Yellow Jessamine Garden Club Learns About Plants Of The Bible

On March 7, President Mildred Mishue called the Yellow Jessamine Garden Club meeting to order. After welcoming those in attendance, Ms. Cathy McDaniel led the group in prayer and devotion, which challenged members to pay attention to the things critical to our happiness — the important things in life — like family and spiritual matters.
Ms. Mary Ricks hosted the event and kicked off the evening with homemade chili and pimento cheese sandwiches. After a delightful taste of banana nut bread, Ms. Terry Hayes taught the group about plants mentioned in the Bible. She mentioned many plants that are still prominent today, including honey, papyrus, dates, palm trees, olive trees, flax, almonds, and pistachios, and their important role in the ancient and modern world.
Genesis 43:11 mentions fruits, balm, honey, myrrh, pistachio nuts, and almonds. Balm was used to treat sores; honey was used for nourishment and medicinal purposes; myrrh is a gum resin extracted from small thorny tree species of the genus Commiphora. Myrrh resin has been used throughout history as a perfume, incense, and as medicine. Pistachio nuts are the oldest of the flowering nut trees, while almonds come from medium-sized trees with narrow, light green leaves. The almond represents resurrection, as it is the first tree to flower.
In Deuteronomy 8: 7-8, the Bible mentions wheat, barley, fig trees, pomegranates, and olive trees. Wheat has been a staple food of mankind since the dawn of time and is often ground into flour and baked into bread. Barley was a primary grain in ancient Israel, which was planted in the fall at the first rain. Barley fed horses and was generally used by the “poorer” people of that time. Wheat, on the other hand, was considered a luxury. Grapes were one of the seven fruits that Moses’ messengers brought back from the land of Israel. Grapes were an incredible source of income enjoyed by people in food and drinks. Fig trees are mentioned in the Bible over fifty times in scripture because they were extremely important to the economy and diet of ancient people. Pomegranates have medicinal properties and were used to treat ailments ranging from skin conditions to stomach problems. In ancient Rome, because of its rich color that produced high levels of betacyanin pigments, pomegranates were also used to make ink and to dye textiles. Olive trees frequently appear in the Bible. Olives could be pressed to make oil for cooking or smeared on skin and scalp for hygiene. Olive trees can live up to 1,000 years and produce fruit across its lifespan, but require attention throughout the year by pruning, cultivation, and fertilization. Honey was also used for medicinal purposes as well as for food.
The Cedar of Lebanon tree species appears often in the Bible, and is referenced in First Kings, Ezekiel, Amos, Psalms, Jeremiah, and several other books. It is a strong and beautiful tree. Flax produce beautiful light blue flowers that only open in the morning. Linen fabric is made from the cellulose fibers that grow inside the stalks of the flax plant. Flax was also used for wicks in candles, shrouds, ship sales and measuring lines. Hyssop, another plant, is mentioned 10 times in the Old Testament and twice in the New Testament. A member of the mint family, Hyssop was an integral part of Passover and the ceremonial cleansing of the skin. In Genesis, the palm tree was seen as beauty and was referred to as Tamar, a term used to describe beautiful women. In several places, the Bible directs people to use the date palm to build shelter or as nourishment to their bodies.
The juice of the date palm was used to make wine; its trunks became timber, and leaves were woven into baskets, mats, brooms, and ropes. Papyrus was used in ancient Egypt for many everyday items such as boxes, mats, and ropes. The basketYJGC March Meeting
in which Moses’s mother hid him on the banks of the Nile was said to be made of papyrus. It was also one of the earliest forms of paper used by the Egyptians.
While a lot has changed since then, this informative lesson helped the group better understand the uses of plants mentioned in the Bible for ancient society, including many plants that are still common today.
After hearing from each committee, the group discussed travel to the Coastal District meeting. New officers were elected during the meeting and will be installed at the next Yellow Jessamine Garden Club of Dillon meeting on April 4 at 6:30 p.m.
The Yellow Jessamine Garden Club of Dillon is a member of the National Garden Clubs, Inc., South Atlantic Region of National Garden Clubs, Inc.,
The Garden Club of South Carolina, Inc., and Coastal District of the Garden Club of South Carolina, Inc.

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