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A Silene Flower

A Silene Flower

Silene Flower

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How is your pet doing? Just ask the Silene Flower. It’s a new product from the Amazon Echo that can answer questions about your pet’s mood and behavior.Silene undulata (syn. S. capensis) is known as iindlela zimhlophe ("white paths") by the Xhosa of South Africa. A Xhosa diviner identifies and collects the plant from the wild. The roots are ground, mixed with water, and beaten to a froth, which is consumed by novice diviners during the full moon to influence their dreams. They also take it to prepare for various rituals. The root has such a strong, musky essence that the diviners who consume it exude the scent in their sweat.

Plant

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It is a biennial or perennial plant, with dark pink to red flowers, each 1.8-2.5 cm across. There are five petals which are deeply notched at the end, narrowed at the base and all go into an urn-shaped calyx. As indicated by the specific name, male and female flowers are borne on separate plants (dioecious), the male with 10 stamens and a 10-veined calyx, the female with 5 styles and a 20-veined calyx. The fruit, produced from July onwards, is an ovoid capsule containing numerous seeds, opening at the apex by 10 teeth which curve back. The flowers are unscented. The flowering period is from May to October and the flowers are frequently visited by flies such as Rhingia campestris. Native to the North American grasslands, the silene plant is renowned for its colorful early summer blossoms. Most often referred to as the catchfly, the plant typically blooms in shades of pink, magenta, white, and red. The plant's sticky leaves and stems (which are what give this flower its memorable "catchfly" moniker) are actually not strong enough to catch a fly, nor do these flowers attract the pesky insects. They are, however, a favorite amongst hummingbirds and butterflies, so silene makes a perfect addition to either container plantings or pollinator gardens, which will offer a medium green foliage for many months after the plant first blooms.

Though the plant often grows as an annual in both meadow and prairie settings, there are some silene varieties with strong perennial tendencies, so they'll reliably pop up in the same spot each spring. These varieties will self-seed readily. The silene's foliage makes its grand debut in early spring and continues to persist through the late summer, however be aware that some varieties may go completely dormant in the heat of summer. An ideal plant for any landscape, silene has a natural ability to withstand dry conditions. It does have a preference for the sun, and makes a great addition to rock gardens, curbside planting areas, and other full-sun garden beds. Try planting silene with options like aster, bee balm, cosmos, alyssum, and calendula for a truly stunning colorful flower display that lasts from the first days of summer all the way through fall. The great news is that not only are these plants beautiful, but silene is also easy and economical to start from a seed planted in the garden in the springtime (as well as from transplants that were purchased at your local garden center). They're relatively easy to maintain—the requirements for successfully planting silene include good drainage, regular watering, and only occasional feed. (Source: www.thespruce.com)

 

 

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