While a traditionally cold month, February heralds the beginning of many changes. With Spring just around the corner and there finally being more light at the beginning and end of the day, February is a month that holds many changes.
With crisp, lighter days also comes the blooming of many new flowers that you wouldn't have seen in Winter. Here are some flowers to look out for with brighter, warmer days ahead.
Violet is a flower that blooms early in the Springtime. Violets tend to be, as the name suggests, a deep purple. However, you can also get violets in blue, yellow, and even bicoloured varieties.
Violets originated in Eurasia and tended to like temperate climates. Not too hot or cold. With over 400 species of Violets, there's a large variety of choices to make some truly unique floral arrangements.
Violets were first largely cultivated by the Romans and Greeks. The Greeks considered violets a symbol of fertility, using them to worship the goddesses of love. Violets have often been used throughout history as a herbal remedy, wine, and even a painkiller. Even today, certain violets are still used in the creation of aspirin, as violets secret salicylic acid, a painkiller!
Violets can be paired well with roses as a sombre or passionate addition to an arrangement. Violets symbolise modesty but also everlasting love. The Victorians used violets as a reminder of their faithfulness to their beloved. It is said that Violets blossomed when the angel Gabriel told Mary she would be carrying Jesus.
Daffodils mostly flower in the middle of Spring, as the snow is melting and the sunny yellow bulbs open up. However, some varieties of daffodils flower in February. They are called "February Gold".
Daffodils make for a unique floral arrangement. Their friendly yellow colour will bring a smile to anyone. Specifically, yellow represents deep meaningful friendships, but can also be used as a perfect gift for a mother.
Daffodils originated in the Mediterranean basin. They are officially named "Narcissus" plants. This name comes from the Greek myth of the god of Hubris, Narcissus, who fell into a river after falling in love with his own reflection.
The ancients often utilised the flower in poetry, art and culture. Soon the Romans began testing the plants for medicinal properties. While no longer used as a herb, the daffodil remains a pretty and entertaining flower today.
The meaning of daffodils in the modern day goes deeper. Many cancer charities and third-sector organisations use the daffodil to remind people of their causes. The daffodil is also the national flower of Wales. This cements the daffodil as a long-standing symbol of Welsh nationalism and independent spirit.
Known as the heralds of Spring, snowdrops represent the melting away of the cold and the beginning of the warm spring days ahead. Though most flower in Winter, other snowdrop species flower as late as Spring and autumn.
Snowdrops are largely a European plant. They were cultivated mainly in the Pyrenees mountains and taken throughout the ancient world. They tend to enjoy woodland, though some have adapted to open fields or even mountains.
The original name for snowdrops came from the Greek words for "White Violet". Many early scholars noted the snowdrop as being one of the first flowers to grow in the winter time; thus, it heralded Spring.
Though the snowdrop lacks any medical or herbal significance, its effect on culture has been dramatic. Writers and botanists the world over have hailed the snowdrop as the horseman of Springtime. Many evocative poems use their symbology for new life and cyclical death life.
A snowdrop is a stunning flower that can pierce through the snow cover of your dingy February days. Its cultural impact, and imagery of purity and innocence, have earned it a place in the honoured list of flowers. It's all the better that one of the best flowers be such for a month of transience and change.