April Birth Flowers: Significance of the Daisy and Sweet Pea

daises and sweet pea flowers

An April birth flower gives you two choices of either a daisy or sweet pea. You may decide you like both flowers for your April flower. Your April birth flower choice presents two very different flowers - daisy and sweet pea. The daisy has a star-shaped bloom with ray florets and a big center yellow or black disc florets. The sweet pea flower is a climber. The flowers have a wing-like appearance with lance-shaped leaves. The flower is especially fragrant that makes it a wonderful garden addition.

Daisy as April's Birth Flower

You may decide that the daisy is the bloom you wish to use for your April flower. The daisy is an ancient symbol and has various meanings for colors that you can use to make it a personal symbol of your birthday. If you're planting daisies or are planning to send them to someone with an April birthday, you may find a listing of the colors helpful in deciding on the best color of daisies to send.

  • Pink - love, romance
  • Red - passionate love and romance
  • White - purity, innocence
  • Yellow - happiness, friendship
Daisy flowers

Ancient Symbolism

There are several ancient myths about daisies. In Norse mythology, the daisy is a sacred flower of the Norse goddess Freya. As the goddess of love, fertility, and beauty, it's easy to understand how the daisy became the symbol of motherhood, childbirth, and the hope of new beginnings. In Celtic mythology, the gods shower the ground with daisies to offer hope and happiness to grieving parents.

Modern Symbolism

Today, daisies are the symbol of purity, innocence, and new beginnings. The daisy is associated with newborns and is often the flower sent to congratulate parents on the birth of their baby. An April birth makes this a great flower choice to send to new parents.

Popular Types of Daisies

If you can't decide on the daisy (Bellis perennis) cultivar for your garden, a little information about the four most popular ones may help you decide. Any of these of these flowers will make a wonderful addition for your flower garden, especially an old-fashioned, cottage style garden.

  • Shasta daisy - The perennial Shasta daisy (Leucanthemum x superbum) is found growing wild in pastures and along the highway. It is a larger daisy and produces more blooms. This is a great daisy to add to your cottage garden since it has a frilly bloom.
  • English daisy - In some regions, the English daisy (Bellis perennis) is considered an invasive plant and is often classified as a weed. Some cultivars are showy, even though shorter than other daisies.
  • Gerbera daisy -Gerbera daisy (Gerbera jamesonii) has a large bloom and comes in vivid colors. This daisy is a native South African perennial and thrives in warmer climates. The Gerbera daisy is a stunningly dramatic addition to a flower garden.
  • Painted daisies -Painted daisy (Tanacetum coccineum) bloom in early summer. You may prolong the blooming period into the fall if you keep the faded blooms dead-headed to encourage continued blooming.

Growing Daisies in Your Cut Flower Garden

Daisies make a great cut flower for your garden. You can grow daisies from seeds, or you can transplant potted daisies from a nursery or garden center. Some daisies like Shasta daisies are hybrid perennials. Since they propagate via rhizomes, they may need to be divided every three or more years. Annual daisies are great self-seeders and will generally re-seed year after year.

Sun, Water, and Soil Requirements

Happy daisies need sunshine and moist soil. Some cultivars can tolerate partial shade, but be warned, without full sun your daisies won't produce as many flowers. You want to use soil that drains well. Daisies can't survive wet feet, but established plants can survive dry spells. You may need to water if the rainfall is less than 1" for the week.

Pests and Diseases

Daisies can suffer from fungi infections when there is too much rain and soil that doesn't drain well. Other problems include powdery mildew, root rot, and botrytis blight. The biggest pests are deer and rabbits. These two animals love daisies and will munch on your daisies, leaving behind short stubs of what used to be your beautiful tall cut flowers. Deer especially love Gerbera daisies.

Sweet Pea as an April Flower

You may prefer the fragrant sweet pea for your April birth flower. The name can be misleading since sweet peas don't actually produce peas. Due to the shape of the sweet pea blooms, the flowers are often said to have a miniature butterfly appearance. Sweet pea flower meanings include a bittersweet goodbye or a joyous hello. If you wish to welcome someone home, sweet pea flowers are a lovely way to send a heartfelt message.

The various colors of sweet pea flowers carry an additional meaning. When sending these flowers, you can choose according to the color meanings.

  • White - gratitude, innocence
  • Pink - joy, happiness
  • Red - desire, passion, love
  • Purple - admiration
sweet pea flower

History of Sweet Pea

The origins of the sweet pea flower (Lathyrus odoratus) are often debated among horticulturists. Some point to China as the plant's native home, while others declare the plant came from Eastern Mediterranean, specifically Sicily, Italy. Still, other believe the fragrant flower was brought to Sicily via Peru or Ecuador. Over the centuries, the flower was cultivated and was a favorite among Victorians.

Climber Sweet Pea Flowers in Your Garden

Sweet pea is a climber. The vines can be grown on various supports, such as a trellis, obelisk, and bamboo stake. On average, each vine/plant features around 10-15 flowers at the end of the vine/stem, so you want a support that will show off these beautiful, slightly ruffled blossoms.

Get More Blooms Out of Your Sweet Peas

Some gardeners remove the tendrils that support the vines and lash them to poles with string and garden rings. The absence of the tendrils forces the plant to spend its energy producing more flowers.

Growing Sweet Peas in Your Garden

If you decide to grow sweet peas in your garden, then you can plant them in late winter or wait to plant in early spring, depending on your Hardiness Zone. You start the plants indoors and transplant once the threat of frost has passed.

Soil Requirements

Sweet Pea flowers need rich soil. Most gardeners add compost to the garden bed around five to seven weeks prior to planting sweet pea flower seeds or transplants to ensure the soil has enough nutrients for these hungry feeders. Sweet pea flowers like the soil to be a tad acidic for optimum growth. You can always add a little lime to your soil if needed.

Sun and Water Requirements

Sweet pea flowers love the sun but need a cool and moist soil. Most gardeners plant taller flowers around the vines to provide ground shade. You want to keep the flowers watered so the soil remains moist. If the buds drop from the vines before blooming, the most likely culprit is a lack of water.

The Seeds Are Toxic

Sweet pea pods appear after the flowering. The plant pods can contain 20+ seeds, which are toxic and deadly to humans and animals if consumed. Keep pets out of this part of your flower garden.

Pest and Disease Threats

The most common pests for a sweet pea flower are various types of aphids. Other insects include cucumber beetles, leaf miners, spider mites, and thrips. The most common diseases that strike sweet peas are powdery mildew, leaf spots, and root rot.

April Birth Flower to Grow or Give

You can choose the April birth flower to represent your birthday from the two choices of the daisy or sweet pea. Both flowers have distinctive attributes that make them beautiful choices for anyone with an April birthday.

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April Birth Flowers: Significance of the Daisy and Sweet Pea