Thursday, February 1, 2018

FEBRUARY



It's February already! Honestly, I almost forgot to write this as I'm in the middle of my exam period (mid January to mid February). 
I'd also like to wish happy birthday in advance to all of my fellow Februarians 😉


February is the second month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian calendars. It is the shortest month of the year as it is the only month to have a length of less than 30 days. The month has 28 days in common years or 29 days in leap years, with the quadrennial 29th day being called the "leap day."

February is the third month of meteorological winter in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, February is the last month of summer (the seasonal equivalent of August in the Northern Hemisphere, in meteorological reckoning).



Its birth flowers are the violet (Viola) and the common primrose (Primula vulgaris).
Its birthstone is the amethyst. It symbolizes piety, humility, spiritual wisdom, and sincerity.
The zodiac signs for the month of February are Aquarius (until February 20) and Pisces (February 21 onwards).


Viola is a genus of flowering plants in the violet family Violaceae. It is the largest genus in the family, containing between 525 and 600 species. Most species are found in the temperate Northern Hemisphere; however, some are also found in widely divergent areas such as Hawaii, Australasia, and the Andes.


Some Viola species are perennial plants, some are annual plants, and a few are small shrubs. A large number of species, varieties and cultivars are grown in gardens for their ornamental flowers. In horticulture the term "pansy" is normally used for those multi-coloured, large-flowered cultivars which are raised annually or biennially from seed and used extensively in bedding. The terms "viola" and "violet" are normally reserved for small-flowered annuals or perennials, including the species.


Primula vulgaris is a species of flowering plant in the family Primulaceae, native to western and southern Europe (from the Faroe Islands and Norway south to Portugal, and east to Germany, Ukraine, the Crimea, and the Balkans), northwest Africa (Algeria), and southwest Asia (Turkey east to Iran). The common name is primrose, or occasionally common primrose or English primrose to distinguish it from other Primula species also called primroses.


It is a perennial growing 10–30 cm (4–12 in) tall, with a basal rosette of leaves which are more-or-less evergreen in favoured habitats. The leaves are 5–25 cm long and 2–6 cm broad, often heavily wrinkled, and a usually short leaf stem. The delicately scented flowers are 2–4 cm in diameter, borne singly on short slender stems.

(Sorry, not sorry. This photo of P. vulgaris with the great tit (Parus major) was just to adorable to miss)

The flowers are typically pale yellow, though white or pink forms are often seen in nature. The flowers are actinomorphic with a superior ovary which later forms a capsule opening by valves to release the small black seeds. The flowers are hermaphrodite but heterostylous; individual plants bear either pin flowers (longuistylous flower: with the capita of the style prominent) or thrum flowers (brevistylous flower: with the stamens prominent). Fertilisation can only take place between pin and thrum flowers. Pin-to-pin and thrum-to-thrum pollination is ineffective.


The primrose is one of the earliest spring flowers in much of Europe. "Primrose" is ultimately from Old French primerose or medieval Latin prima rosa, meaning "first rose", though it is not closely related to the rose family Rosaceae.


Amethyst is a violet variety of quartz often used in jewelry. It's a semiprecious stone and is the traditional birthstone for February.


The name comes from the Koine Greek ἀμέθυστος amethystos from ἀ- a-, "not" and μεθύσκω methysko / μεθύω methyo, "intoxicate", a reference to the belief that the stone protected its owner from drunkenness. The ancient Greeks wore amethyst and carved drinking vessels from it in the belief that it would prevent intoxication.

(Empress of Uruguay - world largest amethyst geode)

Amethyst is a purple variety of quartz (SiO2) and owes its violet color to irradiation, iron impurities (in some cases in conjunction with transition element impurities), and the presence of trace elements, which result in complex crystal lattice substitutions. The hardness of the mineral is the same as quartz, thus it is suitable for use in jewelry.


Amethyst occurs in primary hues from a light pinkish violet to a deep purple. Amethyst may exhibit one or both secondary hues, red and blue. The best varieties of amethyst can be found in Siberia, Sri Lanka, Brazil and the far East. The ideal grade is called "Deep Siberian" and has a primary purple hue of around 75–80%, with 15–20% blue and (depending on the light source) red secondary hues. Green quartz is sometimes incorrectly called green amethyst, which is a misnomer and not an appropriate name for the material, the proper terminology being prasiolite. Other names for green quartz are vermarine or lime citrine.


Aquarius (♒) is the eleventh astrological sign in the Zodiac, originating from the constellation Aquarius.


The water carrier represented by the zodiacal constellation Aquarius is Ganymede, a beautiful Phrygian youth. Ganymede was the son of Tros, king of Troy (according to Lucian, he was also the son of Dardanus). While tending to his father's flocks on Mount Ida, Ganymede was spotted by Jupiter. The king of gods flew down to the mountain in the form of a large bird, whisking Ganymede away to the heavens. Ever since, the boy has served as cupbearer to the gods. Ovid has Orpheus sing the tale.


Under the tropical zodiac, the sun is in Aquarius typically between January 21 and February 20, while under the Sidereal Zodiac, the sun is in Aquarius from approximately February 15 to March 14, depending on leap year.

On Stardoll:

I haven't seen any violet or primrose items on Stardoll. If I'm wrong, please let me know. There used to be two Aquarius-themed items available at different points in time.
One was this necklace that was a part of zodiac signs "collection" a long time ago (around 2008) and that water jug from that floor of Other World I mentioned in "January" post.



February birthdays:

February 6th : elisachat
February 8th: JudyellaFairy
February 10th: ann_devil

If there's anyone else that celebrates their birthday in February, please leave a comment with your username and birth date.

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