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The Language of Love: A Guide to Symbolic Wedding Flowers and Their Significance

December 05, 2023


Flowers offer so much more than just sweet smells and delicate petals. Many of them also symbolize certain emotions, ideas, and romantic sentiments. This makes the blooms you choose for your wedding bouquet, buttonholes, and venue and table arrangements even more poignant.


Understanding the meaning of flowers is a fun and romantic way to make your wedding even more personal and to create a connection to your chosen accessories and decor.


Here, we’ll delve into the language of love as spoken through flowers, elevating your understanding of these beautiful blooms and helping you to choose those that harmonize perfectly with your big day.


Flowers And Symbolism: A Brief History


The language of love has been expressed through flowers for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. However, it was only in the 19th century that a formal code or language of flowers was developed for communicating special messages and feelings between friends, lovers, and romantic suitors.


In the language of flowers, each flower is bestowed with a specific sentiment or meaning. This gives even more depth to the gesture of gifting someone flowers or carrying them on your wedding day.


The first official book on the secret language of flowers was Frenchwoman Charlotte de la Tour’s Le langage des fleurs, published in 1819. In this book, de la Tour details over 300 blooms, along with the hidden meaning of flowers, symbolism, and historical associations.


More than 200 years later, we still use Le langage des fleurs as a reference for communicating and adding more emotional depth to wedding bouquets and floral arrangements.


10 Symbolic Wedding Flowers To Consider For Your Big Day


There is an endless supply of flowers in the natural world, and just about every one encompasses a unique mood, feeling, or idea. Let’s take a look at ten of the most popular wedding flowers, along with their assigned symbolism and meaning.


  1. Tulips: Love and Passion


Traditionally, tulips denote romantic love and passion. However, there are different meanings assigned to different color variations, such as red for love, pink for luck, purple for admiration,  and orange for friendship.


There are other colors with hidden meanings, too. White flowers mean purity and yellow flowers mean joy and hope. You’ve got a world of options to choose from when it comes to tulips, and these blooms also make the perfect choice for a spring wedding as they’re so seasonal.


  1. Rosemary: Remembrance



Even though rosemary is technically an herb, not a flower, it has risen to popularity in wedding flower arrangements and happens to be a beautiful symbol of remembrance, too.


Ever since ancient times, this fragrant herb has represented fidelity and remembrance. It is a grounding herb with delicate blue flowers, making it a subtle and earthy accompaniment to any bridal bouquet or table centerpiece.


  1. Peony: Compassion



The lusciously layered peony is a symbol of compassion. Associated with a feeling of deep love, empathy, kindness, and altruism, this is a wonderful flower to incorporate into your wedding if you and your partner feel eternally grateful to one another for the selfless input you put into each other’s lives.


Peonies are also symbols of a happy marriage, and their gorgeous, soft, romantic petals are the perfect choice for a wedding.


  1. Rose: Love and Desire



The rose is arguably one of, if not the most, popular wedding flowers to date. With its clear associations with love and romance, you can never go wrong with roses for your big day.


However, like tulips, roses have different meanings for different colors. They include red for romance and desire, white for purity, green for fertility, blue for mystery, and pink for sincerity. If you combine one or more rose colors together, it becomes a symbol of unity.


  1. Wisteria: Resilience and Longevity



Enchanting, gentle wisteria blossoms are a symbol of resilience, longevity, and everlasting love. This is because wisteria plants are able to live for hundreds of years under the right circumstances. If you want the blessing of a long life with your loved one, wisteria is a great option for you.


  1. Dahlia: Commitment



Vibrant dahlias denote commitment, kindness, and steadfastness. The latter has a special meaning—dahlias can continue blooming after weathering difficult conditions and tend to last much longer than other flowers. They commit to their growth, just like you and your partner will do when you say your I dos.


  1. Heather: Good Luck and Protection



Delicate, wafting heather symbolizes good luck and protection over your marriage. For this reason, many people choose to decorate their homes with heather when a big event or ceremony is coming up.


Also representative of purity and innocence, Heather is a flower that naturally brings about positive feelings and a gentle, supportive atmosphere. With its feathery spikes and bell-shaped flowers, heather is ideal for a boho-chic themed wedding or one with a more rustic theme.


  1. Hydrangea: Gratitude



Large bunches of blue or purple hydrangeas are representative of gratitude and generosity. Their large, round shape and abundance of petals show a giving nature that can be a beautiful addition to any wedding party. Their colors also represent harmony and peace in the home.


  1. Chrysanthemum: Everlasting Joy



Chrysanthemums are bright, beautiful, and busy-looking flowers that symbolize everlasting joy and optimism. If you and your partner are overwhelmed with excitement and positivity for the future, these vibrant blossoms would make an excellent choice for your wedding.


  1. Baby’s Breath: Innocence


Baby’s Breath

Baby’s Breath is another one of the world’s favorite wedding flowers. Simple, soft, and subtle in appearance, its delicate little white petals denote purity and innocence.


What makes this flower special is that it looks beautiful on its own or when paired with other flowers, making it very flexible. The meaning of this flower is perfect for a marriage ceremony as it’s a powerful symbol of hope and new beginnings,


Use The Secret Language Of Flowers To Express Your Love


Understanding the language of love through flowers is a beautiful and enjoyable way to celebrate not just your wedding day but every special occasion afterward. Whether you celebrate every year with the same flowers on your anniversary or join a flower club and mark the passing of every shared month or season, knowing the meaning of flowers can add new meaning to every bouquet.


Use this guide to choose flowers that resonate with you and your partner, and you’ll add something unique and memorable to your big day!


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