About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Monday, March 17, 2014

What are shamrocks?

The Shamrock, a 3-Leaf Clover, is Ireland's most recognized National Symbol. In the 5th century Saint Patrick used the plant to illustrate the Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity - that God was composed of three entities - the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit - yet each entity was part of the other just like the shamrock has three leaves but a single stem.

But before the arrival of the Christians to Ireland the plant was also sacred to the Irish Druids because the three leaves formed a triad.

The word shamrock comes from the Irish word seamróg meaning "little clover". There is no one "true" species of shamrock, but the Lesser clover Trifolium dubium is considered to be the shamrock by roughly half of Irish people, and White clover Trifolium repens by another third, with the remainder split between various other species of Trifolium and oxalis.

What do the 4 leaves on clover symbolize?:
The four-leaf clover is an uncommon variation of the common, three-leaved clover. According to tradition, such leaves bring good luck to their finders, especially if found accidentally. In addition, each leaf is believed to represent something: the first is for faith, the second is for hope, the third is for love, and the fourth is for luck.

Related Articles:
- How to garden for birds http://goo.gl/ypyRV
- Hummingbird Flowers http://goo.gl/XSy5V
- Monarda: Fireworks Flowers http://goo.gl/vFxDc
- Michigan Lily http://goo.gl/bSlff
- Wild plants that combine unique shape, fascinating folklore and practical uses. http://goo.gl/XEyWf

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