You may have noticed a more pleasant smelling walk to class and a more colorful Colorado State University campus. New spring blooms have made themselves right at home, so if you are looking for a way to relax your mind before finals week, take a moment to stop and enjoy nature. Here are five flowers and trees to look out for on campus:
This perennial plant related to the lily is known for its bright colors and near-perfect symmetrical petals. The 1600s was a time of tulip mania, when the tulip was the most sought after and expensive flower in the world. This flower was said to be worth more than most peoples’ homes during this time. Today, the tulip has over 3,000 natural and genetically-cultivated varieties. Newer variants are being made constantly, although, it is a long 20-year process.
Alyssum “Basket of Gold”
These tiny golden flowers are great at finding unusual places to grow, like sidewalk cracks, in between stones of walls or in huge bushels. These drought-resistant beauties reseed each year, filling an area for the next spring with more dazzling yellow. Even after blooming, the Alyssum shows attractive green foliage.
The pansy, from the French word ‘pensee,’ means ‘thought’ or ‘remember.’ This hardy and disease-resistant bloom is the oldest cultivated flower in the world, and was commonly used in the 19th century in love potions. Besides being a flower for lovers, pansies are also edible. Add them to a salad or dessert for a minty flavor.
Yes, a favorite baked potato topping comes in flower form! This hardy perennial is a member of the onion family and are easy to grow. This purple plant was discovered in Asia and Europe and has been used since the Middle Ages. Chives are used mostly in culinary practices, offering a delicate onion flavor. Chives are known to promote good digestion and are high in vitamin C.
Known as jewels of the landscape, crabapple trees stay attractive throughout the year. Spring is the time the tree blooms white, pink and red. In the fall, you can find the tree turning brilliant colors with small fruit on the branches. There are about 30 different variants of the tree that offer fragrant flowers and edible bitter fruits, which are best used in jams and preserves.
Although it seems April showers bring May snowstorms here in Colorado, the flowers are still busy being beautiful and fragrant. Take a moment to appreciate the CSU campus and the hard work of Mother Nature.
Collegian reporter Sarah Ehrlich can be reached at email@example.com and on Twitter @SarahEhrlich96.