Emilia, also known as Tassel Flower, is a genus of more than 100 species in the family Asteraceae, distributed mainly in tropical regions of the Old World.
Emilia has bright, tassel-like flowers appearing on its slender stems in summer and early fall. The flowers come in shades of purple, red and orange and are great for container gardens and fresh cut flower arrangements.
The etymology of the genus name is unknown.
The common name “Tassel flower” refers to its characteristic tassel-shaped flower head.
Tassel flower symbolizes creativity.
Interesting facts about Emilia:
Lilac Tassel Flower (Emilia sonchifolia)
Emilia sonchifolia, also known as Lilac Tassel Flower, is one of the “Ten Sacred Flowers” of Kerala State in India, commonly known as Dasapushpam. These herbs are culturally and medicinally significant to the people of Kerala in India. Dasapushpam constitute a group of ten auspicious herbs used as an ayurvedic medicine for curing chronic diseases.
Women of Kerala wear these flowers in their hair on the day of Thiruvathira and perform Thiruvathirakkali, a dance form native to Kerala. It is said that wearing these flowers benefit their health. According to Ayurveda, Emilia sonchifolia is used for the treatment of Kapha and Vata imbalances and is effective in treating fever, tonsillitis, conjunctivitis, worm infections and allergy.
Is Emilia Invasive?
Some species may be invasive where soil and climate are suitable. They produce large amounts of wind-dispersed seeds that may be carried long distances.
Emilia fosbergii has been listed as a weed in Columbia, Costa Rica, Mexico and many Pacific islands.
Benefits and Uses
The plant has been used for food and medicinal purposes by various communities.
It has been used as a cure for various ailments, such as wound healing, sore throat, high blood pressure and conjunctivitis. It has also been used for upset stomach and as an antidiarrheal medicine.
The scientific research shows that this plant could be useful in the management of eye diseases.
The plant is also edible, but it’s not everyone’s favorite. The leaves are eaten in salads and soups.
The flowers come in shades of purple, red and orange.
These plants usually grow from 30 cm (1 ft) to 60 cm (2 ft), and possibly up to 90 cm (3 ft) tall, depending on species.
The plant is not fussy about soil pH, but the soil must be well drained.