forget me not flower meaning

Forget Me Not Flower Meaning and Symbolism

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A petite and delicate flower, the Forget-Me-Not is a flower that is steeped in legend. Known as the Myosotis flower, this translates directly to “mouse’s ear.”

That name is appropriate, given how small the Forget-Me-Not flower truly is. Most will rarely reach half an inch in width! As a perennial flower, this bloom is actually quite easy to grow.

You don’t have to be a gardener to appreciate the beauty and symbolism of the Forget-Me-Not. Despite its small size, the Forget-Me-Not packs a huge symbolic punch. 

What Does Forget Me Not Mean?

Forget-Me-Not is a broad term that applies to a large genus of flowering plants in the Boraginaceae family. As mentioned, it means “mouse’s ear,” as the foliage looks quite a bit like a mouse’s ear, both in terms of its size and dimensions. 

Forget-Me-Nots are sometimes also referred to as scorpion grasses. There are more than 89 species and subspecies of this plant around the world! Many of these are endemic to New Zealand. 

What Does the Forget Me Not Flower Symbolize?

There are many meanings behind the Forget-Me-Not flower. For starters, it can be used to symbolize remembrance – both during a parting or after a death. It can also be used to symbolize a connection that endures all challenges and measure of time. That could be a friendship or any other kind of loyalty you may have.

Forget-Me-Nots also can be used to represent a reminder of your favorite memories with someone or the growing affection between two people. Forget-Me-Nots are often gifted to those who are caring for the poor or disabled, including those with Alzheimer’s Disease, too. 

What Does a Purple Forget Me Not Mean?

The purple forget me not is most often used to show respect and recognition for the Armenian Genocide. This flower is used to show remembrance for the millions of people killed during the early 1900s. In addition to light and dark blue Forget-Me-Nots, the purple variety can be used to represent remembrance and memory of any kind in addition to this cultural and historical meaning.

What Does a White Forget Me Not Symbolize?

White Forget-Me-Nots are used to symbolize charity or care for the less fortunate.

What Does a Pink Forget Me Not Mean?

Pink Forget-Me-Nots are usually used to represent romantic love between spouses or other romantic partners.

What is the Cultural Significance of the Forget Me Not?

The most notable cultural significance of the Forget-Me-Not is linked to the Germans, who first coined the common name of the flower. The myth goes that there were two lovers walking along the banks of the Danube River.

When they saw the blossoms, they were breath taken by their beauty. The man attempted to pick the flowers for his lover, but he was swept away by its swell.

As he floated away, he told her not to forget him. 

While this is more of a legend than anything else, it has made the Forget-Me-Not stand the test of time as a symbol of remembrance. It was used as a symbol by the Freemasons, a group that faced persecution for their beliefs. It was also used to represent remembrance for the Armenian Genocide, which started in 1915, and the Alzheimer’s Society uses it as their icon, too. 

What is the Symbolism of a Forget Me Not Tattoo?

When chosen as a tattoo, the Forget-Me-Not flower has powerful symbolism as a meaning of hope, true love, and memory. It’s one of the most widespread flower tattoos, traditionally tattooed on an ankle, wrist, foot, or shoulder. 

When Should You Give Someone a Forget Me Not Flower?

The Forget-Me-Not grows in all locations, including in wetlands or even in grassy fields. You should be able to find, grow, or purchase this bloom no matter where you live. 

But when is it appropriate to give someone a bouquet of Forget Me Not flowers? This bloom is often used in corsages and boutonnieres but is best gifted at funerals or in remembrance of a  lost loved one. 

*Photo by bulatova/depositphotos

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