Camellia Flower – Meaning, Symbolism and Colors

Flower symbolic helps us pick the correct flower for somebody we cherish, while it also can help us in different occasions as it teaches us more about history and societies that lived before us. Our ancestors were creating different flower symbolic that passed through generations and came to our times. Using flowers in customs and various ceremonies goes back thousands of years and some traditions managed to live up today.

Today we will talk about the Camellia flower and concealed imagery behind it.

What Is The Meaning of the Camellia Flower?

Past generations shaped the meaning of the Camellia flower into the one we know today.

The main meanings of the Camellia flower are:

• Longevity,
• Desire,
• Perfection.

Camellia flower stands for longevity and strength to overcome difficulties life puts in front us almost every day. People usually take the Camellia flower to graves of their beloved people. Even though we lose people we love, as this is an inevitable process of life, that doesn’t mean they no longer exist in our hearts.

Camellia flower is a nice way to send a message to up above that we are still thinking about that persons and that we caress the memory of them.

This meaning of the Camellia flower is a bit contradictory, as we said it represents longevity. That means you can gift the Camellia flower to an older member of your family and wish them a long and peaceful life or to someone who just started up a new thing in life and hopes that it will last.

If you feel desire and passion towards someone, then the Camellia flower might be the right choice for you. Camellia flower is, still, universal flower when it comes to love, so you can give it to anyone towards whom you feel any type of love. You will express your emotions through the Camellia flower without even saying a word and send a deep message at the same time.

Camellia flower is also a metaphor for excellence, beauty, and perfection. It got this meaning because this flower seemed as a bit unrealistic but still perfect for people living in the past centuries that they believed it was perfect. Camellia flower is a perfect option if you want to say to someone they are perfect from your perspective or if you want to wish them success.

The Etymological Meaning of the Camellia Flower

Georg Joseph Kamel discovered and founded taxonomy and the Camellia flower was named after him.

However, Carl Linnaeus was the one who engaged much more in studying and writing down facts about the Camellia flower much more. Carl standardized the Camellia flower in 1753.

The Symbolism of the Camellia Flower

What is your first association when someone mentions the Camellia flower? Millions of people across the world think of “The Lady with Camellias”, the novel written by Alexander Dime. This sophisticated, graceful, gentle, and delicate flower is one of the most common flowers we give to people we love and secretly admire. Camellia flower will send a direct message to someone who is maybe your secret object of admiration and reveal your emotions. Still, the Camellia flower also carries a degree of decency and it represents longing and affection towards someone.

Camellia flower originates from Asia (eastern parts of the country) and it has been claimed as one of the oldest cultivated flowers ever. People from Asia know the Camellia flower by the name Japanese Rose more. Camellia flower represents a religious symbol in the Far East.

Buddhist priests have always followed the paths of the Camellia flower and use it in almost all ceremonies, carry it to cemeteries, and decorate temples with it. Buddhists claim the Camellia flower is a flower of flowers as it comes so much important traits in one – the beauty of anemone, elegance, and sophistication. Camellia has a large and full flower that sends a straightforward message of freedom, new beginnings, victory of spiritual over the material, and supremacy.

It is more than obvious that the Camellia flower is related to peace, honor, spirituality, faith, and the perfect nature in nature and in the world. The Chinese believe the Camellia flower is a symbol of beautiful women so they gift it to their partners often. Camellia flower emphasizes sustainability and persistence despite possible obstacles.

Camellia flower’s petals and their number are considered to be a symbol of a young girl’s spirit in the East. On the other side, a cup of flowers symbolizes a boy who is committed to that girl and is protecting her from all bad things in this world. This associate to a perfect community between the two genders, a girl and a boy who are in love with each other, a love which transgresses every obstacle and goes into endless dedication and devotion towards each other. Camellia flower in this aspect symbolizes basis of every true love.

We can say with certainty that the Camellia flower indeed is one of the most beautiful and most powerful flowers when it comes to expressing love, lust, and passion, especially if we are talking about the red Camellia flower. More on the Camellia flower color and symbolism in the following paragraphs.

Camellia Flower – Color and Meaning

Even though some flowers come in one or two colors maximum, there are much more ones that come in various colors and one of them is the Camellia flower.

The color of each flower usually doubles the meaning of that flower, but at other times the color itself might tone down the meaning and change the symbolic. Only if we combine symbolism and color of a flower, we can expect that we will send the intended message to a receiver.

Camellia flower comes in red, pink, and white color with many varieties.

As we already mentioned, the red Camellia flower is one of the most effective ways to reveal your emotions to a person you are in love with and even express your affection and passion towards that person. If you are thinking about a gift for upcoming Valentine’s Day, you might want to send the Camellia flower or a bouquet of the Camellia flowers that will say how deeply you are in love with the receiver.

Pink Camellia flower symbolizes affection, love, romance, feminine energy. This color of the Camellia flower is appropriate as a gift for any woman that takes a special place in your heart and your life, as it doesn’t carry romantic feelings and emotions exclusively. Pink Camellia flower express longing and devotion to someone. If you miss your mother, sister, a friend, or your partner, send them the pink Camellia flower as it represents longing and missing someone due to your separation.

White Camellia flower symbolizes innocence, purity, faith, but it can also be a symbol of mourning so people take it to funerals and cemeteries to honor people who are no longer with us. Camellia flower in this color is also a sign of a connection between a mother and her child.

On the other side, if you feel admiration towards someone, the white Camellia flower might be a great choice. White Camellia flower is considered to be a symbol of luck in some cultures, so if you want to bring someone or yourself luck, get a bouquet of the white Camellia flowers.

Botanical Characteristics of the Camellia Flower

Camellia flower is a unique mix of rose and its elegance, anemone and its beauty, and orchid and its sophistication. This is the reason why the Camellia flower is well known as queen of flowers. Camellia flower has oval, dark green, leathery leaves and beautiful flowers that decorate gardens all across the world. Botanists claim the Camellia flower is one of the oldest cultivated plants and it came from the region of East Asia.

However, the beautiful Camellia flower came in Europe about 300 years ago. The first countries that used the Camellia flower in Europe are France, Germany, England, and Portugal, but the thing is that they used the flowers for tea production. Over time, these countries started growing and cultivating the Camellia flower. The world today knows about two hundreds of wild Camellia species, while around 300,000 Camellias were created.

Camellia flower likes warm and shady and semi-shaded places and gardens. Some amount of humidness and protection from the sun, as well as the wind, are great conditions for all Camellia flowers. Don’t be surprised if you see your Camellia flowers bloom under the snow, as these plants tolerate cold well. However, if the cold weather lasts for too long, it would be good to protect your plants with a cover.

When planting the Camellia flower, you want to find a poorly acidic soil with pH no higher than 6.5 and you want to find the one with good permeability. Roots of the Camellia flowers are sensitive and soil might damage them by causing rotting of the root. Add some manure and sour peat and maybe some sand if the soil is loamy.

When you pick a place for your Camellia flowers, you should check the quality of the soil but the drainage as well. You should dig the pits for your Camellias wide but not too deep, as it might suffocate if it is deep-rooted. Lay the Camellia roots nicely in the pit and make it straight, but take care that crows are about 10 cm above the ground. Prepare the soil a couple of days before planting your Camellias.

After you fill the pit, press the ground around the plants and water them well. If you want to know which time is optimal for planting the Camellia flowers, we would say that it goes from October to March. In case you want to transplant your Camellia flowers later, you need a healthy root, but not the stems.

Flourishing of the Camellia flower is a bit slow so that you would have to wait for three years to see its flowers. Camellia flower blossoms in early spring, autumn, and winter. It comes in a couple of variants – as single, semi-dull, double, and offers a wide palette of colors such as snow-white, pink, crimson-red, dots, and stripes. Your Camellia flowers will last for about 4 months in general.

Botanists and gardeners developed several thousands of cultivars of the Camellia flower of the wildlife species of this flower. Probably the most accessible and most popular species is the Camellia japonica. It has flowers up to 15 cm that grows in a bush. It grows both indoors and in garden, but the Camellia japonica takes some time to grow as it is slow but also has long life.

You can find the Camellia japonica in dotted, red, and colorful variants. Camellia japonica or “Bob Hope” is one of the flowers that are suitable for our climatic conditions as it adapts great and tolerates sun and half-shade positions. C.M. Xovey is another easy-to-breed Camellia japonica with strong and shiny green leaves and loose crochets. Its flowers grow up to 13 cm and come in intense pink color with some white spots. You will enjoy its flowers from winter to late spring and you can plant it in a shady or half-sided place in your garden.

Camellia sasanqua came to Europe from Japan. This species of the Camellia flower carries a nickname of mountain tea. We can say with certainty that the Camellia sasanqua is more resistant and stronger than the Camellia japonica as it adapts to new conditions easily and blooms richly. This is one of the Camellia flower species that tolerate both sunny and shadowy places. Even though the Camellia sasanqua is originally white, you can find it in pink and burgundy colors too.

One of the most beautiful and most demanding species of the Camellia flower is the Camellia reticulate. It has butterfly-large flowers and blossoms in the spring. Even though it asks for additional care, this species of the Camellia flower is totally worth the effort.

Camellia Flower – Fun Facts

Camellia flower comes for the tea family of plants. Tea oil produced of the Camellia flowers is edible and used as a seasoning in Asian countries.

Ice tea is made of the Camellia flower.

The state of Alabama proclaimed the Camellia flower as their official flower.

The Chinese use the Camellia flower as a medicine for asthma and cardiovascular diseases.

Surprisingly, the Camellia flower is not fragrant, but it still attracts many insects.

The oldest Camellia in the world lives in Panlong Monastery in China. This Camellia flower is planted back in 1347. Typical Camellia flower lives between 100 and 200 years.
Camellia flower is often used with the Hydrangea in flower arrangements.


Camellia flower has a strong and rich symbolism that dates hundreds of years in the past. The main associations with the Camellia flower are affection, love, purity, perfection, and longing.

Besides having its own symbolic meaning, the Camellia flower also has a secret message behind it all. Camellia flower teaches us to think positively and to love people around us. If you want to bring back love in your life, decorate your home with the Camellia flowers and expect a miracle – it will happen.