Valira Torrent - bulletin of the Andorran Philatelic Study Circle. Issue 11, pp3-4 (April 1980).

Copyright notice

The Flower Stamps of Andorra

by John Mashiter

These were discussed in the first issue of Valira Torrent and covered the issues up to 1974.

The Edelweiss (Leontopodium Alpinium) stamps issued by the Spanish Bureau in February 1948 aroused interest at the time because most experts felt that this was not an Andorran flower.

Gentian

Thirty two years have passed and every corner of the little country has now been opened up with roads and "carrerteras forestales" giving Jeep access to all levels. The flora has been examined thoroughly by the Alpine Garden Society and other specialist bodies but no-one has come up yet with an edelweiss grown wild in Andorra and we can reasonably conclude that it does not grow there.

Anemone

The only Andorran flower issue since 1974 came from the French Bureau on May 10th l975.

This shows on the 60c Gentiana acaulis. Acaulis which means "stemless" is a group name covering a number of trumpet gentians. Of these occidentalis, alpina and kochiana are found in the Pyrenees and it is probably the last of these which appears on the 60c.

Autumn crocus

The 80c stamp features the yellow alpine anemone which used to be Anemone Vernalis sub species Sulphurea but is now called Pulsatilla Alpina sub species apufolia. It is found in the Pyrenees usually on acid soils.

Colchicum autumnale, the Autumn crocus appears on the 1f20 stamp and is widespread in Europe and in East Anglia and Yorkshire where it is called "Meadow Saffron". In fact it is neither a crocus nor does it produce saffron. All this belongs to crocus sativus. Colchicum produces colchicine, a poison, used in medicine to some extent.

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