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Camellia Japonica: Official Alabama State Flower

Camellia Japonica: Official Alabama State Flower

In today’s article, we will talk about the Alabama state flower. Every American state has had its national flower since ancient times. Their symbolism and meanings definitely explain why that particular flower is perfect for that country.

Today we will talk about Alabama’s state flower. Why did they choose this evergreen flowering shrub, what’s the meaning of camellia blooms, and is it also the official state wildflower?

To learn why is the state flower of Alabama camellia, stay with us because below we bring you all information in detail about this flower.

What Is The Alabama State Flower?

Back in 1959. Alabama adopted camellia japonica as its state flower. Camellia growers and camellia enthusiasts couldn’t agree more since they were extremely happy that the state choose this flower for its national symbol.

Before this flower, the original state flower was the Goldenrod flower. This flower also grows in the southeastern united states.

If you’re visiting this state in the early spring season, you’ll have a chance to see this state symbol all around the place.

It’s their growing season, relatively soon, so get ready to see many colorful varieties of this flower. It is not found in colder regions, it’s typical for the southern regions of the USA.

Do you know what is the Idaho State flower or the Louisiana State flower?

Why Are Camellias Alabama’s State Flower?

The popularity of the use of this flower in America since the 1800s has led to its title of state flower. For over 60 years, the Camellia flower has been a famous flower in America. As a Japanese plant after Asia, when it was cultivated in America, it suddenly became a very popular flower.

In the 1800s, having a Camellia flower in the garden was like having a Rolce and Roys car parked in front of the house.

The beauty of the flower was indeed and remains enchanting. In the period when colored plants were not planted, when most plants were green or possibly white, the pink camellia was a ray of joy in the garden.

In the 1940s, it was planted so much in private baptisms, then and around public parks, that they had no choice but to name this flower, the flower of the state of Alabama.

Camellia Japonica Features And Characteristics

Camellia japonica is native to the southern united states. They can grow up to 12 feet tall. See below what features and characteristics this flower has:

  • Botanic name: Camellia Japonica
  • Family: Theaceae
  • Native habitat: China, Japan, USA, rarely planted in Korea as well, Birmingham region in the UK
  • Flower color: pink bloom, soft pink petals, some species are red and yellow
  • Leaf shape: oval
  • Sun conditions: partial shade
  • Soil type: well-draining soil
  • Fertilizer: high organic matter
  • Pruning: planted and divided from rooting compound
  • Planting season: late spring, or early summer. planted from cuttings
  • Blooming season: early spring, mostly cultivated in the southern USA

What Is The Symbolism Of Camellia Flower?

Camellia is a flower with multiple symbols, known in Europe and the world as a symbolic flower, dating back to ancient Chinese and Japanese culture. It was once considered a samurai flower.

Samurai decorated their swords with these flowers. It was also a sign of the imperial family and a symbol of nobility and courage.

Camellia in the modern age signifies longevity and durability and is considered a symbol of reserved people, and people who are not very sociable. The camellia was also a symbol of Japanese Catholics when they were forbidden to use the Christian cross.

What Is The Spiritual Meaning Of Camellia Flower?

Camellias represent refinement and perfection. Flowers embody the essence of eternal piety and perfect and immortal union. Depending on the color of the camellia, the camellia has more precise meanings.

The pink color of the camellia signifies nostalgia and the desire to find oneself. Red camellia symbolizes burning passion, and white represents deep and sincere affection.

The colorful camellia is a symbol of trust and hope. The double bloom signifies how much you think of the one you are giving it to and finally, the simple version signifies adoration and beauty.

History Of Camellia Flowers – Alabama State Flower

Camellia was discovered in ancient China where it became a favorite plant of Chinese emperors because of its beauty. The first mentions date back to 2000 years before Christ.

In the course of history, it spread throughout Southeast Asia, and later throughout Europe and America, and new species were created that adapted to other conditions and other environments.

In the 17th century, it reached Europe, where an attempt was made to start the production of camellia flower tea, but it failed. Its cultivation is maintained by the Italians and the French today, mostly.

Today it is spread all over the world and in other parts, except Asia, it is primarily grown as an ornamental plant.

Use Of Camellia In Art And Literature

The camellia has been used as a motif in many paintings and works by artists. Camellia flower inspired the famous writer Alexander Dumas.

He wrote the novel The Lady with the Camellias, which over the years has been staged as a theater play and an opera.

The novel is about a courtesan suffering from tuberculosis who informs her customers about her condition by wearing a white or red camellia, precisely because of its symbolism.

FAQs – Alabama State Flower


You ask, and we answer! Below we bring you the most popular FAQs about Alabama state flower. Let’s check what did we prepare for you below.

How Did Butler County Affect On The State Flower?

In the 1930s, ladies of Butler county prefer the Goldenrod flower more. They thought it is a beautiful flower and definitely more than a weed.

However, when the camellia japonica flower cultivation started everyone changed their mind since it was obvious how popular and wonderful this flower is.

Is Camellia The First Alabama Flower?

Camellia japonica isn’t the first Alabama state flower. Before camellia, the state flower was the goldenrod.

What’s The Official State Wildflower?

The official state wildflower is oak leaf hydrangea. The flower is also known as hydrangea quercifolia bartr. It is a woody perennial plant that’s partially green in winter months as well.

Besides this one, Alabama state had other wildflowers plants as well such as rosebud orchids, wild ginger, Cardamine, etc. However, now in the Alabama legislature, it’s written that its official flower is the oak leaf. The plant is found in the southern united states.

What’s The State Bird Of Alabama?

The northern flicker is the state bird of Alabama. By popular saying, it is believed that if you see a northern flicker bird, you’ll have a visitor soon. They usually live in woodlands and forests.

Final Thought On The Alabama State Flower

Today we talked about the Alabama state flower. Once the camellia flower took root in America, especially in the state of Alabama, it became popular and earned the title of the state flower.

Similar to a rose, the flower is characteristic of the eastern and southern spheres of the country. If you are tired of seeing weeds in your yard, you know what to do. A beautiful pink flower with strong symbolism surely deserves a place in your garden, right?

As we mentioned above, this flower was the inspiration for poetry and prose as well, and with that being said, we bring you the most beautiful quote from a book about Camellia for the end.

“Her delight in the smallest things was like that of a child. There were days when she ran in the garden, like a child of ten, after a butterfly or a dragonfly. This courtesan who had cost more money in bouquets than would have kept a whole family in comfort would sometimes sit on the grass for an hour, examining the simple flower whose name she bore.” – Alexandre Dumas-fils