Hyacinthus Orientalis - Common Hyacinth | Center Moriches, New York

© Sophie W. Smith

Joined October 2012

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Scientific classification
Kingdom:Plantae
Clade:Angiosperms
Clade:Monocots
Order:Asparagales
Family:Asparagaceae
Subfamily:Scilloideae
Genus:Hyacinthus
Species:H. orientalis
Binomial name
Hyacinthus orientalis

Hyacinthus orientalis (common hyacinth, garden hyacinth or Dutch hyacinth), is a herbaceous perennial flowering plant, native to southwestern Asia, southern and central Turkey, northwestern Syria, Lebanon and northern Israel. It was introduced to Europe in the 16th century. It is widely cultivated everywhere in the temperate world for its strongly fragrant flowers which appear exceptionally early in the season, and frequently forced to flower at Christmas time.

In Greek mythology, Hyakinthos was a young man admired by Apollo and Zephyr, but killed by a discus in a jealous fight between the two gods; a flower was allegedly named after him when it sprang from his blood. However, Theophrastus describes both a cultivated and a wild plant called ὑάκινθος (hyakinthos), neither of which are considered to be the modern hyacinth. Read more

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