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This charming little flower's name derives from the French word penser, meaning "to think/ponder." But it's also referred to as "hearts ease" thanks to St. Euphrasia, whose name means "cheerfulness of mind." Because of her humility the nun was referred to as a "humble violet."
Nikk | Flickr CC by 2.0
This beautiful ornamental shrub adds a pretty touch to any home in the colder months. Its edible fruit that ripens in fall makes a delicious marmalade full of vitamin C. Coming from the Chaenomeles family, this flower that blossoms in winter and early spring symbolizes rebirth -- a perfect reminder that Easter is coming.
Bonita de Boer | Flickr CC by 2.0
Also known as Calluna vulgaris -- Calluna from the Greek, Kallune, meaning "beautify, sweep clean," and vulgaris from the Latin meaning common. Heather was often used to make brooms, but this flowering shrub is perfect for filling pots. Symbolizing good luck and admiration, heather is thought to have to protective powers, so it's a comforting addition to a home.
Peter O'Connor | Flickr CC by SA 2.0
The origin of this exquisite perennial plant isn't certain, but it's also referred to as a Christmas or Lenten rose that flowers in late winter and early spring. Although toxic, it's been used for medicinal purposes over the years. If the plants flower before Christmas, this signals a bountiful year to follow.
Helen Haden | Flickr CC by NC 2.0
From the Greek galanthus, meaning "snow" and "milk," this plant is also known as Mary's tapers. There is nothing more beautiful than a pretty snowdrop emerging from blanket of snow. Symbolizing purity and hope, these bell-like flowers are a must for any home or garden.
Jim Roberts | Flickr CC by ND 2.0
This deciduous shrub produces pretty star-shaped flowers in the winter months. Because its sweet-scented flowers blossom at night, they're symbolic of purity and modesty. The name of the flower, which has also become a popular girl's name, comes for the Persian for "gift from God."
Yeji Lee | Flickr CC by NC ND 2.0
This sweet-fragranced shrub has beautiful flowers that start to appear in January. The name stems from the Latin viere, meaning weaving or bending. Along with its berries, the plant is a symbol of the beauty of young maidens in Slavic culture. The big cloudy blooms make an impact in any home or garden.