The weather certainly played a great April Fools joke on us this year, but here at the shop we’re determined to be full of the joys of spring! And whilst looking outside over the past few days, you wouldn’t necessarily know that spring was here, officially it is, so we thought we’d kick this month off with two flowers that bring both warmth and happiness!
For those born in April, the daisy and the sweet pea have special meanings. While daisies stand for innocence (who can forget making daisy chains as kids?), purity, and true love, the sweet pea represents a way to say goodbye, send good wishes, or to simply say “thank you” to someone.
One of the most recognized flowers out there, the daisy is native to Europe and Africa, and belongs to the aster family. This huge plant family also includes sunflowers and, of course, asters. The word daisy stems from the Old English “day’s eye,” and refers to the English daisy opening its petals in the morning and closing them at nighttime. Depending on the species, the daisy can be one of the earliest spring bloomers or among the last to appear in the fall.
Whilst the daisy looks like one flower, it is actually made up of two. The centre “eye” is, infact, a collection of tiny florets, while the ray floret (the petals) radiate outwards from the centre. It is because the daisy is made up of two flowers that work in perfect harmony together, that it has long been a symbol of true love.
Daisies come in many colours, with each symbolizing something different. The white daisy represents purity and innocence; yellow means joy and friendship; pink is a symbol of affection; and red is a sign of love and romance.
Representing new beginnings, motherhood and childbirth, daisies are a common gift for new moms. They are also said to be symbolic of keeping secrets, and it was once thought that a daisy in a bouquet was a sign that one’s secrets could be entrusted to the sender, with the daisy meaning “I’ll never tell!”
Daisies have also long been associated with medicine, being used for healing purposes as far back as Ancient Egyptian times. Daisy flowers have astringent properties and were made into teas used to treat coughs and colds, or directly applied on the skin to treat wounds. Daisy flower buds and petals can actually be eaten raw and are even made into teas and vitamin supplements.
The second birth flower for April is the sweet pea. Related to beans and other legumes, the sweet pea has also been used in some areas of the world for medicine and food, but, unlike its edible garden pea relatives, the sweet pea is considered toxic to humans and animals if eaten in large quantities.
Native to Italy and the Mediterranean region, sweet peas are delicately beautiful, and their flowers have a lovely, sweet fragrance which is often likened to oranges, honey, and jasmine. At one point in history, sweet peas were worn in pockets of clothing to provide fragrance.
Sweet peas are found in a wide range of pretty pastel shades, including blue, pink, purple and white, and they usually bloom from spring to early summer. These climbing plants can grow to an impressive height of over 6 feet!
Sweet pea flowers are traditionally given as a way to say goodbye or thank you. They symbolize good wishes, kindness, gratitude, and friendship. In France, traditionally sweet peas were gifted to brides on their wedding day as a symbol of good luck, and in other cultures, the sweet pea was thought to have magical properties.
So if you want to feel “fresh as a daisy,” or you’ve got April birthdays to celebrate, come visit us online or in store. Our shelves are chock full of gorgeous spring gifts and our flower cooler is bursting with beautiful blooms! You can also order online here.