For centuries, throughout Europe and Asia, the symbolic language of flowers has been widely recognized. Mythologies, plays, sonnets, and folklore of the Chinese, Egyptians, as well as the Greeks and Romans, have contained plant and flower symbolism.
Flowers are a portrayal of expression, sentiment, and significance like no other. Whether it’s an orange blossom implying loveliness and purity or a chrysanthemum declaring unyielding love, flowers always have something to say. (1)
Flower symbolism is not just present in history but can also be found in art and music. Flowers’ uniqueness and beauty have inspired countless artists and creators. Even though the symbolic significance of flowers dates back to hundreds of years and a multitude of cultures, it can still be seen around us today.
Listed below are the top 10 flowers that symbolize strength:
Table of Contents
Gladiolus, also known as the Sword Lily, is a type of flower from the family of Iridaceae. It is one of the 300 species from this family. Most of these species are native to sub-Saharan Africa, while around 10 species are native to Europe.
The gladiolus is popular as both garden and cut flowers and comes in a variety of different colors. It has blade-shaped leaves and is an attractive, fragrant flower on tall spikes. The name gladiolus originates from the Latin term ‘gladiolus,’ which means ‘small sword.’
The name is a reference to the shape of the flower’s leaves. This flower symbolizes strong character, moral integrity, honor, and faithfulness. The Gladiolus flower also represents feelings of romance. (2)
Gladius is also the root for the word ‘Gladiator’ (3) Gladiolus is a long-lasting plant with sturdy stems that is a reminder of how strong we can be, both our personal character and our physical body. (4)
A species native to North and South America, the phacelia is also known as the Scorpionweed. This is a versatile flower that is able to adapt to many soil conditions as long as it’s well-drained.
It has blue or purple flowers arranged in fascicles or small clusters. It is also known as ‘lacy Phacelia’ due to its attractive appearance. (5) The Phacelia flower is highly attractive to bumblebees and honeybees. The name Scorpionweed is a reference to its flower clusters that develop a curling formation similar to a scorpion’s tail.
Known to survive in sandy and gravelly soils, the phacelia thrives in warm weather. (6) It is drought tolerant and can survive in high temperatures. Basically, this flower is a symbol of determination and endurance.
This flower is native to the Northern Hemisphere but is cultivated all around the world. The Allium comes in an assortment of colors, shapes, and sizes. It consists of globe-shaped flower clusters, mostly white, yellow, blue, pink, and purple colors.
Allium is an edible plant but is used in an ornamental setting. Literally, the name Allium stems from the term used for garlic. It has a distinct onion-like flavor; hence it is nicknamed the ‘ornamental onion.’ Ornamental Alliums are symbolic of patience, good fortune, and prosperity.
They also represent humility, unity, and good luck. These flowers are a reminder to persevere and be patient during times of difficulty. They are also beautiful flowers to grow in your garden. (7)
The Amsonia was named after an 18th-century physician, Dr. Charles Amson, from Virginia. This flower is native to North America. It is a star-shaped flower with leafy stems. It can be planted as a single specimen or in mass plantings.
These beautiful flowers are a great addition to your garden. They are also easy to grow and care for. The Amsonia is also known as the ‘Blue Star’ due to its star-shaped flowers. These flowers are pest and disease-resistant.
Once they are well planted and established, they are also considerably drought resistant. (8). Due to these qualities, the Amsonia symbolically also represents determination, endurance, and strength.
Also known as Star herb and Masterwort, the Astrantia flower has nine different types that are divided throughout Europe and Western Asia. The term ‘Star herb’ is a reference to the flower’s Latin name. ‘Aster’ also translates to ‘Star.’
It grows in mountain pastures and humid mountain forests. A fragile flower with a tough appearance, straw herb-like structure. The Astrantia flower is a symbol of protection, strength, and courage. (9) It’s also known as ‘the strong, brave protector.’
This flower left an impression in the Middle Ages due to its star-shaped appearance. In folk tales of the time, these flowers are referred to as stars that have fallen on Earth. (10)
The Potentilla flower’s name comes from the Latin word ‘Potens’ meaning ‘powerful.’ This is a reference to the plant’s numerous medicinal benefits. Potentillas are also known as ‘Cinquefoils’ in English.
Potentillas are found in multiple northern continents of the world. A popular landscape shrub, the Potentilla is valued for its carefree nature, exceptional hardiness, and long bloom time. This sturdy plant is tolerant of harsh weather conditions such as drought, air pollution, and salty air. (11)
The Potentilla symbolizes many attributes. It is a symbol of honor, loyalty, and power. (12) It also symbolizes maternal affection and a beloved daughter. (13) The Potentilla is also called the ‘little powerful one’ by many experts as it is known for its anticatarrhal, anti-inflammatory, and diuretic properties. (14)
A native to North and South America, Europe, and Asia, Valeriana or the Valerian is a much-valued medicinal plant. It’s had a number of traditional medicinal uses. (15) Valerian root extract has sedative and anxiolytic effects.
It is also included in many dietary supplements to promote sleep. The name Valeriana is taken from the Latin verb ‘Valere,’ which means to be healthy or strong. (16) The Valerian plant symbolizes awareness or readiness for future circumstances.
It implies being strong and prepared for what lies ahead. Its medicinal usage emphasizes its power and strength. (17)
The name Aquilegia is derived from the Latin word ‘Aquila,’ which means ‘eagle.’ The name refers to the five spurs of the flower that resemble an eagle’s claws. The flower is also known as ‘Columbine.’ (18) Aquilegia or the Columbine is found in a plentitude of environments along the Northern Hemisphere.
They can be found in high mountains, meadows, woodlands, and grasslands. Quite an uncommon flower, the Columbine’s beauty can be seen in wide alpine settings. This unique flower is rich in symbolic meaning. It inspires us to reach lofty heights.
It is also symbolic of endurance, good fortune, risk-taking, peace, and faith. (19) The Greeks and Romans also linked this plant to Aphrodite, the goddess of love. Columbine is also a symbol of love and romance. In some cultures, it also represents court jesters and foolishness.
This connection was created due to the shape of the flower that resembled a court jester’s hat. (20) In the Christian faith, the Columbine represented the seven gifts to the holy spirit. Within the realm of the faith, it was also a symbol of reverence and piety. (21)
The Echinacea, also known as the coneflower, is an attractive and colorful flower that resembles a daisy. It has a cone-shaped central disc with a ring of petal-like rays. It has dark leaves and a tall, slender stem.
The name ‘Echinacea’ comes from the Latin word ‘echinos’ that means ‘hedgehog’ or ‘sea urchin.’ The name refers to the flower’s prickly center. (22) These flowers come in a variety of colors and have been used for ornamental and medicinal purposes.
The coneflower has an attractive, long-lasting bloom that can last for two days after it’s plucked. The coneflower is also valued for its medicinal properties. It is also highly used as a herbal remedy. Due to these characteristics, the coneflower is symbolically linked to concepts of strength and healing. (23)
The term Antirrhinum is a Greek word that means ‘nose-like.’ It is also known as ‘Snapdragon’ as its appearance resembles a dragon opening and closing its mouth. (24) A native to North America, Europe, and Africa, this flower is known to grow on rocky grounds.
The Antirrhinum or Snapdragons have multiple symbolic meanings. They are a representation of strength as they are able to grow in uninhabitable, rocky areas. They represent fighting against all odds. They also symbolize grace, strength, and deviousness. (25)
This Dragon Flower is a symbol of grace and virtue as it stands proud and tall. It is a reminder of a proud, self-sufficient person who can’t be told what to do. This flower makes a lovely gift for someone you love as it sends a message of respect and admiration.
In ancient times, the Snapdragon represented deviousness as it was sent between lovers symbolizing lust and love. In Victorian times, it was a tool to say sorry and requesting forgiveness. (26)
The Final Takeaway
Flowers and plants have unique qualities and attributes. They inspire us to adopt qualities of endurance and strength. They are also important tokens of showing love and affection to the people we care about.
They almost always contain implicit messages the givers want the recipients to know. Which of these flowers and their attributes were you already aware of? Let us know in the comments below!
- Lacy Phacelia Plant Guide. Natural Resources Conservation Service. US Department of Agriculture.
- Dave Long,UCCE Master Gardener of Lake Tahoe.
- Harper, Douglas. “valerian”. Online Etymology Dictionary.
Headering image courtesy: pxhere.com