|The national flower of the Republic of Korea is Mugung-hwa, also known as the Rose of Sharon. Mugung-hwa has a meaning that a flower blooming forever without withering: "mugung" means endlessness, immortality and "hwa" means flower. As the word "mugung" symbolizes, all the Koreans have demonstrated the perseverance and determination throughout their long history. That is, Mugung-hwa represents the wish for lasting national development and prosperity.
For centuries, Koreans have loved the rose of Sharon. According to records, Koreans have treasured Mugung-hwa as a heavenly flower since ancient times. In fact, the Go-Joseon called itself "Geunhwahyang," the country of Mugung-hwa and also the Silla Kingdom called itself Mugung-hwa Country. The ancient Chinese even referred to Korea as the "Land of Gentlemen where Mugung-hwa Blooms." As the rose of Sharon, Mugung-hwa, has been an important part of the Korean history and culture for centuries and as all the Koreans have loved it, it was surely logical and natural that the Korean government adopted it as the national flower after Korea was liberated from Japanese colonial rule. Love for the flower has been further heightened when Mugung-hwa was written into the national anthem of the late 19th century, which was composed in 16 bars by Ahn Ik-Tae, and sung by every Korean.
Mugung-hwa blooms everyday from early July to the end of October. As many as 2,000 or 3,000 blossoms bloom on a single plant. There are more than 100 cultivars of it with single, semi-double, and double types of flowers. Depending on the colors, Mugung-hwa is divided into three groups such as Dansim (flower with red center), Baedal (pure white flower), and Asadal (pink dots on the edges of the petals), and the single type of Dansim mainly serves as Korea's national flower.