Maribeth gave me some Lily of the Valley last fall, and I put it in a pot and promptly forgot about it. But in early spring, I lined up my flower pots by the back fence to make plans for filling them with flowers -- and after a spell of warm weather, I had a most delicate set of white blooms! They smell great and will come up every year. If I manage it just right, they may also spread! How lucky is that? Wikipedia notes that it may be a difficult flower to contain or to get rid of it (shocking problem!) Maribeth has been a flower-splitter-and-sharer for years. Since the time she lived 3 blocks from me in St. Joseph. My garden is blessed and so am I!
The flower is also known as Our Lady's tears, since legend states that Mary's tears turned to lily of the valley when she cried at the crucifixion of Jesus. According to another legend, lilies of the valley also sprang from the blood of Saint Leonard of Noblac during his battles with a dragon. The lily of the valley has often been a symbol of humility in religious paintings and is used as a sign of Christ's second coming.