Silene cretica

Cretan catchfly                                                                                   Σιλινή η Κρητική

Caryophyllaceae - pink family                                                                          Monocot.


This delightful bright pink flower was named after the moon goddess, Silene and the island of Crete, where first identified. It is found in moist, shady places often amongst the litter of the woodland floor.  Flowers occur in ones or twos supported on a smooth, bright green, grass-like stalk with pairs of narrow leaves ay intervals, but arising from a rosette of broader oval  leaves. The flowers are typical of the silene genus; with 5 sepals fused to form a flask shaped vessel, 5 bi-lobed petals each with two sharp tooth-like protuberances which form a crown in the centre of the flower.

1.5-2cm ,15-30cm                                                                                                JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC

Silene  Σιλινή

the white goddess

Silene,  was one of three goddesses of the moon: Artemis, the waxing moon;  Silene, the full moon and Hecate, the waning moon: She rode a chariot pulled by oxen across the sky. She was the daughter of the Titans , Hyperion and Theia and sister of Helios, the sun god and Eos, goddess of dawn.

She had several lovers including Zeus and Pan but fell in love with a mortal,  a young shepherd, Endymion. She could not bear the thought of Endymion growing old and dying and asked Zeus to make him immortal. Zeus granted her wish but although he lived, the youth slept forever in a cave near the summit of Mount Latmos. Silene visited him at night and bore him fifty daughters.

Perhaps he sleeps there to this day.

Silene gallica
French catchflySilene_gallica.html
Sherardia arvensis
field madderSherardia_arvensis.html