Articles Tagged 'flower meanings'

February 15, 2017

Flower Feature – Hydrangea


One of the most beautiful and well-known species in the flower kingdom, is hydrangea. Hydrangea originated in many regions of the world, including North and South America, Europe and Asia. Now worldwide, they are very famous and a popular flower grown in gardens, while also being used at special occasions and weddings. Offering a variety of species in the kingdom, it is most famous for its hydrangea and Dutch hydrangea variety. The hydrangea species is famous for its large soft clusters and overwhelming beauty in its natural state. The hydrangea flower is grown on a hydrangea bush in single clusters containing multiple little flowers and blooms. Though each individual flower is very small, hydrangea’s florets are known for coming in full round clusters at the top of a single stem.


White Hydrangea Bouquet - A Modern Style - via Martha Stewart Weddings

White Hydrangea Bouquet-A Modern Style- via Martha Stewart Weddings


Hydrangea are most popular and known for their pure white petals, yet they are also grown in a variety of colors including purple, blue and pink. A small fact that many don’t know about hydrangea is that the color of the hydrangea flowers depends on the acidity of the soil they are grown in. This can determine whether they will produce, for example, blue or white flowers. Offering a complete range of colors, Dutch hydrangea bloom in a little more variety of colors than the average hydrangea, including white, green, and all shades of pink, blue and purple.



Hydrangea, though grown in many parts of the world,  thrive in moist soil with partial shade and die instantly when exposed to direct sunlight and heat. Another fact about the hydrangea is that they are the ‘camel’ of the flower world,  meaning they require and flourish off a huge amount of water. Hydrangea need to drink excessive amounts of water a day to stay crisp, fresh and silky. They get their name from the Greek word ‘hydro’, which means water, and ‘angeion’ which stands for vessel. This symbolic name is very fitting, since this species requires a lot of water to grow and lasts a long time.


Blue Hydrangea - Haute Hydrangea - photo by Hamptons Hostess

Blue Hydrangea – Haute Hydrangea – photo by Hamptons Hostess


Representing honesty, gratitude and the thought of giving, hydrangea makes for the perfect package for many occasions. Another aspect of this species is that its unique look can adapt to many wedding styles. From classic, romantic, modern, colorful or even neutral styles, hydrangea can modify and complement their surroundings beautifully. Hydrangea are a staple flower in the summer and spring, but are also used for special occasions during the other seasons. As we mentioned earlier, hydrangea are offered in blooms of white, purple, blue and pink, making them the perfect statement piece that complements both arrangements and brides. These flowers look beautiful and delicate, yet are very strong and have a long vase life with plenty of water. They are a classic choice, and one that complements each and every occasion.




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February 6, 2017

Flower Feature: Tulips



Tulips via Flickr

Tulips via Flickr


Popular in home gardens worldwide, the tulip is an essential asset to many floral design recipes. Known for its wide range of colors, bright bulbs and symbolic value, the tulip flower is a fan favorite.  In fact, tulips are the 3rd most popular flower in the world.

There are over 75 species of tulips, such as the Dutch tulip and parrot tulip.  Tulips are available in a variety of shapes, dimensions and colors, making them extremely versatile.



Tulips were first recorded growing in the Ottoman Empire. The word tulip comes from the Turkish word for turban, due to its tall, round shape. Today, many recognize the tulip as the emblem of Holland. When roaming the streets of the Netherlands, beloved tulips play a significant role in the nation’s cultural traditions and are loved by locals and tourists alike. Tulips were first brought to the Netherlands in the sixteenth century. Flemish botanist Carolus Clusius wrote a book about tulips in 1592 and they suddenly became so popular that his garden was raided and bulbs were stolen regularly! As the years went by, the Dutch became so fanatically obsessed with tulips that bulbs became immensely expensive.  Tulipmania, the name now given for this curious enthusiasm for tulips, peaked in 1637 and is considered the first example of an “economic bubble.”  Buying one tulip bulb at that time would have cost you 10 times the average national income.



Blossoming in vibrant shades of every color of the rainbow excluding blue, tulips are often thought to symbolize different things based on their color.  Purple correlates with royalty and elegance, red with love, white with forgiveness, and yellow with cheerfulness and joy.

Tulips bloom in the spring and early summer and produce wonderful wedding work. The bulbs bloom in a classic cup shape, with layers of petals curling out from all angles.  Tulips’ dark centers create beautiful contrast with their light outer petals.


Tulips via Pinterest

Tulips via Pinterest


Being single bloom stalks, tulips look best when grouped as a bunch. Tulips look great paired with greenery, smaller species like baby’s breath and wax flowers, and with other colored tulips. Tulips are great for any time of year, but tend to shine at garden-style weddings in the warmer months.



Charming, classic, and versatile, it’s easy to see why tulips never go out of style.


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December 8, 2016

Flower Feature: Dahlias


Purple Dahlia Bouquet via Deer Pearl Flowers

Purple Dahlia Bouquet via Deer Pearl Flowers


Full-bodied and bright, dahlias are all about the drama. While you may think  you’ve seen one dahlia, you’ve seen them all, the term ‘dahlia’ actually applies to 42 species and over two thousand sub-varieties and hybrids. From the exotic Firework dahlia, whose petals stand strong and stoic, to the Bitsy dahlia, whose inner petals cloak their center and softly extend outward layer after layer, the endless variations in size, color, and texture are mind-blowing.


Why so many blooms under one umbrella?  It all began in 1789, when botanical explorers traveled to Mexico and collected dahlias from their native land.  The original Mexican dahlia spread about 2 inches across with a single set of petals and a central disk or head, similar to a sunflower.  The species was transported to Madrid, where horticultural growers discovered dahlias to be natural and eager hybridizers, and soon dahlias were readily adopting many different colors and sizes.

Excited by their adaptability, dahlias established a stylish cult following among gardeners and flower enthusiasts across Europe in the mid-1800’s, and hybridizers across the world have been experimenting with dahlia breeding ever since.


Dahlia Card Table Arrangement / Shelley and Safa / Gurneys Montauk / Flora and Fauna

Dahlia Card Table Arrangement / Shelley and Safa / Gurneys Montauk / Flora and Fauna


Despite achieving incredible range in size ( 1-inch to 1-foot wide!) and covering almost all manner of colors and patterns, hybridizers remain stumped by the dahlia’s staunch resistance to blue.  Horticultural societies across Europe offered sizable cash prizes to anyone who could produce a true blue dahlia throughout the 1800’s, but there has yet to be evidence of a blue dahlia even today!  While the reason behind this refusal remains a mystery, dahlia breeders continue to cultivate new varieties every year, hoping to unlock even more potential from these generous Mexican blooms.

The Victorians saw the dahlia as a symbol of commitment between lovers, friends, or family members.  When given as a gift, dahlias were seen as an expression of dignity and elegance, a gesture of gratitude or admiration for a loved one who has performed a noble deed with grace.  Today, dahlias have come to symbolize change, transition, or a departure from the norm, recalling the flower’s eager willingness to take on many forms.


From a design standpoint, dahlias’ full-bodied petals and proud posture make them a seductive and eye-catching addition to bouquets and centerpieces. Their strong, trusty petals make smaller varieties a great filler for bouquets that need a pop of playful texture, while larger dahlias naturally carry a wonderful festive air about them that’s impossible to repress.


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November 28, 2016

Flower Feature: Anemones


These charming, vibrant blooms with their signature black center derive their name from the same Greek word meaning “the wind’s daughter.”

Anemones / Kristen & Dave / New York Botanical Gardens / Chad David Kraus Photography

Anemones / Kristen & Dave / New York Botanical Garden / Chad David Kraus Photography


Anemones open in the day and close up at night, a unique trait that played a symbolic role in the Greek myth of Aphrodite and her lover Adonis, a mortal.  The story goes that the two lovers would go hunting together in the woods, Adonis chasing game on foot and Aphrodite trailing behind him in her swan-driven chariot. Aphrodite’s ex-lover Aries soon grew jealous of their bond, and while Adonis was out hunting alone, his rival disguised himself as a boar and brutally attacked Adonis with his tusks.  While Adonis fought for his life, he was no match for a god and fell to his death on the forest floor.

Aphrodite rushed to his side, but it was too late.  In mourning, she sprinkled ceremonial nectar on her lover’s wounds and carried him out of the forest.  Turning back, she saw crimson anemones had sprouted out of the ground where each drop of blood had fallen.  The wind blowing the flowers open or closing them in stillness is said to represent the gain and loss of love.

There are over 150 varieties of anemones in a wide range of colors and shapes, bearing one to three blooms per stem.  Anemones’ petals are extremely delicate, but beautiful to watch furl and unfurl around their black or yellow fringed centers as they burst open towards the light, creating beautiful gestural lines.



Anemones make a stunning statement in bouquets and arrangements, thanks to their wide, deep centers and pastel or jewel-toned petals.  If you’re looking into a black-and-white wedding, anemones are one of the few flowers with true black centers that bring an impactful pop to a white bouquet or arrangement.

No matter your style or color scheme, incorporating anemones into your décor will bring drama, detail, and elegance to any ceremony or reception.



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July 24, 2014

The Traditional Meanings of Flowers That You May Not Know


Certainly wedding bouquets contain some of the most beautiful flowers in the world. This is reason enough to want to include them in your floral arrangements. You probably already know that beautiful flowers carry more weight to them than simply being aesthetically pleasing. What you may not know, however, is that some of your favorite flowers carry some intriguing meanings.


The Victorian Era ushered in a time of proper etiquette among the upper class in England during Queen Victoria’s reign (1837-1901). Among the many rules and customs, there were expected behaviors that prohibited outright flirtations, questions, or conversations between others.

Although the use of flowers to convey messages had been used in Persia and the Middle East, it was during the Victorian Era and the publication of flower dictionaries explaining the meaning of plants, flowers and herbs, that the tradition began to spread throughout England. Soon it became popular to use flowers to send secretive messages. Though often portrayed to relay positive messages of interest, affection and love, flowers could also send a negative message and at times, the same flower could have opposite meanings depending on how it was arranged or delivered.

So which flowers have you selected, or are thinking of using, for your floral arrangements? If you need some ideas, you may be intrigued by what both the flower type and color can mean, and if you’d like, could consider them when making your arrangement choices. Either that, or simply create the meaning for yourself. To get you started, here are some meanings for a few common wedding floral choices:

The Hydrangea: Perseverance  


The Daisy: Innocence


The Lilac: First Love 


The Calla Lily: Regal


The Orchid: Delicate Beauty


The Peony: Healing


The Rose (4 Different Colors with Meanings):
Pink: Admiration/Appreciation


Red: Passionate Love


Red with White: Unity


White: Purity


Yellow: Friendship


There are so many flowers out there to select from. If you would like to learn more about the meaning of flowers, great resources include: and Victoria Diffenbaugh’s novel “The Language of Flowers.” As Diffenbaugh says,

“Knowing what you now know about the language of the flowers, to whom would you send a bouquet and what would you want it to say?”



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January 22, 2014

Types of Wedding Flowers, Part 2


I hope that everyone is having a wonderful week. We have had a great response to our photos of common types of wedding flowers that we posted the other week and wanted to follow up with some additional information on each type of flower, with some fun facts! Enjoy!

Flower: Manzanita branches

Common names:

Colors: natural red, sandblasted, and assorted spray painted colors.

Natural season: dried, year round.

Fun Fact: There are 106 species of manzanita branches.


Flower: Anemone

Common names: wind poppy, wind flower, and lily of the field.

Colors: white, pink, red, mauve, burgundy, red, and purple.

Natural season: autumn and spring.

Fun Fact: the name anemone is derived from the Greek word for wind anemos, hence it’s nickname, the wind flower.


Flower: Curly Willow

Common names:

Colors: natural and assorted spray painted colors.

Natural season: year round.

Fun Fact: commonly used as décor for homes, corporate events, and weddings.


Flower: Phalaenopsis Orchids

Common names: moth orchid

Colors: white, pink, lavender, and yellow.

Natural season: late spring and summer.

Fun Fact: there are about 60 species of phalaenopsis orchids, and over 50 man made hybrids.


Flower: Dendrobium Orchids

Common names: Singapore orchid.

Colors: white, pink, lavender, yellow, and lime.

Natural season: spring

Fun Fact: the dendrobium orchid is actually a hybrid variety of the gorgeous vanda orchid.


Flower: Mokara Orchids

Common names:

Colors: yellow, orange, red, purple, and pink.

Natural season: spring and fall.

Fun Fact: Mokara orchids are a hybrid of arachnis, ascocentrum and vanda orchids.


Flower: Stephanotis

Common names: wax flower, and Madagascar chaplet flower.

Colors: white.

Natural season: spring, summer, and early autumn.

Fun Fact: the light and delicate stephanotis flower is native to Madagascar and its name is derived from the Greek words for crown of ears.


Flower: Gardenia

Common names: cape jasmine.

Colors: white.

Natural season: late spring and summer.

Fun Fact: this divine smelling flower is native to China and some varieties are also native to South Africa.


Flower: Cymbidium Orchid

Common names:

Colors: white, pink, red, orange, yellow, cream, lime, purple, mauve, and several other varieties.

Natural season: from late summer in hothouses, from winter to late spring in natural conditions.

Fun Fact: cymbidiums have been cultivated for thousands of years, especially in ancient China.


Flower: Gypsophila

Common names: baby’s breath, and million stars.

Colors: pink and white.

Natural season: spring, summer, and early autumn.

Fun Fact: this flower is native to Eastern Europe, and has made a huge comeback in floral wedding décor.


Flower: Chrysanthemum

Common names: painted daisy, pockets, mums, buttons, Paris daisy, and spider mum.

Colors: a wide variety of colors.

Natural season: autumn and early winter.

Fun Fact: the Chinese cultivated this flower in 500 BC. it was thought to have many powers, and was used for headache ailments, festive drinks, and for salads.


Flower: Carnation

Common names: dianthus, pinks, gillyflower, sweet william, sim, spray, chinensini, egan, micro, and Indian pink.

Colors: a wide variety of colors and variegations.

Natural season: all year round.

Fun Fact: a pink carnation is a symbol of woman’s love, while a red carnation represents divine love.


Flower: Rose

Common names: rosa.

Colors: a wide variety of colors and variegations.

Natural season: all year round (hothouse varieties), and spring, summer, and autumn (garden varieties)

Fun Fact: roses are the most popular bridal flower, and have about 250 species.



Flower: Tulip

Common names: tulipa, turban lily, and parrot tulip.

Colors: a wide variety of colors and variegations.

Natural season: late winter and spring (available commercially from glasshouses year round)

Fun Fact: tulips are popular garden plants in eastern and western cultures, however the tulip was a symbol of paradise on earth and had almost a divine status in Turkish cultures.


Flower: Sweetpea

Common names: lathyrus

Colors: pink, mauve, yellow, cream, peach, purple, and burgundy.

Natural season: late winter, spring, and summer.

Fun Fact: these common wedding flowers were the rage in the Victorian era, and were a favorite of Queen Alexandra in Edwardian times.


Flower: Ranunculus

Common names: turban buttercup, and buttercup.

Colors: wide variety of colors.

Natural season: late winter and spring.

Fun Fact: these lovely and delicate flowers are very poisonous to livestock.


Flower: Peony

Common names: paeonia, and tree peony.

Colors: pink, white, speckled, yellow, light pink, dark pink, burgundy, and red.

Natural season: late spring.

Fun Fact: these splendid blooms are some of the most sought after flowers for bridal flowers, yet have a short availability window.


Flower: Lisianthus

Common names: eustoma, prairie gentian, tulip gentian, and lissie.

Colors: dark purple, light purple, mauve, pink, white, cream, yellow, and several variegations.

Natural season: late spring and summer.

Fun Fact: lisianthus is an American wildflower and is native to North America.


Flower: Hypericum

Common names: St. Johns wart, rose of Sharon, berries, Aaron’s beard, and Chinese

Colors: yellow (flowers), red, lime, pink, coral, orange (berries)

Natural season: spring and summer.

Fun Fact: in Australia, hypericum are so abundant, they are seen as a type of weed.


Flower: Hydrangea

Common names:

Colors: white, pink, mauve, blue, dark pink, and burgundy.

Natural season: late spring, summer, and early autumn.

Fun Fact: hydrangea love to drink a lot of water, hence the origin of its name is derived from the Greek word for water.


Flower: Gerbera

Common names: Transvaal daisy, Barberton daisy, and African daisy.

Colors: a wide variety of colors and variegations.

Natural season: spring.

Fun Fact: white gerberas symbolize innocence, orange represents sunshine, and yellow means try a little harder.


Flower: Freesia

Common names:

Colors: ivory with yellow center, pink, dark pink, mauve, dark purple, white, and burgundy.

Natural season: late winter and spring.

Fun Fact: freesia was not known outside South Africa until the mid 1950’s, and is now loved and sold all over the world.


Flower: Dahlia

Common names:

Colors: wide range of colors available.

Natural season: summer.

Fun Fact: dahlia’s have also been used for healing and medicinal uses, such as prescribed to diabetics before insulin was invented.


Flower: Calla Lily

Common names: arum lily, lily of the Nile, pig lily, and zantedeschia.

Colors: pink, white, orange, red, dark purple, green, and yellow.

Natural season: spring and summer.

Fun Fact: calla lilies are native to South Africa, and are commonly called the pig lily.


Flower: Artemisia

Common names: lambs ear, dusty miller, and lacey dusty miller.

Colors: silver/green

Natural season: summer, spring, and fall.

Fun Fact: although  wintery in appearance, the dusty miller plant loves a lot of sunlight and a warm climate.



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Bride & Blossom

Bride & Blossom