Saturday, December 21, 2013

Edelweiss

Copyright: Lucian
Queen's Flower or edelweiss (Leontopodium alpinum Cass.) is a species of herbaceous perennial of the genus Leontopodium Cass., Family Asteraceae.

Features
The plant is 5 to 20 cm heigh, with inflorescences composed of flower heads surrounded by numerous long bracts, white - silvery, woolly-hairy. If in Romania the plant reaches only up to a maximum height of 20 cm, it can grow in other countries up to 50-80 cm. The inflorescence is clothed with hairy leaves, some bigger, some smaller, which take the form of stars. It consists of up to ten inflorescences with numerous and tiny flowers surrounded by white bactee 5-15, arranged radial, giving the overall appearance of the whole flower. The plant is covered with velvety hairs, silver, giving it a special elegance. Flowering period is from July to August.
Habitat
Increases in the mountains limestone grassland on steep slopes or rocky and sunny. In Romania it grows in the Carpathian Mountains and it was declared a natural monument in 1933 and protected. Queen's Flower can be seen in the Rodna and Maramureş Mountains, Bukovina, Rarău, Ceahlău, Ciucaş, Bucegi, Fagaras and Retezat Mountains. Outside the Romanian, this flower adorns Abruzzi areas, Alps, Balkans, Carpathians, Pyrenees , but also in Central Asia and Eastern Europe.