Menu

Flower Names for Boys Are Blooming

August 17, 2020 Emma Waterhouse
flower names for boys

Flower names for boys are a rare but beautiful bunch – a subset of the fashionable group of floral baby names which have proved particularly popular for girls in recent years.

Popular nature names for boys include tree names like Rowan and Oakley, wild animal names like Fox and Wolf, and water-related names like River and Brooks. But boys’ names with floral meanings have never caught on in the US as the likes of Lily and Violet have for girls.

However, that’s not the case everywhere!

In mainland Europe, Florian has enjoyed a long spell as one of the top boys’ names of the last few decades, making the Top 10 in Austria, Germany and France at least. In the Netherlands, botanical Senna is rising fast: up 186 places over the past two years. And in Japan, Ren is one of the most popular boys’ names of the moment.

We think it’s time to shine a light on some of the many cool floral names for boys that are out there – from rising stars like Calix and Zephyr to truly unique picks like Aletris and Oleander.

18 Flower Names for Boys

Aletris: A medicinal plant also known as “unicorn root” because of the horn-like appearance of its long stems of white flowers. Aletris shares its fashionable Al– beginning with popular picks like Alexander and Alexis.

Betony: This pretty wildflower has an equally appealing name, which could work just as well for either sex. The English surname Bettany – as in actor Paul – may derive from the plant’s name.

Calix: A botanical term for the cup of a flower (properly spelled calyx), Calix has seen a surprising surge of popularity as a baby name recently. Cool nickname Cal and the spiky X ending no doubt add to its appeal.

Campion: Sometimes used in Catholic families as an honor name for St Edmund Campion, this handsome name also belongs to a wildflower with bright red or pink petals.

Hawthorn: More than three times as many babies were given the E ending version in 2018 (perhaps as a tribute to author Nathaniel Hawthorne), but this prickly nature name has a rugged charm of its own.

Heath: The name of a family of flowering shrubs, most famously borne by Australian actor Heath Ledger. His first and last name both saw a big rise after his tragic death in 2008, but Heath remains an uncommon choice at #936 in 2018.

Florian: A classic in mainland Europe, Florian ultimately derives from the Latin flos, meaning “flower”. Other masculine names from the same root include Italian Fiore, French Florent, and Romanian Florin.

Garland: A Top 500 pick for the first half of the 20th century, Garland fell out of the Top 1000 in 1985. But it’s a strong, solid surname style name that feels ripe for revival today.

Jacinto: The Spanish form of Hyacinth, a flower name, a saint’s name, and a figure in Greek mythology.

Lupin: Most familiar as the surname of werewolf Remus Lupin from the Harry Potter books. Fittingly, it means “wolf-like” – a reference to the tendency of lupine flowers to guzzle nutrients from the soil.

Oleander: Sharing sounds with popular classics Oliver and Alexander, it’s somewhat surprising that Oleander has never made it onto the SSA baby names list. We think it’s a unique and appealing choice.

Ren: Meaning “water lily”, Ren is both one of the most familiar Japanese boy names in the US and one of the most popular in its home country. Its simple, sleek, international appeal makes it a Nameberry favourite – at #249 for the first half of 2020.

Rosen: A double botanical name, meaning “roses” in German and “dittany” in Bulgarian. It was borne by a former president of Bulgaria, Rosen Plevneliev.

Senna: Rising fast in the Netherlands, but still virtually unused elsewhere, Senna is the name of a genus of flowering plants in the legume family. Perhaps more importantly for its baby name potential, it’s the surname of Brazilian F1 legend Ayrton Senna.

Sorrel: An edible herb with reddish purple flowers, which also lends its name informally to other flowering plants. Sorrel is in rare but regular use for girls in England and Wales, with 13 births in 2018, but would work just as well for a boy.

Thyme: Another flowering herb with a soft and appealing name, which has featured at least once in our very own Babyberry birth announcements!

Yarrow: O-ending names are on trend right now, but here’s one you don’t hear often. Yarrow has sprays of tiny white or yellow flowers, and is said to have been used by Achilles to heal his soldiers’ wounds during the Trojan War.

Zephyr: Another mythological pick: Zephyr lilies are so called because they produce flowers only after heavy rainfall, which is associated with the Greek god of the west wind. Zephyr remains outside the Top 1000 for now, but it’s rising fast for both sexes.

Which is your favorite of these flower names for boys? Are there any other floral boy names you’d suggest? Tell us below!

About the author

Emma Waterhouse

Emma Waterhouse — better known as @katinka around these parts — joined the team in 2017, writing about everything from where to find a cool vintage boy name to why some names become popular memes. As Nameberry's head moderator, she also helps to keep our active Forums community ticking. A linguist by background, Emma speaks six languages and lives in England's smallest county with her husband and three young children. You can reach her at emma@nameberry.com.

View all of Emma Waterhouse's articles

Comments

12 Responses to “Flower Names for Boys Are Blooming”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.