The Lily of the Valley (convallaria majalis) has to be one of the most sought after flowers for its sweet scent and delicate bell like petals which makes it immediately recognisable. But how much do you know about this stunning little flower? Pod & Pip puts it in the spotlight and gives you some facts I bet you didn't know!
1. It's poisonous if eaten! I didn't know this either!
2. In the 'language of flowers' used in the Victorian era, the Lily of the Valley signifies the return of happiness.
3. It's the birth flower for the month of May and represents humility, chastity, sweetness and purity.
4. It can also be known as Our Lady's tears and Mary's tears which derive from the weeping of Mary during the crucifixion of Jesus.
5. At start of the 20th century in France Lily of the Valley was sold on the 1st May as a symbol of spring.
6. Many perfume houses try and simulate the scent of the lily of the valley and it was the favourite flower of Christian Dior who produced a famous perfume in the 50s by trying to recreate the scent.
7. It was included in the bridal bouquet for the wedding of Princess Kate and William.
8. It's an expensive flower to buy for use in floristry and therefore it is not often used.
9. Once the stems of the Lily of the Valley have been cut, the flowers last no longer than a day so bridal bouquets using Lily of the Valley will be finished at the very last minute.
10. You can buy Lily of the Valley from wholesalers complete with root ball. They need conditioning by placing the roots in a shallow bucket of water and this will help them last before you need to cut them for floristry use.