The Phlox flower sounds just about as old-fashioned as the name! Lo and behold a flower that embodies the valor of champions! The Phlox has many different flower meanings and symbolism because of the many different colors it comes in.
In fact, the phlox is more popularly known as the flame flower or high flaming flower because of how it symbolizes passionate love and the warmth of fire. During different times, the phlox flower represents either a profession of love or a display of loyalty and bravery of a knight.
History of Phlox Flowers
Did you know that the name of this flower is also the genus it originates from? The botanical genus name Phlox originates from the Polemoniaceae family. This phlox family includes 65 other antiquated and novel species.
Aside from this, a few floral enthusiasts also refer to it as the garden Phlox or the Phlox paniculata wherein the species are either annual or perennial herbs by nature.
The Phlox genus term was first coined by the Roman scholar Pliny in the year 1706 as a rendition of the red campion (Lychnis). Swedish botanist Carolus Linnaeus then transferred the Latin word in 1737.
Phlox plants are primarily native to North Asia and are commonly grown as garden flowers during early spring to late summer. These flowers can also be found up north America such as in alpine tundra. It requires soil with good drainage and full sun or partial shade conditions to thrive.
There are many different phlox species to enjoy in a garden. Some of these phlox flower species include the Creeping phlox (Phlox stolonifera), the Wild blue phlox (Phlox divaricata), the Downy phlox (phlox pilosa), the Siberian phlox (Phlox sibirica), the Moss phlox (phlox subulata), and the Annual phlox (phlox drummondii).
Here’s a fun fact, the Annual phlox is named after Thomas Drummond because he was the first to send the seeds from Texas to England in 1835.
Symbolism of Phlox Flower
This plant’s blossoms are no different from other old-fashioned flowers with its amassed symbolism. In fact, the flower meaning and symbolism behind phlox flowers are very interesting.
In Latin, the Phlox simply translates to the word flower referring to the profusion of florets on the plant. The name derives from the Greek word phlox or phlogos which means flame. To put it simply, phlox flowers symbolize a flaming torch because of its ferocious colors and resemblance to that of a flame.
The Medieval eras also preserved the symbolism of the florets through knighthood and heraldic figures. Shields adorned with white lilies, harebells, and phlox blossoms were bestowed upon knights, esquires, and gentlemen as tokens of gratitude for their service. These shields were also said to symbolize purity and simplicity.
Meaning of Phlox Flower
A phlox or high phlox is an annual or perennial herb native to North America. What’s astonishing about this flower is that its colors appear either solid or variegated. Its floral blossoms come in blue, red, pink, purple, and white depending on species. These wondrous blossoms begin budding between the months of summer and spring just after pollination.
During the spring, a phlox can have a very interesting meaning. The Pink Full Moon or April’s Full Moon is enjoyed during the 16th of April. The moon during this time is bright and full and is closely associated with the wildflower – related posts say that this wildflower is the phlox.
What does a Pink Phlox Flower Mean?
A pink phlox flower bears the meaning of gentle admiration, love, and femininity. In the language of flowers, a pink phlox can represent romantic intimacy and a tender expression of love and compassion.
What do Red Phlox Flowers Represent?
Bright red or soft red phloxes have a very special meaning. It stands for romance, passion, and strong feelings in romantic and platonic relationships. A red phlox flower best represents a burning passion and love in any relationship.
What does a White Phlox Flower Symbolize?
White phlox flowers have a very interesting symbolism. These white flowers are symbolic of purity and innocence. Sometimes, these humble beauties symbolize pure intentions and the honest commitment both parties express in a relationship.
What does a Blue Phlox Blossom Mean?
Light blue & pale blue phlox blossoms have a very tranquil meaning behind its beauty. In the language of flowers, a blue phlox flower means honesty and understanding. These blue flowers can also mean patience, spirituality, and wisdom.
What do Purple Phlox Blooms Represent?
Purple is a color of royalty and knighthood. For phlox blossoms, a purple color represents stability and endurance especially for love in long-lasting, very mature relationships.
What does an Orange Phlox Flower Symbolize?
An orange flower has many different meanings throughout the language of flowers. Meanwhile, an orange phlox flower symbolizes warmth and desire – the feelings felt when in a relationship that’s true and will last a lifetime!
What Does a Phlox Flower Portray in Art?
Art is a common medium for expressing one’s thoughts and emotions. Murals of scenery hold to it the embodiment of beauty and bounty.
Phloxes portrayed in paintings depict the togetherness of family and how people think alike. If you examine it closely, you will find that a bounty of florets is on one plant alone. It is an implication of a well-grounded individual and the unity of each member of the family – it also meant united hearts.
What Does a Phlox Flower Implicate in Relationships?
May it be familial, friendly, or romantic, this flower has a meaning for each connection. This plant’s florets in families signify the unity of souls, for a pal, friendliness and good companionship, and a significant other, a proposal of love or marriage.
If you are feeling romantic, you can try giving a bouquet of phloxes instead of roses on Valentine’s!
What Do Phloxes Mean in Floral Arrangements?
Any flora-loving individual knows that floral arrangements always have a meaning behind them. The same idea applies to that of this floret ornamented into a beautiful ensemble. The blossom is somewhat versatile while simultaneously subtle and romantic in bouquets.
Bouquets of the phlox handed over to any individual symbolize high regard and utmost importance.
What is the Cultural Significance of Phlox Blossoms?
There are quite a few cultural meanings and symbolism behind the flame flower, phlox. Here are some cultural references that might interest you in planting your own phlox flowers!
In the Victorian language of flowers, a phlox flower has a very intimate meaning. During the Victorian era, giving these flowers as a gift can symbolize a public expression of love or even hinting at a marriage proposal! Meanwhile, a gift of fragrant phloxes was symbolic of sweet dreams. It’s similar to wishing someone you love to have sweet dreams.
The middle ages have quite a different symbolism associated with the phlox flower. For many knights, the phlox was a symbolic part of their chivalric code during the knighting ceremony. Noble people had knights adorned with pin phloxes as and during the end of these events, these noble men would present the flowers to their special ladies.
In Japan, the phlox has a very special festival held along with other spring celebrations. Fuji Shibazakura is a festival known to showcase the many colored varieties of creeping phlox flowers. During the festivities, over 800,000 flowers are laid down on a carpet with Mount Fuji as the background.
Meanwhile, native American folks have a different name for the phlox. Known as the Great Spirit’s Flowers of Flame, because of a beautiful legend about the Chickasaw tribe and the hunting grounds Creek Indians. There was a battle that lasted for three days between the two tribes wherein the Chickasaw tribe was trapped by a wall of fire set by the Creek tribe.
To escape the fire, a little boy sent his black bird Chuhla to call on other animals to help tame the flames. Many animals were injured and burned when the Great Spirit saw their suffering and transformed the flames into flowers. The Chickasaws were able to escape and thus the legend of the flame flower lived on.
Uses of Phlox Flowers
The phlox plant has many different uses in the garden as well as in medicine. For native American tribes, the phlox plants had interesting botanical characteristics used in traditional medicine. Early medicine regards phlox leaves as a remedy for eczema. The leaves were boiled into a tea and was used to treat the skin problem as well as purify the blood.
Meanwhile, the roots were also boiled as a tea. This type of phlox tea was said to be helpful in treating venereal disease. A precaution must be taken into account as the medical uses of these flowers are not supported by modern medicine research.
Aside from traditional medicine uses, a phlox flower can be used to decorate gardens – specifically rock gardens wherein the creeping phlox can be planted! These phlox varieties will become a favorite for all hobby gardeners in no time!
*image credit: sapfirhik/depositphotos