Welcome To The
Biblical Botanical Gardens Society, USA & Global.
Founder of Rodef Shalom Biblical Gardens with Dr Ed Bez
Granite signage for the gardens
Announcing New Collaboration
With Wildflowers of Israel, NGO
I'd like to introduce you to an amazing website that presents the native and Biblical wildflowers of The Land of Israel – WILDFLOWERS OF ISRAEL.
This website is devoted to the study of wild plants of the Land of Israel which were a focal point of interest to people all over the world for many years. Everybody who is interested in the nature and the environment of this Land will find there a wealth of information regarding all kinds of plants. Special emphasis has been given to references to the plants in the Biblical scriptures and scholarly literature.
The database can be searched using scientific and common English names. As time and means will allow more of the texts will be translated into English.
In spite of Israel's small area it has a very diverse flora including some 2500 species. The causes for this great diversity are related to the climatic history of this part of the globe and its location at the crossroads among a variety of climatic regions in Europe, Central Asia, The Sahara and the tropics.
The plant descriptions are kept simple while not compromising on accuracy or breadth. Their mission is to bring the information to a wide audience in a friendly way in order to educate and promote the appreciation of the natural beauty of this land.
One can easily search the database for an unknown plant using simple attributes and select the correct one from an assortment of pictures. There are plans to translate all the information in this website into English if the necessary resources will be available.
The website presents more than 2140 plants, and more than 10,000 marvelous pictures described in 4 languages, and includes more than 6,000 text pages that load up quickly in a friendly manner.
The persons behind this venture are Mrs. Sara Gold, website Director, Prof. Amram Eshel, professor of botany at Tel-Aviv University, Dr. Erga Aloni, and Dr. Dror Melamed. The pictures were taken by a number of professional and amateur photographers, who donated them to this website, and knowledgeable botanists who wrote the texts.
I am delighted to have had the opportunity to spend time with Sara in Israel. She is a woman of passion and commitment. She is equally thrilled in our new collaboration. I commend her work and that of her partners and volunteers to all of our BBGS constituents. I look forward to a long and fruitful partnership.
BBGS Director to Study Biblical Flora in Israel
Dr Ed Bez and his wife, Rachel, are currently working in a biblical garden at Yad Hashmona, Israel. They are being trained by a 20 year biblical garden veteran. They will be attending Ulpan (intensive, emmersion, language school) beginning in September as well. Dr. Bez will be collecting botanical specimens and taking thousands of photos of native flora.
Dr Bez will be posting many of these photos (below are a few teasers). Can you identify them? If so, send him your guesses to firstname.lastname@example.org
He will also be blogging and writing extensively about biblical flora. He will point out their importance in understanding biblical stories as well as investigating modern uses of these fascinating plants.
Dr Bez and Rachel are in Israel until December 2011.
Where Dr Bez is working and studying
Dr Bez and Rachel are based at Yad Hashmona in the Judean hill country, Israel.
If you have a garden and a library you have everything you need.
Cicero, Roman Orator, Statesman, died 43 BC
In grasses, trees, and fruits, apart from their various uses, there is beauty of appearance and pleasantness of odor.... Has the Lord clothed the flowers with the great beauty that greets our eyes, the sweetness of smell that is wafted upon our nostrils, and yet will it be unlawful for our eyes to be affected by that beauty, or our sense of smell by the sweetness of that odor?... Did he not, in short, render many things attractive to us, apart from their necessary use?
A garden teems with life. It glows with color and smells like heaven and puts orward at every hour of a summer day beauties which man could never have created and could not even, on his own resources, have imagined.
Photographic Introduction to the Plants of the Bible ( See more in our Photo gallery)
Olive trees (Olea europaea) in the Garden of Gethsemene, Jerusalem.
The olive is one of the plants most cited in recorded literature.
The olive tree and olives are mentioned over 30 times in the Bible, in both the New and Old Testaments. It is one of the first plants mentioned in the Bible, and one of the most significant. For example, it was an olive branch that a dove brought back to Noah to demonstrate that the flood was over. The Mount of Olives east of Jerusalem is mentioned several times. The olive tree itself, as well as olive oil and olives, play an important role in the Bible.
Photo by Ed Bez in the Garden of Gethsemene, Mt. of Olives (2008).
Aloe (Aloe vera) in bloom at Caesarea Maritima, coastal region of Israel.
Comment by Dr. Musselman, April 2, 2009- "And true aloes (genus Aloe) were most likely not used in Bible times in the Middle East. The problem stems from the translation of the word alaloth which almost certainly refers to the valuable extract of the Aquilaria tree".
Photo by Ed Bez taken at Caesarea Maritima, eastern Mediterranean (2008).
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