31 March 2007
Palm Sunday Flowers
We added some new photos of Palm Sunday floral designs to our image gallery. Each features braided Commodore Tee Pee foliages and uses accents of red flowers, the traditional color of Palm Sunday.
I wrote an article about the Palms of Palm Sunday last year and think it's still timely today, so I'm re-posting it below.
Christian churches around the world will celebrate Palm Sunday on April 9. In keeping with the liturgy, many services will be incorporating various types of a palms and flowers into their processionals and decor.
According the the Catholic Encyclopedia, the feast day has also been called Pascha floridum, in French Pâques fleuries, in Spanish Pascua florida, and it was from this day of 1512 that our State of Florida received its name. Early worshiper incorporated the custom of also blessing flowers and entwining them among the palms, giving rise to the names Dominica florida, dies floridus, Flower-Sunday in England, and Blumensonntag or Blumentag in Germany.
Woven Palm Arrangements
In local celebrations, our florist has created designs featuring braided palms to adorn the altars of a number of churches. Arrangements usually include Chamaedora Costaricana (commodore tee-pee) that have been hand woven into various forms. These designs are often accented with other tropical foliages and/or red flowers in keep with the liturgical color of the feast day.
For florists looking to learn how to create these simple yet intricate weaving patterns, my husband, Phil Rulloda, offers a 'how-to' DVD that provides step-by-step demonstration of the various shapes and forms with additional patterns available in his book, Tropical and Contemporary Floral Design. Of course, the braids and weaves can be used in many floral designs and applications beyond Palm Sunday celebrations.
Another of our shop traditions has been to take fan palm from the Palm Sunday feast and braid them into the figure of Christ on the Cross to commemorate Good Friday. Each of these specialized weaves takes more than an hour and is crafted from a single frond. The entire form continues to draw water when the palm stem is placed in floral foam. Designs are also accented with flowers in red, the liturgical color of Good Friday.
Making Palm Sunday news this year is an effort spearheaded by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation, where churches from 34 states will be using more than 80,000 palm fronds imported from Mexico and Guatemala that have been certified as environmentally sustainable by Rainforest Alliance under a project of the University of Minnesota’s Center for Integrated Natural Resources and Agricultural Management (CINRAM). The chamaedorea palms, also called commodore, are harvested in a manner that avoids damaging the plants thus preserving their continued benefit to the eco-system of the rainforests from which they are cut.
After Palm Sunday
The palms blessed on Palm Sunday are to be taken home by the church members and used as a sacramental, preserved in prominent places in the house. Each year's new palms are to replace the previous year's fronds.
Did you know that the ashes from Ash Wednesday come from the burned palms from the previous Palm Sunday celebration?
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