La primavera (spring) is the perfect time to grow your vocabulary.
One of the best feelings in the world is emerging from a bracing, cold winter to a relaxing, warm spring day with the scent of new growth in the air.
Trees, bushes, grass and, especially, flowers smell wonderful after the frigid cold of winter.
Spring is a metaphor for renewal, new beginnings and new habits—such as improving your Spanish seasonal vocabulary.
With all its lovely colors, spring is the perfect time to add some words to your jardín del vocabulario (vocabulary garden). Here are 30 Spanish spring words to start you off and put some spring into your step… and your vocabulary list.
30 Fresh Spanish Spring Words to Grow Your Vocabulary
Stop to Smell las Flores (the Flowers)
In my opinion, flowers are the best part of spring! Before you can talk about flowers, however, you need to learn the different flower parts:
el capullo — bud
la hoja — leaf
el tallo — stem
la raíz — root
el pétalo — petal
la semilla/la simiente — seed
Learning the individual parts of a flower is an elementary botany lesson. It’s also an important Spanish language lesson. The key to true fluency is to go beyond the broad terms for things in Spanish, and really get into the details.
Now that you’ve learned the individual flower parts, you can grow your vocabulary by naming specific flowers in Spanish. Many flower names are English-Spanish cognates; that is, they’re the same or similar in both languages (like rosa — rose), so we’ve picked out some beautiful Spanish flower words that you might not have known!
la amapola — poppy
el girasol — sunflower
el narciso — daffodil
la margarita — daisy
la azucena — lily
el lirio — iris
Grow Some Jardín (Garden) Verbs
Having nouns without verbs is like planting seeds without water. You need verbs to have make your garden nouns sprout into flowers. Here are some useful spring action words that’ll help your vocabulary bloom:
crecer — to grow, increase
Crecer is the verb you’d use to speak about plants growing:
El girasol crece debajo del sol. (The sunflower grows under the sun.)
But it doesn’t just pertain to plants. It can also be used to refer to growth and increase in terms of humans, plants, grades, rent, prices, taxes… I think you get the idea.
florecer, abrirse — to blossom/open
Florecer and abrirse are synonyms and can both be used to talk about flowers blooming.
Abrirse is the reflexive form of abrir, meaning “to open.” When you add the reflexive pronoun se to the verb, its meaning changes to “to open oneself, to open up,” which is exactly what flowers do when they bloom:
Cada día los pétalos de las prímulas se abren. (Every day the petals of the primroses open.)
Florecer, on the other side of la hoja (the leaf), has other meanings. It can also be used to mean “to flourish” and “to prosper,” so you can use it when talking about plants but also in reference to other things that do well, like your botany business, for instance. Here it is in relation to nature:
Odio que las malas hierbas florezcan en mi jardín. (I hate that weeds flourish in my garden.)
cavar — to dig
Cava el agujero aquí, por favor. (Dig the hole here, please.)
regar — to water
Es importante que riegues las plantas nuevas. (It’s important that you water new plants.)
plantar — to plant
Planté las margaritas y las amapolas cerca del árbol. (I planted daisies and poppies close to the tree.)
germinar, brotar, echar — to sprout
Although all three of the verbs above mean “to sprout,” they each have their own nuances.
Echar is one of those complicated Spanish verbs that have multiple meanings, such as: “to throw,” “to pour,” “to emit,” “to send,” “to reckon,” “to fire,” “to begin” and many more. To use it as “to sprout,” you’d say:
Las semillas echan de la tierra. (The seeds sprout from the earth.)
Germinar is a more specific way to say “to sprout,” and it’s used exclusively when speaking about seeds. In fact, you might have noticed that it sounds like the English word “to germinate”!
Brotar is another way to say “to sprout”:
El arce japonés brota hojas rojas. (The Japanese maple sprouts red leaves.)
You can’t use these verbs as is, of course. For some help conjugating any of these words, head over to SpanishDict’s conjugation dictionary.
Describe Your Garden with Colorful Adjectives
You now have a nice list of words associated with flowers and spring, but they’re only nouns and verbs. Let’s make your flower vocabulary garden grow even more by adding some colorful words. Think of these adjectives as the plant food and fertilizer for your vocabulary!
brillante — bright, vibrantly-colored
El lirio anaranjado tiene pétalos brillantes. (The orange iris has bright petals.)
verde — verdant
Las yerbas del prado son verdes y blandas. (The meadow grasses are verdant and soft.)
espléndido — glorious
La balsa con los lirios acuáticos, las ranas y los peces es espléndida. (The pond with waterlilies, frogs and fish is glorious.)
resistente — hardy
Ese diente de león es la peor mala hierba porque es muy resistente. (That dandelion is the worst weed because it’s very hardy.)
exuberante, lozano — lush
El parque tiene mucho arboles y flores lozanos. (The park has many lush trees and flowers.)
frondoso — leafy
La hortensia es una flor verde y frondosa. (The hydrangea is a verdant and leafy flower.)
You might have noticed this from the example sentences, but Spanish adjectives are a little different from English ones. To use a Spanish adjective, you usually place it after the noun it’s describing. Learning about adjectives and their uses can bring some life to your sentences.
Achoo! Talk About Allergies
Many people around the world love spring, but there’s one group of people who aren’t as friendly with the beautiful season. Who are these strange people?
They’re alérgicos (allergy sufferers)!
All they can do is don a mask and goggles, swallow some allergy pills and wait for colder and dryer weather to come their way.
If you suffer from allergies, you can express your misery in Spanish.
el polen — pollen
Las abejas aman el polen, pero los alérgicos lo odian. (Bees love pollen, but allergy sufferers hate it.)
la caspa — dander
No quieres saber cuáles materiales asquerosos encuentras en la caspa. (You don’t want to know what gross stuff you’ll find in dander.)
taponado; atascado — stuffy, congested
Tengo la nariz taponada. (My nose is stuffy.)
estornudar — to sneeze
No sé quién estornuda más, mi perro o mi gato. (I don’t know who sneezes more, my dog or my cat.)
sorberse — to sniffle
Sorberse is one verb that definitely needs its reflexive pronoun article in order to keep its meaning. If you remove it, sorberse becomes sorber, which means “to swallow,” “to sip,” “to soak up,” “to swallow up” and even “to listen attentively.”
Cuando fui al arboreto, me sorbí la nariz. (When I went to the arboretum, I sniffled.)
resollar — to wheeze
Los alérgicos resuellan porque el viento sopla el polen y la caspa. (Allergy sufferers wheeze because the wind blows pollen and dander.)
Resollar also means “to breathe heavily”:
Mi primo extraño resuella en la primavera. (My weird cousin breathes heavily in the spring.)
You’re now equipped with a garden’s worth of Spanish vocabulary. Now what? It’s time to put your Spanish floral words to work. Here are a few ways you can actually use your spring vocabulary.
Take a walk at a local arboretum, nature trail or park. Bring along your partner, children or friends and see if you can identify the flower parts and the specific flowers in Spanish correctly.
If you see more flowers and other plants you recognize but don’t know the Spanish word for, you can create your own flower and plant list.
An even better idea is to test out your green thumb. Visit your local nursery or garden supply shop, locate the flowers your learned about here and plant them. Be sure to test out your Spanish verbs while caring for the flowers!
You can also take photos of all these lovely flowers, post them online and then label all of them with your new Spanish words. Impress your friends by knowing the flowers and plants’ names in another language, or join a Spanish-speaking community of plant-lovers.
If you’re an allergy sufferer, you can see all the splendor of spring from the comfort of your home thanks to the internet.
Everyone can enjoy this beautiful season, and now you have the Spanish spring words to reinforce your language learning while you do it!