Posts Tagged ‘Convallaria majalis’

Friday, May 15, 2009

White Coral Bells . . .

Another Look at Lily of the Valley

Above: Lily of the valley (Convallaria majalis)

White coral bells upon a slender stalk
Lilies-of-the-valley deck my garden walk. . . .

—Traditional English Round

In spite of its medieval association with the exotic Queen of Sheba (see last week’s post), this modest, northern European woodland flower is actually as easy to grow as it is familiar. Read more »

Friday, May 8, 2009

I am the lily of the valleys . . .

Lily of the Valley Detail from Two Riddles of the Queen of Sheba Lily of the Valley in Fruit

Above, from left to right: Detail of a potted lily of the valley forced for early display in Cuxa cloister; Detail of the tapestry The Queen of Sheba before King Solomon from Two Riddles of the Queen of Sheba; Lily of the valley fruiting in Bonnefont Garden in late summer.

I am the flower of the field,
And the lily of the valleys.
As the lily among thorns, so is
My love among the daughters.

—Canticle of Canticles (Song of Songs) 2:1-2

The lily and the rose are the chief adornments of the allegorical hortus conclusus, the enclosed garden of the Virgin rooted in the language of the Song of Songs in the Old Testament. Read more »