Plant Symbolism: The Meaning Behind Your Gift Plant

Giving a plant gift is always a good idea, as it is a unique gift that breathes life into a room and reminds the receiver of your warm thoughts towards them. But just which gift plants are appropriate for which types of occasions, and what are the meaning behind each plant? We have included some of the gift plants provided here at Giving Plants so that you can say exactly what you’d like to say to your loved one or colleague.

Money Tree

As the name of the plant implies, this little green beauty symbolizes wishes for good fortune. As such, money trees are great gift plants for co-workers and business contacts, and make excellent office plants, as they prefer indirect lighting and require very little water.


Known for its soothing natural fragrance, lavender is used to quiet the mind and soul. A symbol of constancy, devotion, and love, a lavender plant gift is perfect for a friend who is having a tough time and needs a break from stress and confusion. The light, peaceful fragrance of lavender flowers will be a constant reminder to your loved one to relax, take a breath, and remember that there are those that are thinking about them.


Purity, trust, and clarity are all symbols for the delicate gardenia plant. Its vibrant white flowers with their alluring natural fragrance make these leafy, blooming plants popular for all occasions: from sympathy gifts and anniversaries to birthdays, Mother’s Day, and Valentine’s Day. Aromatic and airy, these fresh flowering plants will express your love long after you’ve given them as gifts.

Peace Lily

The peace lily is, of course, the plant symbolizing peace, innocence, purity, and rebirth. As such, it is often given as a sympathy gift or used in funeral arrangements. When you give a peace lily as a gift, you are, in effect, wishing peace and tranquility on them.


The flower symbol of femininity and delicacy, azaleas are wonderful plant gifts for the women in your life: wife, mother, daughter, or whoever she may be. But men, women, and children all love these bright, cheerful flowering plants. As such, they can be given to anyone on virtually any (or no) special occasion. Housewarming parties, holidays, and baby showers are all great occasions, or simply send them at any time to someone you wish to make smile.

Bonsai Trees

Synonymous with harmony, inner strength, wisdom, balance, calm, and peace, the bonsai tree is a meaningful plant gift. Ascending from an ancient Japanese art form, pruning these miniature trees into composed shapes, the bonsai tree remains a symbol of spiritual and artistic significance, while acting as a connection to the natural world. This plant gift is for the discerning, unique friend, relative, or colleague who enjoys taking their time doing things, and one who appreciates fine art and patience caretaking. Give it to someone who is starting a new venture in life; think retirement and going-away gifts. They also make great Father’s Day gifts for the dad who enjoys his meditative moments.

Lucky Bamboo

Lucky bamboo plants are meant to bring wealth, happiness, longevity, and good fortune to the gift giver. But the message for the gift receiver depends on how many bamboo stalks the plant has: two for love, three for a long and happy life, five for wealth, seven for health, eight for growth, nine for luck, ten for perfection, and twenty-one for an overall powerful blessing. Give one for New Year’s, Father’s Day, birthdays, anniversaries, and other special (or everyday) occasions.

Get the Perfect Plant for Your Occasion

Want more ideas on how to give just the right, meaningful gift to your friend, loved one, or co-worker? Peruse our range of live plant gifts at, and call us toll-free for orders and questions. You can reach us at 1-888-320-0631.

6 replies
    • Lindsey
      Lindsey says:

      The Pisonia Tree has no symbolism or cultural reference to speak of, but we can tell you they’re also called “birdcatcher trees”. Their sticky seeds are postulated to be an adaptation of some island species that ensures the dispersal of seeds between islands by attaching them to birds.

    • Annie Krug
      Annie Krug says:

      An aloe plant as a gift can have a few different meanings; considered a “healing” plant for its antioxidant and antibacterial properties, it can be meant as a wish for the healing and protection of the receiver. In some cultures and countries, it has also become a symbol for luck, possibly due to the fact that this plant is “lucky” enough to survive in places where other plants can’t.


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