Flower of the week: Eucalyptus Viktoria
Friday 11th Aug 2017 – Flower of the week
Eucalypt-us, eucalypt-you, eucalypt-me, eucalypt-who?
I absolutely love providing flora and fauna enthusiasts across the UK with postal flowers with a difference.
So here’s my newest addition: Eucalyptus Viktoria. Welcome to the Freddie’s Flowers box game, Viks!
Did you know that here are over 700 varieties of eucalyptus in the world?
When you think you’ve seen them all, you’ll find another. What do they all have in common? The aroma! The health benefits! And, of course, my favourite; the leafy pazazz it brings to any flower arrangement!
So settle in and let me tell you about this lovely variety of eucalyptus along with all the gloriously great stuff about this fab foliage in general.
What kind of eucalypt-is this?
The humble beginnings of the eucalyptus plant all began down under in Australia, mate. So it would be reasonable to think that Viktoria, the eucalyptus in question, is named ‘Viktoria’ after the region in Aus. With a stand-out fashionable typo for laidback Aussie effect.
But no. This variation of eucalyptus in your box is a tale of the unexpected.
A delightful chap spotted this sprightly eucalyptus sprouting on the west coast of Portugal. Seeing as it wasn’t a registered cut flower and it complemented certain flowers beautifully (think Oriental Lilies and Ornithogalum), he decided to cultivate it! Then to top off the tale he thoughtfully named the variety after his wife, Viktoria (ahhhhh).
He even produced extra especially for us!
Eucalyptus oil is a widely acknowledged medicine cabinet staple. But don’t put down the bottled goodness when you’ve combatted your cold! It’s good for lots more:
- Antiseptic for cuts and scrapes
- Aromatic air and fabric freshener
- Hair nourishment
- Disinfectant cleaner
- Insect repellant and treating bites
- Muscle relief
To find out more, head to Dr Axe and unleash the power of this magnificent oil.
As you may know, us humans aren’t the only eucalyptus lovers. Eucalyptus becomes toxic after a certain quantity so it’s no wonder koalas are renowned for their dopiness, they’re intoxicated!
You’ll be hard pressed to find a picture of a koala doing much other than munching on the leaves or hanging from the trees.
That is, unless a poor celebrity decides to cuddle up to one, only discover that a koala has very very sharp claws!
Smile for the camera, Harry Styles!
Would eu look at that!
This well known foliage has, like all plants, method to its name. Though we’re not often privy to the ongoings of the eucalyptus flower, you won’t forget it when you see it.
With ‘eu-’ meaning ‘well’ and ‘kaluptos’ as ‘covered’, this naming describes the lid-like cap that covers the unopened flower. Like a little acorn.
But when the flower is unleashed ….I consider it magical and almost a little futuristic. I can’t help but see a mixture of nature and nostalgia:
See what I mean!? You might even go as a far as to say that you can’t tell them apart. Uncanny? Not really but certainly funny.
How would eu style your eucalyptus?
Back to flower arranging then!
Did you know that eucalyptus is an interior designer’s go-to plant? It brings an added minimalistic elegance into any room.
Why? Because that greeny greyish tint to the leaves doesn’t command attention. Instead it accentuates similar natural tones such as stone work or whites and greys. Even blues and greens!
In order to pursue this interior phenomenon, I spoke to one of our lovely customers, Emma, all about eucalyptus. Emma grows eucalyptus for both interior design and creating flower arrangements from her cutting garden.
Freddie: ‘What’s so great about eucalyptus?’
Emma: ‘Well, it’s very easy to grow for one! And the smell is just heavenly. To be honest, it looks good anywhere and with anything too.’
Freddie: ‘How do you grow it?’
Emma: ‘It likes alkaline soil and being protected from the wind. I coppice it so there are far more stems for cutting as opposed to one big one with only a couple of off-shoots. It’s more shrub-like rather than a tree as a result. It grows very quickly too so make sure there’s space for it!’
Freddie: ‘How do you use it?’
Emma: ‘Oh in everything. I love it on a large scale in tall zinc pots. Or I keep it delicate – I love little sprigs in table arrangements. My daughter’s wedding bouquet had baby eucalyptus with succulents and gypsophila. They complimented each other so well. I love eucalyptus with white flowers.’
So, what’s stopping you?! Eucalyptus is clearly the answer! Be bold and leave the eucalyptus standing alone once all the other flowers in an arrangement have gone on – it dries wonderfully!
Then maybe go grow your own like Emma has and you’ll never be short of the stuff.
What have eu got in the box? Postal Flowers!
Futuristic looking in their own right, ornithogalum bring definitive drama to the arrangement. Eucalyptus Viktoria will fill your home with a superb scent and create the layering in the bunch. Let the majestic oriental lillies add the class.
If your cat has a soft spot of chewing things, be sure to keep it out of the flower filled room when these lilies come to your door!
Need a little hand arranging them?
After such a fountain of eucalyptus knowledge, it’s only natural that you’d want to see eucalyptus Viktoria in the flesh. Get your very own postal flowers for only £22 a pop!