10 Flowers That Bloom in May

May, in the Gregorian calendar, marks the beginning of summer, and there are numerous flowers blooming in the early summer.

In this piece, I’d like to share ten types of flowers that bloom in May: peonies, Chinese peonies, roses, pomegranate flowers, roses, gardenias, lilies of the valley, pansies, fuchsias, and tulips.

Besides these, do you know of any other flowers that bloom in May? Feel free to add your suggestions in the comments.

1. Peony, Blooming period: May

Peony, Blooming period: May

What flowers bloom in May? The first one that comes to mind is the peony. The peonies that bloom in May are vibrant and fragrant, elegant, and regal, often referred to as the “King of Flowers”.

Their large and aromatic flowers have given them the name “national beauty and heavenly fragrance”. Peonies come in many varieties and colors, with yellow, green, pink, dark red, and silver-red being the most prized, especially yellow and green.

As a unique and precious woody flower in China, the peony has thousands of years of natural growth and over 1500 years of cultivation history. It’s widely cultivated in China and has been introduced all over the world.

Towards the end of the Qing Dynasty, the peony was recognized as China’s national flower. In May 1985, it was voted as one of the top ten famous flowers in China.

2. Chinese Peony, Blooming period: May – June

Chinese Peony, Blooming period: May - June

Among the flowers of May, second to peonies, Chinese peonies take the lead. Known also as the “Minister of Flowers”, they are perennial herbs belonging to the Ranunculales order. Chinese peonies have elliptical or narrow ovate leaves, with flowers that are ovate.

The petals of Chinese peonies overlap, adding to their charm. The flowers are single or double, in colors like yellow, white, pink, and purple, blooming from May to June. They are referred to as the “Fairy of Flowers” and “Minister of Flowers” and are listed as one of the “ten famous flowers”, also called the “May Flower God”.

Since ancient times, they have been considered flowers of love and are now seen as representative flowers of the Qixi Festival. The stunning form of the Chinese peony flower, even more captivating than peonies, holds a high ornamental value and is a common subject in Chinese painting art, much loved just like peonies.

3. Rose, Blooming period: May – June

Rose, Blooming period: May - June

The rose, known also as the white residual flower, the thorny mi, or the laughing buy, has been a famous flower since ancient times. When it comes to what flowers bloom in May, roses are indeed one of them.

Roses are sun-loving climbing plants that can crawl on walls, and when they cover the walls with their vibrant flowers from May to June, it’s an extraordinarily beautiful sight. Roses are cold-resistant and predominantly pink and white, highly valued for beautifying homes and medicinal uses.

The term “rose” typically refers to the multiflora rose but can generally refer to all species of the rose genus, including modern hybrid tea roses.

4. Pomegranate Flower, Blooming period: May – July

Pomegranate Flower, Blooming period: May - July

When discussing which flowers bloom in May, we cannot ignore the pomegranate flower. The pomegranate is a deciduous shrub or small tree, and its flowers appear singly or in clusters at the ends of the branches.

The thick, bell-shaped calyx is smooth, waxy, and orange-red in color. The petals match the number of calyx lobes, growing within the calyx tube, and can be red, yellow, or white. The blooming period is from May to July, with the fruiting period from September to October.

The blossoming of pomegranate flowers is truly beautiful, and the phrase “pomegranate skirt” was used in ancient times as a metaphor for beautiful women, attesting to its beauty. The pomegranate flower symbolizes mature beauty, wealth, and a house full of children.

It’s cherished by many and serves as the city flower for Xinxiang, Xi’an, Zaozhuang, and Huangshi.

5. Rose, Blooming period: May – June

Rose, Blooming period: May - June

The rose is among the most famous and beloved flowers in the world, revered for centuries. Originating in China, the cultivation of roses can be traced back over 2000 years to the Han Dynasty.

The petals are ovate, semi-double to double, and come in shades of purple-red, yellow, pink, white, and various composite colors. Each color of the rose carries a different meaning. Roses bloom in May, with the blooming period typically from May to June. Over 300 chemical components can be found in roses.

As an economic crop, rose flowers are mainly used in the food industry and for extracting essential rose oil. This oil is used in cosmetics, food, fine chemicals, and other industries.

6. Gardenia, Blooming period: May – July

Gardenia, Blooming period: May - July

Which flowers bloom in May? The gardenia is one among the ten that bloom in this month. Also known as yellow gardenia, it blooms from May to July, and its flowers, leaves, and fruits are all beautiful.

When in bloom, the fragrance is overwhelming, making it an important ornamental plant for courtyards. Gardenias belong to the Rubiaceae family and prefer a sunny and well-ventilated environment but are averse to strong light and standing water. They are shade-tolerant and excellent aromatic flowers.

Apart from their ornamental value, gardenias can also be used medicinally – their flowers, fruits, leaves, and roots can help reduce fever, detoxify, and act as a diuretic. Their flowers can be used as tea spices, their fruits have anti-inflammatory properties, and they can even be used as paint pigments in artwork.

7. Lily of the Valley, Blooming period: May – June

Lily of the Valley, Blooming period: May - June

Lily of the Valley, also known as May bells, Our Lady’s tears, or Mary’s tears, is a perennial herb that typically grows in clusters. It blooms between May and June, offering beautiful bell-shaped flowers that come in varieties of pure white, pink, or speckled leaves.

The sight of Lily of the Valley flowers dancing in the wind is reminiscent of falling snow, creating a beautiful sight in May. By autumn, the plant produces bright, enticing red fruits.

This flower’s beauty is particularly loved by the naturally romantic French and the British, who fondly refer to it as “lily of the valley” and “lady’s tears.

8. Pansy, Blooming period: April – July

Pansy, Blooming period: April - July

Pansy is one of the flowers that bloom in May, during the early summer, and its flowering period is from April to July. This biennial or perennial herb from the Violet family usually produces flowers that each have purple, white, and yellow colors, hence its name “three-color violet.

Pansies are cold-tolerant, prefer cool and sunny environments, and are greatly influenced by sunlight. Originally from Northern Europe, pansies are commonly cultivated in both the southern and northern parts of China and are the national flower of Iceland and Poland.

Additionally, pansies have antibacterial properties and can be used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat skin conditions like acne, blackheads, and allergies. A pansy-infused bath can also promote breast enhancement.

9. Pyrostegia Venusta, Blooming period: January – June

Pyrostegia Venusta, Blooming period: January - June

Also known as the Flame Vine or Orange Trumpet Vine, Pyrostegia Venusta is a flowering plant that blooms in May with an especially long flowering period, from January to June in warmer regions. This flower is native to Brazil in South America but is now cultivated worldwide.

It thrives in sunny environments and fertile, moist, acidic soil. The Flame Vine can grow rapidly and has the ability to climb and grow upwards with support. In tropical Asia, it is widely cultivated as an ornamental vine for gardens, often planted around garden buildings and trellises.

The vibrant red-orange flowers bloom in clusters in early summer, resembling strings of firecrackers, hence the name “Flame Vine.

10. Tulip, Blooming period: March – May

Tulip, Blooming period: March - May

The tulip is a plant in the lily family and is one of the world’s most famous bulb flowers, as well as an excellent cut flower variety. Its blooming period is from March to May, making it a perfect flower for May.

Tulips are elegant, with vibrant, lotus-like flowers that are loved by many. Widely believed to be native to Turkey, the tulip is viewed as a symbol of victory and beauty in Western culture. It is cherished as the national flower in countries like the Netherlands, Iran, and Turkey.

Every spring, tulips bloom with a single flower per stem, large and striking. The petals can be red, mixed with white or yellow, or sometimes purely white or yellow, measuring about 5-7 cm long and 2-4 cm wide.