Flowers don’t always get the credit they deserve, likely overlooked by Christmas trees, garland, and candles. There are many colorful blooms and plants that are synonymous with the holiday season and have meanings as beautiful as their appearances. If there’s someone on your shopping list who you always struggle to buy for, try one of these thoughtful Christmas flowers or plants. Or, simply decorate your home with them!
These festive plants are among the most popular to decorate with during the holiday season. Many people think the vibrant red, white or pink blooms are flowers, but they’re actually colored leaves known as bracts. Some associate the star shape of the bracts as symbolic of the star of Bethlehem. Native to Mexico, Poinsettias thrive in bright sunshine and don’t require a lot of watering.
The story of the poinsettia meaning is steeped in Mexican legend. Two young children didn’t have the money to bring a gift to church on Christmas Eve, so they picked some weeds. Though the other children made fun of them for their gift, the weeds turned into red blooms – the vibrant bracts of the poinsettia.
Despite the name, the Christmas rose isn’t actually a rose. It’s more closely related to the buttercup! These white wildflowers tend to bloom on the European mountains in the winter, but few people succeed in growing them themselves.
The association these flowers have to the Christmas season is reminiscent of a European Christian tale. A shepherdess named Madelon watched the Wise Men and shepherds on their way to meet baby Jesus, equipped with presents. However, she didn’t have anything to offer him. An angel appeared to console Madelon and brushed the snow at her feet away to reveal a cluster of Christmas roses, so Madelon would have a gift for Christ.
Holly has deep green pointed leaves that grows on a bush. It tends to be known as a Christmas plant due to the fact female holly bushes grow bright red berries around the holiday season. Among the background of the deep leaves, these red berries really pop, exemplifying the two most popular colors of the season.
Even though holly leaves and berries have been adopted as traditional Christmas decor, the symbolism dates back to the ancient Druids. These people knew the plant as being representative of everlasting life, and Christians adopted that same meaning, only adding that it’s a symbol of Jesus’ promise of everlasting life. If you don’t have the space to plant a holly bush, try decorating with flower arrangements like Teleflora’s Merry and Bright, complete with sprigs of holly.
The amaryllis is an elegant flower that typically grows in red or white – perfect for the holiday season! These tall blooms make great centerpieces for your Christmas get-togethers. Not only does the amaryllis stay in bloom for up to six weeks, but it’s also a bulb plant, so with a little bit of TLC, you can enjoy this flower for seasons to come!
Unlike most holiday flowers, the amaryllis’ symbolism doesn’t trace back to anything particularly Christmas-y, rather being symbolic of the blood of nymph in Greek mythology, as well as confidence and pride.