In a number of countries, plants have been chosen as symbols to represent specific geographic areas. Some countries have a country-wide floral emblem; others in addition have symbols representing subdivisions. Different processes have been used to adopt these symbols – some are conferred by government bodies, whereas others are the result of informal public polls. The term floral emblem, which refers to flowers specifically, is primarily used in Australia and Canada. In the United States, the term state flower is more often used.
|Botswana||Grapple plant||Harpagophytum procumbens|
|Egypt||White Egyptian water lily||Nymphaea lotus|
|Ethiopia||Calla lily||Zantedeschia aethiopica|
|Lesotho||Aloe polyphylla||Aloe polyphylla|
|Liberia||Black pepper||Piper nigrum|
|Libya||Pomegranate blossom||Punica granatum|
|Mauritius|| Trochetia boutoniana|
|Nigeria||Yellow trumpet||Costus spectabilis|
|South Africa||King protea||Protea cynaroides|
|Zimbabwe||Gloriosa superba||Gloriosa superba|
- Bhutan – Blue poppy (Meconopsis grandis)
- Brunei – Simpoh Ayer (Dillenia suffruticosa)
Cambodia formally adopted the romduol (Khmer: រំដួល) as its national flower in the year 2005 by a royal decree. The royal decree designates the taxon as Mitrella mesnyi, however this is a taxonomically illegitimate synonym for Sphaerocoryne affinis Ridley.
Kerala's state floral emblem is the tree Cassia fistula. Tamil Nadu's floral emblem is Glory lily. Water-lily is the state flower of Andhra Pradesh. Kapau (local name of foxtail orchid) is the state flower of Assam. Bihar's floral emblem is kachnaar and that of Uttarakhand is the rhododendron (locally buransh).
There are three types of floral emblems that symbolize Indonesia:
- the puspa bangsa (national flower) of Indonesia is melati (Jasminum sambac)
- the puspa pesona (flower of charm) is anggrek bulan (Moon Orchid, Phalaenopsis amabilis)
- the puspa langka (rare flower) is padma raksasa rafflesia (Rafflesia arnoldii).
All three were chosen on World Environment Day in 1990. and enforced by law through Presidential Decree (Keputusan Presiden) No. 4 1993, On the other occasion Bunga Bangkai (Titan arum) was also added as puspa langka together with Rafflesia.
Melati (jasminum sambac), a small white flower with sweet fragrance, has long been considered as a sacred flower in Indonesian tradition, as it symbolizes purity, sacredness, graceful simplicity and sincerity. For example, on her wedding day, a traditional Indonesian bride's hair is often adorned with arrangements of jasmine, while the groom's kris is often adorned with a lock of jasmine. However, jasmine is also often used as floral offering for spirits and deities, and also often present during funerals which gave it its mystical and sacred properties. Moon Orchid was chosen for its beauty, while the other two rare flowers, Rafflesia arnoldii and Titan arum were chosen to demonstrate uniqueness and Indonesian rich biodiversity.
- Iraq – Rose
- Jordan – Black iris (Iris nigricans)
- Kuwait – Rhanterium epapposum
The national flower is the plumeria (champa), despite it being no longer endemic.
The national flower of Malaysia is the bunga raya (Chinese Hibiscus, Hibiscus rosa-sinensis).
Malacca's state flower is the bread-flower, Vallaris glabra (local name bunga kesidang).
- Maldives – pink polyantha rose (fiyaathoshi finifenmaa)
- Nepal – Rhododendron
For thousands of years, the jasmine plant has been cultivated not only for the beauty of its small, white, star-like flowers, but it has also been prized for its intoxicating scent. Originating in the foot hills of the Western Himalayas and the Indus Valley plains of the Punjab, the plant was cultivated and brought to the rest of the Indian subcontinent, China, the Middle East and other regions of Asia. From there, it spread into France, Italy and the Mediterranean, and eventually it was introduced to the rest of Western Europe and Britain. Today, jasmine is grown and cultivated all over the world in its many varieties. Since jasmine has been cultivated all over the world for its flowers and scent, there are different varieties, and each type of jasmine is associated with different meanings. In Pakistan, Jasmine is a very common plant and one can find it in any garden. Because of its attractive scent, the white jasmine symbolizes attachment and represents amiability and modesty.
Palestine's unofficial national flower is the Poppy. The poppy symbolizes "the martyr's sacrifice embedded in the land. The poppy is the dominant Palestinian spring flower that children normally collect from the hillside. The flower is mainly red but also has all the colors of the Palestinian flag."
The Philippines adopted the sampaguita (Arabian jasmine, Jasminum sambac) in 1934 as its national flower because it symbolises purity and cleanliness due to its colour and sweet smell. It is popularly strung into garlands that are presented to visitors and dignitaries, and is a common offering to religious images.
The national flower for Singapore is the orchid Vanda Miss Joaquim.
This beautiful aquatic flower appears in the Sigiriya frescoes and has been mentioned in ancient Sanskrit, Pali and Sinhala literary works. Buddhist lore in Sri Lanka claims that this flower was one of the 108 auspicious signs found on Prince Siddhartha's footprint.
The national flower was officially designated as the plum blossom by the Executive Yuan of the Republic of China on July 21, 1964. The plum blossom, known as the meihua (Chinese: 梅花; pinyin: méihuā), is symbol for resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity, because plum trees often bloom most vibrantly even during the harshest winters. The triple grouping of stamens represents Dr. Sun Yat-sen's Three Principles of the People, while the five petals symbolize the five branches of the government.
The national flower for Thailand is Golden Shower Tree (Cassia fistula), locally known as dok khuen or rachapruek.
- Turkey – Tulip
- Vietnam – Red Lotus
The floral emblem of Albania is the red and black poppy. The poppy can be found everywhere in the country, though they originate from Anatolia. Poppies are recognized for their beauty, medicinal value, and seeds. Its colors are red and black, just as in the flag of Albania.
- Red poppy
Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Bosnia and Herzegovina – Bosnian lily Lilium bosniacum
- Bulgaria – Rose
- Cyprus – Cyprus cyclamen
- Czech Republic – Tilia cordata
- Estonia – cornflower
- Faroe Islands – Marsh Marigold
- Gibraltar – Candytuft (Iberis gibraltarica)
- Hungary – Tulip
- Iceland – white dryad (Dryas octopetala)
- The shamrock (or trefoil) is widely used as an official symbol for Ireland.
- Latvia – oxeye daisy
- Lithuania – Rue
All three of them appear on the national emblem.
- Monaco – Carnation
- Poland – Red poppy
- Russia – Chamomile
- Plum and its products are of great importance to Serbs and part of numerous customs. A saying goes that the best place to build a house is where a plum tree grows best. The fertile region of Šumadija in central Serbia is particularly known for its plums and Šljivovica, the national drink.
- The oak is a symbol of Serbia, having been part of the historical coat of arms. In the coat of arms, the oak at one side symbolized strength and longevity, while the olive branch at the other symbolized peace and fertility. At troublesome times, when there were no churches, people prayed under oak trees where they would carve a cross, zapis; some of these oaks are over 600 years old and are considered sacred. The oak is used in the Serbian Christmas tradition of Badnjak.
- Several flowers are regarded national symbols. The autochthonous common lilac (Syringa vulgaris) is part of Serb tradition and history, often mention in folk songs and Serbian epic poetry. Ramonda nathaliae is considered a symbol of the Serbian Army's struggle during World War I. The Ramonda serbica was named after Serbia.
- Spain – Carnation
Antigua and Barbuda
The national flower of Barbados is the known locally as the Pride of Barbados (Caesalpinia pulcherrima).
- Bermuda – Strict blue-eyed grass (Sisyrinchium montanum)
- Mexico – Dahlia
The maple leaf is widely used as a symbol for Canada. The maple tree was officially recognized as Canada's arboreal emblem in 1996.
The official Provincial and Territorial floral emblems are:
- Ontario: white trillium (Trillium grandiflorum), adopted in 1937
- Quebec: blue flag (Iris versicolor Linné), adopted in November 1999
- Nova Scotia: mayflower (Epigea repens), adopted in 1901
- New Brunswick: purple violet (Viola cucullata), adopted in 1936
- Manitoba: prairie crocus (Pulsatilla ludoviciana), adopted in 1906
- British Columbia: Pacific dogwood (Cornus nuttallii), adopted in 1956
- Prince Edward Island: lady's slipper (Cypripedium acaule), a species of orchid, adopted in 1947
- Saskatchewan: western red lily (Lilium philadelphicum L. var. andi num), adopted in 1941
- Alberta: wild rose (Rosa acicularis), also known as the prickly rose, adopted in 1930
- Newfoundland and Labrador: pitcher plant (Sarracenia purpurea L.), adopted in 1954. It was first chosen as a symbol of Newfoundland by Queen Victoria, and was used on the island's coinage until 1938.
- Northwest Territories: mountain avens (Dryas octopetala), adopted in 1957
- Yukon: fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium), adopted in 1957
- Nunavut: purple saxifrage (Saxifraga oppositifolia), unanimously adopted by the Legislative Assembly of Nunavut on May 1, 2000
Many Canadian flags and coat of arms have floral emblems on them. The flag of Montreal has four floral emblems. On the right side of the flag of Saskatchewan overlapping both green and gold halves is the western red lily, the provincial floral emblem. The coat of arms of Port Coquitlam has the City's floral emblem, the azalea displayed on a collar. The coat of arms of Prince Edward Island displays Lady's Slippers, the floral emblem of the Island. The coat of arms of Nova Scotia has the trailing arbutus or mayflower, the floral emblem of Nova Scotia, added when the arms were reassumed in 1929.
In 1986 President Ronald Reagan signed legislation to make the rose the floral emblem of the United States. In the United States, state flowers and trees have been adopted as symbols by state legislatures.
- Cuba – Mariposa (Hedychium coronarium)
- Dominica – Caribwood or bois kwaib (Poitea carinalis)
The Dominican Republic's national flower was the flower of the caoba (mahogany tree, Swietenia mahagoni). In 2011, the mahogany was dubbed the national tree, vacating the national flower spot for the Bayahibe rose (Pereskia quisqueyana) in order to bring attention to its conservation.
- Choeblack or rose kayenn (Hibiscus)
The national flower of Jamaica is the lignum vitae (Guaiacum officinale).
Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Kitts and Nevis – red Royal Poinciana
Trinidad and Tobago
- Trinidad and Tobago – Chaconia (Warszewiczia coccinea)
The national flower of Belize is the Black Orchid (Prosthechea cochleata)
- Costa Rica – Guaria morada (Guarianthe skinneri) Plays a role in local folk tradition. There are a number of color forms in addition to the typical orchid-lavender, notably alba and coerulea. Gur. skinneri is highly awarded with nearly thirty flower quality awards and numerous awards for culture. Of course, one of the most attractive characteristics of this orchid is that even un-awarded examples can put on a spectacular display.
The national flower of El Salvador is the izote (yucca flower).
- Monja blanca (white Lycaste skinneri)
- Orquídea brassavola (Rhyncholaelia orchid)
Nicaragua's national flower is the sacuanjoche (Plumeria alba) since August 17, 1971. Its name is derived from the Nicarao, a Nahuatl-speaking tribe: xacuan (sacuan) means ‘beautiful yellow petals’ and xochilt (joche) means ‘flower’. The flower can be found in the Masaya Volcano National Park, among other places.
Panama's national flower is the Holy Ghost orchid (Peristeria elata), or the flor del Espiritu Santo. It is best known for its ivory color petals and beautiful blossoms.
The Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha) was officially proclaimed the floral emblem of Australia on 1 September 1988.
New Zealand does not have an official national flower however the Silver Fern (foliage) is acknowledged as a national emblem in New Zealand. The Kowhai (Sophora spp., native trees with yellow cascading flowers) is usually regarded as the national flower. Other plant emblems are: Koru (a curled fern symbol) and the crimson-flowered Pohutukawa (Metrosideros excelsa), also called New Zealand's Christmas tree.
The heilala (Garcinia sessilis) is Tonga's national flower. The name of Tonga's beauty pageant, the Heilala Festival, is taken from this flower. Resorts, as well as products, are also often named after this flower, such as the Heilala Lodge and Heilala Vanilla. The flower is also used in Tonga for medicinal and ornamental purposes.
The national flower of Argentina is the flower of the ceibo tree (Erythrina crista-galli), also known as seibo or bucaré
The nation flower of Brazil is the flower of the Golden Trumpet Tree (Handroanthus albus).
- Chile – Copihue (Lapageria rosea)
- Guyana – Victoria regia lily
- Paraguay – Mburucuyá
- Uruguay – Ceibo
- Venezuela – Flor de Mayo (Cattleya mossiae, an orchid)
|British Columbia||Pacific Dogwood|
|New Brunswick||Purple Violet|
|Newfoundland and Labrador||Pitcher plant||The pitcher plant was officially declared as the provincial flower in 1954, but had appeared on the colony's coinage as early as the 1880s. It can be found in the marshlands of the province feeding on insects that fall into its leaves and drown.|
|Northwest Territories||Mountain Avens|
|Prince Edward Island||Pink Lady's Slipper|
|Quebec||Blue Flag Iris||The Blue Flag Iris replaced the Madonna Lily in 1999, since the lily was not native to Quebec.|
|Saskatchewan||Western Red Lily|
|Sweden||Småland||Linnaea borealis||The Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus, sw. Carl von Linné (1707–1778), often called the father of taxonomy or "The flower-king", was born in Älmhult in Småland. He gave the Twinflower its Latin name based on his own (Latin: Linnaea borealis), because of his particular fondness of it. The flower has become Småland's provincial flower.|
|China||Hong Kong||Bauhinia blakeana||The blossom, native to the territory was chosen as the logo of the Urban Council in 1965 and was later incorporated into the flag and emblem of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China after the 1997 transfer of sovereignty.|
|Macau||Nelumbo nucifera||A stylised depiction of the flower can be seen in the territory's flag.|
|Pakistan||Islamabad Capital Territory|| Paper mulberry
||The floral emblems of the four constituting provinces of Pakistan; however, they are all unofficial and are not recognised by the new Federal Government of Pakistan.|
|Balochistan|| Date palm
|Khyber Pakhtunkhwa|| Jujube
|The Punjab|| Tamarix aphylla
|Sindh|| Vachellia nilotica
|Gilgit–Baltistan|| Quercus ilex
|Azad Jammu and Kashmir|| Platanus orientalis
|Spain||Catalonia|| Weaver's Broom
|Usually along with red poppies|
|Galicia|| Gorse flower
- Australian Capital Territory – Royal Bluebell (Wahlenbergia gloriosa)
- New South Wales – New South Wales Waratah (Telopea speciosissima)
- Northern Territory – Sturt's Desert Rose (Gossypium sturtianum)
- Queensland – Cooktown Orchid (Dendrobium phalaenopsis)
- South Australia – Sturt's Desert Pea (Swainsona formosa)
- Tasmania – Tasmanian Blue Gum (Eucalyptus globulus)
- Victoria – Pink (Common) Heath (Epacris impressa)
- Western Australia – Red and Green Kangaroo Paw (Anigozanthos manglesii)
- Lily-of-the-valley was chosen as the county flower of Østfold
- Globe flower is the county flower of Troms
Each of the four countries of the United Kingdom has a traditional floral emblem.
- England - officially the Tudor rose or unofficially the red rose and English Oak.
- Northern Ireland – the flax, orange lily, or shamrock
- Scotland – the Scotch thistle, Scottish bluebell (harebell) or heather
- Wales - the daffodil, leek or sessile oak
A county flower is a flowering plant chosen to symbolise a county. They exist primarily in the United Kingdom, but some counties in other countries also have them.
One or two county flowers have a long history in England – the red rose of Lancashire dates from the Middle Ages, for instance. However, the county flower concept was only extended to cover the whole United Kingdom in 2002, as a promotional tool by a charity. In that year, the plant conservation charity Plantlife ran a competition to choose county flowers for all counties, to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.
Plantlife's scheme is loosely based on Britain's historic counties, and so some current local government areas are not represented by a flower, and some of the counties included no longer exist as administrative areas. Flowers were also chosen for thirteen major cities: Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle upon Tyne, Nottingham and Sheffield. The Isles of Scilly was also treated as a county (distinct from Cornwall) for the purpose of the scheme. The Isle of Man was included, even though it is not a county, but a self-governing territory outside of the United Kingdom with an existing national flower: the ragwort or cushag. The Channel Islands were not included.
A total of 94 flowers was chosen in the competition. 85 of the 109 counties have a unique county flower, but several species were chosen by more than one county. Foxglove or Digitalis purpurea was chosen for four counties – Argyll, Birmingham, Leicestershire and Monmouthshire – more than any other species. The following species were chosen for three counties each:
- Bog Rosemary Andromeda polifolia (Cardiganshire, Kirkcudbright and Tyrone)
- Cowslip Primula veris (Northamptonshire, Surrey and Worcestershire)
- Harebell Campanula rotundifolia (Antrim, Dumfriesshire and Yorkshire)
- Thrift Armeria maritima (Buteshire, Pembrokeshire and the Isles of Scilly)
And the following species were chosen for two counties:
- Grass-of-parnassus Parnassia palustris (Cumberland and Sutherland)
- Pasqueflower Pulsatilla vulgaris (Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire)
- Common Poppy Papaver rhoeas (Essex and Norfolk)
For most counties, native species were chosen, but for a small number of counties, non-natives were chosen, mainly archaeophytes. For example, Hampshire has a Tudor rose as its county flower, even though it is not a native species.
No plant or flower seems to be among the current official symbols. Some flowering plants from the area include Althaea armeniaca, Armenian Basket, Muscari armeniacum, Armenian Poppy, Armenian vartig (vargit), and Tulipa armena.
Azerbaijan currently has no official national flower. Traditionally, various regions have different designations where national symbols are concerned. Country's Shusha city named the Khari Bulbul (Xarıbülbül) the floral emblem of the Nagorno-Karabakh.
China currently has no official national flower. Traditionally, various regions have different designations where national symbols are concerned.
The puppet state Manchukuo followed Japan's model of dual floral emblems: the "spring orchid" (Cymbidium goeringii) for the Emperor and the imperial household, and the sorghum blossom (Sorghum bicolor) for the state and the nation.
The plum blossom, meihua (Chinese: 梅花; pinyin: méihuā), has also been one of the most beloved flowers in Chinese culture. The Republic of China government named the plum blossom as the national flower in 1964. The plum blossom is symbol for resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity, because plum blossoms often bloom most vibrantly even amidst the harsh winter snow.
The People's Republic of China, which has controlled mainland China since 1949, has no official floral emblem. There have been several petitions in recent years to officially adopt one. However, the government has not taken any action yet. A poll in 2005 showed that 41% of the public supports peony as the national flower while 36% supported the plum blossom. Some scholars have suggested that the peony and plum blossoms may be designated as dual national flowers. In addition, the orchid, jasmine, daffodil and chrysanthemum have also been held as possible floral symbols of China.
Denmark has no official floral emblem. The daisy won an unofficial competition on a national flower in the 1980s, but it was not officially adopted. In 1936, the Danish foreign office responded to Argentina that it would be the red clover, due to its significance in agriculture. The letter is obscure and was soon forgotten. Denmark has never used a floral emblem.
Japan's national government has never formally named a national flower, as with other symbols such as the green pheasant, which was named as national bird by a non-government body in 1947. In 1999, the national flag and anthem were standardised by law.
A de facto national flower for Japan for many is the sakura (cherry blossom), while a stylised depiction of a chrysanthemum is used as the official emblem of the imperial family. The paulownia blossom was also used by the imperial family in the past, but has since been appropriated by the Prime Minister and the government in general.
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