The National Flowers of Southeast Asian Nations
and Its Symbolysm

Because of their aesthetic beauty, flowers are being given many symbolic meanings. It can be a gesture of love for a couple. Flowers can also be given to departed loved ones as a sign of respect and remembrance. Flowers can also become symbolic representations in various countries.

Countries in Southeast Asia have flowers that are considered symbolically important and culturally relevant. Depending on the history of each country, these flowers can be treated as symbols of virility, regrowth and death. Knowing more about these flowers helps people uncover the cultural history of these Southeast Asian countries. Here are more information about it.

In Thailand, the national flower is the cassia fistula -- ornamental plants that look like sprays of hanging yellow blossoms. The flower is also called the ratchaphurek or the golden shower tree. The flower symbolizes Thai royalty. Yellow is a special color in the country. It is also the personal color of the King.

In Singapore, the national flower is the Agnes Joaquim -- a bright purple orchid. The flower is named after its breeder. In the mid-1800s, Joaquim lived in Singapore. She specialized in planting orchids and won prizes for her hybrids. The orchid won first prize at a 1899 show. The Agnes Joaquim was named the national flower in 1981.

In the Philippines, the national flower is the Sampaguita Jasmine. The country have long been a hub of international trade. It was brought to the Philippines in the 1700s. The flower is a symbol of purity and strength. In the country, garlands of Sampaguita Jasmine are hanged on religious shrines and are given as gifts for guests. Extracts from the plant is also used to make perfumes.

In Indonesia, the national flower is the Rafflesia Arnoldii. With a diameter of one meter, the plant produces the largest flowers on earth. However the plant is known as the “corpse flower” because it smells like decay. The flower is very hard to find and grows like mushrooms on the forest floor. It is used as local medicine.

In Vietnam, there are two national flowers: the lotus and the chrysanthemum. The lotus has ties to Buddhism. The plant roots in the mud at the bottom of ponds and blossoms above the water. The lotus represents enlightenment, purification, and even rebirth.

Chrysanthemums were first cultivated in China. The significance it has in Vietnam is mainly due to Chinese influence. Both the lotus and the chrysanthemum are also used in local delicacies.

These flowers are known throughout Southeast Asia. Each flower, in its respective region, has significance and historical importance.

Article Contibution by XpressFlower.