Early Botanical Paintings

I’m very fond of botanical art, perhaps because I have no skill in the visual arts. I appreciate the works of those who do have that gift, though!

Here are two paintings by a seventeenth-century woman, Maria Sibylla Merian:

These paintings brings back memories. Back in my Knox County, Missouri days I grew both species of fritillaries. The Crown Fritillary shown in the second painting lasted for just one year, as the species requires well-drained soil. The Guinea-Hen Flower, Fritillaria meleagris, naturalized well in some open hickory woodland and might still be blooming there. The checkerboard blooms are a sight to see!


2 comments on “Early Botanical Paintings

  1. bev says:

    We grew both at our farm too, but only the checkered one persisted. Btw, I have always heard it said that the the bulb or corm of the Crown Fritillary has an obnoxious odor, but I found it not all that unpleasant.

  2. Larry says:

    I must confess that I sniffed my bulbs of the Crown Fritillary before planting them, but didn’t detect the supposedly unpleasant odor. Plant folklore, perhaps?

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