Celia Hart's blog about what's going on in and around her studio.
Art, printmaking, inspirations, gardening, vegetables, hens, landscapes, wild flowers, East Anglia, adventure, travel.

Thursday, 16 January 2014

100 Flowers : #004 Greater Periwinkle

Now, this may seem a little unseasonal but in this mild and wet winter there are some plants that have just kept on going without a pause . . .

#004 : Vinca major

Greater Periwinkle 

I'm enjoying deciphering the botanical latin for the #100Flowers posts, this one is pretty straightforward . . .
Vinca : is from the latin 'vincere' which means 'to bind', the long trailing stems with evergreen leaves are perfect to use binding garlands and wreaths.
major : means 'greater' or 'larger' and distinguishes this plant from the smaller flowered periwinkle, Vinca minor.

The buds are furled like tiny umbrellas.

Take a closer look at the flowers, what elegant geometry! A golden circle in a pentagon, surrounded by five intriguingly asymmetric petals – like a fan or propeller.

Lines Written in Early Spring
by William Wordsworth in 1798
I heard a thousand blended notes,
While in a grove I sate reclined,
In that sweet mood when pleasant thoughts
Bring sad thoughts to the mind.

To her fair works did Nature link
The human soul that through me ran;
And much it grieved my heart to think
What man has made of man.

Through primrose tufts,
in that green bower,
The periwinkle trailed its wreaths;
And 'tis my faith that every flower
Enjoys the air it breathes.

The birds around me hopped and played,
Their thoughts I cannot measure:-
But the least motion which they made
It seemed a thrill of pleasure.

The budding twigs spread out their fan,
To catch the breezy air;
And I must think, do all I can,
That there was pleasure there.

If this belief from heaven be sent,
If such be Nature's holy plan,
Have I not reason to lament
What man has made of man?

Worries about man messing up the natural world aren't new!

I'm putting all the #100Flowers on a Pinterest board, you can find it here.



  1. That has made me think... I can't remember the last time there was a flower on my Vinca

  2. I'm loving seeing all the flowers in bloom in your garden. It is amazing how some keep on flowering nearly all year. We have penstemons in our garden still in flower since last summer.

  3. I love the colour and the petal shapes.

  4. I was about to write that's it's no surprise you can find Vinca in flower because it is a bit of a thug down here and rampant... and then I read Gina's comment about no flowers on hers so maybe that's not so everywhere. I love the variegated version too with those sharp green leaves. Beautiful photos Celia. Don't they just shout 'draw me?'

  5. I love periwinkle's gorgeous colours, but it does run rampant over everything. I have to say though that I've always just grown it as ground cover and never even considered that it could climb up! I think I will give it a try as a climber and see if I can keep it under control better that way.



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