Posted by: marinvit | February, 2009


This week romance is clearly in the air as Valentine’s Day rapidly approaches. This very special day is not new, only the manner in which loving greetings are conveyed.


In Ancient Rome February 14th was celebrated in honour of Juno, Queen of the Roman Gods and Goddesses and the day started with the Feast of Lupercalla. On the eve of this festival it was customary for girls to write their names on pieces of paper and place them in a jar. On the day of the festival the boys would draw a girl’s name from the jar and the couple would become partners during the festival.

This Pagan tradition was modified by the early Christian church by replacing the names of the girls with the name of saints. St. Valentines Day was chosen for the celebration of the new feast.

Valentines’ Day greetings became popular during the Middle Ages, when sentiments were spoken or sung. At the end of the 15th century written handmade paper cards became popular. The oldest Valentine in existence, created in this era, can be seen on display in the British Museum.

In the 1800’s cards began to be mass-produced and handmade cards became extremely rare. In the early 1900’s Hallmark (formally Norcross) became well known for manufacturing Valentine’s Day cards.

Today when you send your valentine a loving message, you have many other options to choose from including email messages as well as ready-designed cards to send via the Internet. Beautiful floral tributes can be ordered from the garden centre, simply by picking up the phone, or your gift can be transported anywhere around the globe by FTD (Florists’ Transworld Delivery) within hours. FTD process approximately fifteen million orders and messages annually! Enquire at your garden centre about this service.

Now, down to the dirt! Finally, the time has arrived. I always think of January as the month to dream and February as the month to get sowing.

Did your seeds arrive safely? Mine did. Did you forget to order? Well, all is not lost. The seed racks at all the garden centres are now simply bursting at the seams with a terrific selection from this year’s collection. You will find names such as Morgan & Thompson, Mr. Fothergills, Seeds of Change, Plants of Distinction, Veseys and many others, providing a wide range of seed choices – annuals, perennials, vegetables and herbs. Also, don’t forget to review the seed you collected from your garden last year and stored in the refrigerator.

Always check the date on the package before you buy. The sell-by date is equally important for seeds as the items you purchase from your groc

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