What Is the Meaning of the Honeysuckle Flower?

Updated July 19, 2017

Native across the northern hemisphere, honeysuckle inspires many with its sweet fragrance and hardiness. The Druids, Chinese herbalists and the French have all attached different meanings to this flowering vine.

The Druids: Ogham Plants

The Ogham was an ancient Celtic alphabet carved into stones, with each letter representing a certain plant or tree and the mystical meaning behind it. The honeysuckle character stood for following one's path, as a twisting vine, and attracting sweetness in life.

The Chinese: Medicinal Meanings

Traditional Chinese medicine has long relied on honeysuckle---called Jin Yin Hua---for a variety of cures. It is referred to as a cooling herb that removes toxins and provides the psychological benefit of quelling homesickness and feelings of nostalgia.

The French: Language of Flowers

In 1819, a French woman named Louise Cortambert, writing under the pen name Madame Charlotte de la Tour, published a book entitled "Le Language des Fleurs." This "Language of Flowers" outlined the hidden meanings behind flowers, with honeysuckle standing for the bonds of devoted love, fidelity and spiritual vision.

Modern Gift Meaning: Happiness

According to the Flower Society, the predominant modern sentiment attached to honeysuckle has changed from ancient times. Today, a gift of honeysuckle represents an expression of happiness.

Fun Fact

Honeysuckle vines are extremely hardy and difficult to kill once established in a garden. This attribute contributes to the honeysuckle's meaning of devotion and lasting bonds.

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About the Author

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, Angela Tedson has been writing slice-of-life articles since 2005. Her work has appeared in "Southern Family" magazine and "Angie's List" magazine. Tedson holds an Associate of Arts degree from the Art Institute of Atlanta.