Gladiolus flowers bloom into a long, one meter high spike. These attractive flowers open from the base and work their way upwards creating a long flower spike. They create a stunning backdrop in garden décor, but are often grown in court gardens for use in flower displays. The grass-like foliage resembles the blade of a sword. The flowers range in color from orange and deep red to pastel blues, pinks and yellows, with many exceptional bi-colors, but are often grown in court gardens for use in floral displays. The grass-like foliage resembles the blade of a sword, which is why these flowers are reputed to be sword flowers. The flowers range in color from orange and deep red to pastel blues, pinks and yellows, with many exceptional double colors.
What does the gladiolus flower mean?
The gladiolus flower symbolizes honor and remembrance, but it also has other meanings. It can also symbolize the following attributes:
- Strength of character
- Fidelity, sincerity and integrity
- Never give up
Etymological meaning and scientific name of gladiolus
Gladiolus is the scientific and common name for these flowers. They are sometimes called sword flowers or sword lilies because of the sword shape of both the foliage and the flower’s spike. It is said that the spike of the flower pierces the heart of those who receive it with love.
The ancient name of the gladiolus was xiphium, from the Greek word xiphos, which means sword. Its name was later changed to gladiolus, which comes from the Latin word gladius, which also means sword.
Gladiolus flower symbolism
Gladioli were considered the flower of gladiators and have long been associated with swords. These flowers are used in floral displays at special celebrations and are a favorite in country gardens. They are considered old-fashioned flowers, as early American women used to plant these flowers in the back of their gardens to create a colorful backdrop in the flower bed. They also used to be planted along fences or the foundations of houses, since the tall spirals need support to stay upright.
Curious facts about the gladiolus flower
Currently the gladiolus genus includes 260 species with 10,000 registered cultivars that come in the colors of the rainbow. The individual flowers can be single or double colored and span the gamut of shades of pink, red, purple, yellow, orange, white, and even green.
Most gladioli are native to Africa and Asia and were not known in Europe until, between 1739 and 1745, they were introduced by travelers following the trade route from India. European botanists and hobbyists soon began to grow and breed gladiolus flowers. In 1806, William Herbert produced the first hybrid. By 1840 and 1850, hundreds of varieties of gladioli had been bred.
The plural of gladiolus is gladioli or gladioli, depending on the regional preferences of the term. Modern gladiolus flowers are affectionately called glads. It can be interpreted if it is a shortening of its name or an expression of what these flowers make you feel.
Gladiolus flower color meaning
There is no specific meaning attributed to gladiolus flowers of particular colors. They are simply seen as a symbol of fond remembrance and honor and are often included in funeral sprinkles for this reason. Traditional meanings of flower colors can be applied to gladioli to give them special meaning to the recipient.
- Red Gladiolus: Love and passion
- Pink Gladiolus: Femininity, compassion and maternal love
- White Gladiolus: Innocence and purity
- Yellow Gladiolus: Joy and compassion
- Purple Gladiolus: Charm, grace and mystery
Botanical characteristics of the gladiolus flower
The English used the powdered roots of the British and Mediterranean gladiolus to make a poultice for wounds. It was believed to remove splinters and thorns. The powdered corms of these gladioli were also mixed with goat’s milk to treat colic in babies, but be careful. Many gladiolus roots are poisonous and can even lead to skin rashes if the corms are cut or bruised.
Modern African herbalists believe that gladiolus is a powerful healing herb used to treat some ailments such as colds, dysentery, diarrhea, and constipation. It is also thought to increase low energy and promote regular bowel movements. A kind of gladiolus (Gladiolus dalenii) constitutes a source of food in the Congo. The underground corm is boiled and leached into water to remove toxins. Provides a good source of carbohydrates to the diet.
What message does the gladiolus flower convey?
The gladiolus flower message may vary, but it will never be ignored. This sassy beauty captures the heart and soul like no other with its stunning flower swirl. Whether you choose a similarly colored gladiolus flower arrangement or prefer a rainbow of colors to impress your sweetheart, there is a gladiolus color for just about any occasion that may come your way.