Gladiolus, sometimes called Sword lily, is a genus of around 300 species in the family of Iridaceae. Most of them are native to sub-Saharan Africa and around 10 species are native to Eurasia.
These perennials produce narrow, blade-shaped leaves and attractive fragrant flowers on tall spikes . They are available in a wide range of colors and are popular both as garden flowers and cut flowers.
The name comes from the Latin “gladiolus”, which means “small sword”, referring to the shape of the leaves.
In Ancient Greek, gladiolus was called “xiphium”, from the Greek word “xiphos”, which also means sword.
Gladiolus symbolizes strength, strong character, honor and moral integrity.
It also stands for remembrance and faithfulness.
Gladiolus can also signify serious romantic feelings.
Interesting facts about Gladiolus:
Benefits and Uses
Gladiolus were recognized over 2000 years ago.
Roman Gladiators, an armed combatants who fight other gladiators or animals in the Roman amphitheatres, wore Gladiolus around their necks during battles to protect them.
The plant has been used for medicinal purposes to draw out splinters and thorns or to treat colic.
It has also been used to to treat cold, constipation and diarrhoea.
The corms of some species are also used as a source of food.
The flowers range from white, yellow, pink and lavender to red, purple and even green.
Spring, Autumn, Summer
Gladiolus grows between 60 to 180 cm (2 to 6 ft) in height.
These plants prefer moist and well drained soil, with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0.