31 Days. 31 Flowers. Teaching kids about the Azalea Blossom…
Literature, legends and art bloom with FLOWERS, from lovely little nursery rhymes to sophisticated epic poetry and great myths and masterpieces. Knowing the names of flowers, the references to flowers, the symbols of flowers, the language of flowers gives kids a blooming head start in understanding literature and enhancing literacy.
Each day in May, a FLOWER will be presented here at 31 Days. 31 Flowers – 31 Ways to engage your kids in literature, literacy and life in just a few moments a day. Enjoy!
The AZALEA – A hardy plant with gloriously colorful and profuse blossoms, its name derives from the Greek azaleos, meaning dry. The Azalea both flourishes in dry soil and is known for its dry, brittle wood. Makes sense!
The Azalea is a member of the Rhododendron family and is used as an ornamental shrub in gardens and hedges. Blooming in Spring, the Azalea brings gardens alive with its fragrant, showy flowers in pinks, purples, whites, reds, oranges and yellows. Some varieties of the Azalea are striped, blotched, dotted or flecked. In China, the Azalea is known as the Royalty of the Garden.
There are also variations of shapes in the Azalea flowers. Petals may be rounded, pointy or linear, and margins may be flat, frilled, ruffled or wavy. Flower shapes may even change from year to year on the same plant. All of this keeps the Azalea very intriguing.
The most common symbol associated with the Azalea is temperance – self-restraint and moderation.
But the Azalea is also symbolic of passion and fragility, and in China is known as the thinking of home shrub.
Let your kids in on the secrets of the Azalea. Discover them in gardens, as hedges, in hanging baskets, in pots… or in books! Look closely for their differences in size, shape and color. Tell of the symbols of the Azalea… then whisper the delightful secret that the Azalea will always make you think of home.
Share this beautiful little poem, Scents, by Hortense Foster:
Petals of silken brilliance,
In colors of luscious pinks,
To deep reds,
Grace your tender branches,
With a sweet woodsy perfume aroma,
That floats through the air,
As I walk down the path,
Landscaped with Azaleas.
Why not bring home your own Azalea today, as the Royalty of your Garden!