The Edelweiss Enigma

The Edelweiss Enigma

Star of the Alps

Myth, kitsch, reality

The Edelweiss, symbol of the Alps, is popular and highly sought after. Everyone claims to know the secrets of this velvet plant, but the white star holds many mysteries of its own. The documentary examines the plant and it's legacy with both humour and scientific accuracy and explores areas that have seldom before been seen.

High up in the Alps, at altitudes over 1800 meters above sea level, grows a fairly inconspicuous flower that enjoys a high cult status: the Edelweiss. The plant is rare and difficult to access; however, when it is plucked, it retains its shape and color for centuries.

Even people from distant countries have utilized the plant's powers in traditional medicine - as the Europeans did a few centuries ago. Buddhist practitioners use it as medicine and Mongolian Cowboys ignite their fires with this most-unusual kindling, and subsequently lit their muzzleloader rifles. And now scientists have found an astonishing fact related to Edelweiss: The "eternal flower" possibly even contains the key to memory.

From the Austrian Alps to the yurts of the Mongolian steppes, across nature, culture, myths, and medicine, the film seeks the truth about this flower, which has captured the imagination of millions.