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Behind the Print: Endangered Flower

 

Our classic British interpretation of Aloha style has been reworked for spring/summer 2018 and the Endangered Flower print has received a fantastic reaction so far.  Living by the maxim that “real men wear flowers” and with a desire to use our product to prompt an awareness of the pressure that humanity is placing on the natural world, here we share with you some of the plants featured in our 2018 print, and highlight their plight.

 

botanical illustration of a yellow and purple lady's slipper orchid 

Cypripedium calceolus, Kew Library Art & Archives (reproduced under a Creative Commons 3.0 license)

 

The rarest, and certainly most endangered flower on this new print is the yellow and purple lady’s slipper orchid (Cypripedium calceolus, meaning ‘the shoe of Venus’) that appears in various colourways, but is the flower with three narrow petals and a bulbous sack of contrasting colour.  Once reasonably widespread across the limestone landscapes of the north of England, deforestation and upland grazing saw the population tumble to just a single specimen in the wild by the end of the 20th century.  This lone flower has survived on a golf course in Lancashire for over one hundred years, and is protected by the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981), with local police monitoring the plant.

 

botanical illustration of common rock rose flowers 

Helianthemum nummularium, Royal Horticultural Society

 

Common Rock-rose (Helianthemum nummularium, also known as “Flower of the Sun”) is a low-growing shrub with five yellow petals that flowers through the summer months.  Whilst not an endangered species, these flowers favour sunny chalk grasslands and these habitats are under threat.  This chalk grasslands , uniqu ecosystems, often contain such high levels of biodiversity that they are compared to rainforests. However these landscapes are threatened by changes in land use such as a decline in grazing.

 

model wearing riz sustainable swimshorts burgh endangered flower in black 

 

Both of these examples from the selection of flowers featured on our print highlight just some of the damaging impacts that we as humans have had on our natural environment over recent decades.  This is not simply confined to the development of greenfield sites and the loss of green spaces in suburban areas as gardens are paved or “landscaped” over.  During WWII many wildflower meadows were turned over to the production of food crops, and in the following decades farming practices changed and further impacted biodiversity in what was, in the British Isles, an already heavily impacted environment.

 

botanical illustration of silver fratillary butterflies 

Argynnis Paphia, Silver-washed Fritillary Butterfly

 

Our native flora and fauna is so important; a wide range of flowers better support the insects that pollinate many of the fruit and vegetables that we eat.  When it comes to biodiversity, broader is most definitely better and when it comes to boardshorts, we believe that bold is most definitely more beautiful. 

 

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