All posts filed under: The Herbarium of Rhodes

Framing the Anemone of Rhodes

Anemone, the word is a Greek one meaning: ‘daughter of the wind’. Its flowers open when the wind blows and they start to bloom with the arrival of the first spring winds – on Rhodes around February. In mythology they are considered as Aphrodite’s tears when she is mourning her love, Adonis.This type we have on Rhodes is called ‘anemone coronaia’ because of the flower’s crown-like middle part which is almost black. Other names for her are ‘Lilies-of-the-field’ and ‘Poppy anemone’. The anemone below in the frame was collected close to Stegna beach, Rhodes island. This type of anemone is native to the Mediterranean region, specifically Greece, Syria, Israel, France, Italy. Growing at woodlands and meadows and attract pollinators. The different colors they have on Rhodes are so vivid, and they transform the bold meadows into a fairy tale scene every year for a short while when blooming. As a companion I selected a ‘pistacia lentiscus’ leaf to her on the above picture (13*18 cm), which is an aromatic evergreen shrub with strong scent caused …

The first blooming Narcissus tazetta of the season ’22

Plants are great teachers – you probably heard this before. And indeed they are. For many reasons. On the first place they are teachers of humbleness. They can’t communicate with words, they don’t shout at you, they don’t wave their arms, therefore you have to be humble, silent, aware, sensitive enough in order to get the wisdom and the messages of the plants. Interestingly ancient Greeks were humble enough to be aware of the silent messages of plants. The vegetation has a major symbolic role in ancient Greek myths. Plants are connected to certain archetypes or realms or attributes of human nature. Ancient Greeks’ intellect was a so called transcendent intellect, so they were able to see beyond the material nature with their intuitive vision. They had a mythical worldview which is above linguistic communication. Much more, much different than that. These myths are crystallized forms of truth. Getting the deep messages of myths and plants both require a non-linear, beyond-material, humble transcendental vision of the world (and ourselves in it). We can train ourselves …

The sacred plant of the Rain God: the Mexican marigold

Few weeks ago I received a strange dried flower bouquet from a local farmer here on Rhodes island. I consider him as a local shaman although he would never accept this title. He is the person who was teaching me the most about plants and the divine cosmic design. So he gave me these strange yellow flowers amongst dozens of others, and did not say anything about them. Back home I found its name at least: Mexican marigold or Tagetes Lucida. But I didn’t really look up for more info. Now I am reading a book about archaic images, symbols of water, moon, feminine, underworld. It describes a God of the Aztecs: Tlaloc. He was the rain deity, the ruler of the mysterious water-underworld: Tlalocan (Greeks called it Hades) where the great ancestors, the wisdomholders lived. The rain is the blessing of the otherworld, and ancestors. It is the nourishing source which maintains life on Earth. The Great Ancestors send love to Earth in the form of rain. Rain and water was the primordial element …