{Aster and Morning Glory}

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Aster Many people don't know that just like the stones, each month has a flower or two which symbolizes birth. Here is the history and meaning behind your birth flower, the aster.
The Aster includes 600 species of star shaped flowering plants. The name is Greek, meaning "star". Most of the species are found in gardens because of their showy flowers and petals. The Aster is unique for its delicate purple color suggesting a manner in which these core aspects of the Self are brought to a very high spiritual level of expression. The Aster can also be found in a variety of other colors including blue and white.

The Aster is known for its well defined physical structure and strong integrative features. Because of this it is thought that the Aster has qualities of strength, immunity and integration. Depending on the exact species, Asters begin growing in the summer and continue growing through the fall.
In order to multiply and continue to grow well, Asters should be transplanted and divided at the room every other year. It is best to do this in early spring, keeping the root wet the day before and after dividing it. Doing this will rejuvenate the plant, help with size control and also give you more of them to add to the garden. Aster's grow best in rich wet soil, and can be grown either in direct sunlight or in the shade.

Interesting fact: Legend has it that burning the Aster leaves will keep away snakes. In French tradition it is said that placing the flowers on the grave of a dead soldier is a tribute to his bravery.

Morning Glory As its name insinuates, the Morning Glory is a flower that blooms in the morning hours. However, by the time the sun has fallen, the flower has died. Each morning will give birth to a brand new flower on the plant. Because they bloom in the morning, they are often pollinated by hummingbirds, bees, butterflies and other daytime birds and insects.
Many species of Morning Glory have seeds that contain LSA which is a drug that is up to 10% as potent as LSD. To discourage the growing of Morning Glory specifically for drugs, some cultivators are treating the seeds before they sell them with a chemical that can not be washed off and will cause vomiting and sickness if ingested.

In Japan the Morning Glory is known as asagao, asa "morning" and kao "face". In China it has been used for medicinal purposes as a powerful laxative. During the Edo Period it because a popular decorative flower. It is often used next to walls as it will grow as a vine, blocking out some of the heat and lowering air conditioning bills in the summer.

Interesting fact: By soaking the flowers from the Morning Glory in water for a couple of weeks you can create a mildly alcoholic wine with a good flavor and mild psychedelic effect. You can add herbs or honey to this to enhance the flavor.


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