The Name Says It All

After this year’s long winter no wonder everyone is reacting with joy to every single new plant we put in the ground.

There are more plants than ever coming out from all over the world.  But sometimes seeing the tried and true can give anyone a pep in their step!

Right now pansies are seen everywhere in a multitude of colors. Their sweet fragrances are unmistakable.  But where did the name pansy originate?  The name comes from the French word, “pensee” for thought.  By the 1400’s it was changed to viola from the late Middle English word to represent a symbol of remembrance.

Whether you prefer the small violas or the pansies, they are all in the same family, Violaceae.

Writing this article brought back memories of my sister and I collecting wild violets (Viola papiolanacea) which are actually considered invasive weeds. We used to string them on thread and create a little violet crown for our mother for Mother’s Day.

Interesting that all those years and still now I think of my mother Jackie when I see a violet or a pansy! It is the “pensee” that counts every day in every way.