Frequently Asked Gardening Questions

Week #2 Question:
What does your flowering gift mean?

Why do we give flowers to those we love? For one, because they’re beautiful and they make people smile. But we often choose specific flowers for the meaning behind them. There’s no more beautiful way to send someone a message without having to say a word! Take a few minutes and learn the quiet yet wonderful language of flowers.

Flowers and their meanings:

Roses have long been used to show love and passion, but they have more meanings than just that, depending on the color:
Red – enduring passion
White – humility and innocence
Yellow – friendship and joy
Pink – gratitude, appreciation, and admiration
Orange – enthusiasm and desire
Lilac and purple – enchantment and love at first sight

The number of Roses you give is also significant:

1 – On a first date, it stands for love at first sight. Later, it can mean “I still love you.”
2 – mutual love and affection
3 – A traditional one month anniversary gift.
6 – infatuation
9 – “We’ll be together forever”
10 – “Our love is perfection”
12 – “Be mine”
13 – “You’ll be my friend forever”
15 – “I’m sorry”
20 – “My feelings for you are truly sincere”
21 – “I’m dedicated to you”
24 – “I’m yours!”
25 – “Congratulations!”
36 – “I’m head over heels in love”
40 – “My love for you in genuine”
50+ – Expresses a love that knows no bounds.

Alstroemeria, often known as a Peruvian Lily or Lily of the Incas, symbolize friendship and devotion.

The Anemone, whose name comes from the Greek word for “windflower,” is thought to bring luck and protect against evil. Legend also says that when an Anemone closes its petals, rain is approaching. Another myth was that fairies slept under the petals after they closed at sunset. These magical or prophetic beliefs about the Anemone may be why it is also used to represent anticipation.

Chrysanthemums symbolize optimism and joy.

Delphiniums, commonly known as Larkspur, symbolize an open heart and deep affection while conveying a sense of lightness and levity.

Gladioluses get their name from the shape of their leaves which comes from the Latin word “gladius,” meaning sword. From this comes the flowers’ meaning: strength and moral integrity. They can also represent infatuation, with a bouquet conveying that the recipient pierces the giver’s heart with passion.

There are differing opinions as to the meaning of the Hydrangea: the abundance of petals and lavish, rounded shape symbolize vanity and boastfulness; a bouquet shows the giver’s thankfulness for the recipient’s understanding; or Hydrangea blooms represent any emotion that’s truly heartfelt.

The three upright petals of the Iris symbolize faith, valor, and wisdom.

Lilacs are often considered a harbinger of spring, and those with purple blooms stand for the first emotions of love, while white ones symbolize youthful innocence.

Lilies symbolize purity and refined beauty. Depending on the color and type, they have different meanings: White lily – modesty and virginity; Orange lily – passion; Yellow lily – cheerfulness; Easter lily - symbol of Virgin Mary.

Peonies are a symbol of riches and honor. Their lush, rounded blooms embody prosperity and romance and are seen as an omen of good fortune and a happy marriage.

Week #1 Question:
What is a Plant Patent?

Have you ever gone to a nursery and noticed the letters “PP” and a set of numbers next to a plant’s name? Ever wondered what they are? Well, they’re the plant patent. The “PP” stands for Plant Patent, and the number is the patent number that the plant is listed under. And what a plant patent does is protect a plant from vegetative, or asexual, reproduction for 20 years. Simply put, a patent is granted to someone who has invented or discovered and asexually reproduced a distinct and new plant variety, which then means others cannot legally asexually reproduce or sell this plant without the permission of the patent holder. And this reproduction includes cuttings, layering, tissue cultures, corms, rhizomes, bulbs, grafting, nucellar embryos, budding, and runners.

Now, you may also be wondering what the point of this is or think it sounds a bit selfish for a grower to try to monopolize the market of a certain plant, but there are distinct reasons for a grower applying for a plant patent. Plant growers often spend years trying to foster a particular variety, and if they have no protection for their work, another grower could take that plant and market it everywhere, essentially leaving the one who did all the work empty-handed. In that regard, it’s the same as a regular product patent: protection of one’s ideas and hard work.

There are, of course, other rules and regulations concerning Plant Patents, and for further information, visit the US Patent and Trademark Office.

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