In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know about July’s Official Birth Month Flowers – the Larkspur and Water Lily. Learn about their meaning and symbolism in the language of flowers, as well as their cultural significance around the world today.
July Birth Flowers: Larkspur
The official birth flowers for July are larkspurs. These popular ornamentals flaunt tall flower spikes, typically in pink, white, and lavender shades. Often confused with delphiniums because of their similar appearance, larkspurs (Consolida spp.) are annuals, while delphiniums (Delphiniums spp.) are perennials. However, larkspur or perennial larkspur is another common name for delphiniums.
History and Origins of Larkspur
The July birthday flower is also known as lark’s heel, lark’s toes, lark’s claw, and knight’s spur. The name larkspur refers to the shape of the flower’s spur-like petals as they resemble the claws of a lark bird. According to Greek mythology, the first larkspur plant sprouted on the land where Ajax the Great died during the famous Battle of Troy.
For years, larkspurs used to be part of the Delphinium genus until they were re-classified as Consolida in the same Ranunculus botanical family.
Meanings and Symbolism of Larkspur Flowers
In the language of flowers, larkspur symbolize love, joy, romanticism, and positivity. Nevertheless, the July birth flower holds numerous meanings depending on its color.
Pink larkspur flowers are a known symbol of capriciousness and disagreement. On the other hand, white larkspurs are on the opposite side of the spectrum as they represent happiness, joy, and easygoing nature. Purple and blue larkspurs are the most common color available. The purple flowers symbolize first love and affection, while the blue signify grace, honor, and respect.
Water Lily: The Other July Birth Flower
The water lily is another recognized birthday flower for July. Native to tropical and temperate regions in the world, the plant exhibits various forms and sizes that range from miniature species to giant water lilies.
The History and Origins of Water Lilies
Water lilies are aquatic plants that belong to the family Nymphaeaceae. They are one of the oldest families of flowering plants, dating back to about 130 million years. They are native to various parts of the world, including North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. They’re predominantly found in freshwater bodies like ponds, lakes, and slow-flowing streams.
The plants have been cultivated since Assyrian and Babylonian times, with the flowers spreading rapidly to Europe and North America during the 1800s and 1900s.
Most species are summer blooming, producing flowers from May through September. However, a handful of species are autumn blooming instead. They can bloom all year round in warm climates.
The Meaning and Symbolism of Water Lilies
Like larkspurs, water lily flowers are significant in many cultures. In Hinduism and Buddhism, these long-lasting blooms are considered sacred and important religious symbols. The flowers signify rebirth and resurrection because they close at night and reopen at the crack of dawn. Since the blooms emerge from the mud, they are also a symbol of enlightenment.
Other meanings of water lilies include purity, beauty, creation, and divine birth.
In ancient Egypt, water lilies, specifically the blue lotus (Nymphaea caerulea), were considered sacred and often depicted in Egyptian art, architecture, and hieroglyphics. They symbolized rebirth and the sun, as the flowers open during the day and close at night. The Egyptians also used the flowers, seeds, and tubers of this plant for medicinal purposes.
In Hinduism and Buddhism, the water lily, often referred to as the lotus, holds profound spiritual significance. It’s seen as a symbol of divine beauty, purity, enlightenment, and rebirth, primarily because the pristine flower emerges from murky waters.
Water lilies have also had a significant impact on art, most notably in the paintings of French impressionist Claude Monet. Monet’s series of Water Lilies paintings capture the serene beauty of these flowers on the water’s surface, showcasing their calming aesthetic.
Other Popular In-Season July Flowers
While both larkspurs and water lilies are readily available in July for the month’s birthday celebrants, other in-season flowers can qualify as the perfect gifting flowers. Here are a few examples.
Orchids are undeniably beautiful, delicate, and one-of-a-kind ornamentals. They flaunt a unique form in varying colors and color patterns depending on the species and type, which makes them even more desirable. These exotic blooms symbolize luxury, love, strength, beauty, and masculinity.
Hydrangeas are popular ornamental plants in gardens and flower shops because of their large flowerheads. You often see them in luxurious floral arrangements for weddings, birthdays, and other special celebrations. Many hydrangea flower colors are available, including blue, purple, pink, white, green, and red. They represent grace, beauty, and gratitude.
Another ornamental plant that blooms in July along with the July birthday flowers is the sunflower. The crowd-favorite flower presents many types and varying sizes, from miniature species to giant sunflowers. Regardless, they all flaunt the same bright and cheerful appeal that made sunflowers famous across the globe. These flowers often represent longevity, admiration, and loyalty.
Why Are There Two Birth Month Flowers in July?
July is represented by two birth flowers: the Larkspur and Water Lily. While there isn’t a single reason why some months have more than one birth flower, several factors contribute to this phenomenon.
The most common likely reason for two birth month flowers in July can be attributed to folklore and cultural variances across regions and countries over time. Various traditions of assigning flowers to birth months have developed. These traditions can depend on the local climate, which influences what flowers bloom during a particular month, as well as local folklore and customs.
Moreover, different flowers carry different meanings in the language of flowers, a symbolic system that was particularly popular during the Victorian era. Two flowers for one month allow for a richer range of symbolic expressions.
What are the Origins of July Birth Month Flowers?
The tradition of July birth flowers is thought to have originated in ancient Rome, where flowers were given as gifts to celebrate birthdays and other special events. Each month was associated with a particular flower, believed to hold specific characteristics or powers that would be imparted to people born in that month.
The specific flowers associated with each month have varied throughout history and between cultures. For example, some cultures in the Middle Ages used the symbolic language of flowers, called floriography, to communicate coded messages based on the type and color of the flower given. This practice continued into the Victorian era when the language of flowers became extremely popular and complex.
Like many traditions, the current list of July birth month flowers that we use today has been influenced by various historical and cultural factors. It’s similar to birthstones, where each month is associated with a specific gemstone.
For more, see our in-depth guide to the Official Birth Month Flowers.
For the best local florists curating beautiful July birth flower arrangements, see our local guides to flower delivery in Los Angeles, Chicago, and NYC and the best nationwide flower delivery services.
The Official Birth Flower Month Calendar:
|Month:||Birth Flower:||Meanings & Symbolism:|
|January:||Carnations & Snowdrop||Pink Carnations (love and appreciation), White Carnations (luck, love, and affection, Red Carnations (love and friendship). Snowdrop (hope and rebirth).|
|February:||Violet, Iris, and Primrose||Violets (faithful love, truth, loyalty, humility), Iris (hope, faith, passion, purity, and innocence), Primrose (affection, young love, undying affection)|
|March:||Daffodils||Daffodils (new beginnings, faithfulness, luck, prosperity, and hope)|
|April:||Daisy & Sweet Pea||Daisy (purity, love, new beginnings, fertility, and motherhood). Sweet Pea (blissful pleasure, gratitude).|
|May:||Lily of the Valley & Hawthorn||Lily of the Valley (romance, luck, happiness, purity, humility). Hawthorn (hope, love, beauty, fertility, and supreme happiness).|
|June:||Roses & Honeysuckle||Roses (love, passion, romance, purity, gratitude). Honeysuckle (happiness and eternal love).|
|July:||Larkspur & Water Lily||Larkspur (happiness, love); Water Lily (enlightenment, resurrection, purity, beauty, creation).|
|August:||Gladiolus & Poppy||Gladiolus (integrity, honor, respect); Poppy (remembrance, prosperity, enchantment, sympathy).|
|September:||Aster & Morning Glory||Aster (faith, love, achievement, and wisdom); Morning Glory (affection, intimate love, patience).|
|October:||Marigolds & Cosmos||Marigolds (devotion, commitment); Cosmos (harmony, love, innocence, beauty, modesty, joy, and balance).|
|November:||Chrysanthemum & Peonies||Chrysanthemum (friendship, love); Peonies (romance, prosperity, good fortune, honor, and compassion)|
|December:||Narcissus, Poinsettia, and Holly||Narcissus (innocence and purity); Poinsettia (success, celebration); Holly (happiness and optimism).|
July Birth Month Flowers FAQs:
What are the birth flowers for July?
The birth flowers for July are the Larkspur and the Water Lily.
What does the Larkspur symbolize?
In the language of flowers, Larkspur symbolizes love and affection. However, different colors of Larkspur can have different meanings: pink conveys fickleness, white signifies a happy-go-lucky nature, and purple is often used to express a first love.
What does the Water Lily symbolize?
Water Lilies symbolize purity, enlightenment, rebirth, and self-awareness. In many cultures, they are seen as symbols of life and resurrection.
Can I give Larkspur or Water Lilies as birthday gifts in July?
Both Larkspur and Water Lilies can make thoughtful and beautiful birthday gifts for July birthdays. Their symbolism of love, affection, purity, and self-awareness can add a deeper meaning to floral arrangements gifted in the month of July.
What are other names for these flowers?
Larkspur is also known as Delphinium, while Water Lily is often referred to by its botanical name, Nymphaea.
Are there any superstitions or traditions associated with Larkspur and Water Lilies?
In folklore, it’s said that Larkspur can protect against scorpions and other venomous creatures. In ancient Greek mythology, Water Lilies were linked to the nymphs of springs and rivers.
July Birth Flowers – Wrapping Up
The Larkspur and Water Lily, July’s official birth monrh flowers, carry a beautiful blend of symbolism and ornamental value. With Larkspur’s vibrant colors representing love and affection, and the Water Lily’s serene presence symbolizing purity and enlightenment, these flowers mirror the warmth and splendor of summer.
For more, see our guide to the best birthday messages and quotes to share with friends, family, and loved ones.
Andrew is the Editorial Director at Petal Republic. He holds a BSc degree in Plant Sciences and has trained professionally at leading floristry schools in London and Paris. In amongst overseeing a global editorial team, Andrew's a passionate content creator around all things flowers, floral design, gardening, and houseplants.