Lysimachia. Loose-Strife

[Name said to be in honor of King Lysimachus,]

Lysimachia nummularia. - Moneywort. - Is an ornamental creeping perennial, with yellow flowers all the season, suitable for lock-work, or hanging from a pot in a northern exposure; a number of the indigenous species are worth cultivating.

Lythrum. Willow-Herb

[From the Greek for blood, in allusion to the flowers.]

Lythrum Salicaria

Is a British perennial, and is considered a handsome border-flower; three or four feet high, with purple flowers in July and August; leaves opposite, cordate, lanceolate; flowers in spikes.

L. Roseum Superbum

This is a hardy perennial, and a great improvement over L. salicaria. The plant is from two to three feet high, producing numerous spikes of bright, rosy-red flowers through the season; propagated by dividing the roots.

Madia. Madia Elegans. Elegant Madia

A pretty annual from the Pacific coast. The seeds should be planted in the border in May. If the plants can have a shady location, it will be much the best, as the bright sunshine causes the petals of the flower to curl up, thus destroying much of their beauty. The flowers are large, with yellow rays and brown disk. Early in the morning, or just at night, the blossoms appear splendid; about two feet high. The plant emits an agreeable fragrance; it stands the early frosts, and the only objection to it is, that it fades in the sun, and almost immediately after gathering. It is not fit therefore for bouquets.


[Malope, a name given to Tree Mallows.]

Malope grandiflora. - Grand-flowering Malope. - This very showy plant is of the Mallow tribe; grows from two feet to two feet and six inches high. The flowers are produced in great abundance, and, being of a .fine rosy crimson, make a very gay appearance, rendering it a desirable plant for giving a distant attracting effect. It blooms from June to the end of October, unless cut off by frost. Seed should be sown in pots early in March, and be raised in a hot-bed; or may be sown upon a hotbed, under a frame or hand-glass. The plants may be set out in the open border by the middle of May. M. gran-diflora alba, is a variety with white flowers, but rather more delicate in its habits. Both of the varieties are better grown in the green-house, but are perfectly hardy. The plant blooms more profusely in a good loamy soil, mixed with a little manure or leaf-mould. If the soil be very rich, the plant will be liable to grow too vigorously, and produce a vast profusion of foliage, which will rather conceal the flowers; but, if moderately enriched, it will produce one mass of bloom. I find it profitable to give all my flower-beds an addition of fresh soil every winter, generally adding about two or three inches deep. If the Malope grandiflora is not desired to come into bloom before the beginning of August, the seed may be sown in April or May, in the open border where it is desired that the plants shall blossom. The plant produces seed in abundance, which ripen well from plants that bloom early in the summer.

Malva. Mallows

[An old Latin name from the Greek, for soft.]

Malva Alcea

A pretty, hardy perennial, from Germany, with purple flowers from July to October; three feet high; easily propagated by seed or divisions of the roots.

Varieties of the same, have pink and white flowers; lower leaves angular; upper, five-parted, cut; stems and calyxes velvety.

M. Crispa. The Syrian Or Curled Mallow

Has white flowers, veined, with red or purple, with elegant curled leaves; annual; flowers in June, July, and August.

A species of Mallow was used among the Romans as an . esculent vegetable. Horace mentions it as one of his or- dinary dishes.

"Olives, succory, and white Mallows are my food."

Job speaks of them as being eaten in times of famine:

"For want and famine they were solitary, fleeing with the wilderness in former time desolate and waste; who cut up Mallows by the bushes, and juniper roots for their meat."

The Mallow was formerly planted, with some other flowers, the Asphodel in particular, around the graves of departed friends. It was, probably this circumstance which led to the following reflections, in the epitaph on Bion, by Moschus:-

"Raise, raise the dirge, Muses of Sicily ! Alas ! when Mallows in the garden die, Green parsley, or the crisp luxuriant dill, They live again and flower another year; But we, how great soe'er, or strong, or wise. When once we die, sleep in the senseless earth, A long, an endless, unwakeable sleep."

Such a sentiment will do for a heathen, perhaps, but not for the Christian.

Martynia. Unicorn-Plant

[Named in honor of John Martyn, professor of botany, at Cambridge, England.]

Martynia Proboscidea. Common Martynia

This is an annual, as are the other species, from sub-tropical America. It is often cultivated in vegetable gardens for its capsules, which, when green and tender, make a fine pickle. It is also a curious plant for the border, on account of its large flowers; but more particularly for its singularly curious seed-vessels.

Martynia Proboscidea

Martynia Proboscidea.

M. Fragrans. Fragrant Martynia

This is a beautiful annual, that succeeds very well when sown in the open border the tenth of May. It is undoubtedly one of the finest species of the genus; no other one will compare with it for beauty. It is robust in habit, throwing out large lateral branches; the plant attains the height of three feet, producing an immense profusion of flowers from the first of August, until destroyed by frost. The flowers are large, resembling the Gloxinia; thickly set in spike-like racemes; delicate rosy-lilac, blotched and shaded with bright crimson, with an agreeable odor. The foliage is thick, more soft and velvety than the above described species. The capsules add much to the handsome appearance of the plant. The flowers, however, are not suitable for bouquets, and, unless there is much room in the flower-garden, this plant is not recommended.