The Official Birth Flowers for October

We know that floral gifts can easily make a birthday or any celebration memorable, but giving more thoughts about the kind of flower gift could make it even more special. For October celebrants, what could be a more heartfelt gift than marigold and cosmos – the official birth flowers for October? Read through our quick guide below to learn more about these lovely flowers, including their origins, meanings, symbolism, and some useful buying tips. 


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).

October Birth Flower: Marigolds

Marigolds are famed ornamentals known for their vibrant daisy-like blooms. They are part of the Asteraceae family, which makes them related to sunflowers, chrysanthemums, asters, and dahlias, among many others. This October birth flower showcases beautiful blooms from spring to fall in shades of bright orange, red, gold, and yellow. 

Brief History and Origin of the October Birth Flower

Marigold Flower Care Tips for October Birth Flower

Marigold, otherwise known as Calendula or Tagetes, is one of the two official birthday flowers for October. Native to the New World, it is currently a popular annual ornamental plant in many North American gardens and the rest of the world. 

The earliest known cultivation of marigolds began with The Aztecs, who considered marigolds as sacred and magical flowers primarily because of their medicinal properties. Early Spanish explorers then brought marigolds from the Aztecs back with them to Spain, where the plants were grown in monastery gardens. From there, marigold seeds reached France and northern Africa, and eventually the Americas and the rest of the world after several hundred years.

The common name Marigold originated from “Mary’s Gold,” since, back in the day, Virgin Mary’s altar received these flowers instead of coins as offerings. Meanwhile, in the UK, these flowers were called the “Rose of the Indies.” In India, the other known name of marigold is The Friendship Flower. 

Meanings and Symbolism of a Marigold Flower

Marigold Flower Meaning & Symbolism for October Birthday

Marigolds are popular in Mexico and Latin America, especially during the Day of the Dead. The colorful flowers often serve as decorations for household altars and cemetery graves as families remember their departed loved ones. 

The flowers of marigolds also play a role in Hindu religious ceremonies. In particular, people in India hang marigold garlands in their homes during festive celebrations as a symbol of surrender and offer to god.  

The October birth flower comes in many colors, but the most popular ones are the orange marigolds that symbolize passion and creativity because of their vibrant color. Because of their diversity, these flowers convey different meanings that include cheer, joy, remembrance, wealth, success, hard work, and winning over someone’s love. 

The negative connotations of marigolds are cruelty, despair, grief, and jealousy. These meanings may intend a desire to express strong passion, which roots back to the flowers’ association with the courageous lion. The Victorian meaning of these October birth flowers is a desire for riches, which perhaps relates to the legend of the flower’s representation of gold coins. 

Tips When Buying Marigold Flowers

Marigold Flower Meaning Official October Birth Flower

Marigolds are hardy ornamentals that will give you attractive blooms in late spring to fall. Often cultivated as bedding plants than as cut flowers, marigolds showcase vibrant flowers that, though almost odorless, can also be used in floral arrangements or gifted as potted plants. Here are some useful tips when buying marigold flowers.

  • Observe the plant or flower for any kind of physical damage or occurrence of pests or diseases.
  • Make sure to buy healthy marigold plants or flowers. Pick ones with strong and sturdy stems and healthy-looking leaves. 
  • Do not buy flowers with petals that are fading, wilting, or browning. These are signs of an unhealthy plant. 
  • Choose marigolds with buds that are just starting to open. 
  • When using marigolds as part of your home décor, you can mix them with more abundant (or smaller) and boldly-colored flowers like roses and zinnias. 

The vase life of marigolds is one (1) week or more. After purchasing marigold cut flowers, be sure to condition and hardy them as soon as possible. 


Cosmos: The Other October Birth Flower

Cosmos Flowers Official October Birth Flower

The other birthday flower for October is the cosmos flower. Cosmos flowers, which also belong in the Asteraceae family, are prolific blooms that showcase lots of flowers for months. Native to Mexico, this October birth flower occurs in various parts of the world, including the US, South Africa, and Argentina. 

In the language of flowers, cosmos are a known symbol of peace and tranquility. The flowers mean harmony and order, as well as love, innocence, beauty, modesty, joy, and balance

Because of their attractive colors and lovely scent, cosmos flowers also convey wholeness and peacefulness. The chocolate cosmos flowers, in particular, are one way to say, “I love you more than anyone could.”

Aside from being one of the two October birthday flowers, cosmos are also the second wedding anniversary flower. 


Other Popular In-Season October Flowers

Alstroemeria

Alstroemeria Flowers for October Birthdays

Alstroemeria, otherwise known as Peruvian Lily or Lily of the Incas, is one of the most-loved flowers because of their dramatic look that instantly makes any arrangement one of a kind! It has various meanings and symbolism, but those the most common ones include love, friendship, devotion, and strength. What’s more, they have twisted leaves that symbolize a strong bond, and six petals that represent different characteristics (respect, patience, understanding, humor, empathy, and commitment). 

Calla Lily

Calla Lily for October Birthday Flowers

Calla lilies are not true lilies. Despite that, these extraordinary blooms made their way to being one of the most beautiful cut flowers because of their unique form. In addition, they come in a plethora of shades, including pink, purple, green, yellow, and orange. The meanings of calla lily flowers include purity, faithfulness, and holiness. They symbolize rebirth, resurrection, and triumph

Delphinium

Delphinium Flowers for October Birthday Flowers

A famed garden plant from the buttercup family, delphiniums are known for their dolphin-like flowers typically in rich hues of blue and purple. They make an excellent gifting flower as they symbolize new experiences and overall positive outlook. The beautiful flowers, which bloom in time as the October birthday flowers, also represent cheerfulness, goodwill, dignity, youth, and renewal


Other Birth Flower Resources:

For further details on the meanings, symbolism of official flowers here are some of our favorite resources:

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We are a floristry, plant, and lifestyle city resource curated by a passionate team of horticulturists, floral & plant enthusiasts, budding designers, and intrepid urban gardeners. We're committed to showcasing the best in floral and plant design, sharing our experience and recommendations on the best blooms and greenery for every occasion, season, and living environment, and spreading our love of the enchanting world of flowers and plants.

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