One was written in English for an American musical production. The other was written in German as a military marching song. But both songs are often mistakenly believed to be native folk songs. The Edelweiss flower has become a common symbol and an icon in the German-speaking world. The flower is protected in Austria, and it is illegal to pick or disturb the plant.
Two Songs, Two Flowers: “Edelweiss” and “Erika” – The German Way & More
The song was composed by Herms Niel in the s, and it soon came into usage by the Wehrmacht , especially the Heer and, to a lesser extent, the Kriegsmarine. The lyrics and melody of the song were written by Herms Niel, a German composer of marches. The exact year of the song's origin is not known; often the date is given as "about ",  a date that, however, has not been substantiated. It had been popular prior to the start of World War II. Reichspropagandaminister Joseph Goebbels noticed early that down-to-earth, simple songs were a useful propaganda tool. After each line, and before each time the name Erika is sung, there are three beats pause , which are filled by the kettledrum , or stomping feet e.