Forget-me-not Flower Meaning, Symbolism, and Uses

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As the famous lyric in the song goes – sending you Forget-me-nots, to help me to remember! Quite a nostalgic song and quite an unforgettable dainty small flower!

These special blue blossoms called forget-me-nots can do just that – help you remember anything you may have seemed to have forgotten. People loved these so much it is now a popular floral in the ornamental industry and for traditional folkloric medicine.

The meaning and symbolism behind forget-me-nots is also quite special. For instance, a white or blue flower means protection and inner peace. A pink or purple one symbolizes innocence and delicacy. Lastly, a yellow forget-me-not represents security.

History of Forget-me-not Plants

The long history of forget-me-nots is quite a story as cute as the flowers are! It was first defined in 1532 as a small perennial herbaceous flowering plant with bright blue or white flowers arranged in a spike. These flowering plants are prolific bloomers thanks to their ability to self seed.

Forget-me-nots are a part of the genus Myosotis of the Boraginaceae family or Borage family. The Myosotis genus has the most intriguing history you can imagine. It actually comes from the Greek words myos and ōtis meaning mouse ear or a mouse’s ear. There are more facts about how naming flowers like this came to be.

The Greek word ōtis which means mouse ears refers to the small flowers that resembled it. Additionally, a specific epithet name – scorpioides, known as scorpion tail refers to how the plant’s stems resemble an actual scorpion’s tail.

It’s also interesting to know that a special type of forget-me-not flower was called the Ne m’oubliez mye and was known all around the world as a flower bearing a true love never forgotten.

Although the common name for this flower is quite long, it was also previously called other names such as Scorpion grass or Myosotis flower. The florals are native to the temperate regions of western Europe (the Somerset area), North America, and the tropical areas of Africa.

Some of the very popular types of these flowers include the Woodland forget me not (Myosotis sylvatica), the water forget-me-not (Myosotis scorpioides), the Field forget-me-not (Myosotis arvensis), the Bay forget-me-not (Myosotis laxa), the Alpine forget me not (Myosotis alpestris).

Now you know some of the species, here are some facts about planting forget me nots and some tips to grow forget me nots. The best growing season for these small size flowers is from the early spring and avoiding extreme hot summers. 

Forget me nots love the full sun or partial shade with regular watering but good drainage to maintain moist soil. With the right conditions, these flowers are super easy to grow and truly long lasting! Just make sure to stay alert for any powdery mildew.

Symbolism of Forget-me-not Blossoms

The symbolism behind forget-me-nots isn’t as obvious as you might think it is. Some say that these flowers have a symbolic significance of remembrance when given to someone. It is an important keepsake or token to be held and beloved in heart and memory. 

Not only that, but Myosotis blossoms are also a sign of ingenious simplicity and a true constancy. And what comes after constancy? Love and respect as well as faithfulness towards romantic partners – which is also what these flowers stand for. 

Traveling to the Alaskan territory, the forget-me-nots over there have been honored as the Alaska state flower since 1913. They believed it symbolized the nation’s constancy and perseverance.

Meanwhile in the Victorian flower language, forget me nots symbolize honoring a loved one who has passed away. These delicate flowers were a poignant symbol of a long lasting connection even after death. Such a beautiful way to honor someone dear.

Apart from being a symbol of fidelity, forget me nots are a very special flower. It is the official formal emblem to help raise awareness about Alzheimer’s disease. This disease is about people suffering from extreme memory loss which the Alzheimer’s society and Alzheimer’s association is spreading awareness towards.

Additionally, forget me not is the birth flower of June and was the official emblem of the 100th year of remembrance of the Armenian Genocide.

Meaning of Forget-me-not Flowers

For the flower meaning behind the forget me nots, better be prepared because there is quite a lot that are very sentimental yet beautiful. In simple terms, Myosotis flowers can mean memories to remember and hope never to forget. But, the most beautiful meaning behind this beautiful flower is that true eternal love is the best kind of love!

Forget-me-nots are messengers reminding you of a love that remembers. These flowers say to take time to remember all the things you love – past or present. Create more memories and pass on old tales of gone loved ones to keep their legacy and memory alive. 

There are quite a few different colors of the forget me nots each with its own symbolic meanings. Here is the list of those flower colors and what they mean.

What does a White Forget-me-not Flower Mean?

A bunch of white Myosotis flowers conveys the meaning of protection from a guardian angel. Likewise, these flowers also mean a hope never gone. 

What does a Pink Forget-me-not Blossom Symbolize?

Pink flowers are truly a garden favorite. Pink varieties of forget-me-nots are truly special because pink forget me nots are symbolic of sweet memories of innocence and the delicacy of unconditional love. 

What does a Purple Forget-me-not Flower Represent?

Purple forget me nots are beautiful flowers with a delicate symbolic meaning. One interesting note about this flower is how its shades of purple go from a lighter to darker scale. It represents optimism, playfulness, and delicateness.

What does a Blue Forget-me-not Floret Mean?

The blue color almost always denotes delicate blue flowers. Whenever there is trust, there is this feeling of inner peace that surely follows after – and that is just what blue Myosotis blossoms indicate!

What does a Yellow Forget-me-not Bloom Symbolize?

A yellow forget-me-not flower represents a sense of order and a great foundation of security – secured memories, life, or love, it’s all up to you! 

What is the Cultural Significance of a Forget-me-not Flower?

Many different cultures have a significance honoring the forget me nots. In Newfoundland, Canada, there is a special celebration in honor of the forget-me-nots. The flowers are worn on garments every July 1st in memory of all those who died during the First World War. 

During the years between the first and second world Wars, the Myosotis flowers were deemed as a floral motif used by German charitable organizations. These groups believe the flower means never to forget the poor and destitute

It may come as a surprise that these blossoms are also of royal standards. In fact, King Henry IV of England adopted these as an emblem to adorn on the robes and collars of the nobility and English royalty. 

blue forget me not

What is the Biblical Meaning of a Forget-me-not Blossom?

Although not directly written in the Holy Bible, there is a pious legend about the Myosotis flowers. According to that legend, when Jesus Christ was a child, He calmly sat on Mary’s lap and wished that future generations would see them.

He covered his Mother’s eyes and waved His hand across the empty field and a fresh spring of blue forget-me-nots miraculously appeared. A few religious believers say that these flowers were so much bluer than the robe of the Virgin Mary. It symbolized her memory and tenderness. 

There is also quite a dainty Christian story about these flowers. When God created all things, He one by one named every living thing in His garden – hoping not to forget anyone. As He was leaving the garden, a small and delicate flower whispered behind Him saying – what am I called, Lord? God, being struck by How forgetfulness smiled down and said – since I have forgotten you and you have reminded me, you shall be Forget-me-not. God named the forget-me-not after His own forgetfulness.

What is the Spiritual Influence of a Forget-me-not Floret?

Aside from being a symbol of remembrance and good memories, the forget-me-nots also have a spiritual influence. These flowers aid in feelings of isolation and lack of awareness with all the spiritual connections with the past and its memories. It guides and encourages maintaining a self-aware and responsible connection with lost a loved one.

Not only do these flowers connect with a lost loved one or past memories, but it also helps recognize and acknowledge links with the spiritual sense. It will help in the process of accepting loss and tragedy by strengthening the trust in intuition. 

The forget-me-nots will guide the flow of the love currents in the heart.

What is the Folktale Associated with a Forget-me-not Bloom?

Here it is – another tale as to how the forget-me-nots got their name! There was a young man who tried to reach a bunch of pretty blue flowers at the edge of a dangerous cliff. Unaware of the dangers, the young man reached too far and lost his balance. As he fell, he threw the flowers towards his sweetheart and shouted the phrase forget me not

There is a similar European folklore about forget me nots. According to German legend, a brave German knight saw a lady standing along the Danube river trying to save the flowers to disappear downstream as the river washed its roots. 

As the legend tells, the brave knight jumped into the river to save the flower only to be swept away by the waters. He was able to toss the flowers onto the river bank and said “Forget me not!” to the lady. He passed away floating on the river.

Another myth about this blossom is about practice in cemeteries. Folks say that planting them in the grave of someone you love will have their memory live on forever as long as you live.

What does a Forget-me-not Floral Tattoo Symbolize?

A forget-me-not floral tattoo does not only symbolize good remembrance of lost loved ones and their stories. Some who have embodied this floral design say that each flower represents someone dear to them who has left or started a new journey without them. 

Because of that, this dainty tattoo is symbolic of fond memories, faithfulness to lost loved ones, and love reaching beyond the afterlife. 

Uses of Forget-me-nots

The Myosotis flowers are very adored decorative flowers but are sadly considered weeds to farmers and some gardeners because of its self seeding abilities – so not much need for all purpose fertilizer. 

They can be planted as floral covers on a garden bed or as garden borders in cottage gardens. If you’d like to gift these to a special someone, these can be gifted as a beautiful floral arrangement and will only need to be placed in a pretty shade area to prolong vase life.

Now, there are also some traditional medicinal uses for the forget-me-nots. In the early 1900s, a folkloric herbal medicine was made from the juice of the flower and can be used as a syrup to help respiratory problems. Native Americans also had a folkloric medicinal use for these flowers. They used it to treat bites from different animals such as dogs, snakes, spiders, and scorpions! 

Europeans traditionally also used flowers to treat lung ailments and nosebleeds. A word of warning that it’s a must to always consult a medical professional before using this plant or any part of it for medical purposes.

~ image source: depositphotos/BreakingTheWalls

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