I agree that it would be most usable as a middle. It's very sweet and whimsical, but has a very "new-age" or hippy vibe to it also which makes me hesitate on considering it as a real first.
I think it's sweet on paper. Depending on the country/speaker, it can come out like "pedal" though, which a far less attractive word name!
Cute as a middle, but wouldn't use it as a first.
I associate it somewhat with the Cate Blanchett character in the movie The Shipping News (based on the novel of the same name). The Petal in the movie was a crazy narcissistic slut, which is interesting considering the name is so sweet and delicate. She was also beautiful, tho, and could be very charming.
The other association I have is the town where my in-laws live, about ten minutes from where I sit, Petal, Mississippi.
Neither one of these things would keep me from using it, and I actually really like it as a middle name. I think it's very wearable, especially as a middle.
Petal can be used but only as as quirky middle name.
A little too cutesie for me. Would make a good name for a pony, puppy, bunny, kitty. Would also work in the middle name spot.