March Birth Month Flowers: The Daffodil

In this guide, I’ll take you through everything you need to know about March’s Official Birth Month Flower – the daffodil. Learn about their meaning and symbolism in the language of flowers, as well as their cultural significance around the world today.

March Birth Month Flowers The Daffodil

Official Birth Month Flower for March: The Daffodil

A vase filled with fresh cut yellow daffodils
Daffodils

Daffodils are one of the first perennials that bloom in spring. These trumpet-like flowers signify warmer and brighter days are just around the corner, especially with their cheerful and bright yellow petals. Because of this, daffodils are often associated with rebirth and new beginnings. 

Daffodils are also called narcissus (originating from Latin), jonquil, lent lily, and daffadowndilly. Although dainty daffodils are commonly yellow, there are daffodil varieties that showcase flowers that are white, pink, orange, apricot, lime green, or a combination of any of these colors with yellow or white. 

In Wales, daffodils are considered the national flower and a symbol of faithfulness. This is because of its ability to rebloom year after year. In China, daffodils symbolize luck and prosperity because they flower around the duration of the Chinese New Year. Also a symbol of hope, the daffodil is an official emblem of cancer charities in many nations. 

Daffodils further symbolize happiness, chivalry, friendship, respect, and modesty. Also, they are the official 10th wedding anniversary flower

Gifting Daffodils for March Birthdays:

Note, however, that this birth month flower should be given in a bunch and not as a single bloom. While daffodils are a symbol of good fortune, legends say that a single daffodil bloom can bring a stroke of bad luck. 

The History and Origins of Daffodil Flowers

Yellow daffodil flowers in bloom

The genus Narcissus was named in 1753 by Carl Linnaeus. But daffodils go by many names, including narcissus, jonquils, paper whites, and tarzettas, often leading to confusion. While all daffodils and jonquils are Narcissus, not all Narcissus are daffodils. Think of the genus name as an overarching category — it’s like how all chihuahuas are dogs, but not all dogs are chihuahuas.

The genus name stems from the ancient Greek term narke, which means “numb.” This may refer to compounds in the plants that have a slightly numbing effect.

Daffodil Flowers and Greek Mythology

The flowers’ name also links to mythology; Narcissus was the son of a nymph and a god. He was good-looking… and he knew it. A nymph fell in love with him, but he broke her heart. The goddess Nemesis took her vengeance by cursing Narcissus to become mesmerized by his own reflection in the water. He stared so long that he fell in and drowned.

Because the flowers’ shape resembles a head curving to look downward and they grow well next to water, daffodils have long been associated with the cautionary tale of Narcissus.

Daffodils also feature in the myth of Persephone, who was abducted by Hades, the god of the underworld, while she was picking daffodils in the Elysian fields. For this reason, daffodils have long been associated with death and are often found in funeral wreaths or planted in cemeteries.

Daffodil Flower Meaning in Floriography

The Victorian language of flowers often linked daffodils to “regard” or “self-esteem.” Another historical meaning of the daffodil is “unequalled love.” Of course, the flowers also symbolize new beginnings, hope, and rebirth, due to their early emergence in spring.

Daffodil Flower Colors and Their Symbolism

A field of yellow and white daffodil flowers

Daffodils (Narcissus) come in various colors, each carrying its own symbolic meaning. Here are some common daffodil colors and their associated symbolism:

Yellow Daffodils: 

Yellow daffodils are the most common and classic color. They symbolize joy, happiness, new beginnings, and friendship. Like other types of yellow flower meanings, yellow daffodils are often associated with the arrival of spring and bring a sense of optimism and positivity.

White Daffodils: 

White flowers traditionally symbolize purity, innocence, and new beginnings. They are often used in weddings and other ceremonies to represent the purity of love and new chapters in life.

Orange Daffodils: 

Orange flowers symbolize enthusiasm, excitement, and warmth. They are vibrant and eye-catching, representing energy and passion. Orange daffodils can be given to convey admiration and excitement for someone or something.

Pink Daffodil Flowers:

Pink flowers represent love, romance, and gratitude. They are often associated with affection and appreciation. Pink daffodils can be given to express feelings of love and admiration toward someone special.

Peach Daffodils: 

Peach daffodils symbolize gentleness, sincerity, and gratitude. They convey a sense of warmth and appreciation. Peach daffodils are often given as a gesture of thanks or to express feelings of sincere friendship.

Bi-color Daffodils: 

Bi-color daffodils, with their combination of colors, often represent a mix of the associated symbolism. For example, a yellow and white bi-color daffodil may symbolize friendship and purity.

What are the Origins of March Birth Month Flowers?

The tradition of 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 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.

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 Holly,Narcissus (innocence and purity); Poinsettia (success, celebration); Holly (happiness and optimism).

Wrapping Up

March honors the spring-time Daffodil and the endearing Jonquil as its birth flowers, each bringing a unique charm and significance. The Daffodil, known for its vibrant yellow hue and distinctive trumpet-like shape, serves as a herald of spring and symbolizes new beginnings, rebirth, and the return of joy. The Jonquil, a specific type of daffodil, with its delicate petals and intoxicating fragrance, represents love, desire, and affection.

Editorial Director | andrew@petalrepublic.com | Full Bio

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.

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