Bells of Ireland

Common Names: Bells of Ireland, Shellflower, Moluccella

Botanical names: Moluccella, (mo-lu-SEL-la)Year round,, peak season is June through October

Availability: Year round, peak season is June through October

Vase life: 7 to 10 days

Storage temperatures: 36 - 38 degrees Fahrenheit

Ethylene Sensitive: Yes

Description: Tiny, white flowers surrounded by 1 to 2 inch shell like calyexs (bells) clustered along 24 to 26 inch stems.

Color: The lime green calyx is considered the "blossom" with tiny white flowers that are rarely seen.

Botanical facts: Bells of Ireland are often reserved for St. Patricks Day. However, the only association that the flower has with Ireland is the name.

Design notes: A wonderful green flower useful in arrangements for adding line and accent.

Purchasing hints: Purchase strong, straight stems with turgid, well formed bells. The presence of tiny white flowers is a real plus.

Conditioning: Remove all foliage that will be below the water line. Remove two to three inches of the stem end with a sharp knife. Hydrate in a solution of water and commercial floral food before storage or usage.

Additional notes: The stems of Bells of Ireland are covered with tiny thorns which may irritate the skin. Many designers use gloves when designing with this flower. Bells of Ireland are highly phototropic and will bend toward any light source. Always store upright and away from any side light.