Image Source

Plumbago is a genus in the family Plumbaginaceae. It consists of 10 to 20 species of plants. Plumbago flower is commonly known as Plumbago or Leadwort.

Native to warm, temperate and tropical regions, the Plumbago flower is found in South Africa, Namibia, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, Southern Europe, and North America.

Plumbago is taken from the Latin words “plumbum” meaning “lead” and “agere” meaning “to resemble”. It is believed to refer to the lead-like blue color of the flower and the lead-colored stains created by the sap when touched. The derivation of the name may also refer to the belief that the Plumbago flower cures lead-poisoning.

The various species of the Plumbago genus includes herbaceous plants and shrubs. There are both annuals and perennials in this genus. They grow up to a height of 1.6 to 6.6 feet (48.76 to 201.16 cm) tall. The leaves are soft and 0.20 to 4.72 inches (0.508 to 11.98 cm) long, with a tapered base and a hairy margin. They are arranged spirally. When the foliage matures, they are often found with a whitish residue on their underside. Though it resembles a powdery mildew disease or chemical spray deposit, it is a naturally occurring substance from “chalk” glands present in the Plumbago species.

The flowers are saucer-shaped, having a tubular corolla with five petal-shaped lobes. They bloom in blue, white, purple, red, or pink color.

The Plumbago flower thrives in well-drained and fertile soil. It can tolerate drought and does not have much preference of a soil pH level. It grows in USDA zones 8 to 11. The plant loves the Sun but will also tolerate partial shade, with an average watering need. It is easy to cultivate in containers, as ground cover, or along beds and borders. The Plumbago flower blossom throughout summer until the first sign of winter.

There are around 17 species of the Plumbago genus widely accepted across the world. Each of their growing conditions and colors vary slightly from one another.

What do Plumbago flower symbolize?

Flowers are very powerful medium through which we can express our feelings and emotions. The Plumbago flower meaning and symbolism holds great significance. The Plumbago flower meaning symbolizes hope, good wishes, and spiritual desire. In today’s world of chaos and stress, hope has become a man’s only solace. The Plumbago flower can convey hope to someone in need of positive energy.

The Plumbago flower also symbolizes spiritual desire. Growing them in your backyard or gifting a bouquet to your loved ones, the Plumbago flowers will guide you spiritually. They will help bring prosperity, and you will feel a deeper connection with the Almighty.


What do the various colors of the Plumbago flower mean?

The Plumbago flower meaning and symbolism gets a greater depth by the meaning of the various colors of the blooms that occur.

Some of the most popular Plumbago flowers are Plumbago Auriculata, Plumbago Europaea, Plumbago Indica, Plumbago Pulchella, Plumbago Zeylanica.

Plumbago Auriculata:

Image Source

The most popular species of the Plumbago family, this flower is commonly known as Blue Plumbago. The blooms are deep blue, pale blue or violet. This flower can be seen everywhere, from gracing the sidewalks in parks to adorning the ground of a backyard garden. It is also known as Cape Leadwort or Cape Plumbago due to its place of origin, Cape Town in South Africa. This flower symbolizes tranquility, hope, and peace.

Plumbago Europaea:

Image Source

Another popular species of the Plumbago family, it is also known as Common Leadwort and European Plumbago. This flower can be seen adorning the front fences and sandy beaches of Albania, Bulgaria, France, Greece, Spain, Portugal, and Romania. It blooms in dusty pink or lilac color. This flower symbolizes spirituality, renewal, and hope.

Plumbago Indica:

Image Source

Abundantly found in India, Indonesia, China, and Pakistan, this species is also known as Scarlet Leadwort due to the bright red or deep pink color of the blossoms. It is also known as the Indian Leadwort. This flower symbolizes respect, desire, and courage.

Plumbago Pulchella:

Image Source

This species of the Plumbago family is indigenous to Mexico. It is most popularly known by its Mexican name, Cola de Iguana. The flowers are lilac or violet in colors. They decorate the head of a thorny, tail-shaped green stem. The stem is covered with tiny red marks bearing a close resemblance to the tail of an Iguana. This flower symbolizes truth, loyalty, and spiritual desire.

Plumbago Zeylanica:

Image Source

Indigenous to India, this species is mostly found in Gujarat, Maharashtra, Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, and South India. It is locally known as Safed (white) Chitrak or Ceylon Leadwort. Unlike the Indian Leadwort, this plant flowers small white blossoms. It is also found in the monsoon forests of Australia. This flower symbolizes reverence, humility, hope, and good wishes.

Interesting facts and characteristics of the Plumbago flower

  • The name Auriculata of the species Plumbago Auriculata means ear-shaped. It refers to the shape of the leaf base.
  • The powdered root of the Plumbago Auriculata is a great remedy for wounds, warts, skin disorders, and headaches. It can also fight cancer.
  • The Africans use the Plumbago Auriculata plant in the textile industry for dying purposes.
  • The sap of the roots release a gray-blue color which is sometimes used for tattoos.
  • The flowers are used by children as earrings due to their sticky quality.
  • The Plumbago Europaea species have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. It is immensely used in traditional Turkish medicine to treat dermatitis, acne, eczema, insect bites, infections, and other skin-related diseases.
  • The root of the Plumbago Indica contains Plumbagin which cures a number of diseases and health problems. It is used in traditional Indian herbal medicines to cure diarrhea, headaches, tuberculosis, and rheumatism.
  • The rural parts of South Asian countries apply the paste of the nectar, and powder of the roots and leaves of the Plumbago Indica for relief against a plethora of ailments.
  • The Plumbago Indica is a poisonous plant. Expecting mothers should stay away from this plant.
  • The Plumbago Pulchella has blue-red plant pigment which holds an important place in traditional Mexican medicine and veterinary uses.
  • The root of the Plumbago Zeylanica species is used across Ayurvedic medicine. It has antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-carcinogenic properties.

Best time to gift someone Balloon flowers

The Plumbago flower meaning plays an essential part while gifting the flowers to someone. The Plumbago flower meaning symbolize hope and good wishes. They make a perfect gift for close friends, family members, ailing persons, or those who have lost their loved ones. They convey hope for better times and wishes luck and prosperity.

The Plumbago flowers are low-maintenance and easily propagated making them a favorite addition for sidewalks, parks, backyards, and gardens. The vivid colors of the flowers can spruce up any corner or spot in the landscape.