It’s a wet and miserable Thursday morning out there, with the puddles on the road doing their best ‘look at me, I’m Loch Ness!’ impression. But here at CF we’re relentless in the pursuit of light entertainment, and not even this interminable drizzle will prevent us from our noble quest to give you, the reader, the mildly diverting selection of floral facts which you’ve come to expect upon a Thursday morn.
When the weather’s like this, suddenly trees are everybody’s favourite plant. After all, you can’t shelter underneath a nettle (or can you?). So in tribute to our sheltering cousins, today’s weird plant superstitions are all about trees.
1. Most superstitions seem to involve spirits chilling out where they shouldn’t, but it’s not every day that the poor spirits have to put up with paperwork. The Izhuvans of India have done their best to rectify this; as they believe that trees are inhabited by spirits, proper notice of ejection is given to them before a tree is cut down.
2. Of course, if a strange folklore belief isn’t about spirits, it’s likely to be about predicting a wedding…anyone remember our bizarre ‘fact’ about tea from our blog a couple of weeks ago? Well it’s not just tea; trees get involved in future nuptials too.
In Franconia, on St. Thomas's Day, the girls go to a tree, knock upon it three times with due solemnity, and listen for answering knocks within telling them what sort of husband they will get. Presumably ‘silent’ or ‘inarticulate’ are common results…?
3. And one more weird old belief for the day, this time from Sicily, where there is an old belief in tying stones to fruit trees in order to ensure a crop of fruit. Shouldn’t come as a surprise really…every time I eat a peach, there’s a stone in the middle. I’ll … I’ll get my coat (after all, I'll need it out there).
That’s it for another day, blog fans. Have fun plashing through the puddles!