I playfully refer to verbena as my “spirit flower”.
Because of all of the beautiful plants available (and they are many!), verbena stands out for its resilience. She tolerates heat, blooms every year and endures. She is delicate but unstoppable.
There is also a lot of symbolism related to the verbena flower. Verbena flowers historically represent healing, creativity and happiness.
- is sometimes referred to as the “Holy Herb” or “Herb of the Cross,” as it was said to be one of the blossoms used to curb the bleeding of Jesus after he was taken down from the cross.
- is a symbol of sweet memories of the heart and fidelity.
- has longstanding healing use in herbalism and folk medicine, usually as a tea.
- is native to both the the American continent and Europe (as am I, with my British father and Native American mother).
- is associated with a list of contradictions: it is enlisted in the service of both war and peace, love and death, politics and domesticity.
- is almost scentless. While most flowers scent is central to its identity and recognition, I love that “missing” its scent doesn’t stop this flower from profusely producing every year. (Faulker even honored this idea is when he wrote that verbena “masks the scent of courage”thus symbolizing a deeper courage that springs from hope, rather than dispair)
Simply put, verbena is a flower that reminds me of knowing the strength within, that is there now and God-given, has always been.
And to keep blooming after every cold winter. Do you have a story to share of a time your life blossomed after a cold winter? I’d love to read it. Please write and let’s honor the verbena babe in each of us.