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Floral Theme Naming
Malus: I am warning you, you tell me another and I'll arrest you myself. That is a promise, Miss...
Rose: Rose. Sister Rose.
Malus: Of course. Another plant!

A simple and common form of Theme Naming is to name characters after flowers or other plants. This has the advantage of being less conspicuous than other forms of theme naming, as many of these names are common Real Life names, particularly for females. Furthermore, many flowers and other plants already have strong symbolic associations.

Common English language plant names for girls include Dahlia, Daisy, Erica, Ginger, Hazel, Heather, Holly, Iris, Ivy, Jasmine, Lily, Marigold, Petunia, Poppy, Rose, Veronica, Violet and Willow. Creates something of a problem if they later have a son, since there are not many plant names that could work for boys—though there are a few, such as Ash, Basil, Joshua, Logan and Rowan.

If there's a female skunk in a story, chances are she'll have this, for obvious reasons.

See also Cherry Blossom Girl, and, of course, Flower Motifs.

Examples:

    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 
  • Most of the various ships and ship classes, mecha and alien devices in Martian Successor Nadesico are also named after flowers — although this is deliberately obscured at times in the North American dub. ("Chulips" are, in fact, "tulips".)
  • Revolutionary Girl Utena, is rife with floral imagery. "Anthy" is a Greek name meaning "flower". "Utena" is the Japanese word for "calyx", the protective covering that shields a developing blossom.
  • The ferry girls in YuYu Hakusho: Botan (peony), Ayame (iris) and movie-only Hinageshi (red poppy). Sensui is an anagram of "suisen," meaning daffodil, while Itsuki means "flowering tree." As they also worked for Spirit World, this is likely deliberate and a play on their Face-Heel Turn.
  • Flower names also appear, a little more subtly, throughout Weiß Kreuz. Ran means "orchid" and is referenced several times within the series; Sakura, of course, refers to Cherry Blossoms; Yoji may refer to Mirabilis jalapa; Weiss has a handler codenamed Botan. All of the Aoba Center Kritiker personnel have flower names (although these are probably codenames): Shion (Tatarian aster), Kikyou (Chinese bellflower), Kuroyuri (black lily), and Tsubaki (camellia). The members of La Mort use flower-themed names as well: Azami (thistle flower), Ayame (iris), and Rindou (Japanese gentian).
  • Most of the members of the guild Moon Tree in .hack//G.U. are named after plants.
  • The entire Kinomoto family in Cardcaptor Sakura. There's the titular character Sakura, her mother Nadeshiko (Japanese name for an entire family of flowering plants), her brother Touya whose name contains the kanji for Peach Blossom and her father Fujitaka (wisteria)
    • It's emphasized in the manga with the character profiles, which name each of the family's favourite flower as the one they're named after, except Nadeshiko - whose favourite flower was cherry blossom, hence why she named her daughter 'Sakura'.
  • In the Japanese and English version of the Pokémon anime, Misty's three sisters are named after flowers. In the English version, it's Daisy, Violet and Lily.
  • In HeartCatch Pretty Cure!, all the Cures has flower-related names: Tsubomi ("flower bud"), Erika (after the flower erica), and Yuri ("lily"). A supporting character, Itsuki, has a name that follows the theme as well (meaning "flowering tree"), but this is because she becomes the Sixth Ranger. Also, one of the fairy mascots is named Potpourri, and their mothers follow the pattern too: Tsubomi's mother Mizuki ("ki" = "tree"), Erika's mother Sakura ("cherry blossom"), Itsuki's mother Tsubaki ("camellia"), and Yuri's mother Haruna ("haru" = "spring"). In general, this season likes its Flower Motifs.
  • The Kuja tribe of One Piece usually have flower-related names. A full list: Sandersonia, Marigold, Ran ("orchid"), Rindo ("Japanese gentian"), Daisy, Cosmos, Blue Fan, Sweet Pea, Marguerite, Aphelandra, Gloriosa, Kikyo ("Chinese bellflower"), Belladonna ("nightshade"), Kiku ("Chrysanthemum"), Poppy, Pansy, Shion ("aster"), Enishida ("broom") and Nerine. It isn't known for sure where their empress Hancock's name is taken from, but it's probably either from Thomas Hancock, (founder of the British rubber industry), or from the Latin name for snowberry.
  • Please Save My Earth: Being aliens watching over earth, Moku Ren finds out that by pronouncing their names without pauses in it, their names all are a type of flower or plant found on earth.
  • Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory has all of the mobile suits created as part of the EFSF's Gundam Development Project named after flowers, namely the RX-78GP01 Zephyranthes, the RX-78GP02A Physalis, the RX-78GP03 Dendrobium Orchis/Stamen and the prototypes RX-78GP00 Blossom and RX-78GP04G Gerbera.
  • The Asakura family in Shaman King also has something of a theme going, with all of its members having kanji representing parts of plants in their names. The most common is "leaf", found in Hao ("leaf emperor"), Yoh ("leaf"), Yohmei ("bright leaf"), and Yohken ("wise leaf"), but there's also Keiko ("stem child"), Mikihisa ("long-lasting tree trunk"), and Kino ("of wood"). Yoh's son Hana ("flower") also fits the bill.
    • Tao Ren and Tao Ran deserve mention as well as Ren's Chinese name, Lián, means "lotus" while Ran's Chinese name, Lán, means "orchid".
  • Urusei Yatsura has two characters, who are related to each other, named Sakura (means "cherry tree" or "cherry flower") and Sakuranbo (means either "cherry fruit" or "deranged monk", depending on which kanji it's written with; he prefers to be called "Cherry" because of the latter meaning).
  • In tsuritama, the girls: Koko (coconut), Misaki (doesn't seem to be an actual plant, although it literally translates to "ocean blossom"), Sakura ("cherry blossom"), Erika ("heather"), and Keito/Kate ("plumed cockscomb").
  • Magical Flowers, a Show Within a Show in Servant × Service, features a combination of this trope and Colourful Theme Naming for the names of its main characters; namely Gerbera Pink, Rose Black, Hydrangea Blue, Mimosa Yellow and Lupin Purple.

    Comic Books 
  • Bone has Thorn, her grandma Rose, and Rose's sister Briar. The names were chosen as an homage to "Sleeping Beauty".

    Fanfiction 
  • Used in Some Semblance of Meaning, which makes sense, seeing as it's a Hunger Games fanfiction. Several characters are given floral names: Laurel, Briony, Phlox, Cassia (a type of tree), Tansy( the real name of Lavinia Gilden), etc. (Also, the author's pen name is Volcanic Lily.)
  • In Gensokyo 20 XX, it is interesting to note that both Ran and Ren are named after some kind of flower, as Ran's name could either translate to "orchid" or "indgo", and Ren's name could translate to "water lily" or, as a favorite way of writing his name dictates, "lotus". It should also be noted that both are wife and husband.

    Film 
  • In Vincent Gallo's The Brown Bunny, all the women that the main character meets on his journey have flower names. Because his ex-girlfriend's name was Daisy, this suggests that these interactions are all in his head, as is his interaction with Daisy, who is actually dead.
  • There have been four films in the Poison Ivy series, and each has kept the tradition alive and given its protagonist a floral name (Ivy, Lily, Violet, and Daisy.)
  • Damsels In Distress: the Damsels are Violet, Rose, Heather and Lily.
  • In the Sex and the City movie, Charlotte's daughters are Rose and Lily.
  • In both the original and the remake of The Wicker Man the citizens of Summerisle all have plant names to reflect their Pagan religion, including rare male examples like Ash, Oak, and Alder. (This is especially noticeable when Howie is browsing the list of students at the school.) While in the remake it's Lampshaded with the page quote, in the original Howie remarks on it when he looks up the death certificates for the family of the missing girl.
    Howie: "Benjamin and Rachel Morrison." (pleased) Rachel and Benjamin, names from the Bible.
    Librarian: (dismissively) Yes. They were very old.

    Literature 
  • In the Anne of Green Gables series, we have Lavendar Lewis, Hazel Marr, Ivy Trent, Rose Elliott and Rosemary West.
  • In J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle-earth (The Lord of the Rings, etc), the hobbits do have an acknowledged tradition of most often naming their daughters after flowers or gemstones. E.g. among Sam's six daughters are four with flower-names: Elanor (a flower growing in Lothlórien), Rose, Daisy, Primrose.
    • It's also mentioned that many humans and some hobbits from Bree have plant-names, including the innkeeper Barliman Butterbur and Saruman's agent Bill Ferny.
  • Harry Potter:
    • His mother, Lily (symbolic of purity and death) and aunt, Petunia Evans.
    • There's Poppy Pomfrey, the nurse (poppies relieve pain), Lavender Brown and Pansy Parkinson, Moaning Myrtle (it's a shrub like a blueberry), Narcissa (egotism, derived from the narcissus flower) Malfoy, and Fleur Delacour (French for flower).
    • There's Pomona (goddess of gardens and fruits) Sprout, herbology professor.
    • Ron and Hermione's daughter, Rose.
    • Arabella Figg, Dorcas Meadowes and Padma Patil (means Lotus).
    • Lupin. Tends to be overlooked in favour of wolf-ishness, but it's a flower.
  • In P.C. Hodgell's Chronicles of the Kencyrath series, female Kendar almost universally have plant-based names, both flowering and non-flowering: Rue, Brier, Rose, Larch, Nightshade, Cherry, Hawthorn being just a few examples.
  • Happens a lot in Redwall, with instances such as Cornflower, Rose, and Columbine.
  • Artemis Fowl offers Holly Short, Julius and Turnball Root, Mulch Diggums, Grub and Trouble Kelp, and Briar Cudgeon.
  • Dedicates and some mages in the Circle of Magic universe normally pick nature-y names, with plant mages having, well, plant names. Two of them are Rosethorn and Briar Moss.
  • Every single rabbit in Watership Down except Fiver and Bigwig (which are both nicknames) is named after a type of flower or type of low-growing plant. This even allows Names to Run Away From Really Fast, with "General Woundwort".
  • MG and Pete, the Caldecott sisters of the Black London series by Caitlin Kittredge are Morning Glory and Petunia, respectively.
  • In The Secret of Platform 13 by Eva Ibbotson, the three nurses are called Lily, Rose and Violet. For added fun, they are identical triplets.
  • There are lots of plant-based names in Warrior Cats, since the characters name their children after what they know, and they live in the forest.
  • Jessica Day George's Princess of the Midnight Ball, based on The Twelve Dancing Princesses, names all twelve of the princesses after flowers. From eldest to youngest, they are Rose, Lily, Jonquil, Hyacinth, Violet, the twins Poppy and Daisy, Iris, Lilac, Orchid, Pansy, and Petunia.
  • Heather Dixon's Entwined, also based on The Twelve Dancing Princesses, not only names all twelve princesses after flowers and plants, but alphabetically in order of birth as well: Azalea, Bramble, Clover, Delphinium, Evening Primrose, Flora, Goldenrod, Hollyhock, Ivy, Jessamine, Kale, and Lily.
  • Katniss from The Hunger Games, as well as her sister Primerose, their cat Buttercup, and Rue, another tribute.
  • Technically, the Easter Bunny from The Guardians of Childhood series as his full name is E. Aster Bunnymund — 'Aster' being an entire genus of flowering plants. Given his portrayal in the books, the association is likely unintentional, but it's given more meaning in his movie portrayal, where he's a spirit of spring. This has led to a fandom trend of using this trope for original Pooka characters including, occasionally, AU versions of Jack Frost.
  • Deconstructed and then reconstructed in the children's picture book Chrysanthemum. The title character loves her name until her first day of school comes, at which all the other students laugh at her because her name is so long and doesn't fit on her name tag ("I'm named after my grandmother; you're named after a flower!") However, the music teacher, who the students admire deeply, comes to Chrysanthemum's rescue by showing them that she's also named after a flower.
  • In Zilpha Keatley Snyder's The Changeling, Ivy, Martha and Josie have a sustained fantasy game about a faraway planet, The Land of the Green Sky, populated by peaceful Tree People. (You can see where this is going). The characters in the little girls' game are all named for flowers, trees or plants; there's Prince Willow, Princess Wisteria and their advisor Lord Lilac; in the opposite corner (down below the earth) there's Princess Mistletoe, her dad Lord Hemlock (apparently a Consort), and her mom, the reigning monarch, Queen Oleander.
  • In Connie Willis' novel To Say Nothing of the Dog, the Chattisbourne sisters are named Rose, Iris, Pansy, and Eglantine. Their mother even introduces them as her flower garden.
  • In the Vorkosigan Saga novel Mirror Dance, the women of the Durona group are all named after plants because their clone mother is named Lily. The men have avian-themed names, instead.

    Live Action TV 
  • In Keeping Up Appearances, Hyacinth and her three sisters, Violet (the one with a Mercedes, sauna, and room for a pony), Daisy (NOT the one with a Mercedes, sauna, and room for a pony), and Rose are all named after flowers. Hyacinth insists on her last name to be pronounced Bouquet. "Bucket" is Richard's name, and she's being snotty.
  • In The Golden Girls, Rose has two sisters, Lily and Holly.
  • Cleopatra 2525 features Sarge (whose real name is Rose) and her sister Lily.
  • Carnivŕle has Iris Crowe, though that isn't her birth name. It's nicely subverted by the fact that she's one of the bad guys (being big sister to The Antichrist will do that), and that irises are a symbol of heaven. She does, however, wear a lot of blue, and traditionally, blue irises were symbols of faith and hope, which Iris does embody, in a dark way.
  • Constable Crabtree's massively numbered aunts in Murdoch Mysteries. In one episode, Murdoch asks how many aunts he has: "Well let's see, there's Aunt Amaryllis, Aunt Aster, Aunt Azalea, Aunt Begonia, Aunt Briony..." These were just A's and B's. Fifteen identified: Aunt Amaryllis, Aunt Aster, Aunt Azalea, Aunt Begonia, Aunt Briony, Aunt Clematis, Aunt Dahlia (though George managed to pronounce just "Dahl-" before he's cut off), Aunt Hyacinth, Aunt Iris, Aunt Ivy, Aunt Lily, Aunt Marigold, Aunt Nettle, Aunt Petunia, Aunt Primrose. The ones mentioned most often are Aunt Iris, Aunt Primrose, Aunt Petunia or Aunt Begonia.
  • In How I Met Your Mother, Lily has a daughter named Daisy.

    Mythology 
  • Many Greek Nymphs. Obviously justified, since they are nature spirits. Bonus when turned to a flower by a miffed deity.

    Newspaper Comics 
  • An unusual example: On The Fastrack's Rose Trellis (double whammy!), whose second husband is Thornton Saguaro.

     Theatre 
  • In The Secret Garden musical, Colin's mother Lily has a duet at the start of act two (as part of a quartet) with her sister, Rose.

    Video Games 
  • The Heartless in Tales of Hearts are all named after plants, and the biggest one is named Gardenia. Ironically, the character named Flora is the one who worked against them and created the countermeasure/antidote. Flora was the goddess of flowers and other plants, after all.
  • Tales of Graces invokes this - Sophie is named after an in-universe flower, the sopheria.
  • Most of the members of the Imperial Floral Assault Division in Sakura Wars have names taken from flowers. (Although the latest generation of warriors in this setting, appearing in Sakura Taisen V, all have names with astronomical or astrological significance.)
  • In Pokémon: In the Japanese games, every single significant NPC has a plant-based name.
    • In the English version of Platinum, the Frontier Brains have plant-based names.
    • Johto's towns and cities also have a plant motif in both English and Japanese.
    • The various Pokemon Professors are named for trees: Oak, Elm, Birch, Rowan, Juniper and Sycamore.
    • Gary's name is also a pun; there's a type of tree called a Garry Oak.
    • Most of the characters keep their puns in English or use altered versions. They are just harder to find. For example, Candice, Riley, Thor(n)ton, 'Palmer, and so on.
  • Most everyone in Steambot Chronicles of any significance is named after a plant. Most are seasonings and overlap with Edible Theme Naming, but a few are just plain plants.
  • Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney has Dahlia and Iris Hawthorne, which has another bonus: the last name could be seen as "Has thorns", which is plant-related and is indicative of Dahlia's behavior. Sorta kept in the original Japanese: while Dahlia's original name "Chinami" is written in hiragana and thus has no fixed meaning note , her last name "Miyanagi" means "beautiful willow"; also, Iris's name is "Ayame" meaning "Iris" and being a symbol of hope... something that she sorta gives to Phoenix. Another bonus: Dahlia may come from the gruesome murder of "Elizabeth "Black Dahlia" Short and/or the novel written about it.
  • There's a lot of plant names in Ace Attorney Investigations: Miles Edgeworth, probably to reflect that the villains are all part of a ring run from the flower-themed Allebahst. Calisto Yew, Cammy Meele (chamomile), Quercus Alba (the white oak)—whose Japanese name is closer to "red carnation"—etc.
  • Sisters Poppy and Violet from My Sims.
  • The majority of names and places in Duel Savior Destiny are named for plants including such obvious things as Floria academy, Lily or Lobelia.
  • Neku Sakuraba and his three successive game partners in The World Ends with You have this going in a relatively subtle way in their surnames— Sakuraba means "cherry garden", Misaki means "beautiful blossom", Bito includes the character for "wisteria", and Kiryuu has the character for "Paulownia".
    • Arguably, they're all fitting beyond just matching the theme— Neku spends the whole game learning that the world is worthwhile and to break out of his own mental "garden"; Shiki Misaki, besides being The Chick, has major self image issues, making her name a little painfully ironic; Beat is nothing if not tenacious, reflecting the strength of wisteria vines, and paulownia is sometimes called the "princess tree", which is pretty funny given Joshua's campness and flirtation. Or, more relevantly, it also has a whole host of supernatural implications, particularly an association with the Phoenix and therefore death and rebirth; very appropriate for the Physical God in charge of running the Reapers' Game.
  • In No More Heroes, all of Travis's beam katanas (except the Blood Berry) are named after flowers. The Tsubaki models in the first game, and the Camellia, Peony, and Rose Nasty in the second.

    Web Comics 
  • The Spriggs from Beyond the Canopy. Bramble, Glade, Elmsly, Stump, Redwood, Thistle... The only exception appears to be the protagonist, Glenn.
    • "Glen", however, is a synonym for glade, in the sense of a woodland clearing.
  • Female Kayoss in L's Empire do this, apparently as tribute to their first queen, who had power over plants (among other things).
  • In Turn Signals on a Land Raider, the entire Emperor's Pointy Sticks Space Marine chapter, except for the main protagonists Kren and Frep, are named after various types of plants (mostly trees).

    Western Animation 

    Real Life 
  • Some Russian Self-propelled howitzers are given plant/flower names, such as Tyulpan (Tulip), Gvozdika (Carnation), Akatsiya (Acacia), Giasint (Hyacinth), and Pion (Peony).
  • Australian actress Poppy Montgomery (whose full name is Poppy Petal Emma Elizabeth Devereaux Donahue) has sisters named Rosie Thorn, Daisy Yellow, Lily Belle, and Marigold Sun. She also has a brother named Jethro Tull. In 2013, she gave birth to a daughter and named her Violet.
  • During World War One and II, the Royal Navy used "Flower" class ships which could be built quickly as convoy escorts. The WWI class was originally a type of minesweeper (5 sub-classes, 120 units in all), while the WWII class was a corvette (267 units in all).
  • The streets running roughly east-west in Center City ("downtown") Philadelphia are mostly named after kinds of trees and other plants: from south to north, the floral streets are Pine, Spruce, Locust, Walnut, Chestnut, Filbert,note  Vine, Wood, Buttonwood, and Nectarine.
    • This tends to happen a lot, in most major cities that don't use numbers, and especially in the suburbs. As the saying goes, "Suburbia is the place where they cut down the trees and name the streets after them."


Fleur de LisFlower Garden IndexFlower from the Mountaintop
Festering FungusPlant TropesFour-Leaf Clover
Edible Theme NamingTheme NamingLocation Theme Naming

alternative title(s): Plant Theme Naming
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