Poppies Flower Meanings

Poppy Symbolism

Poppy MeaningThe flower symbolism associated with poppies is beauty, magic, consolation, fertility and eternal life. The Egyptians included poppies at funerals and in burial tombs. The Greeks used poppies in the shrines of Demeter, goddess of fertility, and Diana, goddess of the hunt. Poppies denote sleep, rest and repose. In modern times, poppies have been associated with Flanders fields as an emblem of those who died in World War I.

Poppies in Chinese Art

Poppy SymbolPoppies represent the loyalty and faith between lovers. According to Chinese legend, a beautiful and courageous woman, Lady Yee, was married to Hsiang Yu, a warrior with Herculean strength. When Hsiang led his troops into battle, Lady Yee chose to follow him and stood by his side in every battle. (Photo courtesy of Louise Docker, Wikimedia Commons)

During a long and arduous war, Hsiang's army was surrounded and defeat is imminent. Lady Yee tried to boost his spirits by dancing with his sword. The petals of the poppy flower reflect her spirit as she dances in the wind with the sword. When this attempt failed, Lady Yee committed suicide. A cluster of poppies sprang in full bloom from her grave site.

For more on flower symbolism, see our recommended books from Amazon:
Folklore and Symbolism of Flowers, Plants and Trees
The Language of Flowers: Symbols And Myths
The Language of Flowers
The Meaning of Flowers
Forget-Me-Not: A Floral Treasury Sentiments and Plant Lore from the Language of Flowers

Poppy Distribution and History

poppy flower symbolismPoppies do best in cool climates. They are both a cultivated flower and a hearty wildflower. Although poppies are perennials, they are often grown as annuals. Poppies grow through Europe, the Orient and the Americas. Poppies are the state flower of California.


Uses for Poppies

Poppies have been used for centuries in seasonings, medicine and health tonics. Tea from poppies has been used for its calming effect. The oriental poppy is the only poppy that contains opium, but other poppies do have mildly sedative effects, too. Water made from poppies is said to remove wrinkles and freshen the skin. Poppies can also be used for dye and for adding flavor and texture to breads and pastries.

Growing Poppies

Poppies should be watered moderately and kept in full sun. Poppies grow between 2 and 5' tall with blooms up to 12 inches across. Colors include scarlet red, deep orange, light orange, white, purple and pink with black centers. There a single leaf and double leaf forms.

Poppy Photos for Projects and Design

Need photos of poppies? Please visit Dreamstime Stock Photography. Dreamstime is a distinguished leader in stock photography and a major supplier of high quality digital images at unbelievable prices. The Dreamstime database is renewed with thousands of fresh images and titles on a daily basis. See more photos here.

Plant Poppies in Your Garden this Year

Find plants, trees and flowers at Nature Hills Nursery, Inc. Nature Hills Nursery offers one of the largest selections of high quality live plants and related products online, complete with extensive plant information, while maintaining an exceptional level of customer service.

Flower Bouquet Order Bouquets and Flowers
The extensive FloristOne catalog features flowers for every occasion and an extensive network of florists that allows for same day delivery to nearly all of the United States and Canada. Send a classic gift with special meaning for a birthday, baby's birth, holiday, sympathy, graduation or other special occasion. Nothing else communicates your sentiments quite as well as flowers. See our selection of bouquets and flowers here or go directly to the FloristOne website to see all flowers available.

©2008-2010 Living Arts Enterprises, LLC

References:
Yeh, Ning. An Album of Chinese Brush Painting: Eighty Paintings and Ideas. Huntington Beach, CA: Ning Yeh's Art Studio, 1986.

 

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