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Floriography Friday: Ranunculus

Ranunculus: You are radiant and charming aka: Persian Buttercup Ranunculus is Latin for "little frog", as they are often found growing on watery banks.

image via Pinterest

You may have identified the ranunculus as the pink, illustrated flowers in my logo. This is one of my very favorite flowers. And with its versitile array of colors it's growing evermore popular for spring weddings, baby showers, and any other general arrangements. It's hard not to fall in love with its near-concentric circles of delicate, crepe-paper petals.

image by Dutch Flower Line

This lovely flower, however, was not always as popular for flower arranging as it is today. Perhaps this is because most of the ranunculus species are too weak and delicate for a bouquet; many grow small, fragile stems that remain short and close to the ground, with no more than a few small petals. Actually, there are more than 400 species of ranunculus and only a few of this family are commercially grown large enough and strong enough to arrange with.

As for it's mythologies, there are a couple legends to be found about this, my maybe-favorite flower.

There is an asian myth that describes a prince who loved singing to the nymphs of the open country. Falling in love with one of these nymphs, the prince found himself unable to express his amorous feelings to her, and instead withered in his disappointment and died. His body transformed into an array of the delicate ranunculus we know today. And fittingly the flower was named after him.

From the North American continent we have the legend of the coyote who, for amusement, popped his eyes out of his head and began tossing them up toward the heavens. He continued in his fun until a buzzard swooped down and caught hold of them. Unable to see, the coyote made himself new eyes with the blooms of ranunculus flowers, thus inspiring their Native American name to mean "coyote's eyes".

image Florabundance

Farmers are ever growing commercial ranunculus to have more petals and bigger heads, however their fragile and thirsty nature lingers on. These little beauties don't hold up away from water long, making bridal bouquets and boutonnieres tricky to last through the day without the preparation, care and magic touch of a good floral designer. But keep them drinking water and they'll give you a fairly decent vase life.

In fact, in a vase you'll see their every stage as they fully open. It's like they just get prettier and prettier-- until they're gone. But that's when you head out to the market to buy some more, right?

image Of Spring and Summer image Flirty Fleurs image 99 Roots

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