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February’s Birth Month Flower: What It Means & What It Says About You

By February 9, 2023January 22nd, 2024Birth Month Flowers

This post is part of a 12-month series exploring birth flowers. Start here for an introduction and for a full list of all months.

Ah, February, that month of romance and amore! If you were born in February, you can claim the amethyst as your birthstone, Aquarius (or, if you were born late in the month, Pisces) as your zodiac sign, and you have the notable distinction of being born during the shortest month of the year.

If you were lucky enough to be born on a Leap Day, you can claim the odds in your favor. Only about five million people worldwide share your birthday! That means a lot less competition for cake, which is always good news.

And while February typically comes with roses and imagery in shades of pink and red, its birth month flower is a tiny woodland plant that can actually bloom during this chilly winter month.

voilet pansyFebruary Birth Month Flower: The Violet

Like January’s carnation, the violet is an early-blooming flower that can be found gracing woodland gardens as early as February. Their heart-shaped petals are often – as their name suggests – violet, but they can also be found in shades of blue, yellow and white.

It might not surprise you to learn that different colors can have different meanings. White violets symbolize humility and innocence, blue is for faithfulness, purple is for loyalty and remembrance, and yellow is for high worth.

If you were born in February, loyalty and faithfulness are your defining characteristics. Like the shy violet, it can take you a while to get to know and trust someone, but once you do, you’re a devoted friend and partner.

Violets also tend to be dreamers. Just as they poke their hopeful purple blooms through the snowy ground seeking the sun, you reach for your own big dreams.

potted violetsThe Violet Through History

Violets have a long tradition in mythology and legend. In Greek mythology, violets are said to have grown in the spot where Persephone was abducted by Hades and brought to the Underworld. Through some wheeling and dealing ancient-gods style, Persephone was allowed to return to earth for half the year, and violets symbolize her return each spring.

In a questionably romantic myth, Zeus so loved a nymph named Io that he turned her into a cow to hide her from his wife, Hera. When she wept over the unpleasant taste of grass, Zeus turned her tears into beautiful and fragrant violets for her to eat.

Roman mythology is a bit darker. Violets were the culmination of Venus’s wrath when Cupid found some young maidens more beautiful than she (think “black and blue” and you’ll get an idea of how Venus reacted to the news).

Both Greeks and Romans used this innocent little flower as an herbal remedy, to make wine, and as a sweetener in food. Its scent is still prized in perfumes today.

Victorians, who loved assigning meaning to flowers, used violets to symbolize modesty. Thanks to an English poet during the era, we have the phrase “shrinking violet” to marry the flower’s symbolism with a person’s shyness.

Fast forward to 1913, and you might be delighted to learn that New Jersey chose the violet as its state flower! While it wasn’t adopted legally until 1971, the violet and its hardy good nature have long represented the beauty of the state.

potted pansiesWant To Plant Them?

Violets are fantastic border flowers and especially good in woodland gardens where they can get their fill of the rich, organic soil they crave. They’re perfect cold-weather flowers, but don’t tolerate heat very well, which is why they’re ideal for late winter/early spring gardens.

If you’re planning a non-traditional Valentine (or birthday!) gift, violets make excellent container flowers. Make sure you use well-draining potting soil and use a slow-release fertilizer for long lasting blooms.

As an added bonus, violets are the only flower that the mining bee will visit, making it a perfect addition for attracting these important pollinators to your garden.

Bonus Flower: The Primrose

The primrose is another February flower and early bloomer that can be found in shades of white, yellow, pink, red and even violet. Interestingly, the center of a primrose is almost always yellow.

Primrose represents protection, safety and love, so if you’re in the mood for a little romance, try planting a few as a welcoming border along paths and walkways. It’s an excellent addition to shady spots, since it doesn’t like direct sun, and it works well in a rock garden.

Ancient Celts believed that large stretches of primrose were a gateway to the fairy realm, and if you ate a primrose, you’d see a fairy.

During Victorian times, a gift of primrose meant, “I can’t live without you.”

If you choose to adopt this flower for your birth month, you share similar qualities as violet babies – you’re loving, devoted, a supportive friend and an adoring partner.

How do February’s birth flowers match up with your personality? Did you recognize yourself, friends or family in any of their meaning and lore? Whether you’re ready to adopt one as a symbol or you’re just intrigued by their beauty, let us know. We’d love to talk to you about bringing their charm to your yard!

More In This Series

Birth Month Flowers Introduction: What Does Yours Mean? (A Series in 12 Parts)

January: Carnations and Snow Drops

February: Violets and Primrose

March: Daffodil and Jonquil

April: Daisy and Sweet Pea

May: Lily of the Valley and Hawthorne

June: Rose and Honeysuckle

July: Larkspur and Water Lily

August: Gladiolus and Poppy

September: Aster and Morning Glory

October: Marigold and Cosmos

November: Chrysanthemum

December: Narcissus and Holly