Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
4 ratings

Wednesday - May 14, 2008

From: San Antonio, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildflowers
Title: Spanish name for bluebonnet
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Anne Ruggles

QUESTION:

What is the Spanish name for bluebonnet? They were in Texas before any other Europeans and must have named the flower. I cannot find it anywhere.

ANSWER:

One Mexican name for Lupinus texensis (Texas bluebonnet) is "el conejo" (the rabbit) referring to the white tip of the flower that resembles the tail of a cottontail rabbit, according to Silverthorne in Legends and Lore of Texas Wildflowers (p. 22) and Andrews in The Texas Bluebonnet (p. 13).

We also found a couple of other Spanish names given to the bluebonnet in an older dictionary (Williams, Edwin B. Spanish and English dictionary. Diccionario inglés y español. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1962). The other two words were:

1. "azulejo"—the major definition is 'tile', but it was also defined as 'bluebonnet', 'indigo bunting' and 'cornflower'.

2. "aciano"—defined as 'bluebonnet' and 'cornflower'

Then, on SpanishDict.com we found these translations for 'bluebonnet':

!. "gorra azul, mote de los soldados escoceses, que llevan tal gorra" = bluebonnet (or blue cap), nickname for Scottish soldiers who wore such a bonnet (or cap)—not necessarily related to the flower.

2. "flor azul silvestre" = wild blue flower

The botanical name, Lupinus texensis, is the same in every language, of course.

 

 

More Wildflowers Questions

Will Texas Bluebonnets grow in Gardiner, NY
May 06, 2010 - Will Texas bluebonnets grow in the Mid Hudson Valley New York? If so when and how is the best time to plant.
view the full question and answer

Blooms as far as the eye can see
March 06, 2008 - Why are some wildflowers capable of putting on spectacular sweeps of blooms "for as far as the eye can see" such as Indian paintbrush at Vail Pass in Colorado, or bluebonnets in the Texas hill count...
view the full question and answer

Identification of Daucus pusillus, native alternative to Daucus carota
June 15, 2007 - What happened to "Queen Anne's Lace"? Growing up in Texas, I recall seeing "Queen Anne's Lace" growing wild. In my mind, the blooms were rather large. The plants I see growing profusely along th...
view the full question and answer

Curling, Red Leaves on Gaura
July 18, 2013 - My gaura had most of its lower leaves turn red and then fall off. It is July now, I bought and planted it in May where it seemed to do really well growing several more inches tall and blooming nicely....
view the full question and answer

When can native wildflower mix seeds be planted from Rosenberg TX
May 30, 2012 - I received a package of "All Native Wildflower Mix". The package says plant in Spring. Is too late to plant now or should I wait for next March?
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.