Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Dogwood Tree

The state tree and flower of Virginia is the "Flowering Dogwood". It is such a beautiful, lacy looking tree. Spring in Virginia always reminds me of winter in Minnesota. Strange I know. There are so many Dogwood trees in bloom that it looks like snow on the trees, and when the wind blows the petals fall to the ground. The wind was really blowing when I was trying to get this picture so it is a little blurry. But is kind of pretty none the less.

A little info you may have not known about the Dogwood tree. Fitting for Easter and for us weavers.

The word dogwood comes from dagwood, from the use of the slender stems of very hard wood for making 'dags' (daggers, skewers). The wood was also highly prized for making loom shuttles, arrows, tool handles, and other small items that required a very hard and strong wood.

There is a Christian Legend of unknown origin that proclaims that the cross used to crucify Jesus was constructed of dogwood. As the story goes, during the time of Jesus, the dogwood was larger and stronger than it is today and was the largest tree in the area of Jerusalem. After his crucifixion, Jesus changed the plant to its current form: he shortened it and twisted its branches to assure an end to its use for the construction of crosses. He also transformed its inflorescence into a representation of the crucifixion itself, with the four white bracts cross-shaped, which represent the four corners of the cross, each bearing a rusty indentation as of a nail and the red stamens of the flower, represents Jesus' crown of thorns, and the clustered red fruit represent his blood

1 comment:

  1. I knew the connection of the dogwood flower to the crucifixion, but not the complete legend...Our woods have many dogwood trees...which are not blooming yet here in Ohio...anxious for them to do so...will post photos when they do...My grandparents lived in Norton, Virginia...visited them often...beautiful state!


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