From “The Language of Flowers”: “Some flowers have held traditional meanings for centuries. Who does not at once associate the red rose with true love? The origin stories of many blooms, such as the iris, narcissus, and hyacinth, can be found in mythology. The association of others are found in the rich gardens of folk stories and medicine. The symbolic meanings of flowers were known to many people in Elizabethan times, and Shakespeare scattered meaninful reference to flowers throughout his plays.
It was the Victorians who codified these meaning into an elegant language without words. Hundreds of flowers, as well as grasses, herbs, and leaves used in arrangements, were assigned simple messages. People sent beautiful bouquets representing carefully-chosen sentiments. A gift of snow-drop blossoms, signifying hope, and jonquils, meaning a return of affection, could represent a suitor’s hope for return of affections.
The method of presentation was also important. A bouquet with a ribbon tied to the left presented information about the sender, tied to the right, it signified the recipient. Creative combinations added even more variety. Upside-down flowers carried opposite their normal meanings: to receive an inverted rose was a terrible blow.”
You may have your favorite flowers in mind for any occasion already, but if you would enjoy some additional thoughts on it, here are some flowers and their meanings:
Acacia (yellow) – Secret love
Camellia (red) – Loveliness
Carnation (pink) – Woman’s love
Carnation (red) – Alas for my poor love
Chrysanthemum (red) – Love
Clematis (white) – I love your mind
Clover, 4-Leaf – Be mine
Forget-Me-Not – True Love
Iris – Message
Ivy – Friendship, Fidelity
Jonquil – Return my affection
Lilac – First emotion of love
Lily of the Valley – Return of Happiness
Morning Glory – Affection
Peach Blossoms – I am your captive
Rose (bridal – Happy love
Rose (red) – Love
Tulip (red) – Declaration of love
And there are many more. Flowers are always fun, and signify thoughtfulness. But they could also be a way to start a conversation, make a romantic impression (especially if you have something to say along with the flowers!).
BTW, we have a much more complete list of flowers and their meanings. Email us if you have questions.