It’s easy to understand why flowers have represented the
strongest of human emotions throughout the ages. The beauty, fragrance and
elegance of floral bouquets convey heartfelt feelings in an instant. Why are
some flowers considered romantic and other are not? We may never know the exact
reasons for this, but we do know it all started long, long ago.
Romantic Flower History and Meanings
Romance and flowers are documented in ancient folklore,
Greek and Roman mythology and deep seated in literature. Venus, the Roman
goddess of love, had a penchant for the rose
and is often credited for its enduring symbol of affection. Besides tokens of
love, roses were used for medicinal purposes, as confetti at public events, and
to make perfume during the Roman period. During the 17th century, the demand
for roses was so great they became a bargaining tool as well as legal tender.
By the late 18th century, cultivated roses were growing in Europe, introduced
from China, and the link to modern day roses.
But roses are not the only flowers that symbolize affection.
also represents love, as does a red tulip
or a red chrysanthemum.
(ragweed) to someone means that love is reciprocated, but beware – it’s
also blamed for triggering allergies in those sensitive to it. The gift of primrose
flowers means you can’t live without the object of your love.
When you are ready to take the next step, send orange
blossoms. Those signify eternal love, marriage and fruitfulness. When
passion swells, give red poppies
for pleasure and mistletoe
for kisses and affection.
However, some flowers have a sinister reputation the public
might not be aware of. Did you know that a yellow rose denotes jealousy and a
decrease in love? An orange lily conveys hatred. A yellow carnation can mean
disappointment or rejection. Giving a yellow chrysanthemum represents slighted
love. (There seems to be a theme with yellow.) So be careful handing out those
When ready to depart, offering sweet
peas means you had a nice time. Leave a good impression with tiger
lilies for wealth, purple heather
for admiration, and a pink carnation
for never forgetting them. Throw in a cattail
for peace and prosperity.
Other flowers that evoke romance include bleeding
heart, which has pink heart-shaped flowers hanging in a row; lilacs
with their heady scent; the ‘Stargazer’ lily, which is pink to crimson with
dark spots and white edges; and delicate orchids
in varying colors and shapes.