Wild Flowers in the Holy Land

A cross reference of BibleWalks sites with Nature photos – wild flowers, herbs and plants.

Song of Solomon 2:12: “The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come”

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Contents:

Overview

Sites with wild flowers

Biblical References

Specials

Etymology

Links

Sites with Wild flowers:

The following table lists the sites with wild flowers (also spelled: wildflowers), herbs and plants that are featured in BibleWalks site pages.

The name field includes up to 3 names: a common name, a scientific name in italic, and a (Hebrew name in parenthesis).  To see more information – click on the site’s name. Hit the photo in order to view it in higher resolution.

 

 Name
Biblical & Historical
References
Feature Site
(click_&_go)
Photo
(click_to_enlarge_me)
Squirting Cucumbers Ecballium elaterium (Yerikat Hachamor)
2 Kings 4:38-39:
“And Elisha… found a wild vine, and gathered thereof wild gourds his lap full, and came and shred them into the pot of pottage…”.
Tell
Regev
“Pretty
Carmelite”
Ricotia
Brassicaceae
(Carmelite Na-ah)
These delicate flowers, which grow among the rocks in most of the Galilee and here near the Carmelite monastery, are cross-shaped and resemble Carmelite crosses.
Stella
Maris
Tsalmon
Yellow-
Asphodel
Asphodeline
lutea
(Ironi-Tzahov)
Tall (1m)
Flowers in the spring
Stella
Maris

Tower of Bells

Althaea

setosa Boiss

(Khatamit

Zifanit)

Tall (to 3.5m!)
Geva
Shemen
Hispid
Viper’s-bugloss
Echium Angustifolium
(Achna’i)
 Flower resembles a Viper snake’s head
Pigeons
caves
Israeli Luf
Arum
Palaestinum
Luf: from Aramaic Lufa; Arabic: Lup
Pigeons caves
Ephedra plant
Foeminea
Forssk
(Sharvitan Matsui)
Jerusalem Western wall: a bush of this Ephedra grew in the cracks, and during summer time it dropped water down to the prayer area.
Migdal-Malcha
Corn Poppy
Papaver
subpiriforme
(Pereg)
Isaiah 40 6-8:
“All flesh is grass, and all its beauty is like the flower of the field. The grass withers, the flower fades when the breath of the Lord blows on it; surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever”.
Kh. Zagag
Mt. Saul
Oriental Viper’s Grass
Scorzonera
papposa
(Hardufnin Hatzitzit)
Viper: possibly use curing snake bite
Migdal-
Malcha
Colchicum tauri
(Sitvanit Hermon)
Sitvanit is referred in the Mishna, the 2nd century AD books of Jewish practices, where it is said to be used to produce vinegar
Beit Jan
Jerusalem Autumn-crocus
Colchicum hierosolymitanum
 same as above
Airplane hill, Jerusalem
Spiny Hawthorn
Crataegus
aronia
(Uzrar Kotzani)
A Christian tradition: Jesus’ crown of thorns was twisted from twigs of the bush, and thus it is also called “Christ Thorn”
Beit Jan
Eastern Strawberry
Arbutus
andrachne
(Katlav Matsui)
2 Samuel 18:9-17:  “And Absalom rode upon a mule, and the mule went under the thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold of the oak,…”
Beit Jan
Globe-thistle
Echinops
adenocaulos
(Kipodan)
Matthew 13 7:
  “…and the thorns sprung up…”.
Zavat
Silverleaf Nightshade
Solanum
elaeagnifolium
Solanum – perhaps derived from Sol (Latin for sun)
Zavat
Daffodils
Narcissus
(Narkis)
Possibly – Lily of the valleys:
Song of Solomon 2 1: “I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys”.
Zavat
Kabra
Wild white mustard
Synapis alba
(Hardal Lavan)
Used to make mustard from seeds
Zavat
Splendid Bindweed
Convolvulus
dorycnium
(Khavalval-Hasi’akh)
Convolvulus – from Latin – to twine around
El Khader

el Hamam

Cyclamen
persicum
(Rakkefet)
Sharta
Migdal Haemek
Barbary Nut
Iris
sisyrinchium
(Tsaharon)
Sharta
Anemone
(Calanit)
Possible Biblical identification:
Isaiah 17 10: “Because thou hast forgotten the God of thy salvation … therefore shalt thou plant pleasant plants,…”.
Sharta
Hyssop Herb
Origanum
syriaca
(Ezov Matsui,
Za’atar)
Exodus 12:22:
“And ye shall take a bunch of hyssop, and dip it in the blood that is in the basin, and strike the lintel and the two side posts with the blood that is in the basin”.
Sharta
Toothpick
Ammi majus
(Ammita Gdola)
Kh. Bata
Squill
Urginea
maritima
(Hazav)
(Legend) Joshua used the squill bulbs to mark the borders between the tribes.
Usha
Zippori
Mazor
Rakkath
Akhbara
Common
Giant Fennel
Ferula
communis
(Kelech Matsui)
Job 30 2: “Yea, whereto might the strength of their hands profit me, in whom old age was perished?”
Tell Beit
Shean
Roman Nettle
Urtica
pilulifera
(Sirpad Hakadurim)
Job 30, 7: “Among the bushes they brayed; under the nettles they were gathered together”.
Tabor –
Greek Orth.
Eryngium
creticum
(Charchevina -Makchila)
Listed in the Mishna: one of the plants that are allowed as Passover bitter herbs (Passachim 2: 6).
Beit Uriyah
Lilac Chaste Tree –
Monk’s Pepper
Vitex agnus-castus
(Siach Avraham Matsui)
Genesis 22, 13: “And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son”.
Hilazon
Jerusalem Spurge
Euphorbia Hierosolymitana
(“Khalavluv Meguvshash”)
This shrub covers most of Gamla;  flowers in  winter, painting the site in yellow-green.
Gamla
Temple cave
Gamla
Syrian Bear’s-breech
Acanthus
Syriacus
(“Koziz Suri”)
Omrit
Blue
Lupine
Lupinus
pilosus
(Turmus HeHarim)
Omrit
Red
Everlasting
Helichrysum sanguineum
(“Dam Hamacabim”)
According to the legend, the flower commemorates a place where the blood of the 2nd C BC Israelite freedom-fighter has been spilled.
Dan
Desertorum Bellevalia
(Zamzumit Hamidbar)
Desert flower found in Jordan, Judea, Negev, Sinai.  Blooms in winter.
Horkania
Bethlehem
Star
Ornithogalum lanceolatum
Star-like flower links to story of Bethlehem star, that revealed the birth of Jesus to the wise men.
Kabra
Mandrake flowers
Mandragora autumnalis
(Hebrew: Duda’im)
Fruits of this plant were used for treating fertility problems (Genesis 30:14): “And Reuben … found mandrakes in the field, brought them unto his mother Leah. Then Rachel said to Leah, Give me, I pray thee, of thy son’s mandrakes”.
Yattir
Israeli Iris
Iris Palaestina
A small flower with white flowers and yellow strips.
Yattir
Syrian Bindweed
Convolvulus Coelesyriacus
Bois
(Havalval Suri)
Annual vine, flowers in March to May
H. Danaila
Tulip
Tulipa agenensis
Tulipa is based on the Turkish name Turban – meaning hat.
(Tsivoni He-Harim)
Flowers February thru April, just before spring.
In 17th century Ottoman Sultan gave bulbs as present to the Austrian ambassador. It was adapted in Netherlands and became their national flower.
Horvat
Hanut
Syrian Cornflower-thistle, Knapweed
Centaurea cyanoides
(Hebrew: Dardar Kakhol)
Flowers March thru May.
Horvat
Hanut
Iris Gilboa
Iris Haynei
(Hebrew: Iris Ha-Gilboa)
Flowers March thru April, on  high Gilboa mountain; Best place to see these flowers is a forest near Malkishua.
Gilboa
Charlock
Sinapis arvensis
(Hebrew: Hardal Hasadeh)
Flowers December thru May, covers large areas
Many sites
Campanula Sidoniensis
(Hebrew:Pa’amonit Zidonit)
Flowers April and May.
Horvat Zunam
Sea daffodil
Pancratium Maritimum
Song of Solomon, 2 : 1-2: “I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys. As the lily among thorns, so is my love among the daughters”.
Masref
Pink Butterfly Orchid
Orchis papilionacea L.
Flowers February-April.
Temple cave
Syrian Cantip

Nepeta curviflora

(Hebrew: Nepit Kefufa)
Flowers April-June
el Hamam
Common Caper

Capparis Sicula

(Hebrew: Zalaph Sicily)

 

Its name appears in Nehemiah 3:30 (“Hanun the sixth son of Zalaph”).

In the Talmud (Sabbath 30 2), Rabban Gamliel uses the Caper as an example for renewal.

Karm er-Ras

 

Specials:

Some outstanding views of wildflowers can be seen in Israel. Here are some samples.

  • Anemone (Calanit) in Maoz Haim, Beth Shean Valley [Feb 2012]:

  • The “Darom Adom” (“Red South”) festival is held in the Negev area during the winter season, when thousands of red Anemone (Calanit) flowers cover the fields. [February 2017].

Photo by Eitan Dvir

Biblical references:

These are dozens of references to flowers, herbs and plants in the Bible. Here are some samples –

Song of Solomon 2:12: “The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come”

Psalms 103:15: “As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.”

Proverbs 15:17: “Better is a dinner of herbs where love is, than a stalled ox and hatred therewith”.

Genesis 1:11: “And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so”.

Job 14 9:”Yet through the scent of water it will bud, and bring forth boughs like a plant.”

 

Etymology (behind the name):

  • Perach, Perah – Hebrew: flower
  • Bar – Hebrew: wild

Links:

  • Plants in the Bible

BibleWalks.com – “The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come”

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This page was last updated on July 5, 2020 (Added Common Caper)

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