In March, we will begin to bask in the beauty of the blooming wild orchids. This monthly feature hopes to show readers some of Palestine’s natural beauty by focusing on our small but mighty wild flowers, but it must also serve to educate in the hopes of saving the magnificent biodiversity in Palestine, and beyond. It is essential that we admire but never pick wild flowers in Palestine, especially our wild orchids – all of which are protected species.
When I first began to walk the hills around Ramallah and beyond, I remember seeing entire hillsides covered in the fiery red of the Crown Anemone. Today I struggle to locate one or two. We have over-picked many species, especially the red blooms, and have thus prevented their ability to reproduce and continue to bloom on our landscapes. It is vital that we begin to value our wildflowers and protect them, telling others of their beauty and importance, and also spreading the awareness that if we do not conserve them, in particular the ones that are already endangered, we will eliminate them completely from Palestine’s hills and valleys.