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The Symbolism Of Flowers

May 9, 2008
When creating a gift basket for a special occasion, you may want to include flowers in your display. Since Victorian times, different flowers have represented different things. Understanding these meanings can help you to include the proper flowers in your next gift basket.

There are several flowers that represent purity and innocence. The daisy symbolizes innocence while a white lily represents virginity, purity, and majesty. A rose bud is a symbol for beauty and youth as well as representing a heart that is innocent of love. A red rose bud symbolizes purity and loveliness, while a white one represents girlhood. The primrose represents early youth, while the orchid is the symbol for many children in China. The white carnation represents innocence as well as pure love.

As well as purity and innocence, there are many flowers that are associated with love. Baby's breath, the anemone, and the white rose are symbols of everlasting love while red roses and forget-me-nots represent romantic love. A gladiolus and a thornless rose symbolize love at first sight while lavender represents devotion. First love is symbolized by lilacs while red tulips serve as a declaration of love. The acacia and the fern represent secret love while maternal love is symbolized by moss and nasturtium. The myrtle also represents love while the yellow tulip symbolizes hopeless love.

Flowers can also stand for a variety of other aspects of the human condition aside from love. Cheerfulness and feelings of joy are represented by the buttercup, the calendula, the lily of the valley, the chrysanthemum, and the marjoram. Burnet symbolizes a merry heart. Pride is symbolized by the amaryllis and the tiger lily. Strength is represented by the bay leaf, garlic, and thyme. The latter two also represent valor along with the iris and the borage plant. Humility is symbolized by the bluebell and woodruff while compassion is represented by allspice.

Some flowers represent the less desirable qualities in people. The striped carnation is a refusal aimed at love, while the larkspur represents fickleness. An orange lily symbolizes hate while a yellow lily, a snapdragon, and an orange mock represent a falsehood. Lust is represented by the coriander.

Certain flowers also represented victory, wealth, and success. The nasturtium symbolizes a conquest and victory in battle while palm leaves stands for victory and success. Some of the flowers whose meanings deal with fame and wealth are the tulip, the yellow poppy, jasmine, and the cattail.

There are also flowers that represent eternal life and death. Some of those that symbolize longevity and eternal life are the acorn, the peach, sage, and the stock. Those that symbolize death and grief included aloe (grief), the poppy (eternal sleep), a black rose (death), and a dark crimson rose (mourning).

In past times, certain flowers were thought to be lucky while others were thought to serve as protection. Some modern meanings for flowers have come down from our superstitious past. The bells of Ireland, the holly, clover, and the camellia are all flowers that are associated with good luck. Other flowers are associated with protection, such as the juniper and the feverfew. The begonia warns to beware, as does the oleander. The lily is thought to keep unwanted visitors away, while the hyssop wards against evil spirits. The monkshood warns to beware because a deadly foe is near.

These are just a few of the different meanings that flowers have acquired over the years. Knowing what each flower represents may help you to decide which to include in your gift basket. If nothing else, you will be able to tell the recipient exactly what the flowers mean.
About the Author
We have baby gift baskets that are cute and practical. Perfect for the newborn and new moms. For more information, visit this article on baby gift baskets.
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