Cyclamen is a flowering perennial plant. In the wild, you can find it growing in Northern Africa, then right across to West Asia and Southeast Europe. Because of its heart-shaped leaves, many of the cultures in these parts of the world believe the cyclamen is a symbol for a devoted heart; you might see it planted next to monasteries and Mediterranean churchyards.
This is a bit different to many other plants; it actually goes dormant in the summer when it dies right down to its tubers (its roots). Don’t worry though, it will grow back and bloom again with the right care. During winter months when it’s actively growing, try to give it bright, indirect light. It will appreciate moist soil, too.
Its sweet-smelling flowers are a treat for the bees, but they’re toxic to both humans and animals if eaten so keep them away from curious mouths.
Did you know? During the Renaissance, the leaves were thought to heal ear aches. Although we haven’t tried it ourselves, we hear it’s best to stick to more traditional treatments.