Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Scabiosa received its unusual botanical name from a herbal remedy that was supposed to treat scabies.  Rather shocking to think this beautiful flower has such a sorted past, but the truth must be told.

In 1550 the only treatment for scabies (a mite that enjoyed living on humans), was a long soak in a hot herbal brew consisting of fresh fennel, marshmallow and scabiosa flowers.  Its effectiveness is debatable, but the name stuck anyway...
The prettier, common names such as pincushion flower, or butterfly flower may have helped it win the prestigious Perennial Plant of the Year award in 2000... but actually it won because of its vigor, heavy blooming and longevity.  I snapped this reference photo from my own garden just yesterday, and painted it for todays posting.

Her whimsical beauty surpasses her unfortunate name... but without such a sordid past, I wouldn't have a story to tell you today.

*This is my 100th painting in 2010!

12x12 oil on canvas.

1 comment:

Gwen Bell said...

Happy 100th...congratulations! This is such a beauty! I opened up to the large version to get a better look at those thick brushstrokes. It's even more gorgeous than I thought!