I took these photos of Christmas Roses in my garden the other week and then forgot all about them! I wish I had got them a few days earlier when they were at their best but even begining to deteriorate they are still enchanting. They are ctually closer related to Buttercups than to Roses. Officially named Hellebore but more commonly known as Christmas Roses because they bloom so close to Christmas. They may not be the most beautiful of flowers or have the most gorgeous scent but they bloom in a time of darkness; Their delicate white flowers adding light and hope for the coming spring.
In the Disney Film Mulan the Emperor says: “The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.” Although he was taking about a girl the quote is certainly apt for this flower.
There are two marvelous tales about this flower..
It is said that a young shepherdess had no gift for the baby Jesus and she cried. An angel took pity on her and wiped away the snow before her feet and where her tears had fallen the angel brought forth christmas roses so she could pick them and give then as her gift.
A mother of a child who was dying went out in a snow storm to get help when she saw a procession of misty Fae beings. The last in line was a child trying to keep up but stumbling on her dress. the mother overcame her fear to help the child tuck up her dress and the lady that was leading them stopped and saw her kindness. she pointed at a spot on the ground and they all disappeared. christmas roses grew in that spot, she picked them and ran home with them for her daughter. Upon receiving the flowers the childs fever broke and she got well again.
Both used as a medicine and poison in ancient times. Believed to have been the poison that killed Alexander the Great and the medicine that cured the daughters of King Midas of their illness that had driven them mad.
it was used to predict the weather and it was used as a weapon of war.
When I look at my little patch of flowers they remind me that beauty can grow from dark places; From the shadows can spring glorious pure light!