As a bit of a plant newbie, I’m still learning how to keep tough-to-kill greenery like succulents alive. And while I’m happy to receive flowers of any sort on my birthday, I’d be hard-pressed to tell you what my favorite kind is. That’s why I was thrilled to grill Jaysen Paulson Hawthorne, a professional astrologer and herbalist, about what kinds of plants and flowers are the best fit for different sun signs, and why.
“People will be attracted to perhaps a representation of their sun sign in some way because it symbolizes what we’re looking for and attracted to,” says Hawthorne. “We often gravitate toward the plants that are in season when we were born. For instance, a lot of watery fruits and vegetables are harvested in early summer—like berries and watermelon and cucumber—so a cancer might gravitate toward watery representations in plants and flowers.” He adds that colors can play into it, as well. Cancer is a moon sign, so Cancers might like white flowers because that’s the color of the moon.
Keep in mind, as always when it comes to astrology, that advice based on your sun sign isn’t all-encompassing. Some of your sun sign’s tenets might apply to you, but if you really want to understand how the zodiac affects you, get your complete natal chart done, and then read up on the tendencies for each major planet in your chart.
Still, Hawthorne’s tips are a great place to start, especially for the botanically challenged, like me. I never realized that it sort of stressed me out not having much of an opinion about which flowers and plants I like best—now I know that because I’m an airy Gemini, I like bright flowers or richly scented plants that stimulate my mind. “Think about what’s up during the time of a person’s birth,” says Hawthorne. “What’s going on seasonally and color-wise will help you figure out what you’re attracted to if you aren’t naturally aware of it.”
Aries: March 21–April 19
As a fire sign, Aries will be drawn to red, yellow, orange and purple flowers that evoke the colors of flames, says Hawthorne. Primula, pictured here, come in all of those hues and their peak season is in March and April. Aries might also like bright blue forget-me-nots and deep purple phlox.
instagram / @chanteclergardens
Taurus: April 20–May 21
Tauri are earth signs who are very focused on beauty, says Hawthorne. "A rose is a perfect flower for Taurus because roses are abundant in spring, and their prettiness and scent will appeal to Taurus."
Gemini: May 21–June 21
Airy, cerebral Gemini like plants that stimulate the mind through bright color or scent. "Yellow plants and flowers are good, as well as scented plants like rosemary," says Hawthorne. The helianthemum at left has intense color that has an energizing effect, and is in season in late May and June. Also try poppies, geraniums, bellflowers, and pincushions.
instagram / @egardengo_app
Cancer: June 21–July 22
Cancers, water signs, will like plants or flowers that grow near water, like lotus (at left), willow, or aloe vera, says Hawthorne. They also prefer ones in whites or pastel—closer to the color of the moon, which rules Cancer.
instagram / @sandidi1325
Leo: July 23–August 22
Fiery Leos do best with summery blooms in gold and yellow, like sunflowers, St. John's Wort, black-eyed susans, and chrysanthemums, says Hawthorne.
instagram / @fumixparis
Virgo: August 23–September 22
Virgos are more practical than some of the other earth signs (like Taurus), so herbal medicines and useful plants are their jam. Anything that has a purpose beyond prettiness is good for Virgo, whether that's aloe vera (at left), peppermint, eucalyptus, or lavender.
instagram / @fsseychelles
Libra: September 23–October 22
Airy Libras, like Geminis, need plants and flowers that are stimulating, energizing, and mood-boosting with color or scent. Try poppies (at right), wolf's bane, aster, and dahlias.
Scorpio: October 23–November 21
Scorpios are less touchy-feely and sensitive, and more tough and fiery than their fellow water signs, Pisces and Cancers. So instead of a pale plant that grows near water, look for something that blooms in autumn and has fiery colors, like black-eyed susans, aster, and violets.
Sagittarius: November 22–December 21
Sagittarius need plants or flowers in fiery tones that grow in cold weather—a rare find, but salvia nemorosa (or sage flower) meets both requirements. Try also coppertips, orange flowers whose season ends in November, and violets.
instagram / @cjy31
Capricorn: December 22–January 10
Earthy Capricorns prefer practical plants in brown or green, like holly and mistletoe. "Capricorns often like trees because it's the only thing still visible and blooming in the middle of winter," says Hawthorne.
Aquarius: January 20–February 19
Airy Aquarius needs a scented, stimulating plant that's also in season in winter. Helleborus (at right) reportedly has a beautiful smell, and Aquarius can also look for basket-of-gold, candytuft, phlox, and violets.
instagram / @postofficefarmnursery
Pisces: February 19–March 20
Watery Pisces favor pastel-hued plants that grow in watery locations or bloom in early spring. "Easter lilies are perfect for Pisces," says Hawthorne. Also try sea holly and rockfoils.