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Unique Nature Names for Girls

nature names for girls

By Pamela Redmond Satran

Nature baby names have blossomed in popularity in recent years, especially for girls. Flower names such as Lily and Violet share the spotlight in the Top 100 with other nature-inspired names such as Autumn, Ruby, and Hazel.

But one of the most exciting thing about nature names is how wide and deep they run. There are so many categories, from flowers to trees to gems to water to earth to sky to weather and animals, that thousands of names qualify as nature-inspired. There are nature names that come out and say what they mean, such as Coral and Cloud, and then there are those whose relationship to nature is hidden. And of course many of all those types of nature names are highly unusual.

Today we look at 12 unique — sometimes literally — nature names for girls.

ArdithArdith is a Hebrew name that means “flowering field.” The th ending is a bit lispy, but with Edith and Judith and Ruth enjoying a resurgence, it can fit right in while also standing out — it was given to fewer than five baby girls in the US last year.

AvelineAveline may feel like a popular name — a cross between Adeline and Evelyn — but in fact it was given to fewer than 60 girls last year. Meaning hazelnut tree, it may be a route to a name that’s at once stylish and unique.

Elowen — The lovely Cornish Elowen, a Nameberry favorite that means elm, was used for only 25 girls in the US last year. One of the freshest members of the popular El family and a great way to honor grandma Ellen.

GaiaGaia is the name of the earth goddess of Greek mythology, the mother of all nature. It’s pronounced guy-ah and was given to 70 baby girls in the US last year.

IndreIndre, pronounced in-drah, is the name of a river in France. It’s so unusual that it doesn’t appear on the US extended list of names, meaning it was given to fewer than five baby girls.

Izara — This African name from the Hausa tribe means a section of a tree. The z gives it zest and it’s both easy to understand and unique, given to fewer than five baby girls in the US last year.

JacarandaJacaranda is a name exotic in both image and rhythm. It’s the Spanish name of a tropical tree with blue trumpet-shaped flowers. No baby girls were given the name in the US last year.

Lihini — Lihini is a word name from Sri Lanka that means bird or “free as a bird”.  If you name your daughter Lihini, she’ll have a truly unique name.

MaileMaile, which is pronounced like Miley, is a Hawaiian name as well as the vine used to make leis. Author Maile Meloy brought it to wider attention, though it was used for only 39 girls in the US last year.

Neve — Translated from the Italian and Portuguese word for snow, Neve is pronounced neh-vay or neh-vee. Actress Neve Campbell pronounces it nehv, and as an Anglicized form of the Irish Niamh it’s neev. Neve was the name of 72 baby girls born in the US last year.

Tivona — This Hebrew name is not strictly a nature name the way Lark or Lake is, but it means “lover of nature.” Truly unique, it does not appear on the US extended list.

Ximenia — The Spanish name Ximenia is derived from a small tropical plant that bears wild limes. Pronunciation is hee-MAY-nee-ah. This name was given to virtually no baby girls in the US last year.

Would you choose a nature name for your child? Which is your favorite here….or anywhere?

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11 Responses to “Unique Nature Names for Girls”

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cgwaltney Says:

May 26th, 2016 at 8:45 am

Oh, I like Ardith!

luca0730 Says:

May 26th, 2016 at 10:15 am

Elowen (beautiful!) is definitely my favorite name within this group, with Neve (pronounced nehv) a close second!

catcher5 Says:

May 26th, 2016 at 3:41 pm

Elowen, love it!

QuirkFlower Says:

May 26th, 2016 at 4:25 pm

Would love to see similar list for boys!

neve_humphries Says:

May 26th, 2016 at 4:55 pm

My name on a list! Neve, only I pronounce it neev (like Niamh)

Pam Says:

May 27th, 2016 at 1:49 am

@QuirkFlower, I’ll try to put one together! And @neve_humphries, lucky you!

mother_dragons Says:

May 27th, 2016 at 7:08 am

Great list! Elowen, Neve and Aveline are to die for. One small correction though: the Spanish name is Ximena, no i. And the x spelling is hardly used- Jimena and Gimena (same pronounciation) are more commonly used

actingfun Says:

May 27th, 2016 at 8:18 pm

Maile is not pronounced like Miley. It’s pronounced MIE-leh. The list was fine, but this really bothers me.

jenni_lynn91 Says:

May 29th, 2016 at 8:15 pm

My daughter has a unique nature name for her middle name, Xochitl. Its the Nahuatl (Aztec) word for flower. I like Izara and Ximena from this list.

teacupsandtiaras Says:

May 31st, 2016 at 3:54 pm

I know several Ximenas but no Ximenias. I’d stick with the Ximena spelling myself!

JossieChris Says:

September 17th, 2016 at 2:23 pm

That’s too funny we are using both Elowen and Ardith mn for our next girl. I liked that they were both nature names and flow nicely. Great nickname options too.. We like Elowen after the ancient Native American word meaning happy home, a promised land beyond the sunset. I didn’t know it was Cornish at all. This is the name of a campground in California we always go to. Ardith is my husbands grandmothers name and with over 60 descendants we are the first to use it in her honor.

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