symbolic sunflower meaning

Symbolic Sunflower Meaning

Last Updated on April 17, 2023 by Avia

The symbolic sunflower meaning deals with beauty, delight, hope and joy. There are a lot of reasons for this. In myth, culture and history we see countless references about the sunflower being a symbol of hope, happiness and renewal. Check out more about fundamental sunflower meaning to get more insight.

The sunflower moves itself in the most direct position in front of the sun so it can get the maximum sun rays. This is symbolic of spiritual faith, and worship because we follow our belief system as the sunflower moves to face the life-giving rays of the sun.

symbolic sunflower meaning
symbolic sunflower meaning

Sunflower Meaning in Different Cultures

The sunflower is the Greek symbol of Clytie (a water nymph) who turns into a sunflower after grieving over the loss of her love (Apollo).


The mythological symbolism here is that Clytie (in the form of a sunflower) is always facing the sun, looking for Apollo’s chariot to return and she might be joined again with her love. The sunflower is also a symbol of Daphne (another Greek nymph).


In Chinese symbolism, the sunflower (and sunflower meaning) deals with long life, good luck and is considered very auspicious. It’s yellow color signifies vitality and intelligence. It’s a symbol of happiness too. Also in China, the sunflower was considered a symbol of long life, and was eaten by royalty to insure immortality.


In esoteric Christianity, the sunflower is a symbol of God’s love. The sunflower as a symbol can also represent the unwavering faith that guides the soul to the highest spiritual attunement.

Native American

In Native American symbolism, the sunflower is used in late summer festivals as a symbol of bounty, harvest and provision. It is a symbol of the sun, and thus likened to the life-giving force of the Great Spirit. The color of the sunflower was noted for its vitality and symbolic of energy as well as fertility.

symbolic sunflower meaning
symbolic sunflower meaning

“I don’t think there’s anything on this planet that more trumpets life that the sunflower. For me, that’s because of the reason behind its name. Not because it looks like the sun but because it follows the sun. During the course of the day, the head tracks the journey of the sun across the sky. A satellite dish for sunshine. Wherever light is, no matter how weak, these flowers will find it. And that’s such an admirable thing. And such a lesson in life.”

~Helen Mirren

Sunflower Meaning in Spiritualism

Years ago, I was an active member of a local Spiritualist church. I mention this because their insignia was the sunflower. When I asked the church president about it, she informed me the sunflower was a perfect symbol for the faith because the blossom (bright and bountiful) is always seeking out the light. Symbolically, this is spiritually akin to the heart/soul of humankind always seeking and attaining unity with the light of faith and keeping a connection with the Source/God/Goddess of one’s own understanding.

Sunflower and the Zodiac

Then there are flower associations with the zodiac, and sunflowers are connected to the Leo sun sign. This combination is symbolic of life, charisma, vitality, energy, and strength.

Symbolic Sunflower Meaning Keywords

Some other symbolic sunflower meanings include…

  • Focus
  • Faith
  • Good Luck
  • Magic
  • Healing
  • Worship
  • Longevity
  • Nourishment
  • Flexibility
  • Spiritual knowing
symbolic sunflower meaning
symbolic sunflower meaning

Sunflower Meaning and the Chakras

Speaking of sunflower color…I often interpret color symbolism according to the chakras. As a yellow flower, the sunflower can be compared to the solar-plexus chakra (Manipura).

This chakra (and its color) governs intellect, and is a central force of perception as well as self-awareness and personal evolution. I mentioned being a member of the Spiritualist church in my area…well…the church had a course on automatic writing, which is a method of communicating with those who have passed into non-physical by writing messages in a state of heightened consciousness.

“Sunflowers are a symbol to remind us to follow our instinct, follow our joy, follow what lights us up.”

symbolic sunflower meaning
symbolic sunflower meaning

Sunflower Color Meaning

I always find it fascinating that the instructor of the course insisted we all use yellow sheets of paper in this exercise. She pointed out that the color yellow is a mind-expanding, and spiritually broadening color. Keep this in mind while you connect with the sunflower.

We could also incorporate the color orange in symbolic sunflower meanings. Referring back to the chakra system, orange is associated with the sacral chakra (Swadhisthana), and is linked with areas of creativity, expansion, fertility, reproduction (of all types).

Orange is also a powerful color to use in aspects of self-acceptance, and a great tool to auger self-confidence. Perhaps the sunflower might be a useful symbol in meditation as a means for bolstering security and confidence. Check out my page on chakra color meanings for more information on this aspect of symbolism.

Sunflower Meanings Connected with the Sun

Sunflower meaning is mostly derived from solar (sun) symbolism which deals with…

  • Light
  • Life
  • Growth
  • Warmth
  • Action
  • Vitality
  • Pleasure
  • Provision

Sunflower and Water Associations

Actually, the symbolism of water comes into play with sunflower meaning too. According to Ted Andrews in his book Nature-Speak (awesome book), water builds up in the cells of the shady side of the sunflower’s stem and pressure forces the blossoming head in a steady arc toward the direction of light. Water carries powerful symbolism of force, emotion, cleansing and purification. Check out more water symbolism here.

Take-Away Points About Symbolic Sunflower Meaning

Now that we’ve covered a bunch of sunflower meanings from various perspectives, let’s summarize by taking a look at a few takeaway points to remember when the sunflower blooms in our consciousness.

Follow the Light

The sunflower is commonly viewed as a symbol of spirituality. This is mostly due to how the sunflower responds to sunlight. It follows the light. Sunflowers turn their heads to greet the sun. This behavior is like humanity following divine light and spiritual insight.

Looking for Love

Sunflower meaning is connected to the Greek water nymph, Clytie. In the myth, Clytie fell in love with the sun god Apollo. Clytie made some poor choices, and was transformed into a sunflower for her mistakes. The myth associates the sunflower with love, as Clytie (in flower form) is always looking to the sun, hoping to see Apollo in the sky.

Mellow Yellow

Colors really help determine meaning in nature. The yellow-gold color of the sunflower is symbolic of vitality, energy and life. It’s connected to the solar-plexus chakra, which is a major power center in the human energy system.


I hope you have enjoyed these thoughts on symbolic sunflower meanings. Be sure to check out the links below for more related content on this website.

As always, thank you for reading.

May all your sunflower moments be sunny!

Mighty brightly,

© Copyrighted. All Rights Reserved.

Get Blooming Insights With These Symbolic Flower Selections From Amazon

symbolic rose flower meanings

Symbolic Meaning of Flowers

Flowers and meanings have been the subject of conversation for as long as humankind has taken the time to behold their beauty. Flower meanings range from protection, to love, to warnings, to wealth. Get more about symbolic flower meanings here.

zodiac flower sign meanings

Zodiac Flower Signs and Meanings

Zodiac flower signs are based on the astrological zodiac signs. These are provided here as another method of self-discovery. This article offers all twelve flower zodiac sign meanings. Get YOUR flower zodiac sign meaning here. (WYS) is a trusted Etsy affiliate & Amazon Associate. We also promote certain products we've tested and approved. As such, the website features sponsored products for Amazon or Etsy or other afiliates. Should you make a purchase from a link on this website, WYS may receive a small commission. This website also hosts advertisements. Please see our policy page for further information. Thank you for your purchases, as it contributes to keeping this website online and running.