Separating us from the animals, our miraculous gift of speech is not always well spent.
Frequently squandered on dithering and gossip, utterly lost to us in moments when just the right word would have changed everything, sometimes aimed and hurled like a weapon, its absence is perhaps the most frustrating of all. If you’ve let an awkward silence develop between yourself and someone you care about, consider sending flowers, which have long been used to speak when words fail us. The freesia is the perfect bloom to break down a barrier of communication and create a connection that you want to keep together. Whether it has been a frosty week of silence after an argument or years of water under the bridge, consider the freesia as a fresh and fragrant flag of parley in a sea of silence.
A distant relative of the iris, the freesia is native to parts of Africa. It is prized for its dainty, upturned, funnel-shaped flowers, which bloom along one side of a gracefully arched stem. Delicate in appearance, the leaves are grass-like and form at the base of the plant, from which 1 to 2 foot long stems develop. Each stem is slightly branched and is topped with the one-sided, curvacious blooms that come in white, pastel pinks, purples, coral and a buttery yellow. The top-most bloom opens first, with each of the other 4 to 5 buds opening up slowly overt time. This progressive blooming sequence gives the flowers a fresh look for more than a week and gives any arrangement a more natural look.
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One of the most highly prized flowers when it comes to fragrance, the freesia has a unique scent that is both sweet and spicy. Found in lotions, perfumes, shampoos and candles, the scent has a specific floral smell that is slightly different between the different colors. White freesias, for example, have a soft, peppery smell, while the purple ones are like an freshly iced cake and the yellow ones smell just like sunshine would. A solid color of freesia stems alone in a vase are quite striking, but they also look lovely mixed in with lilies of a complementary color. Said to represent innocence in the Victorian language of flowers, they are a great start to a conversation that is long overdue.
The freesia has been cultivated since the 19th century, when it was derived from a cross between two species. The hybrid nature of this flower’s very existence is a great reminder that, sometimes, bridging the distance between two things can have beautiful results.