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Symbolic meaning of plants

Various cultures and traditions attribute symbolism and hidden meanings to most flowers and plants. Although most of the symbolism is no longer understood by the population some have survived. People have long used plants and flowers to express their feelings and convey messages to their loved ones. Mythologies, folklore, songs of the ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians and Chinese as well as Shakespeare's plays are full of the symbolism of flowers and plants. Almost every emotion imaginable can be expressed with flowers and plants.

 

Discover below some - of the many - plants and flowers with their symbols and meaning and choose the right plant for you or your loved ones.

 

Aloe: luck, sadness

 

Aloe is a very easy plant in its requirements and can grow well at temperatures of 20-25oC. Place the aloe in sunny, bright places both in the garden and indoors. It is considered a medicinal plant as it has many beneficial properties and has many uses in medicine, pharmaceuticals, the hygiene industry (creams, ointments, etc.) as well as in the food industry.

 

Anthurium: Hospitality, happiness, abundance

 

With its shiny green, heart-shaped leaves, and its impressive flower, it is one of the most beloved and popular indoor plants. Its height varies from 25 to 60 cm, depending on the species or variety. You will find it in red, pink and white shades. It blooms all year round, but at a more intense pace during the summer months.

 

Azalea: gratitude, passion, Chinese female symbols

 

Especially beloved for its rich and dense flowering, azalea is one of the plants that often decorate interiors. There are varieties that grow outdoors (gardens and terraces). Its height ranges from 30 cm to 1.5 meters. It loves acidic soils and shady places. It needs frequent watering and fertilizing.

 

Bamboo: Longevity, strength and grace

 

It originates from the rainforests of Africa and some parts of Southeast Asia and is a popular and easy to care plant. It is considered an auspicious plant, which brings good luck according to the principles of the Feng Shui system and according to Chinese culture this plant is very popular as a gift to relatives, friends, teachers and colleagues. It brings luck not only to the recipient but also to the one who gives it. With proper care, it can grow up to one meter in height.

 

Basil: Success, good luck

 

It is one of the most popular plants in Greece, excellent for cooking. It is used for its aroma in cooking but also in the production of herbs. You need a sunny window to grow well-drained soil. During the summer, a pot of basil on your front terrace is said to help bring good luck at home.

 

Bonsai: Harmony, wisdom and serenity

 

The term bonsai refers to the shaping and maintenance of dwarf trees with specific techniques. Usually the large trees that grow into bonsai are outdoor plants, but there are bonsai that can be adapted indoors. Each tree has its own needs for sun exposure, soil type, watering frequency, etc.

 

Cactus: Protection, purity

 

Most cacti grow in well-drained sandy soils, indoors, on balconies or in the garden. The plants should be placed in a sunny position. Cacti have thick fleshy leaves and shoots that allow them to store water. In this way they are particularly resistant to drought and water shortages.

 

Calla: Majesty and beauty

 

It can be planted in the spring after the last frosts and blooms in the spring, on the feast of the Annunciation and that is why it is often referred to as the lily of the Virgin and all throughout the summer. There are many beautiful varieties of callas with striking colours such as yellow, pink, purple and red flowers. It is one of the most beautiful and popular flowers ideal for bridal bouquets, flower arrangements or place them in vases.

 

Carnation: Charm, distinction, love

 

Carnation is the most popular flower found in the gardens, yards and balconies of Greek homes. There are over 300 varieties of carnation, some fragrant and some not, some tall and some low, with simple or complex and monochrome or multicoloured flowers. Perennial plant that blooms from early spring to December.

 

  • Red: Romantic love, passion
  • White: innocence, pure love, fidelity
  • Pink: The love of a woman, the love of a mother
  • Yellow: rejection, contempt, frustration
  • Purple: whim, unreliable

 

Gardenia: Secret love, sweet love, good luck

 

It is an impressive and classic ornamental plant that stands out for its wonderful white fragrant flowers and shiny leaves. It blooms in early summer and gives us a second flowering in early autumn. The appropriate soil to be selected is brown soil and soils suitable for acidophilus. It loves the semi-shady cool spots, especially during the summer months. Definitely do not place in places that receive direct sunlight.

 

Hyacinth: love, incomparable beauty

 

It is a bulbous ornamental plant with a characteristic intense aroma that blooms in spring. Ideally you will find it planted together with other hyacinths or together with other seasonal plants (tulips, petunias) creating impressive colour combinations, monochrome or multicoloured. It is suitable for wide and shallow pots, glass containers and large planters.

 

Hydrangea: Vanity, gratitude

 

You will find the hydrangea in white, blue, pink and purple shades and the colour is determined by the level of acidity of the soil. There is some debate about the symbolism of the hydrangea as some believe that it is associated with vanity and compassion, probably because of the abundance of its petals and the rich, curved shape and others that the hydrangea flower expresses gratitude. It symbolizes the 4th wedding anniversary, as it has grace and beauty.

 

Iris: faith, courage, wisdom

 

It is a very popular bulbous plant that has impressive flowers in white, yellow, blue, purple and orange shades, with a diameter of up to 15 cm. There are also varieties with bicolour flowers.

  • Blue: faith, hope
  • Purple: wisdom, compliment
  • Yellow: passion
  • White: purity

 

Lavender: happiness, love, devotion, peace

 

Lavender is a characteristic plant of the Mediterranean and is associated with freshness and purity. They thrive in pots and planters. To thrive it needs to be placed in a sunny spot and a pot at least 30 cm in diameter as it shows rapid growth of the root system. Lavender is widely used in the pharmaceutical industry and in the manufacture of cosmetics.

 

Lilium: female love

 

Lilies are one of the most beloved plants that give us wonderful flowering with their large and impressive flowers. Most lilies bloom in the summer and are a great choice for your balcony or garden.

  • White: purity
  • Red: ambition
  • Orange: desire, passion

 

Olive: peace, success, longevity

 

It is an age-old tree perfectly connected with the Mediterranean nature but also with the culture of all the Mediterranean peoples. According to Greek mythology, the goddess Athena donated the olive tree to the city, in order to defeat Poseidon and become the protector of Athens. The olive tree was associated with the Olympic Games, as the winners received as a prize a wreath of olive leaves. The olive is also used as an ornamental plant, planted in pots for the balcony, garden or indoors, due to its glossy foliage.

 

Peony: shame, anger

 

They are deciduous herbaceous or shrubby plants native to China and Japan. It blooms from April to June. It has large flowers in a wide variety of colours such as white, red, yellow, pink, purple. In China peonies symbolize prosperity and honour while in Japan they are associated with masculinity and bravery.

 

Alstroemeria: wealth, prosperity, friendship

 

It is an ornamental plant with impressive flowers that originates from South America and is known as "the lily of Peru" or "the lily of the Incas". It blooms from April to September. It has flowers in a wide variety of colours such as red, pink, orange, purple, yellow, white and salmon. Most varieties are not aromatic. It is one of the most popular plants for bouquets and arrangements as its flowers are kept fresh for many days.

 

Rose: love, passion

 

It is one of the most popular plants in the world and one of the first choices of those who decide to buy an ornamental plant for their garden or balcony.

  • Red: enduring passion
  • White: humility, innocence
  • Yellow: friendship, joy
  • Pink: gratitude, appreciation, admiration
  • Orange: excitement, desire
  • Lilac or purple: charm, love at first sight.

The number of stems in a bouquet of roses can also express specific emotions. It symbolizes the 15th wedding anniversary.

 

Orchid: luxury, grandeur

 

One of the most popular orchid species are native to the tropics of Asia and Central and South America. They should be placed in places where there is no significant temperature fluctuation; they need a constant temperature, about 10 - 16 C and do not receive direct sunlight. Depending on the species and the variety of flowers show great differences. They grow alone or in large numbers, have a different appearance with one or more colours and may or may not be fragrant. Orchids are easy to care for plants with a long flowering period. They represent the rare and delicate beauty and symbolize the 14th wedding anniversary.

 

Sunflower: worship, longevity, faith

 

It originates from North and South America and is cultivated as a productive plant while the low varieties of the plant are used as ornamental plants. As the sunflower follows the sun, it symbolizes the sun itself, the transfer of warmth and happiness, worship and longevity. Characteristic of their brilliant appearance, the sunflowers symbolize the great excitement and the 3rd wedding anniversary.

 

Tulip: elegance, grace

 

The tulip is a spring bulbous ornamental plant native to Central Asia and is one of the most widespread and beloved plants. The flowering period of the tulip starts from the beginning of March until May, depending on the region and the variety.

  • Red: passion, perfect love
  • Pink: good wishes, friendship, happy opportunities
  • Purple: rebirth, spring
  • White: forgiveness, memory, value, honesty
  • Yellow: happy thoughts, hope
  • Orange: understanding, appreciation, true love

 

Taking a look at the above plants and their symbolism will help you make the special moments of life more special and unforgettable with the right flowers and plants for every occasion.


Whether you want to send your wishes for a celebration, a wedding or your congratulations on the birth of a baby, sending a bouquet of your favourite flowers or plants from anthemionflowers is the perfect way to express your deepest feelings.