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Unassigned Asterids
Ordo: Ericales
Familia: Primulaceae
Tribus: Cyclamineae
Genus: Cyclamen
Species: Cyclamen purpurascens

Categories
botanic garden Plants

Hypoxis hirsuta-Star grass from Harper’s guide to wild flowers

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Harper’s guide to wild flowers is the book I had recently some fun with. The author had a bit poetic attitude sorting plants according to their color,which I like anyway.But my favorite passus would be  this part of booklet, with a little episode described.When storry-telling emerged from science books is the question I do not know the answer, but I am sure a lot was lost by that time……..

And yes, i like Hypoxis hirsuta..so here a caption from nowadays

(from::http://www.npwrc.usgs.gov/resource/plants/wildflwr/species/hypohirs.htm ):

Down among the bases of the tall grasses in our moist native prairies and coulee bottoms the little yellow stargrass begins to bloom in late May. The plant is restricted to the east in North Dakota; elsewhere plants can be found in meadows and open woods from Manitoba to Maine, and south to Florida and Texas.

Yellow stargrass has no stem. Instead, the three to six-inch long leaves and flower stalks (called scapes) rise directly from a perennial onion-like structure called a corm. Each plant has five to ten six-petalled yellow flowers about a half inch wide. The three to six leaves are very narrow, and provided with a few long hairs.

Never abundant enough to provide much forage, yellow stargrass grows best where grazing is light or the area is annually mowed after mid-July. The plant has no known economic value, but some of its relatives in India are known to have properties similar to ginseng.

Yellow stargrass is a member of the amaryllis family (Amaryllidaceae) which contains many ornamentals such as narcissus, snowdrops, and tuberose. The family is in the class of plants called monocots, wherein among other characters, the veins of the leaves are mostly parallel, rather than in a net-like pattern. Amaryllis was a shepherdess in the writings of the Roman author Virgil. The generic name Hypoxis is from the Greek hypoxys, “somewhat acid,” and the specific epithet hirsuta means “stiffly hairy” in botanical Latin. The famous Swedish naturalist Carl von Linne (Linnaeus) described yellow stargrass for science in his monumental Species Plantarum of 1753.

Categories
Plants plants everywhere

Cyclamen

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My sister has a nice habit of buying cyclamen for her kids each winter .As  I bought one myself last week the spring seems nearer; it will be easier to wait for the first cyclamen in the woods. A little poem goes like:C is for cyclamen-do not try to hide from us for your smell is telling where you are………

And indeed, the shy cyclamen smells so strong, you cannot miss it, as kids we wandered the woods to find the very first ones…..

Searching for more details for this post I found lake Bled district ,Slovenia,  has special dark variant of Cyclamen purpurascens: can’t wait to find it -I promise a post  ; )

Till then something from:

http://species.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cyclamen_purpurascens

Classification System: APG III (down to family level):

Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Asterids
Cladus: Unassigned Asterids
Ordo: Ericales
Familia: Primulaceae
Tribus: Cyclamineae
Genus: Cyclamen
Species: Cyclamen purpurascens

Categories
botanic garden Plants

TATAR MAPLE-ACER TATARICUM

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As I walked trough my botanical garden last time in cold January I found Acer tataricum-I simply liked its name,the picture of its branches against the blue, blue sky and the tiny new little branches emerging into new spring to come………….enough for me to list you some more facts:

Acer tataricum (Tatar Maple or Tatarian Maple) is a species of maple native to central and southeastern Europe and southwestern Asia, from Austria east to southwestern Russia and theCaucasus, and south to Turkey. The species is named after the Tatar peoples of southern Russia; the tree’s name is similarly commonly also spelled “Tartar” in English.[1][2]

Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Sapindales
Family: Sapindaceae
Genus: Acer
Species: A. tataricum
Binomial name
Acer tataricum
L.from:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acer_tataricum

Tatarian maple is often confused with Amur maple. Tatarian Maple grows slightly larger and is naturally more tree-like in growth habit.

  Morphology:
This is a broadleaf deciduous tree that can grow to 20’ in height and 25’ in width. It often forms a multi-stem structure. At maturity the tree shape is described as rounded to wide spreading. Leaves are set in an opposite arrangement and are simple. They are typically un-lobed, though young trees do have 2-5 lobes. The leaf margin is double serrated. During hot summer the leaves are green, while in the fall they turn shades of yellow to reddish brown. The fall color of Tatarian Maple is considered better than Amur Maple.

Flowering starts in April. The flower clusters are known as panicles, and are greenish white in color. Flowers give rise to double-wing samaras which have a pleasing red color. During the winter the samaras dry down and hang from the branches.

  Adaptation:
This tree does best in sun to partial shade. It is widely adapted to most sites, as long as the soil is well drained.

from:http://pnwplants.wsu.edu/PlantDisplay.aspx?PlantID=615

AN OLD-FASHIONED LITTLE TREE

Old Tatarian maples can be seen in Helsinki and St. Petersburg, but there are not many further west. The Tatarian maple is a low-growing small tree with a rounded crown and often a twisted trunk, with lovely autumn colours. Nowadays it is not planted at all, and in nurseries it has been replaced by a close relative, the bushy Amur maple. It has lobed leaves, unlike the unlobed leaves of the Tatarian maple. Characteristic old Tatarian maples grow in many of the old parks around the central part of the city, such as Katajanokanpuisto, Alli Trygg Park and on Tähtitorninvuori.

from:http://www.kasvitkaupunginvaatteet.fi/plants-tatarian-maple/

Categories
Plants

Mespilus germanica-medlar

 

source; http://florence.dautry.free.fr     

 

 

When asked to bring some exotic fruit to school I gave my son a handful of medlars and it turned out that for all kids in the class this was the most exotic fruit, none of them knew it.Which is actually a paradoxe as medlars (the same name for tree and fruit) were, after first being cultivated in mideast 3000 years ago,spread to whole Europe. The Romans gave it the incorrect name-Mespilus germanica, altrought it was grown in Germany as well.

In middle ages medlar was extremely popular in Europe , for it is picked in late autumn and can be eaten far in winter time,after the “bletting”of the fruit.In times without fridges and supermarkets with exotic fruits this was obwious advantage.

Later its popularity fade away  but there are several reasons why it would be a shame to let it grow only in botanical gardens. Medlar is a tree with smelling white blossoms, nice dark green leaves and of course-ecquisite aroma of medlar, wonderfully accompanying even the best wines or being transformed into classy deserts if not eaten fresh.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories
Plants

Chrysanthemum

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The family Asteraceae or Compositae, to which Chrysanthemum belongs, is known as the aster, daisy, or sunflower family. It is the largest family offlowering plants in terms of number of species. According to the Royal Botanical Gardens of Kew, the family comprises more than 1,600 genera and 23,000 species. The name “Asteraceae” is derived from the type genus Asterand refers to the star-shaped flower head of its members, epitomized well by the daisy. “Compositae,” an older but still valid name (McNeill et al. 2006), means “composite” and refers to the unique inflorescence (described below).

Asteraceae is a taxon of dicotyledonous flowering plants. In addition to the chrysanthemum and daisy, other well-known members of the family includelettuce, chicory, globe artichoke, safflower, dandelion, ragwort, and sunflower.

Chrysanthemums were cultivated in China as a

flowering herb as far back as the fifteenth century B.C.E

The chrysanthemum was introduced into Japan probably in the eighth century C.E., and the Emperor adopted the flower as his official seal.

Imperial Seal of Japan

The flower was brought to Europe in the seventeenth century. Linnaeus named it from the Greek prefix chrys-, which means golden (the color of the original flowers), and -anthemon, meaning flower.

In some countries of Europe (e.g., FrancePoland), in Korea, and in Japan, white chrysanthemums are symbolic of death and are only used for funerals or on graves. In China, white chrysanthemums are symbolic of lamentation.

Chrysanthemum. (2008, August 28). New World Encyclopedia. Retrieved 21:57, October 30, 2011 fromhttp://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/entry/Chrysanthemum?oldid=793638.

How could it be that the same flower is the flower of happiness in some countries and flower for funerals in other countries? It certainly has nothing to do with the flower itself, or am I wrong? Is chrysantemum a flower with a “double face”-in a good sense of a word? Looking at a basket full of little flowers I happen to see even more faces……………..

See Tamara Jare floral still life at: https://tamarajare.com/

Categories
Plants

Setaria pumila-yellow foxtail

imagemorning sun and grasses………………..

………………………………………………………..Setaria pumila
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
(unranked): Commelinids
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Genus: Setaria
Species: S. pumila
Binomial name
Setaria pumila
(Poir.Roem. & Schult.

Setaria pumila is a species of grass known by many common names, including yellow foxtail,yellow bristlegrasspigeon grass, and cattail grass. It is native to Europe, but it is known throughout the world as a common weed. It grows in lawns, sidewalks, roadsides, cultivated fields, and many other places. This annual grass grows 20 centimeters to well over a meter in height, its mostly hairless stems ranging from green to purple-tinged in color. The leaf blades are hairless on the upper surfaces, twisting, and up to 30 centimeters long. The inflorescence is a stiff, cylindrical bundle of spikelets 2 to 15 centimeters long with short, blunt bristles. The panicle may appear yellow or yellow-tinged.

from:       http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Setaria_pumila