Feature Flower Lily of the Valley - from Garden of Eden Flower Shop
Posted on April 25 2020
Lily of the Valley is a choice flower for florists. Very hard to get, and quite costly when it’s available, it is a delicate and fragrant addition to bridal bouquets and Easter arrangements. It is also the birth flower for the month of May, when Lily of the Valley is at its peak. Known also as the May lily, Tears of Our Lady, Mary’s Tears, or in French “muguet des bois”, the perfume industry’s favorite flower’s scent hearkens one back to a simpler time; the decade of the 1940’s saw the advent of Coty’s Muguet Des Bois perfume, and the delicate aroma is as timeless as the flower itself.
An adorable legend tells of a Lily of the Valley that fell so in love with the singing of a nightingale that it only would bloom when the bird came back to the woods in May.
Germanic mythology associates Lily of the Valley with the goddess Ostara, from whom we get the word “Easter”. Ostara symbolized purity, rebirth, and innocence, so the flower’s inclusion in floral arrangements for Easter is due to many layers of meanings.
The Lily of the Valley is mentioned eleven times in the Bible. Eve’s tears became Lily of the Valley when she was expelled from the Garden of Eden. The flower also represents humility, in the way the flower heads gaze downward. In Victorian flower language, Lily of the Valley means “return to happiness” – either in happy memories, coming to terms after mourning, or starting over.
All parts of the flower are poisonous – leaves, flowers, berries, stalks. Ingested even in small amounts, it can cause abdominal pain, rashes, blurred vision, and cardiac events. But not to worry! Using Lily of the Valley in bridal bouquets, such as Kate Middleton’s when she wed Prince William, isn’t harmful at all. You can touch and handle the flower all you want, just don’t eat it!
Lily of the Valley spreads underground through the root system, so at the end of its growing season don’t hesitate to cut your plants down to the soil for the next season. It’s better for your plants if you get rid of old stems and leaves, so it can start fresh! There are many new cultivars available, including a new pink-belled flower! And if you have access to Lily of the Valley, do yourself a favor and bring vasefuls of it inside to lighten your spirit with the sweet floral scent!
Happy Birthday, May babies!