Wildflowers are one of the most welcome signs of spring and summer. These colorful flowers cover great swathes of America’s landscapes in vibrant, swaying blankets from late spring until fall. In this article, we’ll delve into what wildflowers symbolize.
What Do Wildflowers Symbolize Around the World?
Wildflowers have several different meanings around the world depending on the particular flower. However, wildflowers can have general meanings as well. Wildflowers are a wonderful symbol of spring and summer as they come into bloom.
Because they are such an inspiring sight, wildflowers can also symbolize happiness and joy in many cultures. Sunflowers are one of the most common wildflowers associated with happiness. These tall, cheerful yellow flowers also represent optimism and honesty.
On a more poignant note, many wildflowers symbolize remembrance and thoughts of those we have lost. A good example is the red poppy, which symbolizes the remembrance of soldiers killed in various conflicts since World War One. Red remembrance poppies are still worn in the US on Memorial Day.
What Do Wildflowers Symbolize in Victorian Floriography?
Many cultures throughout history have recognized the importance and poignancy of the symbolic meaning of flowers. In fact, the Victorians developed their own version of floriography – otherwise known as the language of flowers. In Victorian floriography, different flower bouquets conveyed various messages without the need for spoken or written words.
Several types of wildflowers were used in Victorian floriography – each with their own meaning and symbolism. For example, sunflowers were the perfect gift for a friend because they symbolized affection and adoration. Meanwhile, yarrow was believed to cure heartache, while butterfly weed conveyed a message of “let me go”.
Common Wildflowers and Their Meaning & Symbolism
Here are some common wildflowers native to the United States and their meanings and symbolism:
- Asters – Asters symbolize beauty, elegance, faith, love, patience, and wisdom. In Victorian floriography, asters represented spontaneity and variety.
- Bee Balm – Bee balm is associated with prosperity, protection, and sympathy. It can also symbolize clarity of thought.
- Black-eyed Susan – Black-eyed Susan represents justice and may inspire positive changes in one’s life.
- California Poppy – California poppies are California’s official state flower and symbolize love, success, and good tidings.
- Columbines – Columbines represent strength, wisdom, and peace.
- Coneflowers – Coneflowers are associated with health, healing, and strength. Coneflowers can also convey messages such as “I hope you feel better”.
- Gaillardia – Also known as blanket flowers, Gaillardia flowers symbolize abundance, happiness, joy, optimism, and modesty. These flowers also convey that you find someone charming.
- Lupines – Lupines are associated with inner strength, perseverance, renewal, and transformation. They also symbolize the cycle of life.
- Sunflowers – Sunflowers symbolize happiness, joy, and beauty. In China, sunflowers represent good fortune and long life, while Native American tribes associate sunflowers with abundance.
Wildflowers have several symbolic meanings including happiness, joy, and remembrance. Wildflowers are also a welcome sign of spring and summer. Many wildflowers represent strength and perseverance in the face of adversity. Others are linked with healing, renewal, and the circle of life.
Edd is a budding content writer and gardener living in the United Kingdom. He has a bachelor's degree in Creative and Professional Writing and has written for several gardening publications online. He is passionate about nature and sustainability with a focus on gardening and wildlife.