Seeds of Inspiration
Plan your wedding day details around your favorite flower!
Do roses make you swoon? Do daisies make your day? If you’re like most ladies out there, you probably have a favorite flower. And, if you’re like most brides-to-be, you’ve probably already put some thought into the flowers that will adorn your special day. Flowers, like the dress, the color scheme, the invitations, and the setting, help create a unique and special mood for every wedding event. What makes flowers truly special is that each variety has its own individual history, characteristics, and symbolism.
Use this guide to learn a little more about your favorite flower, or use this guide to help you find the perfect flower(s) to represent your love and joy on your wedding day. You can use your newfound floral knowledge as a jumping-off point for planning the rest of your wedding day details.
With four or five large, flamboyant trumpet flowers springing from big papery bulbs and smooth leafless stems, amaryllis flowers are anything but shy. These beautiful bulbs bloom in rainbow of colors: Red, rose, copper, maroon, white, green, pink, orange, salmon and yellow. The Amaryllis flower has come to symbolize pride, determination and radiant beauty. It’s a perennial flowering plant, which means it will bloom all year long.
Bird of Paradise
Named for its unmistakable resemblance to a brightly colored tropical bird, the Bird of Paradise represents joyfulness and…paradise! Also known as Crane flowers, Birds of Paradise are distinctive, striking, and colorful. A definitively non-traditional wedding flower choice, this daring flower is actually the official 9th wedding anniversary flower. Native to South Africa, Birds of Paradise bloom from September through May.
Sweet, simple, and soft yellow, Buttercups are meant to brighten your day. Representing childhood innocence and happiness, the Buttercup flower is like a little ray of sunshine. Because of their tiny stature (they’re about the size of a quarter), buttercups looks best when clustered together in mini-arrangements or included as colorful filler in more elaborate arrangements and bouquets.
“Pride and Beauty”
Carnations get a bad rap these days, but they actually have a regal history that dates back more than 2,000 years. Depending on the color, carnations represent different types of love: deep red = longing, light red = admiration, striped = refusal of love, white = pure love good luck, purple = capriciousness, and pink carnations symbolize a mother’s undying love). Carnations are famous for their sweet fragrance and hardy, resilient structure.
“Fidelity and Optimism”
The chrysanthemum is named from the Greek “chrys-“ (meaning “golden - its original color) and “-anthemion” (meaning “flower”). After years of careful cultivation, the chrysanthemum now blooms in a wide range of colors, including white, purple, and red. Second only to the rose in worldwide popularity, the chrysanthemum is popular for bouquets and flower arrangements because of its decorative, fluffy shape.
“Rebirth and New Beginnings”
Daffodil means Spring! Symbolizing rebirth and new beginnings, the Daffodil (also known as the Narcissus) is known throughout the world as a lucky symbol of future prosperity. The 10th wedding anniversary flower, daffodils are said to ensure happiness when presented in a bunch (never just one – a single bloom is considered bad luck!)
Sweet, simple, and easy to grow, daisies are the ultimate representation of innocence. When displayed together in happy bunches or standing upright in rows, daisies at a wedding evoke an unpretentious mood of easy, natural happiness.
“Innocence and Friendship”
With their bell-shaped blooms and deliciously sweet, citrus scent, freesias are among the most popular fragrant flowers. Available in a huge variety of colors including white, golden yellow, orange, red, pink, mauve, lavender, and purple, Freesias are the 7th wedding anniversary flower. Their delicate petals, balanced on long willowy stems, have given freesias a reputation as the symbols of friendship as well as innocence.
With its sturdy wooden stems and delicate, lacy, star-shaped flowers, the hydrangea, the 4th wedding anniversary flower, displays enduring grace and beauty. Depending on how it’s planted, the hydrangea’s color ranges from green to white to pink and purple and blue. The hydrangea is a timeless bloom said to represent anything that’s sincere and heartfelt.
Irises, which represent faith and hope, are a perfect symbol of perseverance and strength. The Iris is the 25th wedding anniversary flower and the French national symbol, the fleur-de-lis. With its unmistakable, regal purple hue and distinct shape, the three upright petals of the Iris are said to symbolize faith, valor and wisdom.
“Love at First Sight”
Representing youthful innocence and true emotions, lilacs are often equated with the spring season, as well as with the honest feelings that come with true love. The beautiful purple color and distinct clustered shape make Lilacs a distinct and memorable, yet classic choice for a wedding celebration.
Throughout history, lilies have been signs of protection. Elegant, traditional white Easter lilies represent purity, majesty, chastity and virtue. Multi-colored Alstroemeria (Peruvian lilies) represent friendship and devotion. White stargazer lilies represent sweetness or express sympathy. Lilies of the Valley, with their unique shape, symbolize humility and devotion.
Because of their complex structure and perfect symmetry, Orchids represent refinement and charm, as well as love and beauty. Delicate and strong at the same time, orchids are a symbol of luxury and grace. Because they are equally striking alone and in groups, orchids have become a symbol of independence as well.
“Humility and Good Fortune”
Peonies are known as the flower of honor and humility, and are also known to bring good fortune. Peonies make a great wedding flower because they are considered an omen of a happy, prosperous marriage. They also make beautiful arrangements with their full, lush petals in colors ranging from yellow to red and pink to deep violet and white.
Small, intricate ranunculus range in color from white, to pink, to yellow and orange, but no matter the color, they truly are a charming bloom. Also said to symbolize new beginnings, these perennial beauties are both charming and cheeky.
“Love and Passion”
Roses, as most people know, symbolize love and passion. More than any other flower, the various colors of roses each offer distinct representations: red (passion), white (innocence), yellow (friendship), pink (appreciation), orange (desire), and purple (enchantment). Roses are the national flower of the United States, and June is National Rose Month (not surprisingly, June is also the month most often associated with weddings).
“Perfection, Love, Selflessness”
Different tulip colors carry distinct meanings (white conveys forgiveness, yellow symbolizes cheerful thoughts, purple represents nobility and red represents perfect love). Tulips are colorful, long-lasting, and fragrant. They are often presented as symbols of love, charity, and perfection.
Queen Annes Lace
“Trust and Steadfast Love”
According to legend, Queen Anne, the wife of King James I, was challenged to create lace as beautiful as a natural flower. While she was making the lace, she pricked her finger, and it’s said that the purple-red flower in the center of Queen Anne’s Lace represents a droplet of her blood.
Evoking the simple grace of an English garden, Snapdragons are available in a rainbow of colors including white, red, pink, orange, yellow and multi-colors. Up close, the bloom looks like a dragon’s face (and squeezing the sides of the petals make the dragon’s mouth open and close). From any distance, the effect is colorful and elegant.
“Warmth and Happiness”
Sunflowers literally turn to follow the sun. Throughout history, they have symbolized the warmth and happiness associated with the sun itself. Their cheerful, distinct, open faces convey warmth, happiness, and longevity. As strong and useful as they are beautiful, Sunflowers are both practical and appealing.
Small, richly colored, sweetly scented, and delicate, sweet peas evoke old-fashioned elegance with their fluttering petals and long, dainty stems. Because of their simple yet captivating construction (available in purples, pinks, creams, and salmons) Sweet Peas are said to symbolize complete and utter bliss.