The Official Birth Flowers for August

In the language of the flowers, August’s official birth flowers include the gladiolus and poppy. Here we’ll take you through everything you need to need about their meaning and symbolism, history and orgins, plus learn about the best gifting occasions to celebrate those born in the month of August.

The Official Birth Flower Calendar:

Month:Birth Flower:Meanings & Symbolism:
January:Carnations & SnowdropPink Carnations (love and appreciation), White Carnations (luck, love, and affection, Red Carnations (love and friendship). Snowdrop (hope and rebirth).
February:Violet, Iris, and PrimroseViolets (faithful love, truth, loyalty, humility), Iris (hope, faith, passion, purity, and innocence), Primrose (affection, young love, undying affection)
March:DaffodilsDaffodils (new beginnings, faithfulness, luck, prosperity, and hope)
April:Daisy & Sweet PeaDaisy (purity, love, new beginnings, fertility, and motherhood). Sweet Pea (blissful pleasure, gratitude).
May:Lily of the Valley & HawthornLily of the Valley (romance, luck, happiness, purity, humility). Hawthorn (hope, love, beauty, fertility, and supreme happiness).
June:Roses & HoneysuckleRoses (love, passion, romance, purity, gratitude). Honeysuckle (happiness and eternal love).
July:Larkspur & Water LilyLarkspur (happiness, love); Water Lily (enlightenment, resurrection, purity, beauty, creation).
August:Gladiolus & PoppyGladiolus (integrity, honor, respect); Poppy (remembrance, prosperity, enchantment, sympathy).
September:Aster & Morning GloryAster (faith, love, achievement, and wisdom); Morning Glory (affection, intimate love, patience).
October:Marigolds & CosmosMarigolds (devotion, commitment); Cosmos (harmony, love, innocence, beauty, modesty, joy, and balance). 
November:Chrysanthemum & PeoniesChrysanthemum (friendship, love); Peonies (romance, prosperity, good fortune, honor, and compassion)
December:Narcissus, Poinsettia, and HollyNarcissus (innocence and purity); Poinsettia (success, celebration); Holly (happiness and optimism).

August Birth Flower: The Gladiolus Flower

Gladiolus flower for August birthdays

Gladiolus History and Name Origin

Gladiolus flowers are perennials native to tropical areas and parts of the Mediterranean, Middle East, and South Africa. The genus name gladiolus originates from the Latin word gladius, which translates to “sword” and refers to the sword-like shape of their leaves. Because of this, gladiolus flowers are also called sword lilies. Another known name is corn lily. 

The gladiolus genus has around 300 known species, and the majority are endemic to South Africa. In the 18th century, African Gladiolus plants first came to Europe from South Africa. To this day, these impressive flowers, available in a wide array of colors and hybrids, can be found all over the world. 

A considerable part of the history of gladiolus revolves around the medicinal value of the plant. As early as the 16th century, gladiolus plant parts such as the roots, flowers, and seed pods were herbal remedies against splinters, colic, and physical ailments.    

Gladiolus Flower Meaning and Symbolism:

Gladiolus Flowers

The official birthday flower for August is the gladiolus flower. But, did you know that this beautiful bloom is also the 40th Anniversary flower since it symbolizes remembrance and infatuation?

Gladiolus flowers hold different meanings. Aside from remembrance and infatuation, gladiolus, in general, means strength and integrity because of the flower’s association with gladiators. Also, since gladiolus plays an essential role in traditional medicine, the flower has become a symbol of healing. However, these meanings vary depending on the flower’s color. 

Red gladiolus flowers represent romance, love, and affection, much like other famed red flowers. Pink gladiolus flowers are often associated with romance as well but to a less passionate extent. Yellow Gladiolus, on the other hand, means friendship, joy, and positivity

Gladiolus in purple hues are representations of royalty, beauty, and fortune, which make these flowers ideal as gifts for friends, colleagues, and family members you admire. The August birth flowers also come in white shades, which often symbolize purity and innocence. Because of this, you often see them in wedding bouquets and arrangements. 

Tips When Buying Gladiolus Cut Flowers

Picking the right gladiolus flower out of a bunch should be easy-peasy. Here are some basic tips to note, so you’re sure to get the best quality blooms:

  • Avoid gladiolus flowers with brown stems or dried flowers. These are telltale signs that they aren’t in their freshest state.  
  • Buy flower spikes with a few open florets.
  • If the flowers are not pre-treated with an anti-ethylene product, make sure to treat them right away. 
  • After purchase, rinse away any dirt and debris and remove any foliage that falls below the water level. Recut the stems. 

A gladioli cut flower typically lasts up to 6 to 12 days in a vase. With proper cut flower care and maintenance, you will be able to maximize the vase life of these precious blooms. Check the water level daily and change the water every two to three days. When you change the water, make sure to trim the stems by at least one inch. Lastly, since they are sensitive to ethylene, avoid placing them near ripening fruits and vegetables. 

Poppy: The Other August Birth Flower

Poppy official birth flower for August

August babies have another birthday flower – the poppies. Poppies are popular herbaceous ornamental plants grown for their striking flowers. 

The plant has a rich history in many cultures across the globe. Back in the day, poppies were used by the Greeks and  Romans as offerings to the dead. 

These beautiful flowers symbolize remembrance, especially in Western Culture. Hence, you often see them around Memorial Day in the US. Since poppies are available in many colors, they hold varying symbols and meanings. 

The red ones, for example, are also a symbol of happiness, while yellow poppies mean prosperity. White poppy flowers, as with other white blooms, symbolize consolation and sympathy. There are also purple poppies, which represent enchantment

Not too sure about gladiolus and poppies? Worry not. You still have lots of options when it comes to in-season flowers in August. Here are some of the most popular ones: dahlias and Peruvian lilies.  


Dahlia flowers for August birthdays

Native to Central America and Mexico, dahlias are a recognized ornamental from the family of sunflowers, chrysanthemums, and daisies. Not only are they the official flower of the City of Seattle, but, interestingly, they are also associated with many different meanings and symbolism. Dahlia flowers represent elegance, inner strength, dignity, and creativity. They also symbolize diversity and commitment.

Peruvian Lilies

Peruvian Lilies official birth flowers for August

Peruvian lilies, also known as Lily of the Incas or Alstroemeria, are popular flowers that add vivid colors during the summer season. Available in a myriad of colors such as pink, yellow, orange, and white, these flirtatious blooms are the perfect favorite gifting flowers for any occasion. They commonly represent devotion and friendship

August Birth Flowers FAQ:

August’s official birth flowers include both the poppy and gladiolus.

In the language of flowers, the official flowers to celebrate August birthdays include the gladiolus flower and the poppy flower.

August’s official birth flower gladiolus has roots in floriography dating back to Ancient Rome. The sword-like blooms of the flower were commemorative of arena battles fought in the day which typically occurred during the month of August. Poppies are often at their peak bloom in the August months and are also officially celebrated during this calendar month.

Poppies typically bloom from June to September and are abundant during the month of August.

Red poppies carry the symbolic meaning of happiness, while yellow poppies mean prosperity. White poppy flowers, as with other white blooms, symbolize consolation and sympathy. There are also purple poppies, which represent enchantment.


I’ve long been fascinated with the world of flowers, plants, and floral design. I come from a family of horticulturists and growers and spent much of my childhood in amongst the fields of flowering blooms and greenhouses filled with tropical plants, cacti, and succulents from all over the world. Today, my passion has led me to further explore the world of horticulture, botany, and floristry and I'm always excited to meet and collaborate with fellow enthusiasts and professionals from across the globe. I hold a BSc degree in Plant Sciences and have trained professionally at leading floristry schools in London and Paris.

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