by Cathy Peterson - Date: 2007-01-18 - Word Count: 391 Share This!

Pyrethrum flowers come from the Chrysanthemum genus and are in the Asteraceae (or daisy) family. Due to the size, shape, and color of the petals and daisy-like appearance, they are often called "painted daisies" or "painted ladies." These flowers are perennial plants.

The pyrethrum flower is native to southwestern Asia. There are two main generas of the flower. One came primarily from the Balkans (also called Dalmatia). Because of its origin, this type of pyrethrum is called the Dalmatian Chrysanthemum. These are typically white with yellow centers. The second genus is the Persian Chrysanthemum, which is native to Causcaus. These flowers are generally white, pink, or red.

One of the most interesting facts about these "painted daisies" is that it has the effect of insect repellent, and is commonly used in insecticidal substances. In order to extract the repellent properties, the flowers are taken and dried shortly after blooming. Some use solvents to extract the needed oils from the fresh flower. The substance that is retrieved is called pyrethrin.

The pyrethrins work as a poison to an insect's nervous system, rendering the insect motionless. However, not all doses of pyrethrin is fatal to an insect, and oftentimes in order to create the insecticide farmers need, they will use a product containing organophosphates, carbamates, or synergists. This almost always results in the death of unwanted insects.

Insecticides are used to combat insects who eat the crops farmers need or want to produce. They are also used on ornamental flowers which they wish to protect from annoying insect bites and holes, or even the death of flowers due to insect invasion. Pyrethrin is a much better choice than other, synthetic insecticides because it is nontoxic to the environment and other plants, as well as animals and humans which may ingest the crops. The pyrethrins taken from pyrethrum flowers are biodegradable, much unlike most other insect repellents.

The Dalmatian Chrysanthemum actually produces a stronger, more potent insecticide property than the Persian Chrysanthemum does. However, both do produce pyrethrins, which help to combat the insect problem so many plant growers face. Some other, perhaps more well-known names for these flowers are:

Dalmation insect flower
Dalmation pellitory
Persian insect flower
Persian pellitory
Caucasian insect powder plant

Not only is the pyrethrum flower pleasing to the eye, but it also has a very useful substance to farmers and garden growers across the world.

Cathy Peterson writes about 4vacations coupons and Aloha Airlines Coupon Codes
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