Friday, January 13, 2023

The Mystery of January's Carnation Birth Month Flower Folklore Explained & Celebrated

Today is my birthday! What better way to celebrate than with January’s “official” flower: the Carnation.

I must admit, I didn’t always cotton to the carnation (or for that matter, to our birthday gem: the garnet). 

I rudely thought it was too common… Too banal. 

But boy, was I wrong.  

Carnations are sooo captivating. 

Why, you ask?   See here:

I read that the “Capricorn is just like their birth flower, the carnation: they can be bold on the outside. But Capricorns also have a softer personality under their bright exterior.”

Very, very true.  

The carnation flower, Dianthus Caryophyllus or clove pink is a species of Dianthus that symbolizes Love, Captivation and Distinction. 

Does that sound in any way banal?? 

Carnations are uplifting and sweet. 

It also makes a lovely addition to any floral design because of its long-lasting freshness and fragrance that is a bit like, well, sweet cloves… ahhh. 

Image Result



I’m a sucker for flower legends and folklore and so can’t resist sharing this one about my January birthday flower.  

The carnation means Fascination, Distinction, and Love. 

According to a Christian legend, carnations grew from the Virgin Mary's tears as she watched Jesus carry the cross. This is how they became associated with a pure, eternal, motherly love.

Carnations are said to bring a mother good luck. 

Or, how about this legendary flower lore:

The flower of god is Dianthus caryophyllus or Carnation . The name is a fusion of the Greek words "dios" and "anthos." 

The Greek god Zeus is depicted by "dios," and "anthos" means flower.

That's why the Carnation is recognized as “God's Flower.”

Recently, I used peppermint carnations on my Christmas/Holiday tablescape to great effect.

And I use them in mini vases in our guest rooms, as well as on the tablescapes or cocktail tables. 

I “fluff” them up after cutting the stems and before placing them into their vases.  

There are more than 300 different types of carnations and hybrids so using them in your floral designs, in any season, is smart and well, sweet.

You can readily purchase carnations from your local florist, grocery store or grow them. (Write to me if you want to learn more about growing these easy-care beauties).

And I’d be remiss if I didn’t also share, one of my most favorite of the Dianthus: Sweet William ~ Dianthus barbatus.

My husband, Bill, is a (mostly) sweet William (wink).

How irresistible are these beauties?

Embrace your birthday month flowers and their legends/folklore.  

It’s fun and interesting. 

Cheers to happy birthdays and our plant parents... So glamorous!


  1. I do believe that most people do not consider their birthdays with a flower. Your post will inspire many to do so. I will. It will be interesting to find the results. Thanks.

    1. You're probably correct, but at the same time, that's so sad. Birthday month flowers offer so much history, folklore, beauty and more. What is your birth month ? Do you know your Birth month flower?

  2. After reading about your flower, I surly will study my flower. Love having flowers in my entrance all the time. Thanks for sharing.