A SPECIES OF: Baby's Breath
ALSO KNOWN AS: Annual Baby's Breath
BOTANICAL NAME: Gypsophila Elegans
SYMBOLISM: Everlasting love and purity.
DESCRIPTION: Gypsophila elegans is a species of ornamental herbaceous plant of the family Caryophyllaceae.
NAME STORY: The genus name is from the Greek gypsos ("gypsum") and philios ("loving"), a reference to the gypsum-rich substrates on which some species grow. Plants of the genus are known commonly as baby's-breath, or babe's breath, a name which also refers specifically to the well known ornamental species Gypsophila paniculata.
INTERESTING FACTS: A few species are commercially cultivated for several uses, including floristry, herbal medicine, and food. The baby's-breath most commonly used in flower arrangements such as bouquets is the common gypsophila, G. paniculata. G. elegans is also used as a cut flower.The genus is a source of saponins that can be used for many purposes, including the production of photographic film and hemolytic laboratory reagents. Their detergent qualities make them useful in soap and shampoo. G. rokejeka is used to make the dessert halva.Species are also ingredients in liqueur, cheese, and ice cream, providing flavor, aroma, and crispness to foods. Several species are hyperaccumulators of boron, and may be planted to absorb the element from polluted soils.