crocus flower meaning

Crocus Flower Meaning and Symbolism

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As one of the first flowers to poke its head through the soil each spring, the crocus flower is often viewed as a harbinger of new beginnings. 

Frequently referred to as the “light bulb flower,” the crocus does, in fact, look like a light bulb, until its petals open into a gorgeous, cup-shaped bloom, that is!

You probably already recognize and appreciate the crocus flower for its unending beauty. But did you know that this flower actually has several deep symbolic meanings for you to consider? 

Here’s what you need to know.

What Does Crocus Mean?

pink crocus

The crocus belongs to a genus of flowers, also the crocus, that gets its name from the Latin word “crocatus.” The etymological meaning of this word is bright, saffron yellow. 

Saffron, as you probably know, is a spice that is derived from one specific type of crocus – the saffron crocus. Not all crocus species produce saffron, but they are all similar in appearance and share the same scientific and common name.

Greek Mythology Connection to Crocus Flower Meaning

There are others, though, who say that the flower has Greek origins. It is named after the Greek word for thread, after the golden fiber became widely used to make saffron threads, the spice saffron, and the medicine saffron. If you’re not familiar, saffron is perhaps the most expensive spice in the world.

Though the spring crocus is most often found with white flowers, there are a few flowers that are different shades, like purple and pink. Crocus bulbs are typically planted in the fall, in partial shade, and the blooms emerge in the early spring.

This is true regardless of the crocus varieties you are planting.

What Do Crocus Flowers Symbolize?

The crocus flower is often viewed as a symbol of cheer and happiness. After all, it brings color to a landscape after a long, dreary winter!

However, it can also symbolize mirthfulness, youthfulness, and a general spirit of positivity, too. 

What Does a White Crocus Flower Mean?

White crocuses are usually used to symbolize truth, innocence, and purity. White crocus flowers are some of the most common. This is a popular cut flower.

What Does a Purple Crocus Flower Symbolize?

Usually, like many purple flowers, purple crocus symbolizes pride, success, and dignity.

What Does a Yellow Crocus Flower Represent? 

Yellow crocus flowers generally symbolize joy and cheerfulness. They are sometimes referred to as saffron crocus for their bright yellow colors and use in saffron spice.

What Does a Pink Crocus Flower Symbolize?

The pink crocus flower symbolism is close to the meaning of other pink flowering plants. Pink crocus blooms symbolize femininity and love, and are often used in wedding bouquets.


What Do Blue Crocus Flowers Represent?

Blue crocus flowers aren’t common, but if you’re lucky to find some, you’ll adore the flower meaning. They symbolize fresh starts and new beginnings. This flower color is one of the most unique ones you’ll find!

What is the Cultural Significance of a Crocus?

crocus flowers

Greek legend holds that the Greek noble Crocus was a young man who fell madly in love with a shepherdess named Smilax. The gods forbade their marriage, and Crocus committed suicide as a result. When she discovered his death, Smilax was heartbroken. 

The goddess Flora turned both Smilax and Crocus into plants as she took pity on them. Then, the Greeks used the vines to weave together garlands to be used as wedding decorations. 

Long a symbol of youthfulness, the flower was often used to ward off liquor fumes. The Egyptians also used the flower for this purpose. The ancient Romans, on the other hand, created an infusion of the flower’s scent to emit on guests as they entered various banquets. 

What is the Symbolism of a Crocus Tattoo?

crocus flowers

The crocus flower has many meanings when chosen as a tattoo. It can symbolize youth, glee, and cheerfulness. These jovial images are often used as tattoos to give your body art an uplifting, motivating effect. 

When Should You Give Someone a Crocus?

crocus flower snow

The crocus is an appropriate flower to give to someone on just about any occasion. It can be included in a spring bouquet or given as a gift between friends to celebrate a birthday or some other special occasion. It is generally given as a gift to young women and girls, too. 

So what do you think? Are crocus flowers right for you? Now that you know the crocus flower meaning, you can give a crocus flower for any occasion!

*Photo by nnattalli/depositphotos

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