This is the season of renewal, when flowers blossom.
This is the season of Yunnan flowers, where our raw material comes from.
We think that the most beautiful way to introduce The Beddha second hero product, As A Flower, is taking some time explaining where our raw material comes from.
And our flowers come from Yunnan, the province in the very southwest China that thanks to its location and weather conditions is home to 14,590 higher plants, about half of China’s. Though Yunnan literally means ‘South to the Clouds’, due to its wilderness and landscapes is also known as ‘Kingdom of Plants’. And its capital, Kunming, a historical and cultural city with a civilized history of more than 3.000 years, famous for its year-round mild climate, is often called ‘Spring City’ as well as ‘The City of Eternal Spring’ and the ‘World Spring City and Flower Capital’.
With a capital endowed with flowers blooming across the four seasons in a year, Yunnan produces a little more that half of China’s fresh cut flowers. Some say even more, and closer to 75%. There are 190.000 individual household producers of flowers. It is therefore home to one of the biggest flowers market of the world, with Dounan Flower Market, the biggest fresh flower trade center in Southwest China. And given all this natural abundance of varieties and scenery in the region, flowers are appreciated in literature, food and beverages, and used as well for decorations.
During the festival season, peasants go across the rape flower fields in Yunnan province counties, like Luoping, dressed in colorful embroidered dresses, to collect flowers in full bloom. A mindful visual ritual and experience in itself, that perfectly matches the spirit behind The Beddha mindfulness philosophy.
The Yunnan region is also known for its parks, venue for the annual Oriental Cherry Flowers Festival of Kunning, held in the Yuantong Park, for the Crab-Apple Flowers in Green Lake Park and for the Pear Flower blooming in the Wangxichong Village.
Floral demonstrations are set up as much for tourists as for commerce to encourage local production in other counties. The recent trend in Yunnan is that new production is expanding beyond the traditional rural growing areas and beyond simply fresh cut flowers. There are a variety of new products including perennial flowers and plants, ornamental seedings, edible flowers, traditional medicinal applications. It is estimated that by 2020, 950.000 tons of flowers will be able to be transported by air from the Kunming Airport.
These are massive numbers that show how important the business is becoming and the efforts put in the business by the Industry Federation, by flower companies and even local growers. Large amount of money are spent in the development of new techniques to cultivate more flower types and increase the already huge variety of flowers (600), some of them extremely rare.
Along with the uniqueness of the region, nature and beauty, comes the diversity of the Yunnan’s population. The province is in fact, home to over half of all China’s minorities.
Speaking of another park, there is the Yunnan Ethnic Village, a cultural place dedicated to honoring and educating people about the many Chinese minority ethnicities. It is a collection of 26 villages, and each one displays its own architecture, dress and customs.
As reported on Folk Customs of China, most of the minority women (and children) living in Yunnan and Guizhou provinces wear embroidered cotton shoes, dresses and hats. Often they are good at dyeing, weaving and embroidery and at making their own clothes. One typical peasant cloth is the “Magpie Dress”, made of a black cloth scarf wrapped apron on the head, a white tight jacket covered with a black lace vest, an embroidered apron around the waist, blue pants and embroidered cotton shoes. It is so called because it reminds of the magpie bird which is regarded by the Chinese as a lucky bird.
Given the history, the tradition, the beauty and the abundance of raw material, it seemed to The Beddha the natural choice to start producing As A flower blends and collections from this region. For The Beddha, As A Flower is more than a product. It is part of a sensory mindful ritual. A ritual in itself even when it comes to our flowers selection, drying process and scent preservation.
To give you an insider’s peak about our botanical production, as part of our project how to read our label, here is a list of technical steps we follow:
- Hand-picked with care
- First natural dehydration in the sun
- Storage in cryogenic containers to preserve the color of flowers
- Flowers drying process in ovens: 45-50 degree heat preservation for 3 hours, 50-55 degree heat preservation for 5 hours, 55-60 degree heat preservation for 8 hours; for a total of 16 hours
- Hand-packed with care in sterile environment
Our new blend options will be soon available on the market. Though each blend is different, benefits and ultimate goals (listed on our labels) stay the same. We have designed a system/method to guide you through the process where benefits (to meet your skin goal), are highlighted with stars from 3 to 5.
✒ BY MARGHERITA ANTINORI