Flowers and Children’s Literature: A History & 2 Lists

Big Stock Photo

Big Stock Photo

Last week, I shared some of the flowers and blooming trees that are important to spring in South Dakota.

This week, I want to share how flowers have played an integral part of children’s literature. First, there are some beautiful illustrations in vintage children’s books. See Jill Casey’s post April Showers Bring May Flowers on her blog, The Art of Children’s Picture Books.

In other children’s stories, flowers have been important to the plot, the theme, or the characters, beyond a title or a character name.

Children’s fiction books I’ve read in which flowers are important:

  • The Story of Ferdinand by Munro Leaf, illus. by Robert Lawson
  • The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  • Dandelions by Eve Bunting, illus. by Greg Shed

Other flower-related children’s fiction books, but ones I haven’t read:

  • Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney
  • The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush, The Legend of the Bluebonnet, and The Legend of the Poinsettia by Tomie dePaola
  • Flower Fairies books by Cicely Mary Barker
  • Sunflower House by Eve Bunting, illus. by Kathryn Hewitt
  • Flower Fables by Louisa May Alcott
  • April Flowers by Donna Jo Napoli
  • What Flowers Remember by Shannon Wiersbitzky

What books should I add to my lists?


  1. Jane Heitman Healy

    great lists, Deb! You’d better get busy on that 2nd one. 😉 I’d add “Waiting for Wings” by Lois Ehlert, “Flower Garden” by Eve Bunting, & “The Curious Garden” by Peter Brown.

  2. Deb Watley

    I know! The more books I read, the more books there are to read. Thanks for the suggestions, too! Oh, I just thought of another one I’ve read–Anna Was Here by Jane Kurtz.

  3. Pingback: 2015 Tulip Festival in Orange City, Iowa | Deb Watley

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