borage flower meaning

Borage Flower Meaning and Symbolism

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Borage is a plant of many names, often referred to as bees brea, starflower, tailwort, and more. While the origins of the plant name are somewhat murky, the symbolism of this plant is quite clear.

This masculine plant is perfect as an ornamental species on your lawn, but it can also be gifted as a cut flower. Not only that, but it has some significant benefits as a culinary and medicinal plant, too.

What Does Borage Mean?

Borage plant belongs to the Boraginaceae family, which includes a variety of trees, shrubs, and herbs (including forget-me-nots). This family’s name is derived from Latin and Arabic words like borrego, which mean, quite literally, “the source of sweat.”

Although the etymology doesn’t quite make sense, the history of this plant is fascinating.

Borage’s first uses can be traced back to Dioscorides and Pliny the Elder, who claimed that borage was the original “Nepenthe” mentioned in Homer. Mythologically, borage was believed to cause forgetfulness when it was combined with wine.

Later, Franci Bacon professed that borage had the ability to address melancholy and to make people happy – especially when consumed with wine.

While we won’t speak to that attribute, it’s true that borage will make you happy simply by gazing upon it! It is also a useful companion plant for strawberries, legumes, and other crops. 

blue borage flower

What Does the Borage Flower Symbolize?

Many people that the borage flower symbolizes courage, as “borage” can be considered a corruption of the word “carago.”

Other people think that borage symbolizes infinite romantic longing, as it is frequently referenced in love songs of the German Romantics.

In a more mystical sense, borage was used in magic to bring peace and tranquility to a home. Many people believe, too, that eating borage flowers will boost your happiness in life. 

What is the Cultural Significance of the Borage Flower?

In many cultures, it is believed that borage can help eliminate melancholy. You can eat the leaves in a salad to make you happy, or steep a borage tea.

In the past, wine flavored with borage flowers was consumed by Celtic warriors to give them strength going into battle. It was also consumed by Roman soldiers and worn by medieval knights for the same reason. 

What is the Symbolism of a Borage Tattoo?

Ink your skin with a borage tattoo, and you will be symbolizing your desire to be happy at all times. It can also show that you are strong and courageous, even in the face of adversity.  

When Should You Give Someone a Borage Flower?

Borage is traditionally used for culinary and medicinal purposes. It is often used in soups and has a cucumber-like taste. The leaves can be used in salads, while the sweet, honey-flavored flowers are often used as garnishes for cocktails and desserts. Borage is also used to treat various respiratory, gastrointestinal, and cardiovascular issues.

While borage isn’t traditionally included in a bouquet, if you want to give someone the gift of a live plant, this specimen is the perfect choice. It can help increase their happiness and overall well being, and as a result, it’s a wonderful gift for anybody!

*Photo by PantherMediaSeller/depositphotos

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