Discover The National Flower of Israel: Anemone Coronaria

Written by Volia Schubiger
Published: March 14, 2023
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Located in the Middle East, Israel is a small country with a fascinating landscape and climate. Despite its small size, the country is known for some amazing places, such as the lowest point on the earth’s surface: the Dead Sea. The country is beautiful and Israelis appreciate all that is beautiful about their home. Like many other nations, Israel is fond of its natural fauna and flora. As a result, a national flower of Israel was chosen. The anemone coronaria, also known as the `lily of the field’, is a gorgeous flower that represents the nation. 

However, how much do we really know about this fascinating flower? Have you ever wondered how this flower came to be chosen as the national flower of the country? In this article, we’ll explore the characteristics of the anemone coronaria, where it grows, and its cultural significance.

The Geographic Context for Israel’s National Flower

Mount Tabor in the background of field of poppies

Israel has an incredibly diverse climate and landscape which is why it has such gorgeous flora.

©Irisphoto1/Shutterstock.com

As we mentioned above, Israel is not a large country. The country is relatively the size of the state of New Jersey. However, despite this, it has a beautiful and diverse climate and landscape. The country features snow-capped mountains to the north along with hot deserts in the south. It is bordered all around by other countries as well, such as Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and Egypt. You can find yourself surrounded by mountains and plains, and then, in a matter of minutes, you travel and find yourself surrounded by deserts. The coastal plains, which run parallel to the Mediterranean Sea, feature tons of fertile farmland. 

The climate ranges greatly. It can be anything from temperate to tropical. However, one thing that you’re definitely guaranteed here is a lot of sunshine. As a result, Israel has an incredibly diverse animal and plant life. The country has roughly 2,600 identified species of plants. These plants vary from gorgeous woodlands to stunning flowers. One of these stunning flowers, the anemone coronaria, happens to be the nation’s ‘floral representative’. Let’s find out more about this flower and why it was chosen to represent the country.

Anemone Coronaria: The National Flower of Israel

Anemone coronaria

The anemone coronaria was chosen by the public as the national flower of Israel in 2013 thanks to a poll arranged by the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel.

©iStock.com/TonyBaggett

Anemone coronaria is the national flower of Israel. It was chosen as the national flower back in 2013. This was decided thanks to a poll arranged by the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel and Ynet, a major Israeli news website. 

Traditionally, this flower has been identified as the `lily of the field’. This flower also goes by several other names, including the poppy anemone, Spanish marigold, or windflower. They are classified as part of the buttercup family Ranunculaceae. These flowers are also native to the Mediterranean region. These poppies are known for being gorgeous in color as you can find them in a wide range of colors. Red, purple, and orange are just some of the shades you can find them in. 

It is also interesting to note that this flower doesn’t have a fragrance. They also bloom twice per year and are considered early bloomers. During their first bloom, these flowers will begin to show up in the later portions of spring in March all throughout June. Their second bloom takes place in the fall. The flowers typically contain five to eight petals with a black center and the most common color you’ll find them in is red. So where does this gorgeous poppy flower grow in Israel? Let’s find out.

Where Does Anemone Coronaria Grow in Israel?

In Israel, the anemone coronaria is known to grow primarily in the north and central regions of Israel. However, you can also find them around the edges of the desert in the southern parts of the country. While purple, white, and blue anemones grow in northern Israel. Meanwhile, in the south, these flowers will only bloom in the vibrant red shade. In the country, locals know that the spring season has arrived when the fields are covered with these gorgeous poppy flowers. 

Now that we have a better understanding of where the poppy grows in Israel, let’s look into its cultural significance.

What Is the Cultural Significance of Anemone Coronaria?

red anemone flowers

In Greek mythology, it is said that the anemone coronaria was created by Aphrodite who mixed her tears with the blood of her dying lover, Adonis.

©iStock.com/Alexander Donin

There is a lot of folklore and significance to the anemone coronaria as it has been a favorite flower of many since ancient times. The flower is referred to as Kalanit in Hebrew. The name Kalanit is derived from the phrase Kala which means “bride”. This is because the anemone is so beautiful that she looks like a bride on her wedding day. However, this isn’t the only cultural significance of this flower. 

It has been noted that this flower was mentioned in the Bible as well. In Matthew 6:28-30, Jesus is quoted delivering a sermon on the Mount where he says, “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin.” In these verses, it is mostly like he is referring to the anemones as they were the most common wildflower during this time. 

Additionally, in ancient Greek mythology, it was said that Aphrodite created the flower from the blood of her lover, Adonis, and her own tears mixing together. Adonis has been fatally wounded and was dying. Over time, this flower became a symbol of the goddess’s short-lived lover. This is why the flower earned the name windflower, as the wind easily pulls the petals off these flowers — making them a flower that is quite fragile with a short-lived life.

How to Grow Anemone Coronaria

Since these poppy flowers are so beautiful and colorful, many people choose to grow them in their own gardens or inside their homes. However, it is important to know some of the ways to grow them and keep them healthy. It is best to begin planting your anemone seeds in autumn or in late winter/early spring. It is important to begin growing them indoors inside a pot if you are growing them from seeds. You will also need to place them in an area where they can get a lot of sunshine. Since it is a Mediterranean plant, they do well in warm and sunny climates. These flowers also need soil that is very well draining. Overall, they are a pretty low-maintenance flower to keep and grow. They only need moderate watering during the early season of their growth. 

Once these flowers bloom, you only need to water them occasionally. In fact, it is more likely that they will be hurt by being overwatered than underwatered. Once they have bloomed, you can feel free to cut a few flowers for yourself to display in your home. After all, all that hard labor of growing them calls for some well-deserved home decorations!

Other Native Plants and Flowers of Israel

Israel has a ton of beautiful native flora that shapes the landscape of the country. For example, there are over 200 million trees in Israel today. Some of these trees are forests of pine, cypress trees, olive trees, and eucalyptus. There are also tons of wildflowers that grow all around the country. You can find beautiful tulips, Madonna lilies, and iris flowers. However, that’s not all. The country also grows tons of delicious fruits such as dates, guava, avocados, and mangos. Thanks to the unique climate and environment, there is so much beauty that grows in this tiny country.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © iStock.com/PatrikStedrak


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About the Author

Volia Schubiger is a freelance copywriter and content editor with a passion and expertise in content creation, branding, and marketing. She has a background in Broadcast Journalism & Political Science from CUNY Brooklyn College. When she's not writing she loves traveling, perusing used book stores, and hanging out with her other half.

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