The Language of Flowers: Meanings Behind Your Favorite Blooms

Have you heard of the phrase, “Say it with flowers”? Meaning has been attributed to blooms in different cultures throughout history. You’ll see it in various forms of written pieces—from the Hebrew Bible to Shakespearean plays. But it was only during the Victorian era that floriography—or the language of flowers—grew in popularity. Flower arrangements were used as a mode of communication to convey coded messages.

Today, we continue to use blooms to express our feelings without words. They let us show our appreciation, care, and more. Here’s a list of popular flowers and the meanings behind them:

1. Rose

The rose is widely considered the timeless symbol of love. But each of its various colors has a different meaning. The popular red rose represents romance and passion and is usually given to a lover. Meanwhile, the yellow one connotes friendship and care. Traditionally associated with marriages, white roses are also an homage to new beginnings. Pink roses, on the other hand, represent joy and gratitude.

2. Tulip

While roses generally convey romantic love, tulips symbolize perfect, deep, and undying love. It applies to anyone near and dear to you, whether it’s for a family member or a treasured friend.

Tulips are a thoughtful gift to show someone that you love them unconditionally. They also suit many spaces as your home décor. A floral wreath or garland with these blooms are sure to brighten any room.

3. Orchid

Orchids have different symbolisms, one of which is elegance. During the Victorian age, these tall, slender flowers only grew in the tropics. People would collect and give these blooms as a sign of luxury and refined taste.

In China, orchids are also considered an emblem of wealth and fortune. Use them to manifest prosperity in your home. Consider them also as thoughtful good luck charms for your peers or relatives.

4. Hellebore

The hellebore represents serenity, tranquility, and peace. This beautiful flower thrives in cold weather. It usually blossoms in winter and early spring. One of its variants is actually called the “Christmas rose.”

Insider’s Tip: Go for artificial flowers so you won’t have to worry about whether the blooms you’re eyeing are child- and pet-safe.

5. Dahlia

The most common meaning of the dahlia flower is finding inner strength. This symbolism is rooted in the flower’s ability to withstand harsh conditions. The gorgeous bloom is indigenous to the highlands of Central America and Mexico. The latter considers the dahlia its national flower.

6. Peony

The peony is an important flower in both history and mythology. Thus, it holds many flower meanings. The showy blossom has been cultivated for more than 1,600 years, which spans across different Chinese dynasties. Dubbed the “king of flowers,” it symbolizes nobility, honor, and wealth. Meanwhile, Greek mythology ties the peony to either compassion or bashfulness.

7. Ranunculus

Symbolizing charm and attractiveness, the ranunculus is the perfect tribute to someone you admire. It comes in a wide range of colors, making it a great gifting option for different personalities. As a home décor accent, it suits different types of celebrations. White ranunculus flowers are ideal for weddings, birthdays, and anniversaries. For housewarming parties, go for pink, orange, and yellow blooms.

8. Lavender

Lavender is commonly associated with healing and relaxation. Many use the real blooms and their essential oils for aromatherapy and sleep. Others adore the flower for the distinct look. Bunches of lavender call to mind pictures of idyllic fields in Provence, France. Elevate the cozy feel of any space with these graceful stems.

Insider’s Tip: The color purple can help relax the mind. A great way to surround your home with the hue is by incorporating it through artificial floral décor.

9. Daisy

Daisies were a sacred symbol for Freya, the Norse goddess of love, beauty, and fertility. As such, the flowers became an emblem of childbirth and motherhood. They’re occasionally given as a congratulatory present for new mothers. The flower also symbolizes new beginnings. In fact, Old English referred to it as “day’s eye.” Its petals folded into its yellow center at night and opened again during the day.

While commonly portrayed as a white flower, it also comes in a range of shades of blue, pink, and red.

10. Protea

The protea represents diversity and courage. These flower meanings make it a wonderful addition to celebrations such as Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day. Proteus, the Greek god of shapeshifting and son of Poseidon, inspired the name. Aptly, the protea comes in many different shapes, sizes, and colors. The beautiful and unique appearance stands out in any floral arrangement.

11. Cherry Blossom

The cherry blossom symbolizes spring or a time of renewal. In Japan, the flower is called “sakura” and is a major part of the country’s identity. They use it in many aspects of their culture as their national flower. Further, they celebrate it yearly through the “hanami” (or “flower viewing”). Cherry blossoms also serve as a metaphor for human life—each bud only blooms for around two weeks, representing the transience of life.

Insider’s Tip: You can enjoy cherry blossoms all year round through an artificial flower arrangement.

12. Bougainvillea

Widely considered as a sign of welcome, peace, and free trade, the bougainvillea is native to South America and grows in tropical regions around the world. Locals use it in leis to welcome visitors to Hawaii, while countries including Australia, Fiji, and India celebrate the flower through festivals.

Now that you’re familiar with the language of flowers and their meanings, you can choose countless ways to express yourself using artificial florals, which may last just as long as the messages you want to convey through them.

We hope this helped you decide on which flowers to get for your upcoming celebrations. Sign up for our email newsletter to get updates about exclusive offers, new products, and decorating inspiration.

Bring joy to your home this summer with beautiful accents made even more affordable.

Be Inspired

Read our decorating guides to learn how to fill your home with bright florals:

Write A Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Balsam Hill Videos

View All Videos

Watch step-by-step decorating how-tos, product guides, designer stories, and more. Subscribe to our Youtube Channel today.

Follow us on Instagram Instagram Logo

Create moments you’ll cherish with our most realistic Christmas trees and premium home décor. Share your special memories with us on Instagram using #InspiredByBalsamHill