o. Orphrys Rhodostephane 7/5/2019

In search of Hvar’s wild orchids

We’ve been enjoying the springtime sight of Hvar’s wild flowers for many years now. I’ve taken lots of photos, diligently looked up their names and created flower guides to keep track of what we’ve learned. But until quite recently, I’d not seen any wild orchids on our wanderings. They are quite seasonal, so you have to be on the lookout in April and May, and know what you’re looking for. So the first few orchids had to be pointed out to me, after which I got the idea, and started to look more carefully. It’s amazing how many of these delicate flowers are there among the greenery, just waiting to be seen!

Mosses and lichens - miniature landscape

Discovering mosses and lichens

When I was writing about the wildflowers and plants of Hvar, I intended to include a couple of photos of mosses. I was greatly taken with the feathery green clumps I’d seen on shady walls and paths through the local woodland. However, having worked hard to identify the flowering plants, I was completely intimidated by…

Crocus biflorus

Hvar’s wildflowers and plants in winter

In December, there’s not so many flowers in bloom along the pathways of Hvar, but a few linger on from autumn because of the mild temperatures, while others are getting an early start on spring!  For this winter edition, I’ve expanded the scope to include seeds, fruits and leaves as they make quite the splash…

Eryngium amethystinum

Guide to Hvar’s wildflowers in the late summer

Following on from our Guide to Hvar’s Wildflowers – Spring Edition, I’ve been out and about looking for what’s in bloom at the end of summer. These are mostly in the high country around the peak of Sv Nikola and on the Vorh plateau, although some are down around sea-level, even right on the beach…

The fine art of making lace from agave leaves

Legend has it that the skill of making lace from agave leaves arrived from the Canary Islands around the mid-nineteenth century. A seaman brought back a sample of Tenerife lace from his latest trip, you could imagine as a gift for his sister, who may have been a nun, or attended convent school. The sister…

Rosmarinus Officinalis

Rosemary and lavender – Hvar’s essential oils

One of the delights of Hvar is the variety of aromatic plants that grow naturally here. The island is well-known for its lavender (lavanda), but for many centuries, rosemary (ružmarin) was more important to the island’s economy. Rosemary is actually a close relative of lavender, both belonging to the Lamiaceae (mint) family of plants. The…