Saturday, July 22, 2006

Mary Magdalene's Flower: Agapanthus

In honor of the feast day of MaryMagdalene, I've chosen the flower associated with her:
the agapanthus umbellatus, also known as African Lily and Lily of the Nile.

The plant originates in South Africa, so it’s doubtful that Mary Magdalene ever came in contact with it, but it does have fragrance, and, of course, she has long been associated with perfume, along with other sensual pleasures. It is also blooming on her holiday.

I remember this plant fondly from my southern California childhood but it prefers warm climates and I rarely see it in Seattle.

From Curtis’s Botanical Magazine (1800). reproduced with permission from the National Agricultural Library, ARS, USDA, found at Wikipedia

1 comment:

kerrdelune said...

Waverly, I've always enjoyed these lilies, and so wish I lived further south and could grow them successfully. Alas, such a thing is not possible this far north, and so I thank you for these.