March Birth Flowers

Daffodils are among the first flowers to bloom in the spring.

Daffodils are among the first flowers to bloom in the spring.

If you celebrate your birthday in March, the daffodil is your birth flower. The daffodil is an appropriate birth flower for the month of March since it is one of the first flowers to bloom in the spring. Like the springtime, the flower is a symbol of hope and rebirth. Daffodils represent unrequited love as well. Narcissus is the Latin name for the daffodil.

Description

There are more than 50 species of the daffodil. The center of the flower is shaped like a trumpet or cup and has a circle of petals surrounding it that resemble a star. Daffodils are cultivated in many different hybrid varieties. The traditional daffodil is usually golden yellow in color. Many other types of daffodils are hybrids. The flowers can be yellow and orange, yellow and white, or white and orange in color. The trumpet, or corona, is generally one color and the petals a contrasting color. Native to the Mediterranean region, daffodils often bloom in clusters.

Ancient Legend

According to Greek mythology, Narcissus was a conceited young man who rejected the advances of a musical wood nymph named Echo. Because he loved himself so much, the gods decided to punish him. Legend has it that when Narcissus leaned forward to kiss his reflection in a lake, he fell into the water. He was never seen again, but pale yellow daffodils began growing along the water’s edge where Narcissus last stood.

History

Daffodils originated in Western Europe. The English refer to the daffodil as the Lent Lily because it normally blooms during the Lenten season. In North America, another name for the daffodil is the jonquil. Like the Greeks, the Egyptians associated the daffodil with death. Ancient Egyptians used daffodils to prepare their dead for burial. It was the practice to remove the skins from daffodil bulbs and place them on a mummy’s mouth, nose and eyes. The Egyptians buried the pharaoh Ramses II with a garland of daffodils around his neck.

Symbolic Meanings

People often give daffodils to others to convey feelings of respect and admiration. Daffodils symbolize friendship and are associated with a fresh start. The yellow daffodil is often associated with Easter. In fact, Osterglocke, the German word for daffodil, means Easter bell. The daffodil is the official flower for the American Cancer Society. Similarly, the Canadian Cancer Society and Irish Cancer Society use the daffodil as a fund-raising logo. The daffodil is also the national flower of Wales where it is the custom to wear a daffodil on March 1 -- Saint David’s Day. Saint David is the patron saint of Wales.

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  • Daffodil image by azzzh from <a href='http://www.fotolia.com'>Fotolia.com</a>

 


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