The Dragon’s Skull: The Macabre Appearance of Snapdragon Seed Pods

The Antirrhinum — commonly known as the snapdragon — has been a popular garden plant for many years. Its common name derives from the resemblance of the flower to a dragon’s head. When squeezed, the dragon will open and close its mouth — ask any grandparent whose flowers have been destroyed by curious grandchildren. Yet, once the flower has died, leaving behind the seed pod, something a little more macabre appears. The dragon appears to have a skull. They’re the perfect Halloween decoration after your garden is finished for the year. Many years ago, people thought the plant possessed mystical powers and would place them around their homes to shield their houses from curses. In Victorian days, the flower was a symbol of deception, suspicion and mystery. Today, they're a favorite in gardens around Europe, the U.S. and North Africa. If you’re itching to plant one, know that they're cold-season plants that do best in full sunlight. You can plant them right before the spring season starts. Keep them well watered for the first few weeks and after that, give them about an inch of water every week. When grown, they stand from 6 inches up to 3 feet tall. When dead they’ll leave behind the creepy little tokens that you can collect for display.