Muscari flowers are a genus of between 30 to 40 species – though only 4 to 5 of these species are widely available in the market. These perennial flowers, which are commonly referred to as grape hyacinths, are members of the family hyacinthaceae – although they are also occasionally lumped into the liliaceae clan – and are native to Eurasia. These blossoms, which grow in abundance in sandy soil and full sun, are well loved for their unique appearance. Their heads develop in bunches of small, fragrant, urn-shaped blossoms which are most commonly seen in a rich royal purple hue, but may also come in pure dark blue or white shades. These plants may grow up to 12 inches in height and 8 inches in width, and are surrounded by dark green, blade-like foliage.
In addition to being fantastic in appearance, muscari flowers are also considered something of a delicacy, and of important value in herbal medicine. Named in the Ark of Taste catalog, muscaris are mentioned under the vegetable header as lampascioni, and are prized for their interesting, slightly bitter flavor which is thought to be reminiscent of green onions. In Greece, the bulbs of muscari comosum are eaten in a pickled form. As for their medicinal properties, these flowers can be used to create a sort of sour-tasting wine which is said to be high in vitamin C and other antioxidants; the bulbs may be crushed and mixed with a base to create a poultice for red or irritated skin, and they may also be boiled down into a tea that is an effective diuretic. Many perfume manufacturers have also taken to using muscari flowers for their scents, as these beautiful flowers produce a sweet fragrance that is similar to honey.
Although the symbolism of muscari flowers is limited at best, the distinct colors of these blossoms should be taken into account. Deep blue hues are commonly associated with power and confidence – and so this shade of muscari may be given to someone coming into their own, or assuming a job with a lot of responsibility; while the deep purple shades can represent mystery, calm and creativity. This hue might be presented to an artistic individual – who will also be likely to truly appreciate the unique appearance of the flower itself.