Sunday, January 26, 2014

Church Flowers for Septuagesima

Agapanthus
 
The pre-Lenten season begins on Septuagesima (9th Sunday before Easter) and ends on the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday. The other Sundays during this season are called Sexagesima and Quinquagesima.  The entire season is often referred to as Septuagesima or sometimes as "Shrovetide".   (The latter term, however, is also used to refer to the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday or the few days before Ash Wednesday.)

This year (2014) Septuagesima is on February 16.

According to the sacristan's manual on the Sancta Missa website flowers may be used on these Sundays (unlike Lent when there is a general prohibition on church flowers).

Since the liturgical color is violet -- and one begins to move from the joy of Christmas toward the somberness of Lent -- flower arrangers might consider using stems with violet, blue or lavender blooms.  Here is Knight and St. Claire's list of flowers that can be found in those hues:

Agapanthus (above)
Anemone
Azalea
Cornflower (below)

Cornflower

Dahlia
Delphinium
Hyacinth
Hydrangea
Iris
Larkspur
Lilac
Lily (Martagan)
Petunia
Phlox
Ranunculus
Rhodendron
Rose
Scabiosa
Snapdragon
Stock
Sweetpea (below)

Sweet pea
Sweet William
Tulip
Zinnia

Source of list:  McKnight and St. Claire, Arranging Flowers for the Sanctuary (Harper and Brothers, 1961)
Images:  Agapanthus from Wikimedia Commons.  Click for license.
              Cornflower from Wikimedia Commons.  Click for license.
              Sweetpea from Wikimedia Commons.  Click for license.

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