Some great flower metaphors are:
- A flower is a soldier standing to attention in the sun.
- A wilting flower is a candy cane in the field.
- The flower is a dancer twirling in the wind.
Below is a full list and explanation of 16 metaphors for flowers that I could come up with.
To turn each into a simile, replace is with is like.
Flower Metaphors – A List
1. The Flowers were Soldiers Standing to Attention in the Sun
Meaning: When flowers are in full bloom, their stems stand straight up pointing toward the sun. This can look like they’re standing to attention, a lot like a soldier on parade. This would be a good metaphor to use when there is a patch of beautiful strong flowers in full bloom.
2. A Blooming Flower is a Feast for the Eyes
Meaning: A flower is (of course) not a feast. You don’t eat it like you’d eat a delicious roast dinner. But we’re saying they’re a feast metaphorically here. Just like a good meal satisfies your stomach, a beautiful sight of flowers might satisfy your eyes! They’re beautiful to look at.
3. The Wilting Flower was a Decrepit Old Man
Meaning: When a flower starts to die, its stem starts to droop. While it once might have stood straight (like a young man!), it now bends like an old man with a crooked spine. So, you can say it looks like a decrepit, hunched-over, old man whose spine has curled over.
4. The Wilting Flower is a Candy Cane
Meaning: A wilting flower might also look like a candy cane. Its top bends over rather than pointing up straight. You could imagine a whole “field of candy canes” if all the flowers bend together as they wilt in the summer sun.
5. Flowers are Blooming Suns in the Field
Meaning: When a flower is fully blooming it can look like a little sun. This might, of course, be especially true for a sunflower. But I also happen to think dandelions can look this way, too. When there is a field of blooming flowers, you could imagine a sea of little suns all over the rolling hills.
6. The Flowers are Dancers Twirling in the Wind
Meaning: I originally was going to make this a personification metaphor: the flowers danced. But to make it a traditional metaphor, let’s say they are dancers. Of course, they’re not. But the appear to be like dancers as they sway and twirl in unison as the wind blows through them.
7. The Flower is a Gift from God
Meaning: We often give flowers as gifts. This is because they look and smell beautiful. Having them in our house can make us happy and feel connected to the beauty of nature. But, if you were out on a hike and came across a patch of wildflowers, you might say they are a gift from god. They weren’t given to you by your boyfriend. You could imagine they were placed there by God to make you smile as you walked by.
8. The Flower is a Shy Child Peeking through the Shrubs
Meaning: Sometimes when flowers are hidden behind shrubs or in deep grass, you only see the tips of them. In these situations, they look like they’re timidly peering out at you like a child peeking at you from under their sheets. So, here, we could say that the flowers are shy (again, an example of personification).
9. The Falling Petals were Teardrops Mourning the End of Spring
Meaning: If you look at a flower at the end of its bloom, it will being to wilt. This will often happen when the sun gets too hot and the abundance of springtime water sources run out.
Because it’s sad to see the end of wildflower season, you might create an analogy to tears. Each petal that falls from the flower is another teardrop mourning the end of the season.
10. The Wild Flowers were a Rainbow Cast Across the Field
Meaning: If you see a field of wildflowers of many different colors, it may remind you of a rainbow. Where I live, you see purples and whites all over the place. If you live somewhere with lilies and poppies, you might see many more colors as you look out over a field of wildflowers.
To use figurative language, we could look out at the wildflowers and say: “The flowers are a rainbow spread out over the landscape.”
11. The Flowers were a Blanket Cast across the Meadow
Meaning: Another way to describe wildflowers growing in a meadow is to say they ‘blanket’ the meadow. This doesn’t mean they’re a literal blanket. But it does mean that they are covering the landscape, looking like a blanket.
This metaphor will usually be used when the landscape seems entirely covered. For example, it can also be used as a snow metaphor when talking about “snow blanketing a landscape”, meaning it covers all the grass.
12. Flowers are Nature’s Wallpaper
Meaning: Often, we will put wallpaper up around our house to make it more attractive and beautiful.
When we walk around in the outdoors, we will notice that the wildflowers around us similarly make our surrounds more beautiful. They are spotted around the landscape, making us feel happier. They’re a lot like wallpaper, but they’ve been put there by nature, not by an interior decorator!
13. The Flower is a Bed for the Bees
Meaning: An open flower attracts a lot of bees. Bees come to flowers to collect nectar. So you’ll often see them coming to land on the petals.
Because the flower looks like a nice soft place for bees to land, you could call it a ‘bed’ for the bees, or maybe even a pillow.
14. A Flower Growing Out of Place is a Weed
Meaning: This saying may have many meanings. But, generally, we can see it as a metaphor because you’re calling a flower a weed even though it isn’t one!
First, it might simply mean that flowers that are in the wrong spot look ugly, like weeds. You might have a garden full of a certain type of shrub from one part of the world, and then one random flower that’s only found in Mongolia. Here, it would appear out of place, and look more like a weed than a flower!
Second, you could think of this metaphor more like a proverb. It could say that you (the flower) are beautiful, but you’re in the wrong place, so you look and feel like you’re not being noticed for your beauty. You could say this to someone who is in the wrong career. You might say: “You are really great, but you’re in the wrong career so you’re unhappy and underappreciated. You’re a flower growing in the wrong place, so you’re a weed.”
15. She was a Blooming Flower on her Birthday
Meaning: We often call beautiful women flowers. That’s because, of course, they remind you of flowers, which are also beautiful.
For example, we often call a woman working with men “a rose between thorns”, where the woman is the rose (beauty) and the men are the thorns (prickly).
Another similarity is that they both might appear precious. A flower can easily be trodden on, while a beautiful woman might look like someone you need to respect and be kind to because they’re so rare.
Read Also: Beauty Metaphors
16. The Old Lady is a Wilting Flower
Meaning: Earlier, I mentioned that wilting flowers can look like old bent-over men. We can flip this and talk about old people looking like wilting flowers!
This one has a great added meaning. An old lady might once have been referred to as a ‘beautiful rose’. So, to say she is a wilting flower both reflects on the fact she one was beautiful, and draws reference to how an old flower gets bent and saggy, just like elderly people.
The above flower metaphors are by no means the only ones you could come up with. I’m sure you’d be able to identify many more! But, they’re a good start to get you thinking about how to talk about flowers using figurative language.
If you don’t like any of the above, consider making up your own metaphor or simile! What do flowers remind you of? Simply say they are something that they’re not to create a metaphor, or that they’re like something that they’re not to create a simile.
I’m a Scorpio, I love the outdoors, and I’ve written articles in some major online publications like Medium and The Weekly. My favorite metaphor? Anything that’s got to do with baseball. I’m fascinated by the fact our language has baseball weaved all through it. Read more about me here.