|Scientific name:||Ricotia lunaria (L.) DC.|
|Common name:||Maltese Cross Ricotia, Egyptian honesty|
|Hebrew name:||Carmelite Na-ah, כרמלית נאה|
|Arabic name:||ريكتية قمرية ، سيلان|
|Plant Family:||Brassicaceae, מצליבים|
|Life form:||Therophyte, annual|
|Leaves:||Alternate, dissected, pinnate or bipinnate, dentate or serrate|
|Flowers:||4 pink petals arranged in the form of a cross, which resembles the Carmelite cross.|
|Flowering Period:||January, February, March, April|
|Distribution:||Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands, Montane vegetation of Mt. Hermon|
Derivation of the botanical name:
Ricotia, probably named after M. Ricot, an obscure French botanist.
lunaria, Latin luna, "moon," for the flat, round seedpod that resembles a full moon; moon-podded.
The Hebrew name: כרמלית, carmelit, the flowers are cross-shaped and resemble Carmelite crosses. This similarity is also the source of the English species name, Maltese Cross Ricotia. Some say carmelit is probably derived from the fact that its distribution is also in the Carmel mountain. This name appears for the first time in the 1955 plant definition.
Maltese Cross, the four petals of the Ricotia lunaria are arranged in the form of a cross, which resembles the Carmelite cross. The Carmelites is a Catholic religious order perhaps founded in the 12th century on Mount Carmel, hence its name. They chose Mount Carmel in part because it was the traditional home of Elijah. The Discalced Carmelites, or Barefoot Carmelites ("O.C.D.), is a Catholic mendicant order with roots in the eremitic tradition of the Desert Fathers and Mothers. The order was established in 1593, pursuant to the reform of the Carmelite Order by Teresa of Ávila, (baptized as Teresa Sánchez de Cepeda y Ahumada, 1515 – 1582), and John of the Cross, San Juan de la Cruz, 1542 – 1591 (born Juan de Yepes Alvarez).
Location: Road 87, Yahudiya; Date Picture Taken: February 25, 2011
Location: Road 87, Yahudiya