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Year after year, century after century, holly sprigs and wreaths, with their deep green leaves and bright red berries, deck the halls in homes, schools and stores as festive decorations for the Christmas season. Surprisingly, while holly is a traditional Christmas plant, its origins date back to the Druids, who thought the plant represented everlasting life. Hanging a circular wreath of evergreens during mid winter seems to go back a very long way. Leaves of other species, such as gallberry (I. glabra) are bitter and emetic. Holly, genus of some 600 species of shrubs and trees in the family Aquifoliaceae, distributed nearly worldwide. It is also sometimes called the friendship plant and it was the most common garnish put on the boar's head that rich people ate at the main Christmas meal in the Middle ages! Despite its association with the Christmas season, holly did not get its name from "holy." But it was unlucky to bring either into a house before Christmas Eve. Holly has a long history of being used at Christmas time. Christmas wreath: holly. They are similar in appearance with spiny-toothed leaves and an abundance of red berries. Holly, Ivy and other greenery such as Mistletoe were originally used in pre-Christian times to help celebrate the Winter Solstice Festival and ward off evil spirits and to celebrate new growth. - www.whychristmas.com, St. Nicholas, Santa Claus & Father Christmas, Jesus going to the Jewish Temple as a baby. Holly became a nativity tradition. The toxic chemical in holly is theobromine, a stimulant that naturally occurs in chocolate, though in lower concentrations. The bough was finished by hanging a large bunch of mistletoe from the bottom of the ball. Holly, Ivy and other greenery such as Mistletoe were originally used in pre-Christian times to help celebrate the Winter Solstice Festival and ward off evil spirits and to celebrate new growth. This tree grows in northern China, reaching 20 to 30 feet in height. Holly, or Ilex aquifolium by it’s full name has long been a favourite to decorate homes in winter, a British native that is traditionally associated with pretty Christmas wreathes and cut branches, hence of course the line from the popular Christmas carol ‘deck the halls with boughs of holly’. (For a simpler bough you could also just have a horizontal hoop decorated and hung with apples and the mistletoe.). Holly is a classic Christmas shrub, and the winterberry species (Ilex verticillata) is a hardy sort with dark green leaves. Ilex hybrid 'HL 10-90' PP14477. Rosemary was connected with the Virgin Mary (because it was thought to be Mary's favorite plant) and people thought that it could protect you from evil spirits. Ryan McVay, Getty Images A child can eat 1-2 holly berries ( Ilex sp. ) Before holly was hung in houses to accompany Christmas trees, it was considered to be a sacred plant by the Druids.While other plants wilted in winter weather, holly remained green and strong, its berries a brightly colored red in the harshest of conditions. American holly is often used as a substitute for English holly (Ilex aquifolium) in Christmas decorations where the latter does not grow well. The holly shrubs that we all know as traditional Christmas plants have pointed leaves, red berries, and small white blooms. Holly grows in most parts of the world, so you should have no trouble finding a variety that is right for your landscape. ), like the poinsettia, is one of the most recognized Christmas plants. Holly – Holly is not typically sold as a live plant at Christmas, but the bright red berries of female holly bushes against its dark green pointed leaves are a popular decoration at Christmas. They also make a wide use of variegated hybrids with no prickly leaves as they contribute to splendid decorative effects! The berries are the drops of blood that were shed by Jesus because of the thorns. Keep your poinsettia looking its festive best by checking it's soil regularly – think of it like the Goldilocks tale, the soil shouldn't be too wet or too dry, just somewhere in the middle. 5. Although holly will always be synonymous with Christmas, it has a life well beyond the festive period. The berries are the drops of blood that were shed by Jesus because of the thorns. Ivy has to cling to something to support itself as it grows. Use this transparent png image for your personal projects or designs. Do not overwater. This plant has a number of other common names, including hummock holly, dune holly, and scrub holly. As a rule we always say that before you mulch you should still be able to see the soil from the original pot. Roman Emperors also wore Laurel Wreaths. These were made of five wooden hoops that made the shape of a ball (four hoops vertical to form the ball and then the fifth horizontal to go around the middle). Christmas is a fun festival for many people and is often a very meaningful celebration as well. In the late 1700s a special Christmas Rosemary Service was started in Ripon Cathedral School where a red apple, with a sprig of Rosemary in the top of it, was sold by the school boys to the members of the congregation for 2p, 4p or 6p (depending on the size of apple!). The three other Christmas plants traditionally used are … Shiny green leaves, wavy margins, sharp spines and adorable red berries – these are the features that define the holly plant. There are over 200 cultivated varieties of our native holly and while the Latin name, Ilex aquifolium, means ‘with … Information about the device's operating system, Information about other identifiers assigned to the device, The IP address from which the device accesses a client's website or mobile application, Information about the user's activity on that device, including web pages and mobile apps visited or used, Information about the geographic location of the device when it accesses a website or mobile application. are a diverse lot, American holly being just one of many types. The Romans used holly to honor Saturn, their god of agriculture. Christmas Holly The prickly leaves represent the crown of thorns that Jesus wore when he was crucified. Holly (Ilex) and ivy (Hedera helix) have been used as winter decorations since ancient times.Adorning homes with these plants freshened the air and their greenery reminded occupants of the coming spring. Choose from HD Christmas Ornament PNG graphic-images resources and download in the form of PNG format. In Scandinavia it is known as the Christ Thorn. A signature plant in early, formal gardens, prized by the Victorians and valued for its tolerance to pollution in industrial areas, holly is incredibly versatile. This Christmas plant is the perfect gift for a loved one during the Christmas period or if you're living in a small space, a great alternative to your typical tree. Christmas Jewel® Holly. It is traditional to take down the decorations after Twelfth Night (5th January) on Epiphany (January 6th). The Holly And The Ivy Plants. The Joy of Traditional Christmas Plants. However, most use holly because it is an attractive and colourful plant and one of the very few to bear fruits in winter. The UK and Germany were the main countries to keep the use of the greenery as decorations. Bringing special plants into the home and admiring their flowers, fruits, or leaves is often one of these traditions. Having no gift for the baby, the child wove a crown of holly branches for its head. With proper care, your Merry Christmas Holly® will retain its berries for many months. christmas Holly Plant Tree for Christmas Border for Christmas shared by Shaun under Christmas. Holly plants (Ilex spp.) The version that most people are familiar with is the American holly, as it is the variety most often used in Christmas … Here are the Christian meanings: The prickly leaves represent the crown of thorns that Jesus wore when he was crucified. Mistletoe Inside the hoops were hung red apples (often hung from red ribbons) and a candle was either put inside the ball at the bottom or round the horizontal hoop. Holly trees and shrubs are sometimes deciduous, but more often evergreen. A favorite of the holiday season, holly plants come in literally hundreds of species. It's native to North America, and the female plants bear clusters of vibrant scarlet berries that last through the winter. In Germany, it is traditional that Ivy is only used outside and a piece tied to the outside of a Church was supposed to protect it from lightning! Planting to deep can cause rotting of the stem and death to the tree. In Scandinavia it is known as the Christ Thorn. Holly plants can vary in shapes such as rounded, pyramidal or columnar. These can range in height from 6-inch-tall shrubs to towering 70-foot-tall trees. Fir and Yew trees are evergreen and so signify everlasting life with God. Holly has long been associated with the Christmas holiday. The word 'wreath' comes from the Old English word 'writhen' which means to writhe or twist. Choose from HD Christmas Border PNG graphic-images resources and download in the form of PNG format. ... • Plant 1-2″ above ground soil level, backfill hole with soil • Water deeply to settle, then add more soil if needed Take these steps to ensure the holiday joy will last through the season: Place plant in a well-lit area. It’s a broad-leaved, slow-growing tree which can range from a spreading dwarf bush to trees which are 70 feet tall. The poinsettia is also considered a magical Christmas plant in North America. Fir is also very commonly used for Christmas Trees. Rich Roman women also wore them as headdresses at special occasions like weddings and to show they were posh. Family or personal traditions are especially popular at this time of year. without harm, but around 20 berries can cause death, so eating holly berries is a serious concern for children and pets. Christmas Wreaths as we know them today, might have started life as Kissing Boughs (see below) or come from the German and Eastern European custom of Advent Wreaths. An old tradition from the Midlands of England says that whatever one was brought into the house first over winter, tells you whether the man or woman of the house would rule that year! It symbolises the victory of God over the Devil. Holly is a plant that requires full sun and well-drained soil that is a bit on the acidic side to grow properly. The Irish native holly is important for our animals over the winter, providing an important food source with its berries. The hoops were covered with Holly, Ivy, Rosemary, Bay, Fir or other evergreen plants. The Christmas tree has long been the pillar of Christmas décor, but what about the other Christmas plants? Holly plants can be grown indoors as a way to celebrate the winter holidays. christmas Holly Flower Plant for Christmas Ornament for Christmas shared by Fedde under Christmas. For hundreds of years, holly has been used for winter season decorations. The holly (Ilex) genus ranges from small shrubs to large climbers, with diverse leaf shapes, textures and variegation and berries of different colours. Holly (Ilex spp. It is also known as the remembrance herb and was used at Christmas as this is the time that we remember the birth of Jesus. In pagan times, Holly was thought to be a male plant and Ivy a female plant. More than 780 different species are grown worldwide but only two are used extensively for indoor decorating. Many places offer small potted holly trees. Another legend about this Christmas plant says that a little orphan boy was living with the shepherds when the angels came to announce the birth of the newborn king. When Christianity came into Western Europe, some people wanted to keep the greenery, to give it Christian meanings but also to ban the use of it to decorate homes. Use this transparent png image for your personal projects or designs. This beautiful evergreen shrub will form a naturally conical shape with very little pruning required. Its red berries and green leaves have become the colors of Christmas. In general little is known about inter-species variation in constituents or toxicity of hollies. Holly, Ivy and Mistletoe have also been a part of the Winter holidays, just as long as the Christmas tree. Their shapes vary from rounded to columnar to pyramid-s… In pagan times, Holly was thought to be a male plant and Ivy a female plant. The plants come in many shapes and sizes, ranging from spreading dwarf shrubs 6 inches in height to trees 70 feet tall. But during the middle ages, greenery (including Mistletoe) was often left hanging up until Candlemas (when Christians celebrate Jesus going to the Jewish Temple as a baby) in early February! It was a popular plant to decorate the home in Pagan times, providing shelter for friendly spirits, and symbolising eternal life and fertility. Holly, Ivy and Christmas Plants. In Roman times, boughs of holly were used or given to celebrate Saturnalia (17-23 December). Never plant Christmas Jewel Holly Trees deeper than originally planted in the pot. © Copyright 2000 - 2021 James Cooper | About the site | Cookies & Privacy | Site Map | Other Links | Support | Website logistics by LetterBlock | Proud Affiliate of the Merry Network, whychristmas?com answers your Christmas questions! We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners who may combine it with other information that you’ve provided to them or that they’ve collected from your use of their services. It might have started back in Roman times when wreaths were hung on their doors as a sign of victory and of their status. Weird & Wacky, Copyright © 2021 HowStuffWorks, a division of InfoSpace Holdings, LLC, a System1 Company. Leaves of some holly species are used by some cultures to make daily tea. Ilex is among the few plants that can grow in all USDA plant hardiness zones (or in all 50 U.S. states). Several species are cultivated as ornamentals for their distinctive foliage and red or black fruits, which persist into winter and are popular Christmas decorations. You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website. These species are Yerba mate (I. paraguariensis), Ilex guayusa, Kuding (Ilex kaushue), Yaupon (I. vomitoria) and others. We use cookies to personalise content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyse our traffic. With its shiny leaves and bright red berries, it brings cheer to the season and a refreshing touch of the outdoors to a room. The Mythology Surrounding Holly. They were also given to the winners of events in the original Olympic Games in Greece. Laurel has been worn as a wreath on the head to symbolise success and victory for thousands of years. The Christmas Jewel Holly is a hybrid plant developed from a seedling of a Chinese holly (Ilex pernyi). This reminds us that we need to cling to God for support in our lives. In the UK, before Christmas Trees became popular and dating back to the Georgian period, and possibly earlier; another popular form of Christmas/mid winter decoration was the Kissing Bough or Bunch. It was found in 1858 by the Abbé Perny, a French missionary, and seed was brought out of China in 1900 by the famous American plant collector Ernest Wilson. Water thoroughly and allow to dry before watering again, but do so before wilting.

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