The Legend of Queen Anne’s Lace

Queen Anne’s Lace always makes me think of the scene in Anne of Green Gables when Diana Barry tucks a sprig of the summer flower into her best friend Anne’s hair. She tells Anne, “This is the very last of the Queen Anne’s Lace of the summer.” She then says, ” Don’t worry about your hair. No one even notices it anymore.” Her tender gesture and reassurance speaks to the sweet and inseparable bond of friendship between the girls.

I think Queen Anne’s Lace is one of the prettiest wildflowers of summer. Every year I look forward to the sight of the dainty and delicate white flowers that decorate roadsides and fields.

Queen Anne’s Lace is also known as wild carrot.

I recently read the story about how Queen Anne’s Lace got its name. Legend says that Queen Anne, b.1574 (wife of King James I of England and Scotland) was tatting with her friends when one of them challenged her to create a piece of lace that was as beautiful as a flower. Anne accepted the challenge but while working, she pricked her finger with her needle and a drop of her blood fell onto the lace. It is said, therefore, that the purple-red flower in the center of Queen Anne’s Lace represents the droplet of her blood.

Can you see the purple flower in the center?

Another version of the tale says that the story refers not to Anne, wife of King James I, but to Queen Anne of Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Ireland), b.1665. Either way-the 1574 Anne or the 1665 Anne-it’s a good story.

Queen Anne’s Lace growing in the field across from my home.