Today, many flowers have significant meaning for us. We use flowers to celebrate the most poignant moments of life: births, weddings, funerals and birthdays, to express love, friendship, celebration and mourning. One of the most popular symbols for love has come to be the red rose – so much so that on Valentine’s Day you will be hard pressed to find red roses at the last minute! We are drawn to red roses to express deep romantic love. Have you ever wondered why red roses and not any other flower or colour? The answer goes back to early Victorian society, where flowers were a popular way to send all kinds of messages.
The Victorians were obsessed with the “language of flowers” also known as “floriography”, in which distinct meanings were developed for every type and colour flower imaginable. Since it was not considered socially acceptable to express one’s feelings openly, the secret language of flowers was used to subtly communicate messages of love, devotion, joy and affection to one’s friends, enemies and lovers. It is this tradition that reaffirmed the red rose as a symbol of romance and of love. The pink rose symbolised grace whilst the orange rose symbolised fascination.
In a world where WhatsApp messages and Instagram rules the day, falling back on a more traditional expression of love and devotion in a bouquet of beautiful flowers is the best way to say ‘I love you’.