Have you ever wondered about the meaning behind the most popular flowers? Read on to find out.
Red roses are the most romantic way to say “I love you” on Valentine’s Day. Moms love seeing sunflowers and tulips on their dining room tables on Mother’s Day. And in sympathy, there’s something about a bunch of daisies that has the power to ease a grieving mind, if only for a moment.
In short, flowers have power. There’s a reason it’s a $34.3 billion industry in the U.S. Odds are, you’ve contributed to that number.
If you’ve got a loved one’s birthday, funeral, or special occasion coming up, you’re likely considering which of the most popular flowers will send the right message. Before you make the call, read up on their meanings!
There are between 25,000 and 30,000 different types of orchid in the world. Don’t let that number overwhelm you, though; each type finds their etymological roots in the same place.
In ancient Greece there lived a botanist named Theophrastus. He was one of the first ones to come across an orchid, and therefore got the honor of naming it. Since the flower has a tuber sticking out from the middle, Theophrastus’ salty mind couldn’t help but notice the phallic look of the plant.
And that’s how the orchid came to be named after the Greek word for testicles, “orkhis.”
Today, orchids are symbolic of healthy fertility and sensual love. They’re perfect for an elegant and unique Valentine’s Day bouquet or even as a gift at a baby shower!
Roses: they’re everyone’s favorite flower, symbolizing love and care. They’re also one of the only flowers with varying meanings according to color and count.
When it comes to color, red symbolizes romance. White means innocence, yellow means friendship, pink means gratitude, and orange means passion. Choose your color accordingly to convey different messages to your recipient.
The number of roses you give has its own special romantic meaning, too. You can use this code to ask someone out, let someone know you’ve got a crush on them, or tell your spouse how much you value them.
One rose means love at first sight, and two means deep love. Three is a simple “I love you,” six asks to be yours, and seven say you’ve got a crush. The classic dozen, of course, is a traditional, bold declaration of love.
Daisies are internationally known to symbolize innocence and sweetness. They’ve reaped this reputation from a few very different myths.
The first is Celtic, which says that God sprinkles daisies in front of the homes of parents who have just lost an infant to cheer them up. In Norse mythology, daisies are the sacred flower of the goddess Freya. Since Freya is the goddess of fertility, daisies are usually given as gifts to new mothers!
They’re not just pretty to look at, either. Daisies are edible; they’re often used to adorn salads, and daisy tea can treat bronchitis. They can be rubbed onto wounds to prevent inflammation, too.
Daisies are perfect for new mothers, little girls, and anyone born in April (they’re April’s official flower!).
Daffodils are special because they have varied meaning across the globe. In most places, they mean new beginnings. This is because they bloom so early in Spring, typically right after the last frost melts.
They get their Latin name, Narcissus, from an ancient Greek myth about a beautiful river god who’s head got a little too big. When he became irreversibly enamored with his own reflection in a river, he accidentally fell in and drowned. The Narcissus flowers, or Daffodils, that grew on the riverbank were then named for him.
Today, Daffodils are often given during lent, the time between Ash Wednesday and Easter. Next time you’re at an Easter service, you’ll likely notice Daffodils there. They’re also the traditional ten year wedding anniversary gift, the official March flower, and the official American Cancer Society flower!
The sunflower is so named because of its actions. We often forget plants are alive, since they seemingly have no agency, but the sunflower is a different story. It actually changes its position to face the sun better.
There’s an ancient Greek myth that some turn to as reasoning for the sunflower’s behavior.
When a jealous lover tattled on the Greek god Apollo and his new mistress, the mistress’ father killed the mistress out of anger. Apollo was enraged and turned his former lover into a sunflower as punishment for getting his mistress killed. The lover, now a sunflower, still pined for Apollo and turned to watch as he rode his chariot across the sky.
Thanks to this myth, today, sunflowers are symbolic of loyalty and unwavering love. Some Native American tribes believe sunflowers symbolize healthy harvests, probably because their seeds are edible.
For those religious friends of yours, a bouquet of Calla Lilies is the perfect gift. They symbolize faithfulness and holiness, and can often be found alongside the Virgin Mary in paintings and illustrations. Since they bloom around Easter, Jesus’ time of resurrection, they’re also often associated with rebirth.
Their snow-white color and effortless trumpet shape inspired their name. They’re named after the Greek word for beautiful, which is “calla.” Legend has it that the goddess of love, Venus, saw the flowers on earth and grew angry in jealousy of their beauty. She decided to smite them by placing a protruding yellow pistil in the center to tar their beauty.
Sorry, Venus; they’re just as beautiful as ever, yellow pistil and all!
Looking for Popular Flowers?
So, what’ll it be? Innocent daisies, suggestive Orchids, or love-filled sunflowers? Regardless of which of these popular flowers you’ve fallen in love with most, we can help.
We specialize in sending beautiful flowers to all your loved ones. Check out our featured flower bouquets – one of them has your loved one’s name on it (or it will soon, anyway!)