Since the time of Geoffrey Chaucer in the High Middle Ages, Valentine’s Day has been more associated with romantic love than Christian martyrs. Giving gifts of flowers and sweets began in England in the 18th century. Roses are the most popular flower to be given on Valentine’s Day and each color has a special meaning, each one relating to love and friendship. Giving roses to a wife, lover or friend on Valentine’s Day is a good tradition and much appreciated by the receiver, but the sender should make sure he or she doesn’t send flowers that give the wrong message.
Flowers have become the gift of choice on February 14th because they symbolize the end of winter and the beginning of spring. They have represented marriage, love, fertility and romance for centuries. Some people even give rose bushes that can be planted and give blossoms for years.
Before Valentine’s Day Cards and text messages, flowers were given to send messages. This was started by Charles II of Sweden in the 18th century, and each flower had a specific meaning. In those days, it was possible to carry on a conversation simply by sending flowers. Today, flowers and colors still have meaning, but many people don’t realize this and give whatever flowers they like.
Red is the most traditional choice for Valentine’s Day because it expresses romantic love, but even among red roses there are differences. Full-blown red blooms mean continuing love, fiery red roses mean passion and cardinal red roses symbolize desire. Rose buds are a symbol for expressing love for the first time. The message is clear; I love you.
Light pink roses also express love, but it is not as passionate as the love expressed by red roses. Pink symbolizes gentility, elegance and poetic romance, and pink roses can be used as an expression of sympathy. It also means admiration as well as friendship. Dark pink roses may symbolize thankfulness and appreciation, a combination of red and pink roses send the message of romance. Pink roses are a good selection for Thank You.
Yellow roses are the right flower to give a great friend. They express appreciation for friendship and are suitable for new mothers, graduates and newlyweds. They represent platonic love without the romantic aspect and are a good choice for hospital patients who need cheering-up. The message with yellow roses is Friends Forever.
Orange and coral colored roses are not commonly given. They signify desire and passion. Peach roses mean appreciation and gratitude. They are also a good choice to send the message, Let’s Get Together.
Lavender or lilac-colored roses indicate enchantment. They signify love at first sight and are suitable for a budding relationship. Purple is associated with royalty and suggests majesty and grandeur as well as eternal love and is suitable for wedding anniversaries of 25 years or more.
White roses symbolize purity, unity, loyalty, innocence, charm, sincerity and love that is stronger than death. They are the flowers most used for weddings. In previous centuries, the white rose was used to symbolize romantic love, but that changed to the red rose. White rose buds are the perfect gift from a father to his young daughter. White roses are also suitable for a memorial as they symbolize honor, reverence and memories.
The colors of roses come in different shades which could convey intensity or delicacy. True believers in the messages of colors can combine several different colors and shades in one bouquet to send more complicated sentiments. For example, a bouquet of red and white roses signifies unity with the message that We Belong Together.