Round-up for H

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December........the month of holidays, hollyhocks, hibernation, warm homes and hearths. Winter is at its peak in the Northern Hemisphere and except for a few flowers like the Pansies and Flowering Apricots, color and hues are limited to the blues of snow and browns of barks. In the Southern Hemisphere, flowering plants continue to receive the warmth of the Sun.

At Flower Fest, we would like to brighten your winter days with some gorgeous blooms.

has an acrylic composition of the much-loved hibiscus which is a native of the tropical and subtropical zones of the world. Hibiscus is the national flower of South Korea and Malaysia and also the state flower of Hawaii. In addition to their beauty and warmth, they are used in the prevention of high blood pressure.

Vin also chose Hibiscus and shares his creativity with a digital painting. Hibiscus is one of those common yet vibrant flowers that adorns gardens and yards in many homes. Vin enjoyed growing these lovely flowers and using them for worship. Hibiscus blooms in red, pink, white and peach and several combinations of these colors.

Hibiscus is a strong favorite! Shilpa sent in this gorgeous picture of a hibiscus, saying:
"Hibiscus really needs no introduction. Mythreyee and Vin have already given us the needed information with their lovely paintings. They are so widespread and common that sometimes I take their beauty for granted. Humming birds, bees and butterflies love hibiscus too. I wish I had a big, beautiful garden so that I can plant a few varieties of these plants and enjoy nature’s best all the time.

I took this picture in Boston in summer."

Priya shares a watercolor wash of Hardhack which is a shrub that grows in the United States and Canada. Hardhack is a summer flower that grows in sunny and moist places. Hardhack is a cluster of tiny pink or rose flowers. These clusters are long and narrow. And grow along swamps and lake or stream banks.

Sree presents an oil painting of Heliconia which are tropical plants commonly found in America and Pacific Ocean islands as well as Indonesia. The flowers almost look like bananas and there are about 100- 200 species. They are also called Wild Plantian / Lobster Claw and False Bird of Paradise. Feathered friends such as the Hummingbird feast on these wild beauties. Heliconias belong to the family Heliconiacae and are grown as landscape plants and for florists trade.

Manisha has two entries for H.

Hyacinthus orientalis, or the common hyacinth, has fragrant clusters of flower on a tall spike. They grow from bulbs and are typically planted in fall for blooms in spring. Manisha grew these beauties in her garden.

Helianthus annuus, or the common sunflower, really needs no introduction. Manisha grew the Autumn Beauty in her garden.

If you have any entries for "H", please send them to and we will be glad to add them to our show. As we move on to 2007, we will begin with the letter "I", deadline date for which would be Jan 10, 2007.

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Here's H

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H is here and will be here till December 27. That will be our last round-up for the year 2006!!

Please send in all your entries to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com. The round-up will be posted shortly thereafter.

The guidelines for the letter H.

Round-up of "G"

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We have folks pitching in with a whole garden of gorgeous flowers for "G" - from the commonly seen and popularly grown to the exotic and wild. In addition to our regular participants, we have Mandira and Mythreyee joining in.

Gini shows us a very unusual flower with a very interesting name - Gooseneck Loosestrife. Once you bring them into your garden, beware - you will not be able to get them out, cause their roots take hold deep down into the soil. But who would want to get rid of these lovely clusters, anyway!

Mandira presents Gazania which is a member of the Daisy family. Gazania looks like a cousin of the royal Sunflower too. It is a native of South Africa and has a pretty interesting tale behind its name.

Mythreyee brings us a One-stroke painting of Geranium which is often confused with Pelargonium's. These pretty flowers in attractive colors and leaves seem to be very popular in the United States and Europe.

Anita returns to the Flower Festival with a wild flower called Geum that is a resident of the breath-takingly beautiful Valley of Flowers in Garhwal, India.

Manisha stumbled into a trail of Gillardias on a visit to a working 1880's ranch in Boulder, Colorado. Gillardias are summer flowers that carpet long trails with their hues of flames.

Sree presents an oil painting of Gardenia which is an ever-green shrub that is a native of South and South East Asian countries. Gardenia's fragrance draws many a garden-lover to plant them.

G stands for get together again. Because like Anita, Vin is also back. This time with a fabulous digital entry for Gladiolus.

Mala has a gorgeous bunch of yellow gladioli. They are also called Sword Lilies even though they are not members of the lily family.

ShilpaH has sent in Glaucous Cassia
Botanical name: Senna surattensis, cassia surattensis.
Family: Fabaceae

She says:
"This tree caught my eye while enjoying a leisurely stroll in Charleston, SC. The end of every single branch was adorned with the bright yellow flowers. For sometime I was transported to Bangalore; it is very popular in the city’s gardens and roadsides.
Also called scrambled egg tree, it is very easy to grow. It usually grows four to eight feet tall. The bright flowers and the dark green leaves make a striking combination and attract butterflies."

And lastly, Priya's entry for G is a watercolor wash of Geranium which bursts out in glorious colors and scented leaves too. The popularity of Geraniums drew a group of Geranium lovers into forming an International Society.

Thanks folks for participating in the largest turnout for the Flower-Fest thus far! The G round-up is simply superb.

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Get Going G

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We are on to the letter G, the seventh round of the Flower Fest! Get your cameras and your paints and brushes rolling to churn out some nice entries by the 13th of December!

Please send in all your entries to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com. The round-up will be posted shortly thereafter.

The guidelines for the letter G.

Round up for F

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FFFFFinally ffffound fffflowers ffffor F:)Here are the entries for this round of the Flower fest. It would be really wonderful if more people would join in, the sweet anticipation of a grand round up ( if that's possible) at the end of the Fest is building up. Hope the enthusiasm and the interest doesnt lose its momentum, and hope we will see a lot more entries in the next round for G!

False Indigo

Gini has sent in the False indigo or Baptisia australis, from her own garden! It resembles the pea flower, does not require much care except for an occasional trimming of leaves that tend to grow outward.

Two entries for Forget Me Not!

Forget Me Not - Sree

Sree has an oil painting as usual. These are little flat five petalled flowers which belong to the Genus Myosotis and family Boraginaceae. The state flower of Alaska, this annual/perennial prolific is in spring and the color may vary from blue to pink and sometimes white.

Forget Me Not - Nature and Me

Nature and Me adds - It was believed in 15th Century Germany that the wearer of these prety blooms would never be forgotten by their lovers. Hence, the name Forget-me-not. The forget-me-not became the subject of a disco song "Forget Me Nots" by Patrice Rushen in 1982 hitting the Top 10 in many countries. The lyrics include "Sending you forget-me-nots, to help you to remember".Interesting!

Fringe Tree

Manisha has a lovely photograph taken at the Morton Arboretum in Lisle, Illinois, of the Fringe Tree which quite makes up for the absence of a wild flower this week! Chionanthus virginicus, also known as the Old Man's Beard, sports fragrant white flowers with fringe-like petals. The Chinese Fringe Tree is wonderful to have on small lots as it does not grow taller than 10-15 feet. In the wild, it can grow up to 30 feet.


Shilpa, (not to be confused with Shilpa of Aayi's Recipes!), sent in this gorgeous picture of fuschias. This is what she had to say: "These pretty flowers come in shades of red, purple, white, and pink and are tubular or bell-shaped.
So far, I have only seen the double-colored versions. Do you know there are more than 100 varieties of Fuchsia?

Fuchsia plants are valued for their showy flowers and vibrant colors. They are used in gardens to attract humming birds and of course, for ornamental purposes.

I get a few visitors to my bird-feeder but no humming birds. My plan is to get some Fuchsia plants next summer and see if I get lucky!

This picture was taken in a state park in NC, in September this year. has more info."

If you have entries you would like to send in for F, please do so! G will go live on December 3.

Freak out with F!

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F is the letter to focus on.

It's great to hear that there are entries already brewing for this letter.

Please send in all your entries by November 29, 2006 to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com. The round-up will be posted shortly thereafter.

The guidelines for the letter F.

Round up for E- Flower Fest

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Looks like Echinaceas have won this round of the Flower fest, just as Dahlias did the last!Though it seemed impossible to come up with a name for the letter E, we managed 3 Echinaceas and one wildflower from Manisha!

Erigeron peregrinus

Manisha has captured dainty Subalpine daisies (Erigeron peregrinus) which are a part of the Asteraceae family, the second largest family in flowering plants. Also known as the Wandering daisy, this wildflower is found mainly in the western parts of North America and these blooms are between 1/16th of an inch to 2 inches in diameter.

We have three entries for Echinaceas (Echinacea Purpurea)

Sree has rendered them on canvas with oil. It is also called the purple coneflower a native American herb which is used for its many medicinal properties against cold and other common ailments.

Gini has shot some lovely pictures of the same pink echinacea blossoms, bursting into bloom. Gini adds that these plants require no care. They bear flowers for a long time and attract a lot of bees. Towards fall, when the flowers start to dry out, just let them be. The seeds are a source of food from the birds during the cold. Plant coneflowers for a bird friendly garden.

Nature and Me completes the hatrick with a watercolor of echinaceas. She is currently having computer woes and is unable to update her blog but that didn't stop her from participating in the Flower Fest. (In fact, this is a great example of how you can participate if you don't have a blog or don't want to post the picture of the flower to your blog.)

If you have entries you would like to send in for E, please do so! F will go live on November 19.

E for flowers, not eeek!

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You can do it. There are flowers whose common names or botanical names start with E.

If you are new to this blog, please review the guidelines; the letter is now E.

Please send in all your entries by November 15, 2006 to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com.

If you need help with flowers from E, here are a few helpful links:
By scientific name
By common name

Flower Fest - Round Up for D

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D is for Dahlia! There's no doubt about it. That's the first flower that comes to mind. And we have several beautiful types of Dahlias in the Flower Fest Round-Up for D, sprinkled with a couple of non-dahlia entries!

Pink Dahlia

N&M of Nature and Me has a striking watercolor of the national flower of Mexico, Dahlia. Dahlia is also the official flower of the city of Seattle. Named after Swedish 18th-century botanist Anders Dahl, this flower has blooms that vary in size from 2 to 10 inches!

White and Red Dahlias

Anita made a trip to the Valley of Flowers in the Himalayas recently. She found these perfect beauties near Auli, a famous ski resort!

Butterflies are partial to these flowers, it seems! Read more about dahlia and Anita's trip to Badrinath and Har Ki Pauri on her blog.

Soft Pink Dahlia

Gini has these marvellous soft in pink dahlias in her garden!! She grew them from tubers she bought at a grocery store. Read how Gini plans to care for her dahlias over winter on her blog!


Think of spring and with it come images of yellow daffodils. Sree has a refreshing spring flower in watercolors for us as we go headlong into shorter days and the cold weather starts enveloping us.

Delosperma cooperi

Manisha has planted these metallic pink drought-resistant Delosperma cooperi in her little rock garden. They need very little care and according to her, are late risers and retire early!

I hope you enjoyed this round-up as much as I enjoyed doing it! It's a real treat to be able to do the round-ups and learn more about each flower!

We will be moving on to the next letter, E, on November 5. So put on your thinking caps and brush off those post-Diwali blues and get to work on E!

D, right after Diwali

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How apt! We're moving on to D, right after Diwali.

The guidelines remain the same; the letter changes to D.

Please send in all your entries by November 1, 2006 to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com.

The support is increasing but the number of entries dropped, mainly because of the pressure of Diwali. Your creative juices should be gushing through your veins after the sugar high from all thos Diwali goodies. So let's see more entries for D, eh?

Manisha will be doing the round-up for D, after the deadline of November 1, 2006.

Happy Diwali!

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Round-up of "C"

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We are 'C' down the Alphabet!
Its nice to see the common and wild beauties making their place in the fest! The garden would only be a whole lot lovelier with more flowers pouring in! If you know of fellow bloggers who paint, sketch, "shoot" these petalled wonders,please spread the word!
These are the entries for the third letter 'C'.

CRAB APPLE BLOOMS by Nature and Me

Crab Apple Blooms are abundantly found in the USA in hues of pearly white, delicate pink and rich red. Crab apple trees are grown for ornamental purposes because of their beautiful flowers and fruits. During Spring these trees bloom in delicate colours. The unopened buds may be in one colour, but may bloom in other hues. Even as the flowers fade these trees look rich and colourful. Flowers are classified as single (five petals), semi-double (six-ten petals), or double (more than 10 petals). During autumn, the falling leaves of these trees transform into beautiful colours. These trees are used as pollenizers in apple orchards where they bloom along with the apple trees.Crab Apple flower essence is used as a natural remedy to help alleviate feelings of self-hatred and uncleanliness. It is used in the treatment for facial skin rashes. Also found to be helpful during fasting periods.
(Source for note: wikepedia; and


This flower is only about an inch in height and even less in width. It was like a blur of color on the wet ground in Morrison, Colorado. Morrison is about 8000ft in altitude. The roots of the Canada thistle can spread more than 15 feet horizontally and its roots may grow into the soil anywhere from 6 to 15 feet deep.
Unlike the Buffalo Bur which tosses its spiny seeds into the path of all that may trod that way, the Canada thistle a creeping perennial that reproduces from vegetative buds in its root system. Roots and shoots can give rise to new plants. That's not to say that it does not produce seeds. This picture was taken towards the end of September.It looked like it was done flowering and already producing seed.

It can produce between 1000 to 1500 seeds per flowering shoot and seeds are responsible for long distance dispersal. The feathery pappus helps disperse the seeds. However it is known to fall off leaving the seed attached to the plant, requiring other modes of dispersal. Seedlings grow slower and are subject to competition from other weeds especially as they are not backed by an extensive root system. Nevertheless, its seed should not be underestimated as it can remain viable in the soil for 20 years. The deeper it is buried, the longer it is viable.

Canada thistle has spread throughout the US except the south-eastern region. In Colorado, it is found in the plains and foothills, flowering from July to September. It is classified as a noxious weed.

References: Colorado State University Cooperative Extension
Guide to Colorado Wildflowers Vol 1 Plains & Foothills and Guide to Colorado Wildflowers Vol 2.
Plains & Foothills and Guide to Colorado Wildflowers Vol 2.

CHIVES by Giniann

Chives are abundant in during spring and summer. They have small purple heads and have a lot of oniony flavor. Some say chives and roses grow well together and I think this is true.The chives under the roses flourish much more than the ones that are standing alone.


Cicerbita is a low growing alpine wildflower from the Aster family. The sun-loving herbacious plant with a mounding habit produces clusters of blue-mauve flowers high above. Flowers from July-Sept. Local people use the plant to treat headaches. It is also used in Chinese medicine.
Photographed in the Valley of Flowers and nearby areas (Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve), Chamoli district, Garhwal (Uttaranchal).

COSMOS by Sree

Also called the Mexican Aster, these flowers are so light and delicate they sway like grass in the wind, almost reminding one of dandelions! They belong to the 'Asteraceae' family, they grow up to 3.2 metres in height. The flower color varies between species, most common ones being yellow, orange, purple and white

Round-up for C on the 18th

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Sree will be doing the round-up for the entries for Flower-Fest - C on the 18th. So please send your entries to flowerfestival[a]gmail[dot]com as soon as possible, if you haven't already done so!

Hope to see some really cool flowers as well as new participants!

'C', you're on!

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On to the third letter: C!

The guidelines remain the same; the letter changes to C.

Please send in all your entries by Oct 18, 2006 to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com.

Will we see more entries this time? I hope so, if the increase in traffic to this blog is any indication, we will!! So unleash that creative talent and send in a picture, drawing, sketch, doodle, photograph of a flower whose botanical or common name begins with the letter C.

Sree will be doing the round-up for C, after the deadline of October 18, 2006.

Round-up of "B"

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Here are the entries for the second round of the Flower Festival:

Bunchberry (Sent in by Vin of ) : BunchBerry is kind of a wild flower, the plant grows slowly but requires little care. The bunchberry flower is a small flower that has four petals and is mostly white in color. The beauty apparently comes for its placement over its green leaves creating a contrast.

Butterfly Bush (Sent in by Ginian of : The butterfly bush is usually pruned in late winter. In the spring, they start growing back and grow to large sizes by summer. Almost always, you can find butterflies and bees gathering around this bush. Doesn’t need any special care, other than pruning them in winter.

Blue Bonnets (Sent in by Hema of : Blue bonnets start blooming in early spring and blankets of these wild flowers can be seen throughout central and south Texas from late March to early May. It is named for its blue color and the resemblence of its petals to a woman’s sunbonnet (worn as head coverings during the 18th century). They typically grow about 1 feet tall.

Bird of Paradise (Sent in by Paavani of : The name Bird of Paradise comes from the spectacular flower shape, which resembles a bird’s beak and head plumage. They have banana shaped leaves and that’s why it was classified in the banana family Musaceae, but now got own family Strelitziacea. You will be amazed if you see how its blooms. Long stemmed flowers emerge from green boat-shaped bracts, which are bordered in red or purple. The numerous pointed petals of brilliant orange are contrasted with an arrow-shaped tongue of vivid blue. Some species have white and blue. The flowers have several “sets” of flowers in each bract, which are formed on the end of a stalk.

Buttercups (Sent in by Anita of : Buttercups are usually yellow but sometimes, also white. Most buttercups have five to six petals, and numerous spirally arranged stamens surrounding the green center. After pollination this green part which is a number of distinct tapering pistils, will develop into a small dry fruit, the achenes. True to the genus, the leaves are deeply tri-lobed.Buttercups get their name from a small cup-like feature, called the nectariferous spot, at the base of the petals that keeps nectar for the pollinating insects; their treat for helping out! Anita has a series of beautiful pictures of Buttercups in her blog. Do check out her blog.

Bachelor's Button (Sent in by Priya of : a.k.a Cornflower grows wildly in the fields of Europe. They bloom with little care and are a favorite with gardners. These bright blue blooms appear from summer to early fall. It was declared a national emblem of unity in Germany. These plants generally grow to a height of 1-3 feet and are easy to maintain in dry flower arrangements cause they retain their colour well. They attract a lot of butterflies, bees and birds.

Bluebells (Sent in by Sree of : Also called Wild Hyacinth ( quite a striking resemblance to the water hyacinth both in color and form). Sree quotes from a description of these blue beauties - The bluebell, popularly thought of as Britain's national flower, is a bulbous spring flowering plant. When growing en masse in woodlands it creates a dazzling display of brilliant blue, which is not only a great wild flower phenomenon, but also a British speciality. The fragrant bell-shaped flowers stand upright when they are in bud, but hang downwards, nodding in the breeze when fully open; they may be violet-blue, white or even pink on rare occasions, and have cream-coloured anthers. They are arranged in clusters of 4-16 on flower spikes (known as racemes), which have drooping tips.

Buffalo Bur (Sent in by Manisha of :
This is the Buffalo Bur from the Solanum rostratum genus. It's barely 1 inch across in width and is the bane of most off-road cyclists. Buffalo Bur is from the Nightshade family and apparently, the foliage and the unripe fruit of most nightshades contain dangerous levels of a steroid alkaloid, solanine. The ripe berries are the least toxic part of these plants. Buffalo bur has long, yellow spines on stems, leaves, and flower heads as can be seen in the photo above. They grow up to 2 feet high and are drought resistant. The flowers bloom in summer. By fall, the spiny fruit or the berries, if you will, develop and are up to 1/2 inch in diameter.

If you missed getting your entry in for this round-up, we still have 3 more days before 'C' becomes the letter in focus. So send in your entry to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com as soon as possible and we'll slip it into this round-up.

Round-up for B coming up!

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N&M will be doing the round-up for the entries for Flower-Fest - B tomorrow. So please send your entries to flowerfestival[a]gmail[dot]com as soon as possible, if you haven't already done so!

Looking forward to seeing your art in your flowers!

Moving to 'B'

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After the heartwarming response and support for both, the idea of the Flower-Fest as well as the first Round-Up for Flower Fest - A, we're thrilled to be moving to the next letter: B.

The guidelines remain the same; the letter changes to B.

Please send in all your entries by Oct 4, 2006 to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com.

Flower Fest - Round-up for 'A'

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I am very excited to present our very first round-up for the letter 'A'.

We had so many emails expressing support and interest in the Flower Fest that we are quite overwhelmed! We're hoping that we will be able to convert this enthusiasm into more entries for subsequent letters of the alphabet. There is a lot of learning to be had here, as has been so eloquently expressed in the emails we have received. Thank you again for all your support!

We had 7 superb entries for the letter 'A'.


Gini of Salt and Pepper loves Achillea or yarrow for being low maintenance plants. Achillea is named after the Greek mythological character Achilles whose soldiers used yarrow to treat wounds. Achillea belongs to the large Asteraceae family. Take a closer look at Gini's picture to get an idea of just how teeny these flowers are!

African Lily

A beautiful watercolor of an African Lily, 7 in by 5 in, from Nature & Me displays subtle purple tones against a yellow background. Also known as the Lily of the Nile, this fleshy rhizome is hardy in US Gardening Zones 7 to 11. In Zones 4-6, it is better to grow it in containers and bring it inside for the winter. Known also as the Agapanthus Africanus (its botanical name), this member of the lily family is a perennial evergreen plant.

Alcea Rosea

Alcea Rosea or the Common Garden Hollyhock is a much misunderstood flower. Not only is it easy to grow, it is also gorgeous in shades of pink to dark chocolate. Manisha has submitted photographs of Alcea Rosea, which is a biennial that is treated more like an annual in the colder zones.


Paavani has sent in two flowers, both from the Amaryllidaceae family. She has chosen to use mixed media in her art, canvas as well as Photoshop.

Paavani has a touching write-up on what flowers mean to her. The Amaryllis, says she, is a flower of splendid beauty and represents pride.

The Spider lily or Hymenocallis caroliniana, also in the Amaryllidaceae family, is a perennial plant that only has basal leaves.
It has often been described as a large spectacular flower that is exciting to come across unexpectedly. Exciting is what this round-up is about so this is a perfect fit!


has also decided to regale us with an Amaryllis that she calls the Loudspeaker Lily. She has painted with oil on canvas (8in by 10in). Native to South America's tropical regions, it is very popular worldwide because it is the easiest of flowering bulbs to bring to bloom. Efforts are rewarded with large colorful striped blooms over a flowering period that lasts 7 to 10 weeks. Its botanical name is Hippeastrum and there are about 80 different known species.


Digital art is of great interest to our next participant. Vin of Avlokana has experience with watercolors that he wants to take to digital art.
Vin chose the Anthurium because it makes him nostalgic for the colocasia leaves that are abundant in his native city.

That's it for the very first ever Flower Fest Round-up!

If you missed getting your entry in for this round-up, we still have 4 more days before 'B' becomes the letter in focus. So send in your entry to flowerfestival[at]gmail[dot]com as soon as possible and we'll slip it into this round-up.

Clarifications: A couple of clarifications that need to be made based on the emails we received: You don't have to participate for every letter. It can seem like quite a daunting task to have to do all 26 letters. If you have a flower that is dear to you and you would like to participate just in that round, please do so! You can paint, sketch, doodle, photograph, use digital art, mixed media - anything to create your favorite flower for the Flower Fest.

Please ensure that you have the right to use the images you submit to Flower Fest for each round-up. Flower Fest cannot assume the liability of ensuring that the image you submit is yours or that you are licensed to use the image.

All images submitted remain copyrighted to their respective creator or owner. Flower Fest reserves the right to reproduce these images in digital and printed media, without ever assuming copyright on these images.

With that out of the way, we have just 4 days before B takes over the Flower Fest - the A-Z of Flowers!