Numbers ... they do appear everywhere at the moment ... number of minutes and seconds each race, distance jumped ... hop, skip and jump – or pole vaulted – or height or length ... number of medals won ... and so it goes on ....
|Victory Bouquet - Jane Packer|
... I never thought I’d write about the number of apple mint stems grown for the bouquets presented to each medal winner – 50,000 apparently – the nursery were only asked two months ago to take on the challenge. Perhaps the dreadful weather had taken its toll on another nursery ...
The plants took five weeks to plant up and grow to Olympic standard length for those early medal ceremonies, but then continue on over the Olympics and Paralympics – until 9th September – some task as apple mint grows three or four inches a week.
The bouquets look wonderful and a few medallists have been tempted to smell the pretty bunches – I bet the scent wafting from them must be lovely ...
The unique bouquets are divided into quadrants, each with a yellow, orange, green and pink rose section to match the colours of the London 2012 logo – herbs of English lavender, rosemary, wheat and apple mint intersperse those roses.
|Rosemary in flower|
The bouquet represents the vibrancy of the Games, the roses are iconic British flowers, while the herbs and grasses grow in and around our countryside.
The bouquet has been fashioned in the style of a nosegay set off by the four rose varieties – the Ilios (yellow rose), Marie Claire (orange rose) Wimbledon (green rose) and Aqua (the pink rose).
Jane Packer who designed these charming bouquets – very sadly and extremely unexpectedly passed away last November.
Some other numbers ... 302 Victory ceremonies in over 30 venues – 40 podiums will be used, and 4,400 medal-winning athletes will stand on them to celebrate their success formally and be presented with a beautiful nosegay.
|Lavender field near Lullingstone Castle|
Some history on the nosegay, tussie-mussie, or posy is a small flower bouquet, typically given as a gift – they have existed in some form since at least medieval times, when they were carried or worn around the head of bodice.
|Marie Claire Rose|
The term nosegay arose in the 15th century as a combination of nose and gay (which then meant ornament): so a nosegay was an ornament that appeals to the nose.
|Wheat Ear at the|
late milk stage
The term tussie-mussie comes from the reign of Queen Victoria when the small bouquets became a popular fashion accessory.
Typically tussie-mussies include floral symbolism from the Language of Flowers, therefore may be used to send a message to the recipient.
I wonder if the symbolism of the Victory Bouquet is Higher Stronger Faster ... the Olympic motto – usually in Latin! = Citius, Altius, Fortius.
Enjoy the Olympic Games if you’re watching – there is some history here though!!
PS The four herbs symbolised: ...
Rosemary - remembrance
Mint - virtue
Lavender - serenity
Wheat - energy
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