What Is The National Flower of South Korea?

What Is The National Flower of South Korea?

Rose of Sharon is the National Flower of South Korea. Hibiscus syriacusisis the scientific name of Rose of Sharon and it is commonly known as “Mu-gung-hwa” in Korea. The name is the combination of 2 words. One is ‘mu-gung’, which means ‘immortal’ or ‘everlasting,’ and the other is ‘hwa’, which means ‘flower’.Korean national flower, Rose of Sharon is practically a long-lasting flower.

It blooms all summer and into fall. This flower closes up in the evening and bursts back in the morning when the sun rises. Rose of Sharon is the symbol of strong determination and loyalty towards the nation. It is also one of the national symbols that keep the country people together, given Korea’s long history of struggles against war and invasion. This is why the Rose of Sharon or Mu-gung-hwa was chosen as the national flower symbol of Korea.

The Rose of Sharon is mostly available in red, pink, purple, and white. This flower is trumpet-shaped and has a bright red center. It blossoms typically from early July to late October. A single Rose of Sharon tree bears up to 2500 flowers. Rose of Sharon is long-lasting. It can adapt well to grafting and can survive pollution, heat, humidity, poor soil, and drought too. This flower has five petals. The five petals represent five kinds of duty according to Korean tradition.

Facts About South Korea National Flower [Rose of Sharon]

  • Common Name: Rose of Sharon or Mugunghwa
  • Genus: Hibiscus
  • Species: syriacusis
  • Found in: Hangang Park, Namsan Park
  • Color: Red, pink, purple, white
  • Number of petals: 5
  • Form of the tree: Upright and vase-shaped
  • Time of blooming: Early July to late October
  • Purpose: Ornamental and herbal tree
  • Symbolism: Strength, unity, perseverance

They also represent five kinds of happiness, five kinds of unity, and other qualities. They allcombine to the meaning of ultimate peace and happiness. All the petals of the Korean national flower, Rose of Sharon, wither away at the same time when the flower withers. This symbolizes the strong bond between the people of Korea. It represents the unity between the countrymen. The Rose of Sharon is very much dear to the people of Korea. According to the history of Korea, the Rose of Sharon was first cited in Korean text around 1400 years ago and it has reference in the Korean National Anthem.

Details & Description

The Silla Kingdom used to call itself “geunhwa-hyang” which means“the country of mugunghwa”. A similar nickname appears in the records of the Goryeo Dynasty too. Some works of classical Chinese literature defined Korea as “a country of virtue that has mugunghwa, which blossoms in the morning and withers at night.” The Rose of Sharon can be used to make tea to relieve thirst after constipation, and also to treat insomnia. The United States and Europe used the Rose of Sharon as the symbol of the spirit of resistance. There were several misconceptions about this flower.

Children were taught that The Rose of Sharon was a bloody-eyed flower that could cause eye diseases and boils on the skin if it is touched, under the Japanese colonial regime. Another misconception is that it is problematic to cultivate because the tree is infected with aphids very easily. Efforts are being made by the government to help the people get in touch with the national flower of Korea, Rose of Sharon as their ancestors once did.

On August 15, 2009, 500 pots of white and red Roses of Sharon were placed at the heart of Seoul in Gwanghwamun Square in Jongno-gu district. According to the plan of the Korea Forest Service and the Korea Land Corporation, a total of 15 new cities will have Rose of Sharon theme parks and flower paths.

To sum up, the Rose of Sharon is the most favorite flower of the Korean people. This beautiful national flower has both historical and symbolic importance for Koreans. It symbolizes the strength, unity, perseverance of the Korean people. That’s why the Rose of Sharon is naturally chosen as the national symbol of Korea.


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