Idaho State Symbols
According to Watchtutorials, the nickname of Idaho is the Gem State. This nickname was given to Idaho in the late 1800s by a newspaper editor named George M. Willing, who wrote that “Idaho is a gem of a state, of which the Nation can well be proud.” The name was adopted by the state legislature in 1890 and has been used ever since.
The name Gem State alludes to Idaho’s wealth of natural resources and beauty. The state is home to a variety of minerals, including garnets, opals, jasper, quartz, and jade. It also has some of the most stunning scenery in the United States with majestic mountains and deep canyons that are filled with geysers and hot springs. From its breathtaking lakes and rivers to its lush forests and rolling hillsides, there is something for everyone to enjoy in Idaho.
According to Beautyphoon, this nickname also speaks to Idaho’s rich history as a pioneer state; it was one of the last states admitted into the Union in 1890. Since then, it has become one of the fastest-growing states due to its strong economy and low cost of living. With its diverse population and vibrant culture, Idaho truly lives up to its nickname as a gem among states.
The state bird of Idaho is the Mountain Bluebird. It belongs to the thrush family, which is made up of over 200 species of birds that inhabit both North and South America. The Mountain Bluebird is known for its bright blue plumage, which can range from light blue to deep blue-violet in color. Its wings are slightly darker than its body and the tail has a white bar in the center. The male’s head and back are a deeper shade of blue than the female’s. The Mountain Bluebird typically measures 5–7 inches long with a wingspan of 8–10 inches. It has short but strong legs and feet which allow it to perch on branches or even on wires.
Mountain Bluebirds are found in open areas like fields, meadows, pastures, and along roadsides across western North America from Alaska down to Mexico. They prefer habitats with sparse trees and plenty of open space for them to hunt for insects or catch flying insects mid-air with their beaks. In Idaho, the Mountain Bluebird can be seen during springtime as they migrate northward through the state in search of breeding grounds where they will find ample food sources such as insects, spiders, and other invertebrates that make up their diet. During this time they will flock together in large numbers while singing their melodious songs that can span up to two octaves!
The state flower of Idaho is the Syringa, or Mock Orange. The Syringa has a long history in the state, with it being declared the official state flower in 1931. It was chosen for its beauty and hardiness, as it can survive Idaho’s cold winters and hot summers. The Syringa is a deciduous shrub that grows up to 10 feet tall and produces white flowers with four petals that have a sweet fragrance. The flowers bloom in late spring and early summer, providing color to the landscape. The leaves are dark green and lanceolate shaped and are arranged opposite of each other on the stem. The bark of the Syringa is grayish-brown with a smooth surface. This shrub is also known for its thicket-forming habit which can be used as a natural barrier or windbreak around homes or gardens.
The state tree of Idaho is the Western White Pine, a species native to the state. It is an evergreen conifer that can grow up to 250 feet in height, with a trunk diameter of up to five feet. Its needles are long and soft, ranging in color from green-blue to yellow-green. The bark is scaly and grayish-brown in color. The cones are large and cylindrical, typically measuring between four and five inches in length. They have a slightly curved shape and contain numerous seeds that are dispersed by wind or birds. The Western White Pine is an important species in the ecology of Idaho, providing habitat for many species of wildlife as well as timber for construction projects. It is also an important source of lumber for furniture making and other wood products. The Western White Pine is especially valued by Idahoans due to its historical significance; it was an important source of lumber for settlers during the 19th century, when most trees had been logged from other parts of the country. In addition to its ecological importance, this species has cultural significance as well; Native American tribes have used its bark for medicinal purposes and its branches were used traditionally in basket weaving and other crafts.