Nov
26

Christmas Floral Facts and Fancies

Posted by

Christmas Floral Facts and Fancies Christmas Trees and Wreaths Winter was a time of celebration to pre-Christian Romans and they decorated fir trees in honor of this seasonal change.

The Votayk tribe of Finland believed that certain branches of the evergreen were family gods and they made sacrifices to these branches with bread, meat and drink. Traditionally, these items were placed under the tree. The tribesmen further believed that a new house would have bad luck unless a pine tree was placed under the roof. Each tree was complete with cloth spread and a feast was laid in sacrifice to the family gods dwelling with the tree.                                                               Christmas Rose

In the late 1800’s, the English and Americans were using small, sparsely decorated trees, A green wreath or a few branches of pine were all they used to adorn the front door of their homes. But, the German people of this era used elaborate ornaments of tinsel and candles, and you always saw a star placed at the very top of their trees.

At the turn of the century, candles were replaced by electric lights as a safety measure, and the tradition of a glittering decorated tree became the custom. With the introduction of string lights, many people considered it unlucky to use an odd number of lights on the tree.

In today’s society, Christmas trees can come in a range of sizes to fit anyone’s home decor from an apartment in the city to a country house in the mountains.

Methods of decorating Christmas trees have also changed. In recent years, social trends have dictated that our Christmas trees can come in a wide variety of colors. Yuletide trees may reflect traditional customs of the Victorian age. Crisp, fresh, natural balsam, fir and pine are again fashionable. Paper doll cutouts, glass Christmas balls, candy canes and fresh flowers (especially roses) hold to tradition. Fresh roses can be placed in water tubes to decorate trees when a host or hostess is giving a holiday party. Christmas wreaths, the kissing cousin of the tree, are ancient symbols of eternal life, a circle with no beginning and no end.

The use of a Christmas wreath as a decoration on your front door, mantel or bay window symbolizes a sign of welcome and long life to all who enter.

Christmas Roses

Christian legend tells us how the rose came to be associated with the holy night when Christ was born. A little shepherdess tending sheep near Bethlehem saw the Three Wise Men and after hearing their story, followed them to the manger where they laid their gifts before Jesus. Being poor, the peasant girl had nothing to offer the child. She turned away and wept. Immediately, and angel appeared and touched the earth about the girl and the ground was covered with lovely red roses. The girl joyfully gathered up the blossoms and carried them to the manger. The Holy Child turned from the gems and gold of the Wise Men, reached forth His tiny hands for the roses, and smiled as the girl heaped them at His feet. As this story depicts and tradition has shown, Christmas is a time when families are gathered together to celebrate Christ’s birth and the celebration of time-honored family customs. It is a time of love and giving. For these reasons, roses, our national floral emblem and the “flower of love”, are a perfect gift. During this romantic holiday time, many couples become engaged. Red roses carry the traditional red and green theme and are often used to help with the Christmas marriage proposal. A few red roses boxed, arranged or carried by hand with the engagement ring carefully tied to one rose stem, can say “be mine” in a unique and memorable way. Roses are ideal for any gift giving or special remembrance occasion. The versatility of a rose gift affords you the opportunity of establishing a traditional trademark. No sizes to worry about. No calories to count. Whether a full dozen, two or three in a carefully selected vase, or a few for the thoughtful host/hostess as a thank you, roses are perfect for adding your signature touch.

Poinsettias

The star-shaped poinsettia has become one of the best known floral symbols of the Christmas season. Brought to this country from Mexico over 125 years ago by Dr. Joel Poinsett, the poinsettia is still called by many “Flor de Noche Buena” – flower of the Holy Night. Today poinsettias are the most popular Christmas plant and are the number one flowering potted plant in the United States. Simple but abundant decorations, such as artfully arranged poinsettia leaves mixed with roses and a sprig of holly or other holiday greens in a cornucopia effect or brandy snifter, make for a colorful individual place setting attractively offsetting any holiday feast. After the party is over, distribute the snifters to various locations throughout the house – the bedroom, bath or possibly by the sink in the kitchen.

Mistletoe

Through the ages, mistletoe has meant many things to many people. It is said to have miraculous qualities. Mistletoe has the power to heal diseases, give fertility to humans and animals, and bring good luck and great blessings. Lovers kissing beneath this blessed foliage and berry have the promise of marriage and are assured happiness. When brought indoors, mistletoe bestows blessings and radiates love. Mistletoe as a decoration has always been hung from the ceiling in a doorway or focal point in the home. By adding a few sprigs of holly and one or two fresh roses, you can give special meaning to your greeting.

Holly

Holly, both the tree itself and its brightly berried branches, holds special significance at Christmas. The very name is believed to be derived from the word “holy”. Holly has been widely used in ceremonials long before the Christian era. The Druids considered holly scared and used it in healing the sick. It would repel evil spirits and protect a house from lightning and storms. Branches hung around the house and stable were a good omen, and it was believed that cattle would thrive if holly were placed where it could be seen on Christmas Day. Popular all over the world, holly has been a Christmas symbol for many nations. In Italy, sprigs of this evergreen are used in decorating mangers. In Germany, it is known as “Christ dorn’, the thorn woven in the crown of the Crucifixion, and an old legend relates that before the berries were red they were yellow, and the wounds of Christ stained them. Roses and holly intertwined can also be called upon to wrap the unwrappable gift. It’s difficult to wrap a Christmas vacation, a youngster’s gift of a picture painted especially for Mom, a booklet of homemade coupons that can be redeemed for “doing dishes” or “cleaning out the garage”. A new car parked in the driveway on Christmas Eve can be a wrapping dilemma. But, by adding a note or car keys to an arrangement of roses and fresh decorative holly in a vase under the tree, you can tell the recipient just where and what their gift is all about. Rest assured that your unique gift giving style will be long remembered. Christmas is your traditions… those traditions which your family observes, some old and some new. Make old and new Christmas traditions blend to reflect your personality, style and the love you have for family and friends. Even the warmth you share with a stranger is what makes Christmas memories last forever.

Information Provided Courtesy of Roses Inc., P.O. Box 99, Haslett, MI 48840.

Leave a Reply

Growing Expectations, Inc. PO Box 268 Princeton, NJ 08542 Telephone – (609) 924 – 9782 FAX (609) 737 – 2344