Named for Italian physician and botanist Pierandrea Mattioli (1500-1577), the genus Matthiola includes some 50 species of annual and perennial herbs in the Brassicaceae family. The species most often encountered by florists is Matthiola incana, or stock, whose relatives include broccoli, cabbage, alyssum and radish. Stock’s specific epithet, incana, means “hoary” and refers to the plant’s typically fuzzy stem.
A fragrant flower, good in mixed garden bouquets and line arrangements.
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