Gypsophila

Native to Canada & United States

This flower is also known by the common name of Baby’s Breath or GYP. In the United Kingdom, it is also known by the somewhat unattractive name of soap wort. Its name derives from the meaning of pure of heart or innocence. Perhaps that is why they are often found as part of a hair decoration for children at weddings and special events. It is most closely associated with the Caryophyllaceae family and is related to sweet William, chickweed, and carnations. As such, the GYP Flower can be described as a perennial and annual herbaceous plant with linear or triangular leaves. The small flowers with not more than five petals each are somewhat dense or they can be open.

Gypsophila Paniculata originated in Europe, Northern Africa, and Northern Asia. Its name of Gypsophila comes from the fact that it grows well in calcium-rich soil that often contains gypsum. And, its name is often translated as “lover of chalk” for its preferred soil. Today, it is regularly used by florists as a filler flower in arrangements, offering both white and pink varieties to blend with a range of flowers. It is available year-round and can last between seven and day days in a vase. This flower can be used fresh or be dried for a wide range of floral designs, décor, and applications.

Growing Recommendations - Gypsophila

When found in gardens, Gypsophila Paniculata is considered as an ornamental plant as well as grown to harvest their flowers for bouquets and arrangements. These are easy to grow by propagating them from seed, through cuttings, or by root division. Growth typically occurs in the spring time. When propagated from seed, they can germinate in about ten to fifteen days. They should be placed in full sunlight and like to have rich and light soil. If using fertilizer as a source of enrichment, make sure the soil is well drained. It can be invaded by some pests so the area around the ornamental plant may need to be treated to reduce these pests.

These are somewhat delicate so they should be handled in a gentle manner so as not to break the stems. It is best to not mist these with water as this will cause the Baby’s Breath to turn brown and could encourage rot. Tight buds can be opened up by putting them in a warm solution of flower food, covering them, and placing them in a warm area for a day. Take the plastic off during that time for short periods to help with circulation.

Photos of Gypsophila

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