Posted on : February 13th, 2020
“When an almond tree became covered with blossoms in the heart of winter, all the trees around it began to jeer. ‘What vanity,’ they screamed, ‘what insolence! Just think, it believes it can bring spring in this way!’ The flowers of the almond tree blushed for shame. ‘Forgive me, my sisters,’ said the tree. ‘I swear I did not want to blossom, but suddenly I felt a warm springtime breeze in my heart.”― Nikos Kazantzakis, Saint Francis
Just as people around the world grow weary of winter, the first harbingers of spring make their appearance: the almond trees burst into bloom. And here in Chico—even though we know winter is not yet over—it feels like life is born anew.
Since ancient times almond blossoms have been a symbol of resurrection, bravery and courage, purity, hope and love. They represent the promise of life’s sustenance. Ancient Middle Eastern countries saw almond blossoms as the light returning in Spring. (They certainly light up the trees around here!) In Greek mythology, they were a symbol of eternal true love that cannot be conquered by death. The almond branch was the model for the Jewish menorah; for Christians, in some countries, it is a symbol of the virgin birth of Christ. Of course, in other cultures it is a symbol of sexuality and fertility. Think about pure love and hope—and all its expressions—and you have the gist of the idea.
Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day and one thing I did not know before writing this post is that Almond blossoms are deeply associated with that holiday! One of the stories about Saint Valentine is that, while imprisoned by the Romans for his Christian faith, he struck up a friendship with the jailer’s daughter Julia. She had been blind since birth but he read stories to her and taught her lessons in history, mathematics and Christian faith. One story claims that he even cured her of blindness. The night before he died, he wrote a goodbye note to Julia, urging her to stay close to God, and signed it, “From your Valentine.” He was executed the next day and Julia planted a pink-blossomed almond tree near his grave, a symbol of abiding love and friendship.
The blossoming of Spring is all about love! And almond blossoms are a big part of that. Isn’t that a wonderful thought?
Maisie Jane’s California Sunshine Products, Inc. was founded on strong beliefs and passion for offering unique, flavorful, top-quality, nut products. At Maisie Jane’s we strongly believe in earth-friendly practices that start on our family owned and operated orchards. We use Organic farming practices and continue in the process by using all-natural ingredients with no preservatives or GMOs. And we believe in honest, friendly and helpful customer relations at all levels. We take pride in every task, every day, with every person.