The rules for posting are simple!

1. Every Friday post a photo that includes one or more flowers.
2. Please only post photos you have authority to use.
3. Include a link to this blog in your post - http://floralfridayfoto.blogspot.com/
4. Leave the link to your FloralFridayFoto post below on inlinkz.
5. Visit other blogs listed ... comment & enjoy!

When to Post:
inlinkz will be available every Thursday and will remain open until the next Wednesday.

Thursday 29 February 2024

FFF636 - AFRICAN VIOLET

Saintpaulia, commonly known as African violet, is a genus of 6–20 species of herbaceous perennial flowering plants in the family Gesneriaceae, native to Tanzania and adjacent southeastern Kenya in eastern tropical Africa. Typically the African violet is a common household indoor plant but can also be an outdoor plant. Several of the species and subspecies are endangered, and many more are threatened, due to their native cloud forest habitats being cleared for agriculture. The conservation status of Saintpaulia ionantha has been classed as near-threatened.

Saintpaulias, which grow from 6–15 cm tall, can be anywhere from 6–30 cm wide. The leaves are rounded to oval, 2.5–8.5 cm long with a 2–10 cm petiole, finely hairy, and have a fleshy texture. The flowers are 2–3 cm in diameter, with a five-lobed velvety corolla ("petals"), and grow in clusters of 3–10 or more on slender stalks called peduncles. Wild species can have violet, purple, pale blue, or white flowers. 

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Thursday 22 February 2024

FFF635 - AMARANTH FLOWER

Amaranthus tricolor, known as edible amaranth, is a species of flowering plant in the genus Amaranthus, part of the family Amaranthaceae. The plant is often cultivated for ornamental and culinary purposes. It is known as bireum in Korea; tampala, tandaljo, or tandalja bhaji in India; callaloo in the Caribbean; and Joseph's coat in other areas, in reference to the Biblical story of Joseph and the coat of many colours.

Although it is native to South and South-East Asia, A. tricolor is one of several species of amaranth cultivated in warm regions across the world. Cultivars have striking yellow, red, and green foliage.

The leaves and stems may be eaten as a salad vegetable. In Africa, it is usually cooked as a leafy vegetable. In Mediterranean countries this amaranth and related species are cooked with other vegetables and served as a warm salad (see recipe). It is usually stir fried or steamed as a side dish in both China and Japan.

Amaranth seeds are also edible and useful information about their nutritive value can be found here.

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Thursday 15 February 2024

FFF664 - VALENTINE ROSES

The rose plant belongs to the family Rosaceae and the genus Rosa and contains about 150 species. One of the first recorded instances of roses representing love comes from ancient Greek Mythology. Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love, was walking  through a rose garden full of white roses. Eros, her mischievous winged son aimed at her and missed, but his arrow shot through the roses. The roses grew thorns thanks to Eros's arrow. Aphrodite pricked her finger on a rose thorn and her blood turned the roses red. It’s an interesting story that might be the reason why people started considering roses to be romantic.

In Roman Mythology Roses were known to be a symbol of desire and secrecy. Romans would reportedly put roses in their bedrooms to represent the love and beauty that Venus was known for. Roman emperors were also known for filling their bathtubs with rose petals and using them as confetti for celebrations. Their pleasant-smelling fragrance graced many Romans’ reception rooms and their presence in romantic rendezvous continued adding to roses being associated with love and desire.

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!

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Thursday 8 February 2024

FFF663 - SACRED LOTUS

Nelumbo nucifera, also known as sacred lotus, Indian lotus, or simply lotus, is one of two extant species of aquatic plant in the family Nelumbonaceae. It is sometimes colloquially called a water lily, though this more often refers to members of the family Nymphaeaceae.

Lotus plants are adapted to grow in the flood plains of slow-moving rivers and delta areas. Stands of lotus drop hundreds of thousands of seeds every year to the bottom of the pond. While some sprout immediately and most are eaten by wildlife, the remaining seeds can remain dormant for an extensive period of time as the pond silts in and dries out. During flood conditions, sediments containing these seeds are broken open, and the dormant seeds rehydrate and begin a new lotus colony.

Under favorable circumstances, the seeds of this aquatic perennial may remain viable for many years, with the oldest recorded lotus germination being from seeds 1,300 years old recovered from a dry lakebed in northeastern China. Therefore, the Chinese regard the plant as a symbol of longevity.

It has a very wide native distribution, ranging from central and northern India, through northern Indochina and East Asia. Today, the species also occurs in southern India, Sri Lanka, virtually all of Southeast Asia, New Guinea, and northern and eastern Australia, but this is probably the result of human translocations. It has a very long history (c. 3,000 years) of being cultivated for its edible seeds and edible leaves, and is commonly cultivated in water gardens. It is the national flower of India and Vietnam.

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Thursday 1 February 2024

FFF632 - ARGYRANTHEMUM

Argyranthemum 'Grandessa Sunset' is an intergeneric hybrid that has been developed in Australia. It is larger and more brightly and intensely coloured than the common argyranthemums and grows well in pots on in the garden. It grows best in full sun, but can tolerate part shade, and can cope with frost and dryness. It grows to about 50 cm height and up to 60 cm width.

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Thursday 25 January 2024

FFF631 - BELLADONNA LILY

Amaryllis belladonna, the Jersey lily, belladonna-lily, naked-lady-lily, or March lily, is a plant species native to Cape Province in South Africa but widely cultivated as an ornamental. It is reportedly naturalised in many places: Corsica, Portugal, the Azores, Madeira, the Canary Islands, the Scilly Isles of Great Britain, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ascension Island, Australia, New Zealand, Mexico, Cuba, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Chile, California, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Michigan and the Juan Fernández Islands.

It is a perennial bulbous geophyte with one to two erect solid stems which appear in late summer. The inflorescence bears 2–12 showy fragrant funnel-shaped flowers on a 'naked' (leafless) stem, which gives it the common name of naked-lady-lily. The pink flowers which may be up to 10cm in length, appear in the autumn before the leaves (hysteranthy) which are narrow and strap shaped.

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Thursday 18 January 2024

FFF630 - SUNFLOWER

The common sunflower (Helianthus annuus) is a species of large annual forb of the genus Helianthus. It is commonly grown as a crop for its edible oily seeds. Apart from cooking oil production, it is also used as livestock forage (as a meal or a silage plant), as bird food, in some industrial applications, and as an ornamental in domestic gardens. Wild H. annuus is a widely branched annual plant with many flower heads. The domestic sunflower, however, often possesses only a single large inflorescence (flower head) atop an unbranched stem.

The plant was first domesticated in the Americas. Sunflower seeds were brought to Europe from the Americas in the 16th century, where, along with sunflower oil, they became a widespread cooking ingredient. With time, the bulk of industrial-scale production has shifted to Eastern Europe, and (as of 2020) Russia and Ukraine together produce over half of worldwide seed production.

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Thursday 11 January 2024

FFF629 - BIDENS

The genus Bidens belongs to the daisy plant family (Asteraceae) and is made up of more than 200 species worldwide. The large genus Bidens contains annual and perennial herbaceous plants which grow anywhere from 10 to 150 cm tall. Bidens has many common names including beggartick, black jack, bur marigold, cobbler’s pegs, Spanish needle, tickseed sunflower, to name just a few! 

Bidens ferulifolia, "Taka Tuka" hybrid (shown here) is a compact perennial (often grown as an annual) originally from Mexico, growing to 60cm tall. The green divided leaves form a neat mound, and the striking daisy like flowers with gold centres and red/orange outer petals bloom in the heat of summer. Suitable for wildflower plantings, beds, borders and containers, are also ideal for hanging baskets. Drought tolerant once established. 

After pollination, elongated seeds with dark shells form the so-called achene fruits. They have an appendage for propagation, called a pappus, which inspired many of the common names used for Bidens. It usually consists of two bristle-like teeth with small hooks, which hook into the fur of animals when they brush past the flowers, transporting the seeds over long distances.

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Thursday 4 January 2024

FFF628 - PERSIAN LILAC

Syringa × persica, the Persian lilac, is a hybrid, thought to originate from a cross of Syringa × laciniata and S. afghanica. More compact than common lilacs, it grows up to 1.2–2.4 m and spreads about 1.5–3.0 m. Persian lilac prefers warmer winter climates (hardiness zones 5–9) than many species of lilac. It is slightly fragrant.

Its hybrid with Syringa vulgaris, the common lilac, is Syringa × chinensis, sometimes called Rouen lilac. This is a different plant than Melia azedarach, also sometimes called Persian lilac.

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Thursday 28 December 2023

FFF627 - STOKESIA

Stokesia is a monotypic genus of flowering plants in the daisy family, Asteraceae, containing the single species Stokesia laevis. Common names include Stokes' aster and stokesia. The species is native to the southeastern United States.

The flowers appear in the summer and are purple, blue, or white in nature.The plant is cultivated as a garden flower. Several cultivars are available, including the cornflower blue 'Klaus Jelitto', 'Colorwheel', which is white, turning purple over time, and 'Blue Danube', which has a blue flower head with a white centre. More unusual cultivars include the pink-flowered 'Rosea' and yellow-flowered 'Mary Gregory'.

Like a few other plants (such as some species of Vernonia), it contains vernolic acid, a vegetable oil with commercial applications. The genus is named after Jonathan Stokes (1755–1831), English botanist and physician.

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