Bleeding Heart Flower Meaning and Symbolism

There’s nothing quite like the bleeding heart flower, and how similar it looks to its name. One of the most unusual flowers you can give someone, few flowers hold such a significant symbolism.

If you’re planning on giving someone a bleeding heart flower, or you’ve received one, read on to discover the meaning behind the flower. 

What does The Name Bleeding Heart Mean?

This is not one of those flowers that you learn the name of and then have to squint to try and see the meaning it’s referring to (see also Flower Names Beginning With B).

This flower has a very visual meaning, a very literal representation. The flowers look like the point of the heart is parting to “bleed”. 

The scientific name is also a literal meaning, though not the same poetic one that the common name carries.

The bleeding heart (see also 9 Best Squirrel Resistant Flowers You Can Grow To Protect Your Garden) flower is also known as Dicentra spectabilis. “Dicentra” translates to “two spurs”, which you can see on either side of the “teardrop” of the flower.

“Spectabilis” literally means “spectacular”, as this is a flower that you’ll never forget! 

What do Bleeding Heart Flowers Symbolize?

There’s a lot of symbolism behind a bleeding heart flower. The obvious one is a deep, intrinsic love held for a romantic partner.

The other is the freedom you feel when you’re able to express your emotions without fear of judgment. It’s a symbol of trust, of laying your soul bare for someone else to see, and feeling all the lighter for it. 

In some parts of the world, this flower can embody rejected love, and the heartbreak and resulting pain that comes with it.

The bleeding heart flower also symbolizes feeling things deeply, and holding a love and compassion for everything in your life and beyond.

If you’re struggling to voice your feelings, or you don’t quite know what to say, but you still want to say it, a bleeding heart flower is one way to do it.

It’s a way of being honest without feeling you have to scramble to be heard in the right way. 

What does a Pink Bleeding Heart Flower Mean?

A pink bleeding heart flower embodies compassion, affection, and love.

What does a Red Bleeding Heart Flower Mean?

A red bleeding heart flower is a symbol of unconditional love, passion, and desire.

What does a White Bleeding Heart Flower Symbolize?

White bleeding heart flowers represent innocence, purity, and remembrance. 

Is There Any Cultural Significance Tied to the Bleeding Heart Flower?

The bleeding heart flower is native to Asia (see also Bleeding Heart Guide), and has only been bred for its ornamental value for a few hundred years. It was only in the 1800s that it was introduced to the Western world.

It’s widely believed that the bleeding heart flower symbolizes rejection in romantic love, and the heartbreak that follows. Like the image of the flower itself – the heart is broken into two. 

What does a Tattoo of a Bleeding Heart Flower Mean?

Usually, tattoos that incorporate bleeding heart flowers tend to be in memory of a loved one who has died.

However, they can also be a reminder not to shy away from life for fear of getting hurt, as you may miss out on the good things by doing so.

It’s a symbol to live freely, and as emotionally connected to life and its events as much as you can. 

When Should You Give Someone a Bleeding Heart Flower?

Often, bleeding heart flowers are incorporated as part of wedding decorations. They symbolize compassion and happiness, not just sadness. 

They’re also used as a memorial, and as a love token on Valentine’s Day.

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