Flax Meaning

Uncover Hidden Flowers meanings

Flax makes a name for itself as a domestic symbol in the Victorian age. 

This probably relates to the idea that flaxseeds would have to be spun in order to make yarn for clothes.  Spinning is a woman’s job and therefore, it represents the domestic setting of life.

Of all the folktales that revolve around flax, the most popular one is about a poor farmer who was lured by the goddess Bertha to a magic cave on top of a mountain.  The cavern looked like a room full of gold and precious stones.  Right in the middle of the room, Bertha showed herself as a beautiful queen with handmaidens fawning over her.  She asked the farmer to wish for anything that he desired and she would give it to him.  As poor as he was, he only wished for the flowers that she had in her hand - giving the farmer a bag of the flax seeds that he eventually used to make linen cloth.

  • Name: Flax
  • Color: Flax flowers usually come in shades of blue, lilac and purple, although, there are also flax flowers that have a yellowish hue or a reddish color.
  • Shape: Just when the blossoms of flax are starting to grow, they look like spears.  When these little spears open up into flowers, they take on the shape of a cup.
  • Fact: Flax is commonly known as flaxseed or linseed.
  • Poisonous:  Yes. Flax, particularly their seeds are poisonous.  They have toxins like glycoside that produces cyanide.
  • Number of Petals: Flax flowers have five tiny petals.
  • Victorian Interpretation:  According to Victorian interpretation, flax and its flowers symbolize the domestic front.  It’s a flower that symbolizes the home.
  • Blossom Time:  Flax flowers start blooming in the month of May.  This continues on until September.


The usefulness of flax is primarily in producing yarn for clothe and so it has a number of superstitions related to the spinning of the yarn.  In Germany, if a woman doesn’t finish spinning flaxseed yard on Saturday, anything left over will not produce good yarn.  Also the yarn will never bleach.

As it relates to the direction of spinning flax, if spinning was done counterclockwise, it represented evil.  In northeastern Kentucky, there’s a superstition there about when the best time is to plant flax - it’s Good Friday and no other day before or after that.

What the Flax Means: 

  • The Shape:  From the first moments of the flax flower’s life, it looks like a spear. When it opens up to full bloom, it looks like a cup.
  • Petals:  Flax flower petals are usually blue but they can also be bright red. These blossoms have five petals, 15 mm to 25 mm in size.
  • Numerology:  Flax is the number 7 in numerology. This signifies awareness, the quality of being studious, knowledge and understanding.
  • Color: The most common color for flax flowers is blue. This is consistent with its numerology symbol, the number 7 because it means intelligence and the capacity for knowledge.  It’s also the color that the sky and the sea have - which is very soothing and comforting.  Much like how people would feel in their homes, this is why flax is a domestic symbol.

Herbalism and Medicine:  

Even if flax is most commonly used for making fabric, it also has medicinal properties that we could benefit from.  Making use of the oil from flax and turning it into linseed oil, it works as a nutritional supplement.  Flax is also an herb that can be used to decrease the risk of heart disease and it can also lower a person’s blood cholesterol level.

By Florance Saul
Aug 20, 2012