Flower Glossary is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Flower symbolism has been a popular way of showing people you care about them for centuries. Each flower has its own meaning, and the color of the flower can change this too. This means that flowers don’t just look pretty, they can have quite a lot of significance.
Magnolia flowers have some generalized meanings before you begin to delve into the specific meanings of certain colors. These include beauty, femininity, purity, and dignity.
It is also believed to represent perseverance and a love for nature. If someone gives you a magnolia flower, they are trying to remind you to be stable in your life and keep holding your head up high.
There are many significant meanings behind magnolias across the world. In China, it is seen as a symbol of loyalty and strength in love.
In Europe magnolia flowers are given to a partner that has been cheated on, to symbolize the return of an old love. In Japan, magnolias reflect a love for nature.
In America, the magnolia flower is closely linked to the South and springtime. They are the official state flower of Mississippi and Louisiana.
There are at least 210 varieties of magnolia flowers found across the world. They are believed to have originated from Asia and the Americas but are now found across the globe.
They are commonly seen on corsages given to women by their dates. This is said to be a symbol of the woman’s beauty.
History of Magnolia
There have been fossilized specimens of magnolia flowers discovered. These are at least 100 million years old, making magnolias one of the oldest flowering plants on Earth.
This is one of the reasons that magnolias are said to represent perseverance and endurance. They could survive for an incredibly long time, making them resilient despite their delicate appearance.
Magnolias are so old that they predate bees. This means that the plants rely on beetles for pollination.
Magnolia flowers bloom for an extended period, and the trees can live for an entire century. This is why they are commonly associated with eternity and longevity. Magnolia flowers are also associated with the Yin, the feminine energy.
In feng shui terms, the placement of magnolia plants also has a symbolic meaning. If it is planted in front of your house then it attracts pleasant and restful energies into your life. If you plant it behind your home, this symbolizes the slow and steady accumulation of wealth.
During the Victorian period, secretly sending your crush magnolias was a sign of undying love and perseverance. This was especially popular when the love was not accepted by society.
The medicinal benefits of the magnolia plant have also been known for a long time. Extracts from the bark have been used in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine for over 2,000 years.
This is still used in modern medicines but is primarily found in cosmetic products such as shampoo and conditioner. Magnolia is said to help alleviate headaches, toothaches, menstrual cramps, muscle pain, and lung problems.
Magnolia flowers are often associated with marriage and childbirth. They are often present at weddings due to their connotations of longevity, durability, and character strength.
They are also given commonly to new mothers after they have given birth. This is meant to bring positivity and life force energy to the new child.
Etymology of Magnolia
While magnolias have been in existence for thousands of years, they were not named in English until the 1600s. A French botanist called Pierre Magnol helped to categorize families of plants in the late 1600s. For his troubles, magnolia plants were named after him.
The Chinese people had named the plants long before this point. They refer to it as hou po.
Green magnolias are associated with health, joy, good fortune, and luck.
The color pink is associated with love, femininity, and romance. This is the perfect flower to give people you are courting to show them that you care. This flower provides a welcoming air to your home and they are believed to be associated with the love goddesses Venus and Aphrodite.
Purple has always been a color that represents royalty and dignity. The purple magnolias can also be given as a symbol of spirituality. These messages make a purple magnolia the ideal gift for anyone. They are also closely linked to religion and you will often see them used in religious rituals.
Red is classically associated with passion and romance. Red magnolias can be given as a symbol of love to people you care about. It’s a modern twist on giving your partner a red rose.
White has traditionally been associated with ideas of purity and spiritual cleanliness. A white magnolia can be given as a symbol of innocence and kindness to people you love. These flowers are closely linked to the moon and lunar goddesses like Artemis and Selene.
The color yellow is associated with happiness and friendship. A yellow magnolia is a perfect flower to give to a platonic friend to signify the strength of your relationship. This color of magnolia is also linked to the sun and solar goddesses like Sunna and Medusa.
In a Dream
If you see images of magnolia blossom in your dreams, this is said to reflect your ability to cope with difficult situations. Magnolia is a hardy plant and can get through anything, much like you can get through anything happening in your waking life.
Seeing magnolia flowers in your dream could also be indicative of an expectation. You may be looking forward to something you have planned for the future that is going to fulfill you and make you happy.
A dream about sowing magnolia seeds suggests that you have a lot of inner strength to draw upon in times of struggle. This suggests that you are invested in developing yourself and blooming into the person you are meant to become.
A dream about dried-up magnolia flowers represents the opposite. It suggests that you have intense feelings of inner sadness, or may be reflecting your doubts about what the future may hold.
A magnolia tree in your dream may suggest a desire for attention and a craving to be noticed by those around you. You might be overly cocky and this is working against you. Alternatively, the tree may represent your desire to be protected from life’s issues.
As a Tattoo
A magnolia tattoo is a great way to aesthetically represent some important values to you. Again, the color of the magnolia flower represents different meanings.
A white magnolia tattoo represents peace, innocence, kindness, and spirituality. It is a good tattoo to get if you need a reminder that peace starts from within.
A yellow magnolia tattoo represents happiness. It is a good tattoo to get to reflect a positive and kind attitude towards yourself and others.
A pink magnolia tattoo represents love. If you are a romantic at heart, this is the one for you.
Red magnolia tattoos are similar to pink, with more of an emphasis on the passionate side of love.
A purple magnolia tattoo is good to get when you feel spiritually connected. It is ideal for people who feel genuinely true to themselves.