Tag Archives: exotic

The Many Faces of Love Lies Bleeding

Photo of Amaranthus caudatus flower

Amaranthus caudatus aka Love-Lies-Bleeding

We’ve found a flower to feature in August that could very well have a multiple personality disorder, but sounds like a Bon Jovi song title; Love-Lies-Bleeding.

This beautiful plant is also known as Amaranthus, Amaranth, Tampala, Tassel Flower, Flaming Fountain, Fountain Plant, Joseph’s Coat, Love-Lies-Bleeding, Molten Flower, Prince’s Flower and Summer Poinsettia and they have the same amount of uses, if not more.

These rope-like, brightly colored red, or purple flowers hang from tall, upright branching stems and have breathtaking, deep red or green tassels. The cascading flowers were one of the staple foods of the Incas and is now known as the kiwicha in the Andes. To this day, people around the world toast the Amaranth grains much like popcorn and mix it with honey or molasses to make a treat called alegra, which means joy in Mexican Spanish. North Americans are rediscovering the nutritional property of the grains, which is considered a “super-food” and a “complete protein” when boiled and can be used as a substitute for either rice, or oatmeal with a “cream of wheat” consistency. In Africa, China, Greece, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Tibet the edible greens (which are likened to taste like spinach), herbs and grains are consumed daily.

Love Lies Bleeding was used to provide comfort to those suffering physical and psychological pain, by helping them to move beyond their pain and to seek out a greater spiritual awareness. In doing so, it is believed that the person would experience a shift within their soul from suffering to compassion for others, as documented in the story of St. Francis of Assisi.

The botanical name Amaranthus is Greek and means “one that does not wither” or “unfading flower”. They last longer than most flowers once cut and can be easily dried to extend your enjoyment time. As cut flower arrangements, they will last 7 to 10 days in a vase and at least 10 days if hung upside-down for drying. They make beautiful border flowers in the garden.

A beautiful plant with many unusual names and extraordinary uses; Love Lies Bleeding will add color, conversation and comfort to any garden this summer.

Until next time,

Ken Bolt

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A Look into the World of Weird and Exotic Flowers and Plants

Most people love flowers for their pleasing aromas, shapes and pretty colours. But nature is full of extraordinary flowers and plants, and some really take things to a new level. Like for example Dracula benedictii, a species of orchid found in Cordillera Central, Colombia resembles a monkey face, hence the nickname it got. It was named in honor of Benedict Roezl the noted Bohemian collector, who discovered this species.

Monkey Face

Monkey Face

Or the White Egret, a distinctive wild orchid. It commonly grows in Asia and has been successfully flourishing in the United States. Its different appearance makes it feel like a flying bird. As its name shows, this type of wild Orchid comes only in white flowers. A completely grown flowering spike can have ten flowers, and can attain the height of sixteen inches.

White Egret

White Egret

And how about Ceropegia haygarthii. This weird charmer should be an inspiration to dream up some imaginary fabled beings.

Ceropegia haygarthii

Ceropegia haygarthii

Flowers and plants don’t always have to smell nice. Sometimes they stink. Like the Amorphophallus titanum, popularly known as the “corpse flower,” is the world’s biggest and worst smelling flower. Native to the Borneo rain forest, the plant blooms only a few times in its 40-year life span. During the first eight hours, the bloom emits a scent similar to rotting eggs or a dead animal. Gross!

Corpse Flower

Corpse Flower

Oh and it’s cousin, The stinking corpse lily is the largest known individual flower in the world. The flower is very rare, hard to locate, and smells like a decaying/rotting carcass.

Stinking Corpse Lily

Stinking Corpse Lily

Here is a nice one.. Lamprocapnos spectabilis, known commonly as old-fashioned bleeding-heart, Venus’s car, lady in a bath, Dutchman’s trousers, and lyre-flower is a rhizomatous perennial plant native to eastern Asia from Siberia south to Japan.

Batter Up! Baseball plant, is an incredibly popular house plant that is virtually extinct in the wild due to habitat destruction and the botanical equivalent of poaching. Its sap is poisonous, but it does make an attractive yard ornament.

Baseball Plant

Baseball Plant

Flowering from Spring through Fall, the Bat Face is a lovely addition to gardens, especially those in the South. Native to Mexico, the Bat Face Cuphea produces 1” tubular flowers that are rich with color.

Bat Face

Bat Face

This is a Parrot Flower native to Thailand. It is a protected species and resembles a parrot quite vividly. This flower can not be exported from the country so this is a rare opportunity to see such an amazing sight.

Parrot Flower

Parrot Flower

For more exotic flowers and plants visit out Pinterest board: http://pinterest.com/brantflorist/exotic-plants-flowers-trees-fruits/

Do you like a particular plant or flower that is extra ordinary? Let us know by commenting below..