Sunday, October 14, 2007

Flower of the South Wind

Zephyranthes candida


Every fall, the stands of white rain lily (Zephyranthes candida) in my garden suddenly flower, seemingly overnight. The other rain lilies haven’t done much, which is a shame because they are actually prettier. One stand is a beautiful apricot, and the other, a pale pink. Rain Lilies, also called Zephyr Flower and Fairy Lily, are frequently found in desert gardens, as they are drought tolerant, and can take full sun.

There is something fanciful about this flower. According to most sources, Zephyranthes means “flower of the south wind” and candida means white. However, the definition of zephyr means "mild wind" and zephuros in ancient Greek means “west wind.” It makes me wonder which way the wind was blowing when this flower acquired its name. In The Language of Flowers, Zephyranthes means, “fond caresses,” and another source states Zephyr Flower stands for “expectation.” Altogether, I find the names and meanings quite charming. Just like the flower.

11 comments:

RUTH said...

How lovely and really interesting to read the information about it Happy GTS :o)

Genie said...

What a wonderful flower and a terrific description! Thanks for passing along the information. Happy GTS! :-)

genny said...

thats pretty in there. I dont know lots of the names of the flowers hope i can. Happy Sunday. mine is up here in http://mommygen.blogspot.com and http://happymomiam.blogspot.com thanks

kate said...

Aiyana,

These are beautiful lilies. They remind me of Abyssinian lilies, though the colour is more delicate.

That's what I like about your blog - the way in which you talk about the history behind flowers. This one made me laugh ... rather confusing wind directions! The language of flowers is fascinating to me, especially as it can be so contradictory too.

Jean said...

Thanks for the info! Pretty flower.

TopVeg said...

A lovely photo of a beautiful flower. I certainly could do with a fond caress at this time of year! Amazing that the white rain lily can survive in your climate- it looks so delicate.

gwapasila said...

so pretty. nice shot...Mine is up at My Two Cents Worth hope you can visit me too.

Curtis said...

What a sweet flower and the description of it. lovely!

Dirty Knees said...

How nice that your flowers are still coming into season. I see that the temperature in Phoenix is 82 degrees today. No wonder the flowers are looking so happy.

farmingfriends said...

What a beautiful lily and I thought the information about the names was very interesting. Sara from farmingfriends

Bare Bones Gardener said...

Hey there, here downunder they are called rain lillies or autumn crocus http://www.eplants.com.au/DisplayProduct.asp?ID=3395

beautiful plants none the less. Still growing well even in the sub tropics.