The language of flowers

What would you like to say?

For hundreds of years, flowers have been associated with meanings, conveying messages from the heart. The official name for this floral language is floriography, and its history is rooted in folk tales and cultural customs. From paintings and poetry to bouquets of flowers, learn this language to decipher hidden messages, and send some of your own.

The language of flowers funnyhowflowerdothat.co.ukCopyright: The Wunderkammer for The Green Gallery

Secretly flirting with flowers

Floriography was especially popular in the modest Victorian era, when open flirting was not acceptable. Flowers were called upon to transmit coded messages from secret admirers and between the betrothed. Individuals sent small bouquets, called nosegays, to each other, which were full of hidden meaning. The receiver would have floriography reference books at their disposal, to consult from and decipher the meaning. That is how they could remember that yellow tulips meant ‘our love is impossible’ and that Gardenias stood for secret love.

Flowers as messengers

Floriography may sound mysterious, but it isn’t. Think about red roses: everyone knows that they are a symbol of love. Here are some others to get you started on your own bouquet message:

  • Daisy: loyalty
  • Pink rose: appreciation
  • Peony: protection
  • Pink Gerbera: joy
  • White camelia and marigold: gratefulness
  • Sunflower and gladioli: admiration