Whether you’re looking at a sweet pea flower in your garden or simply reciting its mellifluous name, there is nothing about the sweet pea flower that is remotely unattractive. Simply put, this flower is beautiful in real life.
However, besides its stunning outward appearance, did you know that the sweet pea flower has a ton of symbolic meanings attached to it, too?
Here’s what you need to know about Lathyrus odoratus, the elegant sweet pea flower.
What is the Sweet Pea Flower Meaning?
Before we dive too deeply into the symbolism of sweet peas, we need to talk about the sweet pea flower meaning from an etymological standpoint. The etymological meaning of this flower is quite unique.
Sweet pea is a native of the China family of Pulses. The two words in the flower’s scientific name, “Lathyrus odoratus,” mean “fragrant” and also “very attractive.” That sweet pea flower meaning srure makes a lot of sense!
The plant was categorized by Linnaeus and was done in accordance with its branch nodules that bind nitrogen from the air. “Lathyros” means pea or pulse while “odoratus” means fragrant.
When it comes to the plant’s common name, however, the poet Keats is the first person who used the name. During the time in which Keats was writing, sweet peas were popularly used in England.
The flower was commonly cultivated for its sweet fragrance and quickly became a part of floral arrangements.
More Sweet Pea Flower Facts
With their vibrant colors and meaningful botanical characteristics, it is no wonder that Sweet Peas have become a floral sensation worldwide.
Sweet Pea flowers are available in a range of varieties, such as ‘Strawberry Sundae,’ which has a unique pattern of pink and white blooms that resemble ice cream. Another popular variety is ‘Everlasting Pea,’ which is known for its vibrant purple hue. ‘Apricot Sprite’ is another variety often used in floral design.
Sweet Pea flowers are also the birth flower of April. Gifting these flowers to your loved ones is a thoughtful gesture that shows how much you care about them.
Sweet Pea flowers are not the same as the edible garden peas, but you can plant them together in your garden. Sweet Pea flowers prefer full sun and can grow well in warm climates. They are climbing plants that require support to grow tall.
Sweet Pea flowers can also be grown in hanging baskets. Dense, bushy Sweet Pea plants can work well in hanging baskets, as they don’t require as much support as climbing varieties. The cascading blooms can create a stunning display of colors.
Sweet Pea flowers have some interesting botanical characteristics. For instance, they have five petals and grow in clusters. They are a symbol of blissful pleasure, departure, or good-bye, making them particularly meaningful for funeral arrangements.
What Do Sweet Pea Flowers Symbolize?
Sweet peas are associated with the ideas of departures and goodbyes – as well as those of blissful pleasure. The flower can also be used to say thank you. The sweet pea is the official birth flower of April.
You can also break down the sweet pea flower meaning based on the color of the bloom. While any color can be used as a birth flower, the sweet pea flower meaning changes slightly depending on the color.
Let’s explore this more in depth.
What Do Purple Sweet Peas Symbolize?
Purple has long been associated with royalty, luxury, and elegance. It’s no surprise, then, that purple sweet peas symbolize nobility and grace. Purple sweet peas are often gifted to those who exude elegance and sophistication or to communicate admiration.
If you’re looking to convey a message of respect or admiration, a bouquet of purple sweet peas is a great choice.
What Do White Sweet Peas Represent?
White sweet peas are a classic choice that signify purity, devotion, and innocence. They are often chosen for wedding bouquets to symbolize the bride’s purity and commitment.
It’s also common to gift white sweet peas to express sympathy or convey a message of friendship. The understated beauty of white sweet peas makes them versatile and timeless.
What Do Yellow Sweet Peas Mean?
Yellow is a color associated with warmth, happiness, and friendship. Thus, yellow sweet peas are a great way to say “Thank you for being a friend” or “You make me happy”. They can be gifted to mark a special occasion or simply to convey appreciation.
Yellow sweet peas add a touch of cheer to any bouquet and are sure to brighten up anyone’s day.
What is the Meaning of a Red/Pink Sweet Pea?
A pink or red sweet pea also has deep symbolism. Pink sweet peas symbolize romance, while red sweet peas signify passion and deep love. They are often included in bouquets for Valentine’s Day or anniversaries.
The delicate beauty of pink sweet peas can also convey a message of gratitude or appreciation, while the bold red sweet pea makes a strong statement of love and commitment.
What is the Meaning of a Multi Colored Sweet Pea?
A bouquet of multi-colored sweet peas represents a joyful celebration of life, friendship, and love. Each color in the bouquet has its own meaning, creating a tapestry of symbolism.
Multi-colored sweet peas are a great way to express the complexity of a relationship or to show appreciation for someone who brings a multitude of qualities to your life.
What Does a Sweet Pea Mean if it’s the Color Orange?
Orange sweet peas symbolize enthusiasm, energy, and warmth. They are often chosen to express excitement or to congratulate someone on a job well done.
You can also gift orange sweet peas to say “You inspire me” or “I’m proud of you”. The vibrancy of orange sweet peas makes them a great choice for a celebratory bouquet.
What is the Cultural Significance of a Sweet Pea?
The sweet pea flower was first cultivated in the 18th century. It was brought by F. Kupani, a Sicilian monk, to England.
The plant quickly became popular in England as it became a favorite of the king. Breeding programs quickly established multiple cultivars of this bloom.
In fact, no major event – be it a wedding or a grand dinner party – was complete without the sweet pea! It was famous during the Victorian era, when it was often called the Queen of Annuals.
Sweet pea flowers are often planted on Good Friday, so there is some spiritual significance to this plant, too.
What is the Symbolism of a Sweet Pea Tattoo?
The sweet pea flower is entrenched in deep symbolism, so it only makes sense that this flower would be a popular choice for tattoos among women.
It can mean a blissful goodbye or a bittersweet departure, usually used to symbolize a remembrance of fond memories of a loved one.
When Should You Give Someone a Sweet Pea?
Sweet peas are often given at weddings. In France, in fact, these flowers are believed to be good omens for brides – giving a sweet pea to the bride is a way to encourage good luck.
Their pastel shades and intricate designs make them a perfect fit for romantic occasions, and they complement almost any other flower.
Sweet Pea flowers make perfect cut flowers due to their long stems and sweet fragrance. They can last up to a week if placed in a vase filled with water and kept in a cool spot away from direct sunlight.
You could also give somebody sweet pea flowers as a way to say goodbye. The flower can say thank you for a wonderful time. You can also plant some sweet pea companion plants to make your garden even more beautiful.
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