This is a close-up photo of the sexual apparatus of an Easter Lily, Lilium longiflorum. Lilium longiflorum is a bulb native to the Ryukyu Islands of southern Japan.
Unavailable from Japan following Pearl Harbor, the Easter Lily was successfully grown along a narrow strip of coastal Oregon and California. It’s now one of the top selling flowering shrubs in the world following the Poinsetta (which is really more of a weed than a shrub). The bulbs are harvested in the autumn and shipped to florists and nurseries, who must deliver massive quantities of these beautiful flowering plants to customers during the narrow two-week interval leading up to the Easter holiday.
Odd, isn’t it? A bulb native to the islands of Japan, and cultivated along the Pacific coast of the United States, has come to symbolize a religious holiday celebrating events in a land where they didn’t even have this flower.
While the rise of the Easter Lily may represent the triumph of the agri-floral business over any kind of historical authenticity, the Easter Lily is certainly a beauty.
And celebrating beauty is always OK.
So on that note, I wish you a happy Easter!