Lily of the valley lily of the valley
Lily of the valley lily of the valley
Convallaria majalis is a plant of partial shade, and mesophile type that prefers warm summers. It likes soils that are silty or sandy and acid to moderately alkaline, with preferably a plentiful amount of humus . The Royal Horticultural Society states that slightly alkaline soils are the most favored. It is a Euroasiatic and suboceanic species that lives in mountains up to 1,500 m elevation. Lily of the valley is worn in Helston on Flora Day representing the coming of "the May-o" and the summer. There is also a song sung in pubs around Cornwall called "Lily of the Valley"; the song, strangely, came from the Jubilee Singers from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee . Lily of the valley has been used in weddings and can be very expensive. Lily of the valley was featured in the bridal bouquet at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton . Lily of the valley was also the flower chosen by Princess Grace of Monaco to be featured in her bridal bouquet . Convallaria majalis is widely grown in gardens for its scented flowers and ground-covering abilities in shady locations. It has gained the Royal Horticultural Society 's Award of Garden Merit . In favourable conditions it can form large colonies. Due to the concentration of cardiac glycosides , it is highly poisonous if consumed by humans or animals. In the APG III system , the genus is placed in the family Asparagaceae , subfamily Nolinoideae . It was formerly placed in its own family Convallariaceae, and, like many lilioid monocots , before that in the lily family Liliaceae . The flowers have six white tepals , fused at the base to form a bell-shape, 5–10 mm diameter, and sweetly scented; flowering is in late spring, in mild winters in the Northern Hemisphere it is in early March. The fruit is a small orange-red berry 5–7 mm diameter that contains a few large whitish to brownish colored seeds that dry to a clear translucent round bead 1–3 mm wide. Plants are self-incompatible , and colonies consisting of a single clone do not set seed. There are three varieties that have sometimes been separated out as distinct species or subspecies by some botanists. Various kinds and cultivars are grown, including those with double flowers, rose-colored flowers, variegated foliage and ones that grow larger than the typical species. The lily of the valley was the national flower of Yugoslavia , and it also became the national flower of Finland in 1967. Like many perennial flowering plants, C. majalis exhibits dual reproductive modes by producing offspring asexually by vegetative means and by seed, produced via the fusion of gametes.
Lily of the valley lily of the valley
Lily of the valley lily of the valley
Convallaria majalis is an herbaceous perennial plant that often forms extensive colonies by spreading underground stems called rhizomes . New upright shoots are formed at the ends of stolons in summer, these upright dormant stems are often called pips. These grow in the spring into new leafy shoots that still remain connected to the other shoots under ground. The stems grow to 15–30 cm tall, with one or two leaves 10–25 cm long; flowering stems have two leaves and a raceme of five to fifteen flowers on the stem apex. Roughly 38 different cardiac glycosides – which are highly toxic if consumed by humans or animals – occur in the plant, including: All parts of the plant are potentially poisonous , including the red berries which may be attractive to children. If ingested, the plant can cause abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and irregular heartbeats. The plant has been used in folk medicine for centuries. lily of the valley There is a reference to "Lilly of the valley water" in Robert Louis Stevenson 's novel Kidnapped where it is said to be "good against the Gout", and that it "comforts the heart and strengthens the memory" and "restores speech to those that have the dumb palsey". There is no scientific evidence that lily of the valley has any effective medicinal uses for treating human diseases. The odor of lily of the valley, specifically the ligand bourgeonal , was thought to attract mammalian sperm . The 2003 discovery of this phenomenon prompted research into odor reception, but a 2012 study demonstrated instead that at high concentrations, bourgeonal imitated the role of progesterone in stimulating sperm to swim , a process unrelated to odor reception. Convallaria transcaucasica is recognised as a distinct species by some authorities, while the species formerly called Convallaria japonica is now classified as Ophiopogon japonicus . Convallaria majalis is a native of Europe, where it largely avoids the Mediterranean and Atlantic margins. An eastern variety, C. majalis var. keiskei occurs in Japan and parts of eastern Asia . A limited native population of C. majalis var. montana occurs in the Eastern United States . There is, however, some debate as to the native status of the American variety . Finnish 10 penny coin with the Convallaria carving At the beginning of the 20th century, it became tradition in France to sell lily of the valley on international labour day , 1 May by labour organisations and private persons without paying sales tax as a symbol of spring. The name "lily of the valley", like its correspondences in some other European languages, is apparently a reference to the phrase "lily of the valleys" in Song of Songs 2:1 . European herbalists' use of the phrase to refer to a specific plant species seems to have appeared relatively late in the 16th or 15th century. The New Latin term convallaria and, for example, Swedish name liljekonvalj derives from the corresponding phrase lilium convallium in the Vulgate . In the " language of flowers ", the lily of the valley signifies the return of happiness. In 1956, the French firm Dior produced a fragrance simulating lily of the valley, which was Christian Dior 's favorite flower. Diorissimo was designed by Edmond Roudnitska . Although it has since been reformulated, it is considered a classic. Lily of the valley ), sometimes written lily-of-the-valley , is a woodland flowering plant with sweetly scented, pendent, bell-shaped white flowers borne in sprays in spring. It is native throughout the cool temperate Northern Hemisphere in Asia and Europe, but is considered generally invasive in parts of North America. Convallaria majalis var. montana , also known as the American lily of the valley, is native to North America. Other perfumes imitating or based on the flower include Henri Robert 's Muguet de Bois , lily rose depp chanel