Heliotrope

The Heliotrope.

With the Heliotrope every lover of flowers is familiar; it is not less prized for its delicate fragrance than the tulip for its glowing colours. No doubt exists as to the country from which we have imported the cultivated heliotrope, nor as to the epoch when it was introduced: it came from Peru, whence the name given to it by Linnæus, Heliotropium Peruvianium ; and was brought into Europe, in 1740, by Joseph de Jussieu. Although not known in Europe above a hundred and thirty years, it is now an "old, familiar face" in every garden. Now, by the side of the cultivated species, a native of the New World, we can place a wild variety, indigenous to the Old World, common in our own country, and, indeed, in all the countries of temperate Europe; whence it has received the appellation of Heliotropium Europæum.

The European species, let me state, is in every respect similar to the Peruvian species, except that its flowers are inodorous and of a paler blue. Yet it was known before the discovery of America,—before the discovery of those regions from which we have obtained the cultivated heliotrope. Thus, the two varieties have existed contemporaneously, and have flourished independently of each other, from their very origin. Why should not such be the case with the wild and cultivated tulip?