Safflower

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John J

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Safflower
« on: June 10, 2013, 07:05:58 AM »
Here in Cyprus there is an abandoned village called Fikardou in which 2 of the houses have been restored and opened as rural museums. The people employed as guardians/guides, when not escorting visitors, pass their time in tending an array of plants/vegetables in the gardens around the properties. On a visit yesterday we came across this beauty.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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Alisdair

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Re: Safflower
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2013, 10:05:45 AM »
Lovely picture, John, and lovely plant; is it cultivated in Cyprus?
Alisdair Aird
Gardens in SE England (Sussex); also coastal Southern Greece, and (in a very small way) South West France; MGS member (and former president); vice chairman RHS Lily Group, past chairman Cyclamen Society

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John J

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Re: Safflower
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2013, 01:04:25 PM »
Safflower (Carthamus tinctorius) has been grown in the area since ancient times, archaeobotanical finds in Egypt testify to this fact. It may have been known, and possibly grown, on the island from around the same time. A single seed dating from the 4th century BC was apparently found in the ruins of Salamis in the east of Cyprus. Today it is mostly grown in some of the mountain villages of the Troodos range. It is used as one of the colouring agents for the many eggs that are traditionally boiled at Easter, and to flavour and colour the filling for 'flaounes' an Easter bread/cake.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)