peace lily meaning and symbolism

Peace Lily Meaning And Symbolism

Soothing, tropical, and gorgeous – that is the Peace Lily for you! With its striking dark green foliage and stunning white flowers, this plant’s sheer presence can effortlessly enhance the ambiance of any room. This article is going to look at the varied and fascinating aspects of Peace Lily meaning and symbolism, that only add to the appeal of this popular houseplant.

The Peace Lily has different meanings and symbolism in a variety of situations. It is most commonly a sign of peace, innocence, purity, healing, hope, and prosperity. It is often grown or gifted as a sign of sympathy, longevity, beauty, rebirth, chastity, or virtue.

Peace Lily Meaning

Every plant has its own unique meaning. This is why adorning your home or office space with a plant that symbolizes an emotion close to your heart is bound have a positive impact on your environment.

Peace Lilies can have different meanings – ranging from hope and peace to innocence and purity. Let us discuss them one-by-one.

Peace

In almost every part of the world, the Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum Spp.) is looked upon as a sign of peace and tranquility. Its white flower reminds one of the white flag that is recognized all over the world as a signal of truce. So if you want to put an old feud to rest, sending Peace Lilies to the person is a great idea. Chances are bright that sending this plant might even mark the beginning of a new friendship.

Innocence And Purity

The color white has always been associated with purity and chastity, and therefore white peace lily flowers are a sign of purity and innocence. According to the ancient Chinese art and science of Feng Shui, Peace Lily can be associated with the purity of one’s soul and surroundings. It is believed that keeping this plant at home will help eliminate all kinds of negative energy and infuse positivity into your environment.

Scientifically too, Peace Lily is considered to be a ‘purifying’ plant that helps to eliminate toxins from the air. Although the real-world impact on air quality is negligible, Peace Lilies are at least contributing to the purity of the air in your home.

Hope

This showy plant is also believed to be a harbinger of hope. In Feng Shui, Peace Lily soothes and harmonizes the energy of a place and boosts the feelings of hopefulness and accord. Also, the plant’s ability to bloom season after season signifies hope. It is proof that there is always something good and beautiful to look forward to in life.

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Peace Lilies can be a great gift for someone who’s just had a baby as they would not just be a perfect reminder of the baby’s innocence but also give hope to the parents of the little one’s bright future.

Healing

Another popular Peace Lily meaning relates to healing and creating the right psychic balance to make one’s life more peaceful and harmonious. They are an ideal gift for someone recovering from illness, as a sign of their continued recovery.

Interestingly, many houseplants have actually been shown to have a positive impact on the rate of recovery of patients in hospital, as well as reducing physical and psychological symptoms.

Prosperity

The Peace Lily plant has been blessed with lush green foliage and an abundance of large, cupped spathes. It can flower throughout the year under the right conditions and care. This is why it is often associated with abundance and prosperity. Looking for an ideal way to wish a loved one a happy and prosperous life? Peace lilies can be a great option!

You can read my guide to Peace Lily care to learn everything needed to keep this plant thriving.

peace lily meaning and symbolism

Peace Lily Symbolism

Peace Lily plants bring tranquility to a space like no other plant possibly can. This is one of the many reasons for its popularity as a houseplant.

Now that we have a fair idea of what a Peace Lily plant can mean and signify, let us try to understand a bit about the symbolism of this graceful beauty too.

Sympathy

Because a Peace Lily symbolizes sympathy, it can be a thoughtful condolence gift. You must have often seen Peace Lilies being offered to the family of a deceased person as an expression of sympathy. You can regard them as a living tribute to the person who passed away, as well as a gentle way of showing sympathy towards a person who has lost a dear one.

Longevity

Peace Lilies are tropical perennials. A perennial plant is one that lives for more than two years. This means that if you take good care of Peace Lily plants, they can thrive for years and bloom again and again.

In fact, under favorable conditions, this plant can survive for over a decade. Lovely, isn’t it? This aspect of this perennial plant has made it a symbol of longevity. So the next time you want to wish someone a long and healthy life, gifting a Peace Lily might be a great idea.

Beauty

You have to admit – Peace Lilies are synonymous with beauty. These exotic tropical wonders are downright stunning with their snowy-white flowers and lush green leaves. Such is this plant’s beauty that poets have often used it to describe the attractiveness of their love interests. If you’re fascinated by someone, a Peace Lily is an excellent way of letting them know how special they are to you.

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Rebirth

As mentioned before, Peace Lilies bloom season after season and stay around for years. They also keep growing throughout the year – a characteristic that has led to these plants being associated with the resurrection of Jesus Christ. So basically, a Peace Lily plant symbolizes rebirth of the soul and spiritual transcendence from life on Earth.

Chastity And Virtue

In Christianity, the Peace Lily is a symbol of chastity and virtue and is often associated with the Virgin Mary’s purity. It is also associated with the inherently delicate nature of women and therefore is a perfect choice to gift to a woman getting married and starting a new chapter of her life.

peace lily meaning and symbolism

Peace Lily Meaning And Symbolism Facts

Did you know that those white, hood-like sheaths on a Peace Lily plant aren’t actually its flowers? Yes, you read that right! In fact, they are more like blade-shaped leaves, which is why this plant is also known as Spathiphyllum – a word comprising of two Greek words, ‘spathe’ meaning blade, and ‘phyllon’ meaning leaves. Its actual flowers are pretty tiny and on the spike that this white, spoon-shaped sheath partially covers.

Listed below are a few more interesting facts about the striking Peace Lily plant:

  • Although this plant is called a Peace Lily, it is not actually a lily! Rather, it is a member of the Araceae family, like the Flamingo Flower or Calla Lily. 
  • Peace lilies are also sometimes referred to a ‘White Sails’ because its spathes look like the sails of a ship.
  • This plant is native to the tropical regions of the Americas (specifically Colombia and Venezuela) and southeastern Asia. 
  • It was introduced into Europe in 1870.
  • There are nearly 40 varieties of Peace Lilies out there.
  • Peace Lilies thrive with minimum attention and are pretty low maintenance plants. Just give them a shady spot and water them regularly, and they will last for years.
  • A regular Peace Lily plant can grow up to 24-40 inches, while there are some that can even grow up to 50 inches.
  • This plant wilts pretty dramatically to let you know it is thirsty. See my guide to watering houseplants if you are having trouble with yours.
  • Peace Lilies can be toxic for your cats or dogs if ingested, so it is advisable to keep the plants out of reach of your pets.
  • According to Feng Shui, a Peace Lily is great at balancing the energies in a room. In fact, it can convert negative energies to positive, which is why it is such a sought after plant for both homes and workspaces.
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So you see, Peace Lily meaning and symbolism adds many layers of interest to this popular houseplant. No wonder they are so popular all around the world! Whether you have a Peace Lily at home purely for decorative purposes or whether you view it as a symbol of a virtue you hold dear, there’s no denying that this plant is a wonderful addition to your home. And a pretty undemanding one too!

I’ve written a number of other articles about caring for Peace Lily houseplants that you may find helpful.