You’ll find citrus trees everywhere in homes, shops and buildings around Chinese New Year. The pronunciation of “orange” in Cantonese is the same as “success”, hence the connotation to good fortune. The more fruit a tree bears, the more luck and wealth it’s said to bring. Placing tangerine, mandarin orange, or kumquat trees in doorways spreads the luck far and wide and ensures those entering the room bring good luck with them. Not only does a citrus tree’s aromatic fresh smells and vivid colours brighten an entire area, you can also eat their fruits, or use them in your cooking, baking and drink-making
SPATHIPHYLLUM DIAMOND (PEACE LILY)
The peace lily is thought to bring good health to everyone in its presence, and it turns out it actually can! Peace lilies make excellent air-purifying houseplants, cleaning the air of toxins like carbon dioxide. This super-plant can also provide allergy relief, improve sleep quality, and reduce stress. According to the Chinese art of feng shui, the peace lily is believed to bring hope and an aura of calm to your home or workspace - something we could always do with more of, no matter the time of year
CRASSULA (JADE PLANT)
Also known as the money plant, this sweet little succulent has a long history of bringing fortune, prosperity, and wealth into homes. Its chunky round leaves look like jade stones, a valuable gemstone in Asian culture. This plant’s self-sustaining ways have earned them the symbol of strength and makes them ideal for beginners or busy bodies since they need so little care and attention. Jade plants come in weird and wonderful varieties, so pick a few to create the feeling of having many different plants without overcomplicating things. They love anywhere that’s bright and sunny
Red is a colour of good luck and prosperity in Chinese culture. At Chinese New Year, children receive money in bright red envelopes and it’s a staple decorative colour, so this plant ticks all the boxes. Its bold, heart-shaped flower-like ‘spathes’ (those shiny bracts which protect the yellow flowers found in the centre of stems) bloom all year-round and represent lasting love and friendship – which is fitting, as Anthuriums are one of the longest lasting houseplants to flower. According to feng shui, Anthuriums also attract good luck, especially in relationships. Gift one of these during Chinese New Year and you’ll either receive love, or protect it if you’re fortunate enough to have it already
PHALANOPSIS (MOTH ORCHID)
This is a quintessential Chinese New Year flower, which has always been significant to Chinese tradition and is said to bring good fortune. Orchids have a different symbolic meaning depending on their colour; yellow orchids represent friendship, white for purity and peace, while pink is a symbol of femininity and harmonious relationships. Purple orchids are the most prosperous though, making them perfect for Chinese New Year gifting. Yy don’t need one of each colour to make the good luck magic work - although it would make for a stunning display! While its flowers are beautiful and delicate, the plant itself is resilient, blooming in fall, winter and spring
MORE PLANTS FOR CHINESE NEW YEAR
We couldn’t finish without giving a special shout out to the Dracaena (dragon tree) and Bonsai!
Each Chinese New Year is associated with one of the 12 animals of the Chinese Zodiac, and this year it’s the Year of the Dragon. The dragon is said to represent intelligence, honour and success. The suitably named dragon tree makes a beautiful indoor plant, and since it’s so easy to look after it’ll be difficult not to succeed!
The Bonsai has been a houseplant favourite for years. The word Bonsai literally translates into “tray planting”, referring to the Japanese art form of growing and shaping miniature trees in containers. This art was originally developed from a similar Chinese practice called penjing, which shows off natural and wild landscapes. While we all think of the Bonsai as a tiny tree in a tray, it can be grown up to 80 inches tall! We love the way this bigger bonsai twists around, almost snake-like (or should we say dragon-like?)
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