The gloxinia can be found in many gardens nowadays, embellishing them with its colorfulness. Nevertheless, it is still one of the more unusual flowers, which is why most people still do not know very much about it. To change that, this article contains the most important information.

First of all, the name gloxinia or garden gloxinia is a colloquial name and does not exist in botany. Instead, the named plant is a member of the genus Gesneriaceae. It can be found under the name Sinningia.

gloxinia pink white

Sinningia is a plant that grows mostly quite herbaceous or in semi-shrubs on rocky ground. There it keeps itself with bulbous root strands that can reach a diameter of up to 40 centimeters. From there it grows upward with several unbranched stems that can grow from one centimeter to one and a half meters tall.
The leaves, which usually grow in groups, have a very uneven surface and an elliptical to elongated shape. They grow up to 6 centimeters long, are densely hairy and have a notched or serrated edge.

flower gloxinia

The flowers of the gloxinia are either in groups of up to ten or singly on the sides and ends of the stems. They usually stand out horizontally and are covered with a felt-like down. Their stalk is maximum 15 centimeters long, but sometimes it is absent.
The shape of the flower itself resembles a funnel or a bell; inside it are the reproductive parts. It grows from two to six centimeters long. The colors range from orange and red, to pink and white.

gloxinia red

Seeds are formed inside the flowers, where they grow and mature. These are dry, fleshy capsule fruits that are elliptical in shape and have two opening valves. The seed is light brown and longitudinally striped when mature.

Gloxinia is most common in the Neotropics (i.e., the Indian region) and in the Andes of South America because it appreciates the poor, stony soil with an elevated site. However, some species have been able to establish themselves in Central America as a result of its distribution.
Nowadays, however, it can be found in all parts of the world, where it is cultivated by botanists, but also by enthusiastic gardeners.

In its use, unfortunately, the Sinningia is not too versatile. Since it neither tastes good nor can help to cure or alleviate diseases, it is still used only as an ornamental plant.

This plant was first introduced as a genus of its own in 1825 by Christian Gottfried Daniel Nees von Esenbeck in his “Annales de sciences naturelles”. Its name is intended to honor the head gardener of the botanical garden in Bonn, Wilhelm Sinning.



Clematis is a plant that belongs to the Ranunculaceae family. The scientific name of this plant genus is Ranunculaceae.

The clematis can have different appearances. Firstly, it can occur as a woody and herbaceous climbing plant, which is also common. In rare cases, clematis can occur as a perennial and non-climbing plant or in the form of a shrub.
The evergreen and deciduous lianas of the plant reach up to 6 meters in length. The foliage leaves, which are usually arranged in opposite directions, are divided into petioles and leaf blades. While the petioles are short and long, the leaf blades are simple or pinnate. The margins of the leaves are either smooth or toothed.

clematis white

Clematis flowers are extremely rare to occur singly. Rather, they are in panicle or cymose inflorescences. Directly below the flowers are scale-like bracts, which, however, never enclose the flowers.
Furthermore, the flowers are arranged in a symmetrical shape and can appear in a variety of colors. These include blue, red and cream.

Some species of clematis also have single-seeded nut fruits, which have a pistil up to 11 cm long. Other species have bellows fruits and even berry fruits.

clematis pink

The approximately 300 species of clematis are distributed all over the world. Most species occur in temperate latitudes, but some are also found in subarctic regions, alpine altitudes and in the tropics.
China is home to the largest number of clematis species, 147, and North America is also home to about 32 species. But the clematis is also common in European countries.
The reason for the worldwide distribution is that most species of clematis are suitable for any climate. Only a few exceptions require warmer and more temperate climates and need special protection against frost and cold.

clematis purple

Various medicines can be made from some species of clematis. For this purpose, as a rule, the stems with flowers and the leaves of the plant are used.
It is scientifically proven that clematis can have a great influence on the testicles and to the prostate gland. It is especially effective when they are hardened or swollen. Clematis can be used on both adults and children.

Clematis originated in Asia, including China, Japan and Mongolia. In the early 13th century, the first species finally arrived in Europe.

Furthermore, nowadays the clematis is a must for many garden besizers, hobby gardeners and botanists. It is considered easy to care for and is also a real eye-catcher or highlight in any garden.



Freesia (botanically Freesia) belongs to the iris family. The flower was named after Friedrich Heinrich Theodor Freese, a physician and scientist who lived in the 19th century.

Freesia is a mostly herbaceous plant and loses its foliage in the fall. The tubers grow to about 1cm in size. The flat, parallel-veined leaves occur basally or bipinnately on the stem and have a smooth leaf margin.

spring-flowers freesias

On the simple or branched stems sit unilaterally between four and ten strongly fragrant flowers. These are arranged in spikes and are hermaphroditic, monosymmetrical and tridentate. The six similar petals are fused in a tubular or funnel shape, with the flower tube usually curved. Only one circle with three free, fertile stamens is present.
There are only about 15 true species of freesia, but very many hybrid forms therefore exist countless, different color varieties of this flower. White, yellow, orange, pink, purple and red are just some of the possibilities. Moreover, multicolored or double flowers are also possible.

The flower contains three carpels that are fused into an underside ovary. Also divided into three thin branches is the pistil. The trifoliate capsule fruits contain a few seeds each. These are unwinged, round, hard, shimmering and light to dark brown.

freesia pink

Originally the freesia comes from South Africa, preferably it grows in dry areas where sudden rains occur. In our latitudes the flowers have high season from January to June.

freesia white

Initially in Europe it was only possible to grow the plant in greenhouses, but in the meantime it has been possible to establish it in gardens as well. However, the freesias must overwinter in the warm. In the middle of May you can start planting the tubers in the bed, first in a shady place, later in a sunny place. A bright place without direct sunlight is perfectly suitable. As a thank you, the gardener will be rewarded with a bloom in summer.
Due to its intense fragrance, freesia is also extremely popular as a cut flower. The bouquet keeps very long in the living room, up to 10 days. By regularly shortening the stems, the shelf life can be significantly extended. The plant feels most comfortable at room temperature of 15-20 degrees.

A bouquet of freesias, this symbol stands for unconditional love and so it is not surprising that it is the custom to give his spouse this after seven years of marriage. In this way, the bond for life is reconfirmed and mutual respect and affection are expressed.
The fragrant flowers are also known as messengers of spring, together with other colorful flowers can be wonderfully integrated into mixed bouquets on the theme.
In the garden, freesias are eye-catchers. They enhance any bed, but are perennial not hardy, so they need to move indoors before winter. Next spring, they are planted outside again and shine in new colorful, fragrant bloom.



Daffodil, which has more than 65 different species and in this country is also called jonquil, is rightly considered one of the most popular harbingers of spring.

Its name is derived from the Greek word νάρκειν narkein, which means to stun.

This comparison can be traced back to the poet’s daffodil found in Greece, which gained notoriety primarily for its intense, pungent and numbing odor.


Later the Romans, above all the poet Ovid, adopted the Greek terminology and finally renamed it into today’s botanical name narcissus.

Naming this plant name is considered the legend of Narkissos, a beautiful youth of Greek mythology, who loved only himself and finally fell in love with his own image.

At his place of death remained not a dead body, but a daffodil.

For a better distinction, the poet’s daffodil, which is considered a true narcissus, was given the scientific name Narcissus poeticus L., and the daffodil that is common today was given the name Narcissus pseudonarcissus L..

Where the addition “pseudonarcissus” stands for fake daffodil.

Daffodils are perennial, herbaceous plants.

Depending on the genus, they reach a growth height of about 5 to 80 centimeters.

So-called survival organs in the form of bulbs serve the daffodils for survival and protection.

flower daffodil

The leaves of narcissus species form both strap-shaped and linear formations.

Some varieties even have thin, grass-like or stem-rounded deciduous leaves.

The number of deciduous leaves varies from three to four, depending on the flowering intensity.

The inflorescence stems of daffodils exhibit an undivided and leafless appearance and vary in shape depending on the species.

Some daffodils have compressed inflorescence stems with a distinct keel.

Other daffodils have a rounded inflorescence shaft.

The inflorescence shaft is basically upright in the middle of the foliage.

Depending on the genus, the compressed, racemose-looking inflorescences of daffodils have between one and twenty flowers.

Whereby the flower buds are enclosed by spatha-like bracts.

The colors of daffodil flowers impress with brilliant shades of white, yellow or orange.

Identical-looking petals form the perianth, which also bears the name perigone with six tepals the perigone leaves.

In addition, daffodils have a so-called secondary corolla.

The flower shapes of daffodils vary greatly depending on the genus.

Fertilized daffodil flowers form capsule fruits with three chambers that contain numerous seeds.

The majority of daffodil species contain capsule fruits with 36 seeds; only a few species, such as hoop skirt daffodil, contain significantly more seeds.

However, none of the daffodil plants has more than 60 seeds per capsule fruit.

The seeds require an average of five to six weeks to fully mature.

Depending on the species, the shape and color of the seeds vary from wedge-shaped and dull black to elongated round and shiny black.

Upon reaching maturity, the capsule fruits, also called split capsules burst open at the dorsal seams of each individual carpel.

narcissus flower

Seed dispersal eventually occurs via gusts of wind or by an animal passing by, and the seeds simply fall out of the capsule fruit.

The main distribution focus of daffodils is considered to be southwestern Europe, northwestern Africa and Asia.

A daffodil variety that blooms only in the fall is found today, for example, along the coast from Morocco to Libya.

Only a few daffodil species occur in the coastal area of the eastern Mediterranean.

Other distribution areas are the coasts of Sardinia and Corsica.

Among the most widely distributed genera of narcissus are the poet narcissus and Narcissus pseudonarcissus, colloquially known as daffodils.

Most often, daffodils are used as colorful splashes of color in flower meadows, flower beds or in orchards.

The tall daffodil varieties with sturdy stems also make excellent cut flowers.

These can be arranged into beautiful spring bouquets, especially at Easter time. Furthermore, daffodils can also be used as decorative balcony or patio plants.

It is easy to grow them in pots, window boxes or tubs.

The yellow daffodil looks particularly good in combination with blue-flowering plants such as the blue star, the Caucasus forget-me-not or a grape hyacinth.

For particularly colorful compositions are also suitable wild tulips or primroses in all color variations.

Despite its toxicity, the daffodil, in addition to its use as a decorative houseplant and balcony plant, has received attention as a medicinal plant since ancient times.

In ancient Greece, it was mainly used to treat various skin conditions and health complaints such as ulcers, bumps or bruises.

In homeopathic medicine, daffodil serves as a remedy for whooping cough and colds.

The narcissus is associated with several properties.

Accordingly, on the one hand, the daffodil represents spring, fertility, rebirth and eternal life, but also sleep and death.

It also symbolizes beauty, vanity, great love and altruism.

In China it is even considered a symbol of luck and in Arab countries it is a symbol of service and modesty.



Gerbera, which belongs to the Asteraceae plant family and is originally native to Asia, South Africa and Madagascar, is particularly light-hungry. Accordingly, it requires a sunny to off-sun location. In the course of the growth phase, the heat-loving plant also requires comparatively high humidity, which is why the leaves of the gerbera should ideally be sprayed regularly with lime-free water during this phase. Currently, 45 different Gerbera species are known. The relatively most important variety in this respect is the genus Gerbera jamesonii, which the Briton William Jameson brought back from one of his expeditions more than 100 years ago and imported to Europe.

gerbera yellow and pink

This colorful plant has rosette-forming and upright growth characteristics. Characteristic of the gerbera is its toothed to elongated or obovate leaf shape in combination with colorful flower colors, which cover a wide color spectrum with purple, yellow, orange, white, pink and red. The flowering period of the plant extends between the calendar months of May to September. Single and ray florets characterize its flower form. It requires a sandy to loamy and water-permeable substrate in conjunction with moderate soil moisture and a ph-neutral soil condition.

The lime-tolerant composite plant is sensitive to frost and is preferably used for the greening of interiors and planters. The individual flower stems are adorned with large capitulum flowers that have a velvety to soft surface. Gerbera flowers typically resemble daisies in appearance. Bicolored, double and semi-double cultivars are considered to be particularly desirable.


Gerberas, in principle, should be watered around the stem plant. Watering directly above the center of the plant promotes rotting of the cut flower and, accordingly, should be avoided at all costs. The plant is happy with regular dipping and watering through a saucer. Drains, cleverly embedded in the bottom of the pot, also effectively counteract any waterlogging. Cutting the leaves should generally be avoided.

During the winter, a temperate greenhouse or a sunny spot directly by the window are perfect locations for the light-hungry Gerbera. If the outside temperature is constant and above + 16 ° C, the plant can be placed outside. During the summer months it needs a lot of liquid and should be watered vigorously. In this way, you can purposefully prevent any drying of the soil. In the autumn and winter months, the flower should be placed in a cooler location compared directly to the summer, where it requires less intensive watering.


For the best possible care, the watering water should be replenished with liquid fertilizer explicitly intended for flowering plants in a 14-day cycle in a time window between April and September. This requires a well thought-out dosage of the amount of fertilizer. In principle, the flower should be supplied with a smaller amount of liquid fertilizer than that indicated on the package. October marks the beginning of the winter dormancy of the plant. Accordingly, fertilizing the flower outside the main flowering period should be consistently avoided. Older gerberas should be repotted in potting soil during the spring months, and they can be easily divided for propagation.

To ensure optimal flowering power, experts give the plant a winter break starting in October. For this purpose, insiders place gerbera in a bright place with a constant average temperature of about + 14 ° C. During the winter rest the flower should be watered sparingly and do not fertilize.

Gerbera blight is considered the worst disease that can afflict the plant from the wicker family. Affected plants are basically unsalvageable, so they should be discarded immediately. The first indicators of Gerbera rot are pale green to gray-brown discoloration around the leaves. Subsequently, a rotting process starts around the roots and the base of the stem. Potential causes of the plant’s disease pattern include an oversupply of fertilizers, above-average soil moisture, a location tied to temperatures that are objectively too low for the plant, and excessively acidic soil.

In addition, gray mold can attack the gerbera. This primarily appears if the flower receives too little fresh air, the soil is over-wet, the plant is exposed to comparatively large temperature fluctuations or if the individual flowers are too close together. Leaves affected by gray mold should be picked off early. For the best possible protection of the remaining plant, the gerbera should then be wetted with a high-quality fungicide.



The beguiling fragrance of the hyacinth, Hyacinthus orientalis, and its magnificent colors not only put the garden in a festive mood in the spring, but also beautify the living room. Because in winter, the bulbous plant can be made to bloom in cooler rooms.

The bulbous plant belongs to the large family of herbaceous plants. Characteristic of the hyacinth is that the leaves and flowers begin to grow at the same time. The leaves are green, slightly shiny, striped and envelop the flower shaft. The leaves reach a height of 25 to 30 centimeters and, just like the tall flowers, develop a weight of their own that should not be underestimated. Therefore, especially in living areas, care must be taken to ensure a secure stand.


The flowers also reach a considerable height of about 30 centimeters. The flower shaft bears bell-shaped flowers from April to May. The combination of dense racemose bloom and the sweet, very intense fragrance make the hyacinth a very popular spring bloomer. There are almost no limits to the flower colors, thanks to many hybrids. From delicate white and pink, to bold colors like red and orange, to blue and purple, hyacinth flowers delight with varied shades. The bulbous plant forms capsule fruits. The seed is spherical and dark brown to black.

The hyacinth loves a well-drained, chalky soil and a warm location. It is most comfortable along the wall of the house or in another sunny, wind-protected place in the garden.

The bulbs are planted in the fall at a depth of about 15 centimeters. Compared to small-flowering hyacinth varieties, such as grape hyacinths, large-flowering varieties need to be removed from the ground after the leaves have faded and dried and stored in a dry, cool place until next fall.

Hyacinths herald the arrival of spring. With their blossoms, they skillfully add color accents to the garden and finally end the gray of winter. However, the plants also provide exciting flowers and wonderful fragrance in the balcony box or in the planter on the terrace. In addition, hyacinths are very suitable as cut flowers. Due to their intense fragrance, they should not be placed in bedrooms.

hyacinth pink

It is also very popular to make hyacinths bloom in winter and use them as decorative floral Advent or Christmas ornaments. Special bulbs for this purpose are available in specialized stores. With conventional bulbs from the garden does not always succeed that the hyacinth begins to bloom in winter.

Especially decorative looks blooming hyacinth in a glass. For this purpose, special containers filled with lime-free water, called hyacinth jars are used. However, the hyacinth bulb placed on top should not reach into the water. The hyacinth jar is placed in a dark and cool place. If it is too bright in the cellar or winter garden, the jar is given a cover of paper or cardboard. The optimum room temperature is 10 degrees Celsius. Once the shoot reaches about eight centimeters in height, the hyacinth is placed in a warmer place. The light cover should not be removed until the flower is formed.

hyacinth blue

Although new cultivars continue to produce exciting flower colors, the hyacinth is not a new plant, but a plant with a long tradition. The plant owes its name to Greek mythology. Hyakinthos was originally a pre-Greek god who was worshipped and symbolized the blossoming and withering of nature. According to legend, the youth was accidentally killed by an errant discus throw from the god Apollo. Apollo was upset and very saddened by the youth’s death, so he caused the hyacinth to sprout from Hyacinthus’ blood. However, the original home of the hyacinth is the Orient. As an ornamental plant, it came to Europe in the 16th century and from the 18th century, through intensive crossbreeding, the hyacinths known today with their large flowers and multifaceted colors.



The scientific (Latin) name of the crocus (plural: “crocuses”) is “Crocus” and is derived from the Greek word “Krókos” (κρόκος). However, the ancient Greeks probably meant exclusively the plant from which the spice saffron is obtained, the “Crocus sativus”. Nowadays, however, the name “crocus” is used in ordinary language as well as in science as the official name for the entire plant genus with its more than 200 species.

field of white crocus

The crocus consists of a tuber, on which there are long white roots, a stem, the leaves and the flower. Due to its appearance, it is often classified as a bulbous plant, but this is incorrect. In fact, the bulb is a stem part growing underground, which survives in the ground even after flowering to protect it from the weather.
The leaves of the crocus are narrow and pointed with a smooth edge and resemble blades of grass. They are able to pierce the hard, frozen ground. There are usually about six leaves on a plant.
Depending on the species, crocuses grow between five and 15 centimeters tall.


The crocus has a single flower at the end of the stem, which is above the foliage leaves (called “bracts”). Depending on the species, the crocus blooms in spring or fall in many different colors, but the most common are white, yellow or purple. The shape of the flower is cup- or goblet-shaped, depending on the species, and the individual petals grow out of the stem of the plant in a circle around the flower tube, which contains the stamens.
The crocus flower has three stamens, the filaments of which are fused to the flower cup, and the anthers of the crocus are either yellow, black or white, depending on the species.

The ovary of the crocus is located underground and pushes out of the ground only after fertilization. There it subsequently forms the capsule fruit, which contains the seeds.
The exact timing differs depending on the type of crocus.

Originally, the crocus probably originated in Greece and most species are still found in the Balkans and Asia Minor.
Nevertheless, nowadays it is distributed mainly in Europe, North Africa and as far as Western China.
The crocus prefers regions with cold, wet winters and warm dry summers. Depending on the species, it feels comfortable in sunny to semi-shady locations.

crocuses flowers

Nowadays, the crocus is mainly used as an ornamental plant. Due to its early flowering time starting in February, it is very suitable to bring the first color into the garden and can easily be combined with other spring flowers. Simply plant the crocus on top of other early bloomers and you will have a seamless transition of color and bloom.

Probably the best known and economically most important crocus is saffron ( Crocus Sativus).
This spice has been traded for thousands of years and is now one of the most expensive spices in the world. For its extraction, the stigmas of the crocus are harvested by hand at the time of flowering in autumn and then dried. For one kilogram of saffron, about 150,000 – 200,000 flowers must be harvested.
Another property of saffron is its strong dyeing power, which is why it used to be a sought-after dye, just like the purple snail.
Furthermore, studies show a mood-lifting effect of saffron, so it could be used to treat mild depression.

That the crocus has been known to mankind for a very long time is also reflected in our history and mythology: for example, Krokos in Greek mythology was a youth who was transformed into a plant, the crocus.
There are also theories that the “Rose of Sharon” from the Bible could be a crocus.
Somewhat younger is the naming of the asteroid “(1220) Crocus”, which was named in 1932 after this very plant.
It is certainly nothing new that the crocus family includes both early bloomers and fall bloomers, but did you know that the crocus is a geophyte? It forms so-called traction roots, with which it can pull itself into the optimal position.



The poppy, also known by its scientific name Papaver, belongs to the genus of poppy plants, also called Papaveraceae. Under this genus exist both annual species, for example, the well-known corn poppy or also the opium poppy, and perennial plants, such as the Turkish poppy and the medicinal poppy.

The poppy describes a deciduous, herbaceous plant. The growth height of the poppy can vary from 20 to 90 centimeters. This plant is able to produce a milky sap due to its reticulate connected milky sap tubes. In addition, the poppy is recognized by its little branched stem, which is relatively thin and hairy. The hairy stem leaves are rather rough and bristly with an average length of 15 centimeters.


The poppy flowers from May to July. Its flowers are solitary and terminal. The flowers, which are hermaphroditic, can be recognized by the radial symmetry and the quadrupinnacy with double perianth. When the flower bud opens, the two hairy sepals fall off. The petals of the poppy appear to be irregularly “crumpled” in the bud. The corollas are about 5 to 10 centimeters in diameter. The plant is equipped with four scarlet to purple petals, which have a large black dot in the lower part.
The leaves are extremely thin and therefore resemble crinkly paper. In total, the poppy has about 164 stamens.

The capsule fruit is twice as wide as long. It has a length of 10 to 22 millimeters and is rounded at its base. This capsule contains some several hundred seeds. The capsule fruit is divided into fanned pore capsules by means of several “false septa”, so-called growths on the seed bar. The seeds, the poppy seeds, have a very dark color and are about 1 millimeter in diameter.

poppy flower

This genus contains more than 100 different species.
Mainly, the plant is found in temperate latitudes in the northern hemisphere. In fact, only one species exists, which has spread to the southern hemisphere, more precisely to South Africa.

Some of the poppy species are especially important for medicine. Due to the active substances they contain, the plants are counted among the oldest medicinal plants of all. Both the opium poppy and Papaver setigerum are planted and used for the production of opium. Due to the oily and particularly pleasant nutty smelling seed, the opium poppy is used in some desserts and pastries.


The poppy can also be used raw, by adding the young leaves to salads. The taste is reminiscent of cucumbers with a hazelnut aroma. In addition, the red petals are suitable for decorating and decorating food. The still young and fresh fruits can be eaten, the leaves are also suitable for cooking, like spinach. In earlier years, the plant was made into a syrup for coughs and hoarseness or served as a sedative for infants and pain. Another use of poppy is the processing of poppy seeds into oil. This is said to have similar properties to the opium poppy.

In England, the poppy is a symbol of the memory of fallen soldiers. This was once made famous by a poem In Flanders Fields and by the First World War. On the graves, as the first plant of the approaching summer, the poppy was in full bloom. In Persia, on the other hand, the poppy symbolizes the power of love. Here, too, a poem plays a particularly important role, in which it says : “Yes, as long as there is the poppy, as long as we have to live.”. In Germany, the corn poppy was considered the flower of the year in 2017.



With its beautiful colorful flowers, the geranium has become a popular balcony and garden plant in our country. But what exactly makes it so special? You will find the most important facts about this plant in this article.

In itself, the name “geranium” (from the Greek for “crane”) is a trivial name and not its correct name.
Instead, it belongs to the cranesbill family, technically called Geraniaceae. Within this family it belongs to the genus Pelargonium, which also comes from the Greek and means “stork”. Both names refer to the shape of the flower.
In total, there are between 220 and 280 species.

farmhouse with geranium

Unfortunately, most pelargonium species are only annual plants that grow mostly herbaceous, but shrubs and semi-shrubs also occur.
Starting from the bottom, the hairy leaves on the sides of the stem usually alternate until they are finally found further up, all the same. Stipules are also formed.

The typical pelargonium gathers many flowers into an umbellate inflorescence on a long stem, which also usually contains small bracts.
The single flower is formed by a fixed number of petals that form a nectar tube, as well as an ovary and the characteristic “beaks”. The plant prevents self-pollination by varying the maturation rates of the corresponding parts.

geranium flowers

After the pelargonium fades, several seed pods remain, each containing one seed. This in turn splits into five parts, as it is a cleaved fruit.

About 80 percent of pelargonium species are native to South Africa and Namibia, where they thrive in winter rains. They are also common in the more tropical areas of Africa, such as Kenya, Malawi and Tanzania. A few species also spread to the Arabian Peninsula, the Near East, Australia, New Zealand and some islands.
As for its habitat, this plant is not particularly choosy. It grows both on water bodies, and in the desert, on rocky mountain sides and sandy dunes.

The most important domain of the pelargonium even today, since its export began in the 17th century, is its function as an ornamental plant in gardens and on balconies. For this purpose, over the centuries, more and more new species have been bred and old varieties have been introduced to Europe.
Medicinally, this plant also has its uses, because from its roots can be obtained medicines for colds.
Even the perfume industry has come to rely on pelargonium, especially fragrant varieties such as rose geranium. From such, namely, an essential oil is distilled, which is used in perfumes.
Last but not least, it also has an influence on food preparation. Some varieties are used in the kitchen to refine flavors. This is especially popular for preserves, drinks and desserts.

geranium in pink

Although the pelargonium originated in Africa, it has nevertheless taken Europe by storm. In fact, it became so popular in Switzerland that it was even elevated to the status of national flower.
Scented geranium varieties have also proven over time to be good protection against mosquitoes and wasps, which is probably mainly due to the essential oils that are released with every breath of wind.

So you can see that the geranium has hidden talents and can definitely do more than just look good.



Violets or violas belong to the violet family and there are about 650 different species known to scientists.

The foliage leaves of violas are divided into the so-called leaf style and the leaf blade – this is the flat part of the leaf.

These could be alternately distributed along the shoot axis or all of them can be basally together.

The leaf margin of the stem leaves can be toothed or smooth, while the leaf blades can grow smooth or divided.


In addition, the plant forms stipules, which often bear brown glands at their ends, and in some species a dense pubescence occurs on the back of the leaf.

The flowers of the violas are usually yellow to red in color-the often vivid yellow hues are produced by small grains of dye-or purple to blue.

Whitish, brownish or black colored flowers occur much less often.

The flower shape consists of two mirror-like halves with a total of 5 free sepals and a double perianth.

The lowest so-called petal is the largest and spurred at the base.

To release their seeds and to reproduce, the violas have capsule fruits.

These consist of several carpels, which are fused with the ovary.

To disperse, these leaves open to release the seed inside.

In the northern hemisphere, with some exceptions, they are present almost everywhere, while in the southern hemisphere they are mostly found in mountainous regions, as they need a temperate, not too hot climate to thrive.


Violas originated in North America, Japan and the Andes.

The most common and best known species in Europe are the pansy and the fragrant violet.

Many of the viola species find their place as ornamental plants in parks, gardens or on beds and in planters to beautify the surroundings with their enchanting appearance.

But they can also be used as medicinal and culinary plants.

Thus, some species are used as pretty and edible decoration spread over salad and other dishes and, in addition, used in aromatherapy as oil.

The natural scent of violets is also highly valued in perfume production, while in the cosmetics industry it is now mostly replaced by synthetic substances.

“A violet in the meadow stood bent over and unknown, it was a hearty violet,” wrote Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in 1774 in his poem about the small inconspicuous violet, which comes to death by the steps of a thoughtless shepherdess.


In music, it gained worldwide fame through the setting of this very poem by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, who composed a heartfelt melody to the words in 1785.

The first legends about the violet are transmitted from Greek mythology, where it was considered a companion of the gods and its fragrance was praised as their food.

Then, in the Middle Ages, it was even highly valued as a medicinal plant and used against eye ailments, skin eczema, headaches and lung diseases.

And even later, many a superstition or peasant wisdom was laid on the little violet.

For example, the sight of the first violet in spring is said to bring good luck, and even today in Brittany there is an Easter custom of sowing violets on Good Friday to entice the arrival of spring.

Similar customs also still exist in Hungary and some regions of Croatia.

The appearance of violets in March is still associated with the beginning of spring, the awakening of nature from hibernation, and is still a symbol of love and loyalty, modesty, humility, virginity, paradise, spring and hope.