Tall flowers that reach up like spires, gladiolus flowers carry many meanings that range from integrity to infatuation to remembrance. As the “sword lily,” a gift of gladiolus should “pierce” the recipient’s heart with love, according to tradition. Gorgeous gladioluses are certainly one of the most memorable and striking ways to show your love through flowers.
One legend of the gladiolus suggests that they came from the swords of fallen gladiators, forced to fight in the arena for the Romans, never to see their loved ones again. Another legend suggests that during a conflict in South Africa, a village daughter was captured, but before the enemy could take her life, the gods turned her attacker into a beautiful flower.
Celebrate a Birthday
Just as each month of the year features special gemstones and astrological symbols, each month also features a birth month flower. For your friends and family born in the month of August, their birth flower is the gladiolus (although sometimes the poppy also makes an appearance as an August bloom).
Grown in a rainbow of colors, horticulturalists say nearly 70,000 varieties of gladiolus exist around the world today. Since gladiolus come in an amazing rainbow of different colors, you may choose the color your friend or loved one likes best for a birthday celebration bouquet.
Remember a Friend
Gladiolus also appear in large displays for funerals and burials, as their towering blooms reach toward the heavens. Carrying the dual meanings of infatuation and remembrance, a gladiolus arrangement during a funeral, wake, or another somber event is one of the most powerful ways to remember someone with a flower.
Like offering a gladiolus for a birthday event, bringing them to the site of a loved one’s final resting place isn’t bound by specific colors or tightly observed traditions. White gladiolus are a beautifully traditional color for funerals, but you can also celebrate the life of a loved one with vibrant colors like red, yellow, and purple.
Declare Your Love
As the recipient of a gladiolus is supposed to be “pierced by love,” gladiolus is a gorgeous flower to celebrate the love of a lifetime. Significant anniversaries features traditional flowers, and gladiolus is a symbol of 40 years of marriage. Pair gladiolus with the traditional 40th wedding anniversary gift of rubies.
When plucked from the ground in anticipation of being placed in a basket or bouquet, gladiolus stems sometimes boast over forty buds! However, since the lush, abundant flowers take up so much room, you’ll usually only see around ten blooms on a single stem. For birthdays, anniversaries, and remembrances, gladiolus flowers are a powerful symbol of life and love.