Tag Archives: flowers

The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies

From The Plea of the Midsummer Fairies

The pastoral cowslips are our little pets,
And daisy stars, whose firmament is green;
Pansies, and those veil’d nuns, meek violets,
Sighing to that warm world from which they screen;
And golden daffodils, pluck’d for May’s Queen;
And lonely harebells, quaking on the heath;
And Hyacinth, long since a fair youth seen,
Whose tuneful voice, turn’d fragrance in his breath,
Kiss’d by sad Zephyr, guilty of his death.’

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Fireweed: Survivor. Mutant. Tea.

This may seem like a strange topic for a post, but oddly enough I was inspired by yesterday’s post about the northern lights. If you didn’t read it, I’m from Labrador, in northern Canada, and while the aurora is always a little chancy, you can count on fireweed every summer.

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The Battle of Magenta

Everyone is familiar with Gertrude Jekyll’s dislike of magenta – “malignant magenta”, as she called it. Many other writers of her period were equally dismissive, such as Alice Morse Earle, who said that as she glanced back through her writing on the subject, she felt the word “made the black and white look cheap.” (Kellaway: 93-5)

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Indigo: Seventh Colour or Odd One Out?

Seven planets, seven notes in the Western major scale, so of course seven colours in the rainbow. Isaac Newton even felt that there were similar intervals between colours and notes. (You can hear the tones and see their associated colours on YouTube.) Presumably indigo fitted in well between blue and purple, but most modern scientists who study light consider the spectrum to consist of six colours, the primaries and their complementary colours.

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