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Friday, July 3, 2015

Guest Blog: Judy Baker/Ann Sugg: July's Flower and Birthstone

Judy Baker/Anna Sugg writes historical western romances and contemporary/suspense romance. Judy lives in the beautiful western state of Utah. Though she’s a southerner at heart, she loves the surrounding mountains and the desert valleys. When not writing the stories that fill her head, she enjoys RVing with her family, stargazing through one of her many telescopes, digging in her wildflower garden, and golfing, or just swinging on the patio while plotting her next story. She’s also an avid sci-fi fan, loves coffee, sweet southern tea, and the ocean.
Since the month of July is my birth month, I did a little research on the month’s flower and gemstone that I’d like to share with you. I hope you find this interesting even if your birth month is not July. The July flower is the Delphinium, aka Larkspur, and the July gemstone is the Ruby.

Did you know it was over 130 million years ago that the first flowers graced planet Earth with beautiful colors and delightful scents? Hmm, maybe the dinosaurs like the way they tasted. Celebrating birthdays with flowers dates back to the Roman Empire times, honoring the Roman gods and adorning the altars with flowers. The Roman Goddess of flowers was Flora, a collective term used for plant life and flowers to this day.
During the Victorian era there were strong rules of etiquette when expressing affection or feelings of love, hence, the “Flower Language” evolved. Each flower was assigned its own message, and when a lover sent flowers, the beautiful posy conveyed a hidden romantic meaning, communicating in a mysterious, romantic way. Oops! I got carried away with the flower and its origin. Back to the July flower.
The delphinium (larkspur) flower resembles the shape of a dolphin’s nose, hence the name.  

The Larkspur is mentioned frequently in mythology. One such Greek legend takes place during the battle of Troy, when Achilles’ mother ordered her son’s armor to be given to the bravest warrior during the battle. When the armor was given to Ulysses, the brave warrior Ajax was so upset that he threw himself on his sword. It is said that small blue larkspurs grew where his blood hit the ground. Another Greek mythology story attached to the larkspur is the handsome Spartan prince, Hyakinthos, who was transformed into the larkspur flower by Zephyrus’ jealous anger. Even Apollo, god of war, believed the flower sacred.  If you’re into Greek mythology, there’s many more stories involving flowers.
Did you know
-          a dried larkspur placed in stables keep witches from casting spells on your animals?
-          the larkspur flowers cures ailments and are used during the Summer Solstice celebrations in England?
-          the blue dye of the larkspur flowers were used by Native Americans?
-          the larkspur flowers were used by the ancients to drive away scorpions?

The history and traditions surrounding the birth flowers, also includes gemstones.
July’s birthstone is the Ruby.

The gleaming Ruby should adorn,
All those who in July are born,
For thus they’ll be exempt and free,
From lover’s doubts and anxiety.

Interesting facts about the Ruby:
Ruby derived from the Latin word, ruber, meaning red
It’s the Birthstone for July even during ancient times and continues to this day
Deep red stones are the most valuable, out-valuing diamonds of the same size
Rubies are extremely hard, second only to diamonds
Rubies are rare, not frequently found in large carat sizes
Rubies the color of blood and fire symbolizes vitality, vigor, power, strength, love, anger, undying devotion and other passionate emotion
Rubies are graded like diamonds, by color, cut, clarity and carat weight.
Ruby is a member of the Corundum (aluminum oxide family)
In ancient times, inserting a ruby in your skin was believed to ward off evil and make you courageous in battle.
Rubies are high energy stone, opening a heart to true love.

July Birthstone video:

For those of you that celebrate your birthday in JULY, I wish you the best day during the month, and for the rest of you, remember to give someone a flower to express your affections to one you love.
Thank you RB4U for having me as your guest.

New Release: Spirit Catcher, April 8, 2015    Link
Where you can find Judy Baker



Rose Gorham said...

Enjoyed reading about July's flower and birthstone, Judy. Thanks for sharing.

Nicole Morgan said...

Loved your post, Judy/Ann! I love posts that not only entertain me but also teach me a few things. Thanks for being our guest here on RB4U! :)

Rose Anderson said...

I had no idea delphiniums were named for dolphin noses. I love learning new things! Thanks for joining us today. Best Luck, Judy.

Cara Marsi said...

Judy, thank you for the interesting information. I don't know much about larkspur so this was especially intriguing. Loved the ruby info too.

Melissa Keir said...

Thank you for the informative post. My son's birthstone is the ruby as well. :) All the best with your story.

Judy Baker said...

Thank you ladies for stopping by and reading my post on July's flower and birthstone. I too learned new stuff while researching my birth month. It was fun. And, thank you, RB4U for having me as a guest on your blog.

Paris said...

Thanks for all of the interesting facts about rubies and delphiniums! I had no idea how the larkspur/delphinium got it's name:)

jean hart stewart said...

Thanks for a fun and informative column. Always loves larkspur...much nicer name than delphinium.

stanalei said...

Happy Birthday, Judy, and thanks for sharing all the interesting tidbits about the flower and gem of the month.

Judy Baker said...

Thanks for stopping by Paris, Jean and Stanalei. Hope all of you have a great July month.

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