Summer is finally here and nothing says summer quite like the sunflower! With petals to match the sun’s glowing rays, it is no wonder these flowers are one of the most popular. Sunflowers make up the genus Helianthus which contains almost 70 different species. The meaning of sunflower is rooted in it’s genus Helianthus- helios meaning sun and anthos meaning flower.
The peony is significant both historically and mythologically, and thus is tied to many different meanings and symbols. Common peony meanings include romance, prosperity, good fortune, a happy marriage, riches, honor, and compassion — but peonies can also mean bashfulness.
There are two common myths about the peony. In one, the peony is believed to be named after Paeon, the Greek physician of the gods. According to the legend, Paeon was a student of Aesculapius, the god of medicine. When Paeon used a peony root to heal Pluto — the first time this was tried — Aesculapius became jealous of his talents and tried to kill him. To save Paeon (and show compassion to him), Pluto transformed him into a peony, because he knew it was a flower that people would admire and praise. Thus, one peony meaning is compassion.