When encouraged to slow down a bit, we’re told to “stop and smell the roses.” But, I’ve never heard anyone say to “stop and smell the daisies” Why not? Daises are so plentiful this time of the year. They are blooming in nearly everyone’s yard and actually have become very popular blooms, even in bride’s bouquets. And they grow wild, too.
They have been described as creating a fresh, wholesome, energetic image. They are much easier to grow than roses, but have you ever smelled them? Before writing this
post I went outside to do just that. Daisies have no aroma, none.
We know that perfume is made from flowers, so I wondered if there is a daisy perfume. Yes there is. It’s described as having a fruity smell. Some say it smells like bananas, “raspberries,” says another, and yet another person said, “like pink lemonade.” My question is how does the fragrance come from a flower that seems scentless?
If I could make perfume out of the flowers in my garden, I wouldn’t choose daisies. Now night blooming Jasmine is a different story, but it’s not in my garden. I remember smelling it in Florida while walking at night time. It is believed to be the most fragrant flower in the world. It’s definitely tropical, so it wouldn’t live through Pennsylvania’s winters. Here’s a trick for you to try. Find a flower in your garden that you want to smell like. Then do this: put the flowers’ petals in a pan and cover with distilled water. Don’t cook, but simmer for about two hours, strain and put in your favorite perfume bottle and “voila” you’ve made perfume. I haven’t tried this, yet, so let me know what the results are!
I grew up loving daisies. There were fields nearby where they grew profusely and I would spend hours picking them. Some would end up on my mothers window sill. The rest I would make into a lei. After cutting off the stems I would use a needle and very long, heavy, white thread pushed through the center of many daisies and I’d have a live,
flower necklace. Some of them I used in the “he loves me, he loves not game.” I suppose my mother taught me about this, I had to have been shown at some time, by someone. Of course you should have someone in particular in mind as you pull each petal off the daisy’s yellow center. The special thing about the daisy is it holds secrets, or so we are to believe, and every little girl seeks them out. It’s said that this game goes back to the 1400’s.
I don’t recall anyone being named “Daisy” in my family however my husband’s Grandmother Morris was, although she went by the name Maude. Babies were named “Daisy” in the late Victorian era along with other flower names. It was quite popular between 1900 and 1940, then 1960-1980 it declined in popularity. Daisy, however, is still a popular name in Germany.
Some of you may or may not remember Daisy Mae Scragg, who lived in DogPatch. Many followed her life’s escapades in Al Capp’s comic strip, Lil’Abner. This was one of the most popular comic strips ever written and for forty-three years Daisy Mae was hopelessly in love with Lil’ Abner who seemed to hardly notice her. You may remember that he finally married her and they had one child, “Honest Abe”.
It’s funny the thoughts that come to mind with the mention of one word. The song, “Daisy Bell,” is one of them. Remember how it went? Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do, I’m half crazy all for the love of you. It won’t be a stylish marriage I can’t afford a
carriage, but you’ll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two.” This song was composed by Harry Darce in 1892, when bicycles were an every day sight. That was back when bicycles were missing all the improvements of today’s bikes, even brakes. So we can only imagine a bicycle built for two then. Even today, I find them difficult to ride.
From concocting perfume, making a necklace, pulling secrets from a flower, remembering Daisy Mae, and singing a daisy song, I think we did pretty well since beginning with one little word like, daisy. Oh and by the way, “Daisy, Bell” was the first song to be played on computer. In 1961, the IBM 7094 became the first computer to sing and the song was “Daisy Bell.” There you have it, we’ve gone from the 1400’s to the computer age. Thanks for joining me on a journey with shirlandyou.